A Resource for Athens Area Families

Families on the Move: Staying Fit & Having Fun!
By April Williams
May/June 2007

Families on the Move is an Athens Parent Magazine Initiative with the support of WoW! Boot Camp, Friends of Southeast Clarke Park and MYM Marketing & Public Relations.

So ... there it was.  My moment of TRUTH!  I had been in a six year funk.  I existed in a pretty consistent state of grumpiness, insecurity, irritability, sluggishness, and blame.  If only he (he being the husband) would change ... then I would be happy. 

I was completely convinced my husband should take full responsibility for my unhappiness/funk by changing HIS ways!  So much so, I dragged him into our preacher's office one rainy afternoon for a consult.  (Let me take a moment to point out that my sweet husband had a job he was pleased with, was a caring and responsible father, and trained and competed seasonally as a triathlete and marathon runner.  As a result, he was in the best shape of his life!)  I, on the other hand, had packed on 40 pounds, wasn't training for a darn thing, was currently unemployed and didn't have a single hobby.  So, the preacher listened to my list of complaints and my suggestions on how Michael should change.  I demanded that Michael help more around the house, be more concerned about me, spend less time exercising (to be available to help more around the house, of course). 

The preacher nodded.  He smiled.  Then he turned to me.  To ME!  He said, "April, what are YOU doing to feel better about yourself?"  If that weren't enough, he then proceeded to bring up the taboo subject of all subjects.  My weight!  He asked, "If you're unhappy with your weight, what are YOU doing about it?"  "What are YOUR hobbies?"  I gulped... I gasped... I stammered.  I'd been hit with a humbling 2x4 of truth, by my preacher no less.  I had a lump of emotion the size of a tri bike in my throat.  I had nowhere to run.  I cried.  I paused.  I decided to look the TRUTH straight in the eye.  There's a reason they say, "The TRUTH will set you free," and boy, has it ever!   My amazing family hasn't been the same since.  (Thank you Dr. Ross!)

I didn't know where to begin but discovered that when you're willing to do whatever it takes and will let go of that last (most likely ridiculous) excuse you're holding on to, the beginning will find you!  All the support you need is out there!  Plus, amazingly enough, the answers already live within us. 

I began taking responsibility for setting the standard of fitness and health for the entire family.  We became a family on the move.  I led by example.  I joined Weight Watchers (and lost the 40 pounds), joined a tennis team at Bishop Park and hired my current personal trainer, Orlando Green.  I began running again and taking the Tuesday/Thursday EARLY morning spin classes with Stacey at the YMCA.  We haven't had cable in six years, so none of us are parked in front of the TV.  As a family, we began biking from our house in Homewood Hills to 5 Points for dinner.  We shot basketballs, canoed, threw footballs and baseballs, played hop scotch, 4 square, and hula‑hooped.  We also enjoy the comrade and fun we have with other families on the move, like the Alex's.  Together, our families played soccer on Thanksgiving, ran at the track Christmas Eve and started the 2007 New Year with a 5K road race at Sandy Creek Park.  Who says holidays have to be centered around food and alcohol?!

I discovered healthy eating was as integral a part of good health and fitness as exercise.  So my children, Sam and Janie, helped me count out 10 chips (salsa only - no cheese dip for me, please!) at our favorite Mexican restaurant we now visit only one time a month as opposed to one time a day.  We began talking about being over weight and the quality of life that one lives in that state.  We discuss fat grams, protein, fruits and veggies.  We eat brown rice, whole grain products, turkey (about a 100 different ways) fish, fruits, veggies and even have a "healthy snack bowl" on the kitchen table.

As the transformation took place, people began to take notice.  I found I was continually being asked, "How?"  Always passionate about my response, I discovered I had a burning desire to provide others with a pathway to a fitter and healthier lifestyle.  Out of this desire was born WoW! Boot Camp (www.wowbootcamp.net).  A fitness business the entire family is proud of!

It's been an amazing journey since that day in the preacher's office.  Today, my family's life is filled with fitness and fun!  With baseball, gymnastics, triathlons and road races we are a family on the move ... staying fit and having fun! 

April Williams is the founder and president of WoW! Fitness Group.  She's a certified group fitness instructor, certified running instructor, co‑active life coach, lifetime member of Weight Watchers, an accomplished marathon runner and a budding triathlete.  She's been married to Michael for over 14 years and is the proud mother of Sam, 10 and Janie 7.



Updated weekly!
Festivals, music, arts events    Storytimes
Parks and recreation events  •  Parent groups

Find it all on the Athens Parent online calendar

© 1998 - Athens Parent, Inc.  All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.
Send comments or suggestions to: webmaster@athensparent.com