Thursday, March 24, 2011

Spring Into Action

By Kristin Champagne, Health and Fitness Director, Middlesex YMCA

It’s the end of a long winter and time to finally start looking forward to the warm weather. Maybe you are thinking of your spring and summer clothes, and how they will fit; or maybe you are looking forward to a specific goal; running a race, or doing a hike.

So how do you get started?

Step one- Just start. Your first step is to take action, get to the gym, get outside for a walk or a run.

Step two – Do it again. It takes 30 days to build a habit. Talking yourself out of a workout one day will only make it easier to talk yourself out of it the next day.

Step three- Don’t be afraid to ask for help. If you have questions or concerns, ask a qualified fitness professional. If you need help committing, ask someone you know who is already committed to exercise to be your workout buddy.

Step Four- Set realistic goals. Take stock of where you are without beating yourself up. Negative self talk will only make it harder to get back on track. Give yourself credit for the good work you’ve done.

Step Five – Scathe off boredom. Mix up your workouts to keep it interesting. Try a different kind of workout or a new fitness class.

Finally – Keep your goal in mind. Know that reaching your goal is just a matter of continuing, and maybe you will find you enjoy the journey. Learning to love exercise is a guarantee of lifelong fitness J

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

YMCA Strong Kids Dodgeball Tournament

The first annual Strong Kids Dodgeball Tournament was held on Saturday, March 5th in the YMCA gymnasium. Over 100 people made up the twelve teams that competed in a series of fierce and competitive games of dodgeball.

This event was created to bring members of our community together to have fun and help donate to our wonderful cause; the YMCA Strong Kids Campaign. The Strong Kids Campaign is an annual fundraiser whose proceeds benefit our YMCA Open Doors Financial Assistance Program. Donations to the Strong Kids Campaign ensure that all families and children have access to YMCA programs at affordable prices.

This event helped the YMCA raise $500.00 for our campaign. The winning team of this year’s Strong Kids Dodgeball Tournament was YMCA Camp Mataucha (or also known as Team Awesome). The champions received a gift certificate to one of Middletown’s great restaurants Mondo Pizza.

Thank you everyone who helped make this tournament a great success. A special thank you goes out to Mondo for kindly donating gift certificates and pizzas for this event. I hope to see everyone back next year at our Second Annual Strong Kids Dodgeball Tournament!

Friday, March 18, 2011



Ryan Nolan Barnicle, Aquatics Coordinator

Ryan has been with the Middlesex YMCA for six months. He is a Providence College graduate who obtained his teaching certification from SCSU. Ryan taught high school biology in the Bronx, Newington, and Middletown but decided to recommit to his first love, youth aquatics. He has been a lifeguard, swim instructor, swim coach, and pool director for over 10 years with Newington Parks and Recreation and now calls the Y home.

Fun Fact: Ryan loves to swim and be near the water. He was a Division I swimmer for Providence College and is currently training for a marathon!

What is your role at the Middlesex YMCA?

“I am responsible for scheduling and training the lifeguards and swim instructors here at the Y. I coordinate with the Engineering Department to keep our aquatic facilities clean and safe. I also teach swimming lessons and am the primary instructor for American Red Cross health and safety courses.”

What do you find most rewarding about your work at the YMCA?

“I love seeing a student fall in love with the water after learning a difficult skill.”

How does the YMCA impact the community?

“The Y puts youth development at the forefront of its mission and that is an ideal I can really get behind. Growing up is a precious time in a person’s life and I think the Y helps make sure that it’s done right.”

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

YES! You May

Congratulations to Caroline & David May who were the first of our new members to earn back $50 by visiting the YMCA at least 10 times in their first 30 Days.
David & Caroline now have lots of company because yesterday we sent out 23 more checks to others that have reached that magic number.

We hope that by becoming regular users during their first 30 days, our new members will start to make regular exercise a habit. As regular users they will get all of the health benefits that YMCA members know, more energy, less stress, improved stamina and weight loss.
So congratulations to Caroline and David and all of our new members that are active members of our YMCA.