Not only is the YMCA a place to work out, it has become like a second home. A place where the kids look forward to coming, a place where we as a family have come together to better ourselves.
Elena and Jose have been Y members a little over 2 years. They joined because they wanted to lose weight. At first they worked out separately, but after the birth of their daughter, Reina, Elena wanted to work out more and they started working out together, holding each other accountable. They work out consistently, almost every day, doing a variety of weight work outs and have recently started doing cardio together as well. The older kids, Jesus (11) and Almma (8), like the Multi-generational Room, making friends and doing crafts and are really attached to some of the staff. They've also played youth soccer at the Y, with Jose as their coach. Reina, 19 months, hadn't really been in a childcare situation before, so it was hard leaving her in Child Watch at first. The TV screens on the cardio equipment showing the Child Watch area have helped with that transition. Elena gets to watch Reina go from being in the bouncer, to walking along the cubbies, to going down the slide- watching her, but letting go a little bit, able to observe her growth. They also have good family time when they play together in the pool.
A highlight for Elena and Jose has been the Adult Soccer League. Jose had played soccer up until 2 years before and Elena had played as a child. They were talking with some friends who also used to play and they decided to put together a team- two 20 minute halves showed them how out of shape they were! She was even able to get her dad to play after not playing for 11 years, and Elena was excited to see him active. Elena also appreciates that she has been able to meet new friends at the Y that she wouldn't have met otherwise. She says she's glad Jose made her join and she reached her goal of losing weight- 38 lbs! She enjoys working out now and being here; it's a part of their lifestyle-not something they feel like they "have" to do. Elena says, "Not only is the YMCA a place to work out, it has become like a second home. A place where the kids look forward to coming, a place where we as a family have come together to better ourselves."