Thursday, 21 January 2016 06:45

Be Fit For Life Wellness Challenge and Winter Walk Day shows the need for a well-rounded start to good health

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It’s well into the new year and perhaps those new year’s resolutions involving losing weight or getting more exercise are already broken and done. Part of the issue is not being properly informed on different aspects of healthy living. The Medicine Hat College is a logical place where people can start to learn.


The College’s Winter Food and Fitness Fresh Start program is underway and runs until Feb. 12. It is overseen by the Be Fit for Life Centre.
The Medicine Hat Be Fit for Life Centre is based in the Sport and Wellness Department within the College. Amy Risk Richardson, wellness co-ordinator, sport and wellness for the Centre, says they had a decent number of people take part in the challenge.
The idea and model for this particular challenge came as a result of program held in the fall. The difference is this program has the detailed nutritional component to it.
Richardson says this challenge is kind of a wake-up call, setting people on the right path initiative.
She says one of the impediments to healthy lifestyle changes is there are so many gimmicks on the market.
“It’s more of an openness to healthy living,” explains Richardson of the program. “There are a lot of exercise extremists ... power yoga, crossfit. For someone just starting it’s intimidating and confusing. We don’t promote that idea of (exclusive) specific (type of exercise).”
The four-week challenge involves, not only the live orientation and meeting session, but for those who are able to exercise fitness challenges (cardio, strength, stress release), and weekly tips.
Those who booked early also had a fitness program designed specifically for them.
What helps make this “Fresh Start” program different is the emphasis put on nutrition.
Holistic nutritionist Nikki Stadnyk is working with clients on individual tracking of nutrition as well as systematically looking and understanding the food menu guide as well as a “Ditch the Junk Challenge.”
Richardson is excited about this type of well-rounded program.
“It’s a good approach; it’s going to be a challenge, but we have to look at different ways to improve their bodies,” explains Richardson. “Plus it gives motivation to stick with it and being a part of a group of people makes your more motivated too.
She notes between the expert information and the challenges, it will make it easier for the clients to be self-responsible.
Richardson emphasizes goals have to be realistic and the activities fun or else
On Feb. 3, the college’s staff will be part of a Winter Walk Day where they will walk around the perimeter of the main campus on the Sunrise Rotary Trail.
However, there are two other public events.
In Redcliff at the Senior Centre there’s a walk starting at at 9:30 a.m. and in Medicine Hat College  at 4:30 p.m. the public is invited to be part of Medicine Hat’s version of the provincial Winter Walk Day. The MHC Family Fun Walk includes members of some of the Rattlers varsity teams. It goes from 4:30-5:45 p.m. at the MHC front entrance and there is free parking. There will also be an autograph signing with paralympians, road hockey with Medicine Hat Hockey Hounds Midget AA team members, face painting, winter carnival games and free hot chocolate.
Richardson is encouraging people to sign up (www.winterwalkday.com) including schools within the local school divisions (Grasslands and Prairie Rose). Be Fit for Life partners with the provincial program, Moving and Choosing and promote to the four school jurisdictions in the region (Medicine Hat public and Catholic as well as Prairie Rose and Grasslands). Those divisions which sign up have an opportunity to get the new winter physical literacy resources from the Be Fit For Life Network.
The Moving and Choosing website is www.movingandchoosing.com .

Read 2589 times Last modified on Thursday, 21 January 2016 07:11
Ryan Dahlman

Managing Editor