Seniors of White Rock walked together for the inaugural Walk for Heart event after raising money for five weeks for Heart and Stroke Foundation.
LIVE WELL Exercise Clinic partnered with the Heart and Stroke Foundation to raise money for the charity and promote good heart health through exercise for National Health and Fitness Day.
To celebrate, members of the White Rock Clinic came together to complete a 3 km, heart-shaped walking route together on Sunday morning (June 5).
Members of the clinic also participated in a 5-week event called Fill Your Heart, which encouraged them to exercise four-times a week. For each workout completed, they got a sticker to add to their ‘heart’.
“If you have been inactive, this is a great chance to start again. Walking is the most accessible form of exercise that improves our heart function with the simple act of taking that first step,” said Sara Hodson, CEO of LIVE WELL Exercise Clinic and the president of the Fitness Industry Council of Canada in a news release on Friday (June 2).
“We know many Canadians moved less in the last two years, and we are here to say: let’s take that first step together.”
LIVE WELL clinic now has locations all over the country.
Most members of the fitness facility are older adults, ranging from age 50 to 80, who come to the clinic to lead healthier lives while having their physical and mental health looked after by qualified staff.
Each person who joins the centre dedicates two appointments to perform exercises that are tailored to their physical needs and goals, since most have their own health concerns.
Nearly all members come to the facility on their own, but some find LIVE WELL through a referral from their family physician, Tasha McRae, vice president of brand and culture at the clinic who also has a background in clinical exercise physiology, told Peace Arch News.
“Sometimes we’re the ones who find things and send it to their physicians because we see them twice a week and their doctors, of course, don’t,” she added.
McRae also shared that many people who come to the facility are not comfortable going to a regular gym. At the clinic, they have a community of people surrounding them who keep them accountable, and like-minded individuals who they can connect with.
Making sure all members feel “safe and supported” is the aim, McRae said.
Many seniors McRae works with want to be able to take care of their grandchildren or even simply run around with them outside. Through the workout sessions, many have now reached that goal.
“We had a husband come to us and say, ‘Thank you so much, my wife can get out of the bath tub and I don’t have to worry about her slipping and falling,” McRae said.
Filling space on the walls of the clinic are the little differences that members notice in their everyday lives that they have achieved. The display is to remind everyone that it is important to celebrate even the smallest wins, said McRae.
Accomplishments such as ‘I gardened without any pain’ and ‘I ate salad for dinner four times this week’ and ‘Workouts are getting easier to complete’ can be seen on the wall. These are the changes that really matter in people’s lives, she added.
LIVE WELL raised $12,500 through the members’ fundraising efforts as of Sunday afternoon. To donate to Heart and Stroke Foundation through LIVE WELL, visit heartandstroke.ca.