YMCA set to #039;Shape Up!#039;

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 19, 2005

Greenville's citizens from five to ninety-five and beyond are encouraged to get themselves into the best shape of their lives through a new program offered through the Montgomery Area YMCA and the local Y – Shape Up 2005.

"This is a fabulous program that runs for 90 days. During Shape Up, we have some great guest speakers coming to all our branch facilities to talk about the four most important areas of life: Body, Mind, Spirit and Finances.

"There are seven different sign up locations in our area. When you sign up, you can choose to either keep up with your mileage, work on weight loss, or do both during these three months. You will also get your participation card that serves as your ticket to all Shape UP 2005 events," explains Greenville Family Y Executive Director Amanda Phillips.

Mileage logged in is not limited to miles walked or ran, either, says Phillips. "For every 15 minutes of physical activity, you are given credit for one mile. A child who plays ball for an hour and a half, for example, would get credit for six miles. This is a great way for our youngsters to see getting in shape can be fun and not just hard work. It will be great for children and adults, and kids as young as five can participate."

There are eight check-in dates – March 24, April 7, April 21, May 5, May 19, June 2, June 16 and June 28.

"All our Montgomery Area Ys will be connected together via computer for this program. So, if you happen to be out of town the day of check in and you are near one of our other locations, you can simply stop in there."

While "Shape Up 2005" officially kicks off in Montgomery today at the Riverfront Amphitheater from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., the Greenville Area YMCA will be kicking things off locally this Monday, March 21 from 8 a.m. until closing.

"We will have a table set up out front on Monday so folks can get signed up and weighed in. The program only costs $5 per person or $10 for a family – of course, for Y members the program is free," says Phillips.

Shape Up participants will get plenty of support throughout the 90-day program.

Each participant will receive a Healthy Living Guide to provide resources for making healthy decisions in those four major areas of life.

They will also get a calendar of events including free or low-cost healthy family activities for those 90 days, including financial seminars, health and nutrition seminars, walking events, triathlons and more.

Special discounts will also be offered at Montgomery Area Y businesses to encourage healthy choices. Participants can also choose to record their mileage/weight loss achievements online by logging on to www.shapeup2005.com.

"I think this is going to be really beneficial to a lot of people in our community in many areas of their lives. We are so excited to be a part of it," says Phillips.

For more information, contact the Greenville Area YMCA at 382-0550 or log on to www.shapeup2005.com. Other check-in locations include the Bell Road YMCA, Cleveland Avenue Y, Downtown Y, East Family Y, Kershaw Family Y and Southeast Family Y in Montgomery.

Shape Up 2005 is being sponsored in the Montgomery area by Bell South, the Montgomery Area YMCA, the Montgomery Biscuits, the Montgomery Advertiser, McDonald's, Colonial Bank, Baptist Health, AUM, WSFA 12, Alabama Power and 95.1 The Fox Radio.