Saturday, July 18, 2009

July's Save the World Diet Challenge: Running the Family

The July Save The World Diet Challenge was all about family so my husband and I packed up the car and headed to the beach -- Virginia Beach.

We were heading to the Mount Trashmore YMCA's July 4 event to support their We Build People Campaign. Each one of us got to participate somehow. I was signed up to jog/walk the 5K. My husband took a run during the one-mile event. My daughter -- now 17 months old -- was going to do the Tot Trot.

YMCAs are collectively the nation’s largest providers of health and well-being programs, according to If you didn't already know, the YMCA serves people, regardless of their ability to pay.

I selected the Mount Trashmore YMCA event in Virginia Beach because my friend Bridget works there. In fact, she works non-stop for this awesome organization that does so much for its surrounding community.

I am a YMCA member in my hometown. To me, the place is a godsend. It's an affordable facility with free childcare while I workout. Having a break to be healthy makes me a better parent.
They have family events, and swim time. This summer our YMCA is helping me step up my weight loss routine with an outdoor boot camp and other benefits such as personal training and nutritional counseling. These are just a part of the YMCA's mission, and work.

But back to the race -- I had a great run/walk in the hot Virginia sun (even at 8 a.m.!). I didn't finish last, which was a big victory. Chris had a good run. Then we all went to the starting line of the Tot Trot for our daughter's first race. There were a few stumbles, and a few times when she had to be redirected toward the finish line. But she finished, and clapped as we all yelled, "Yeah!"

(She finished last, but with no other kids under two years old, I suppose she won her age division.)

Like all the other runners, she received a Tot Trot ribbon, a red fabric badge that she watched flap in the breeze, as she proudly held onto its string. She seemed to know that ribbon meant achieving something great.

For me, this event was so special because it symbolized our committment to staying active as a family. We know doing so is fun, and it builds community and character. I'm so happy that the the nation's 2,686 YMCAs are there for so many other individuals and families.

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