Have you ever wondered about the positive impact you have made on the life of another person, whether it is helping them get fit or taking up a new hobby? Mandy Martin is quick to point out that Heather Birge made a difference in her life. The two ladies have worked together for almost five years at Perry Meridian High School, where Mandy is the school nurse and Heather is an Administrative Assistant. It’s where Heather first told Mandy about her workouts at the Baxter YMCA.
It Takes Work To Get Fit
Heather was a YMCA member in her youth when summer meant putting lemon juice in her hair while laying by the pool, and now, as an adult for 13 years. She has tried every class that the Baxter Y
has to offer but has chosen to focus her workouts in the Wellness Center with 35 minutes of cardio and 1 hour of strength training. While Mandy was always impressed by Heather’s motivation and dedication to get fit, she had not yet decided to make it a priority for herself until a year ago. That’s when Mandy joined the Baxter Y and started her workouts inspired by Heather’s routine.
Mandy had stayed home to focus on her family and, like many moms, lost herself in the day to day. That’s something the two had in common; putting themselves last.
"I loved being a mom, but I stopped focusing on me and just put the weight on over time,” explained Mandy.
Mandy experienced that “back to work” guilt that many parents feel. It was one of the things that they bonded over. While they may not work out together, Mandy was still interested in everything that Heather did at the YMCA. Workouts became a priority for her three days a week and eventually the weight started to come off. Soon she turned her attention to her diet. While not on a strict regiment, she did start to eat more fruits and vegetables while casually watching her calorie intake.
The Finish Line
Forty-three pounds later, Mandy is back to feeling like herself again. She credits Heather’s friendship with getting her to the YMCA
, and helping her get fit.
“My family loves to go hiking. My husband and three boys have always enjoyed it. I always went too, but was out of breath and would have to take breaks periodically. They lovingly referred to me as “bear bate” since I was always lagging behind. Now I can keep up. My youngest son Logan and I now race the last little bit of our hike,” Mandy says with a bit of emotion in her voice. “They are proud of me!”
Heather is proud of Mandy’s progress as well. “She is just such a nice person and now look at her! She looks great!”
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