"'What brings you to the Y?' is a question that, for me, has multiple answers. Ten years ago when I signed up, at 40, to participate in a triathlon, the Y taught me how to swim. Five years ago, as a busy mother with growing sons and a business, the elliptical machine and my headphones were often my “me time.” But last year, I had more urgent reasons to come to the Y.

"At my annual physical, I watched the scale tip up fifteen pounds from the year before. My doctor’s response had me reeling. 'At a certain point,' she said, 'it becomes impossible to re-shape the body.' "I was 49. I was also seriously annoyed. How could my body betray me this way? I’d taken such good care of it. I swam, I biked, I hiked. My body had survived three pregnancies including a miscarriage and given me three sons including twins. And it had beat an aggressive cancer. Yes, I was frustrated with the number on the scale, but more important was the realization that an increased BMI could put me at risk for a cancer recurrence and a borderline diabetes diagnosis that affects my father and members of my extended family. My plan was simple: to take advantage of all the wonderful classes at the Hale Y.

"Since last fall, I’ve consistently taken just about every class, from Bosu to Pilates to yoga to Weight Train Together- and I’ve seen the results. My energy is up, my sugar is back to normal levels, I’ve lost those fifteen pounds, and as a bonus: I’m no longer anemic- something I’ve dealt with for nearly twenty years.

"What brought me to the Y ten years ago is also what keeps me coming back: better health for every stage of life. I love that my Hale Y membership includes fantastic classes with devoted instructors in a safe, welcoming atmosphere that produce results I can take to the doctor."

Locations: Hale YMCA
Category: Hale