Parkville, Maryland—According to a survey of runners and bicyclists by Strava, January 17 is the day each year that most New Year's resolutions related to fitness are broken.
Don't count Mike Sullivan, a resident of Oak Crest, in this category.
Mike moved to the senior living community developed and managed by Erickson Living with Doris Neff in 2015 from nearby Perry Hall. Always physically active, he began to take advantage of opportunities at Oak Crest, first by joining the resident softball team.
"I was initially hesitant about becoming involved with the on-site fitness center, but every trainer on the Oak Crest staff made me feel welcomed and appreciated," recalled Mike, a retired mass control technician with WJZ-TV in Baltimore.
A Big Year
In January 2019, he made a concerted effort to bolster his exercise and wellness regimen. By the end of the year, Mike achieved his goals. How did he do it?
"My workout includes the elliptical for cardio and weights for strength training. I also enjoy water volleyball in the aquatics center and joining fellow residents in the Walking Group. All told, I try to make use of the exercise facilities at Oak Crest six days per week," described Mike.
Julie Sega, Fitness Manager at Oak Crest, and her team of trainers (Renee Hill, Laura Selvage and Alex Beilenson) created an engaging calendar of special events in 2019. Mike was an active participant in the Oak Crest Triathlon, March Madness Free Throw Shooting Contest, Poker Run, Super Fit Challenge and National Parks Challenge. He even played cornhole and pickleball.
"They make exercise rewarding and fun," said Mike.
Three Steps to Success
Ms. Sega, a certified MS Exercise Science, RYT 200 trainer, promotes three principles to people of all ages who are beginning an exercise program:
- Goal-Setting: "Set the commitment and make it a priority in your life. At Oak Crest, for example, we perform a comprehensive assessment of each resident when they get started. Our team asks questions and listens to their priorities. It could be improving personal strength, balance or cardio…or even seeking socialization opportunities. We then map out objectives together."
- Regimen: "Wake up and feel awesome today! This can be the early emotional boost to create the habit and move forward with your routine. Develop a calendar that describes your activities and tracks your progress. It could be a hand-written chart on your refrigerator or an app on your smart phone. Either way, you will be able to celebrate your success and identify areas of improvement."
- Support-System: "Enrolling in a group class or working with a personal trainer, services we offer at Oak Crest, are positive ways to generate enthusiasm and accountability and form friendships. Residents in the water volleyball class even celebrated the holidays together. These are all fundamental dimensions of wellness."
A Great Outcome
Mike was named a "Fitness Center Star" in 2019, a quarterly award given to a resident who always strives to excel. He is looking forward to another active year with his friends.
"With the resources so close to our apartment home, there's never an excuse," said Mike. "The fitness center is open 24/7 which fits my early morning routine. Everything connects when you exercise."
About Oak Crest: Oak Crest, one of 20 continuing care retirement communities developed and managed by Erickson Living®, is situated on a scenic 87-acre campus in Parkville, Maryland. The not-for-profit community of more than 2,100 residents and 1,250 employees is governed by its own board of directors, affiliated with National Senior Campuses, who provide independent financial and operational oversight of Oak Crest. Additional information can be found at OakCrestCommunity.com.