Family, fitness and fun

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By Stevie Lowery

Parents and their children exercising... together!
I witnessed that very thing Saturday at the seventh annual Family Fitness and Safety Day at Graham Memorial Park in Lebanon.
It was a welcome sight to see.
I watched children and their parents compete in sack races, run through obstacle courses and they even humored me and did some of my "Girls on the Run warm-up exercises," which included squat jacks.
(FYI - there is such a thing as doing too many squat jacks. I found that out the hard way Sunday morning when I attempted to crawl out of bed. My six-year-old, son, who was helping me lead exercises Saturday, eventually just flat out refused to do the squat jacks. He sat down and said very matter-of-factly, "I've had enough of those.")
But, aside from a few too many squat jacks on my part, Saturday's event was a huge success. More than 250 people attended, which is just awesome. And, throughout the day I noticed something. Every single person I met was smiling and laughing as they were exercising. I would like to think that it was because of the endorphins that are released when one exercises, but it might have been from the sight of me lunging and squatting while grimacing in pain. Regardless, I was just glad to see so many people of all ages and sizes having such a good time while exercising. It was a beautiful thing! And it's something I would love to see more of, which I must say I've noticed an increase in the number of people exercising locally. I hope that it isn't just a figment of my imagination. And I hope it doesn't stop when the temperatures drop. (Which reminds me, I need to get my treadmill fixed. It's been out of order since The Lebanon Enterprise Main Street Treadmill Challenge. Anybody know any treadmill fixer uppers?)
I want to publicly recognize the members of the Marion County Fitness and Nutrition Coalition for organizing such a worthwhile event. Combining fitness, safety and, most importantly, fun all together in one free event for the public is a feat, and the coalition does it year in and year out. The event requires a great deal of organization, time and teamwork to pull off, and the coalition does it with ease. Or, at least, they make it look easy. But, like squat jacks, it's not as easy as it looks. So, on behalf of the hundreds of people who took part in Saturday's event, I want to say thank you, Marion County Fitness and Nutrition Coalition, for hosting such an informative and fun event.
(Now, where did I put my Icy Hot Cream?)