We say it with pride quite regularly, our amazing staff in corporate and senior living fitness centers are what help us serve our clients so well. Their strong educational background in health and fitness helps us set the bar high while their exceptional creativity and relationship building skills allows them to keep their members engaged and asking what’s coming next. Since we have the privilege of getting to know our staff across the country, we thought our followers might like to as well. Join us monthly as we throw a different NIFS team member a High Five.
- Name: Tracy Yost
- City, State: Redding, CT
- Years with NIFS: a little over 2 years. However, I started as a per diem sub so add in an additional 3-4 months of sub work.
- Position: Fitness Manager
- What brought you to NIFS: I was looking to work in fitness on a campus with an older population. After working a few shifts for the previous manager, I knew I liked working at my client site. Then I saw the Fitness Manager's role posted online. I immediately applied. As they say, the rest is history. I find tremendous satisfaction in working with an older population. I understand that it takes effort for them to get to fitness class/gym. I try to make sure that they feel it was worth the effort. I often find that the super seniors, as I call them, are so grateful for every workout, every balance challenge, every tip, etc. In some ways, I work for the daily reward of making a difference in people's lives.
- What is the most impactful moment you have shared with a member: I like to do a loving kindness meditation practice in November. I find that it sets the stage for a better Thanksgiving Day. There was no established mindfulness practice here so I took a risk and introduced a morning meditation class. We had half a dozen participants (which is good for us). One particular day after 3 weeks or so of practicing loving kindness every weekday morning, the energy/the flow was particularly powerful in the room. My voice & pace just right, no outside noises, no late comers, etc. As I was reading the script, I could feel the charged emotion in the room and in my own body. I looked up and eyes were closed but tears were streaming down most faces. I believe it was a moment of true forgiveness combined with the power of group energy. It's hard to describe but it was profound. In fact, those of us in the room still feel connected to each other. I was able to build on that connection during the year of Covid isolation. I added those residents to my weekly call list.
- What separates a NIFS fitness pro from the rest: The resources and the support. We are able to tap into a group of fitness professionals who understand the age population and the dynamic of a continuing care community. We share best practices and best programs. However, it's the next step that truly separates us: we are able to use what we have learned and tailor it to our individual site. Suggestions and answers are a phone call or email away.
- What is your favorite thing about working at your client site: The people, it's always about the people & relationships for me. I love working on a campus and connecting residents to all the resources available on the campus. Right now, my absolute fave thing is providing scavenger hunts that allow residents to walk and explore every nook & cranny of the community.
- What motivates you: Feeling part of...a team, a community, a family. Helping people. I like connecting to residents with conversations, learning about their lives before moving into the community. I also like feeling part of the team that ensures that residents are getting the assistance that they need. As the Fitness Manager, I see residents daily and thus see/hear/notice changes that I am able to share with the transition team.
- What is your favorite hobby: I love my 2 dogs. I love day hikes. On Sundays, my husband and I (with our dogs) are currently exploring The Charles Ives Trail in our area of Connecticut. It's an 18-mile trail (that we had never heard of) that travels through the nearby towns in our area. I love crochet but its's currently on hold. Instead, I am sewing intricate felt Christmas stockings for my family. It's been a long process. I play a crazy mah jongg solitaire game with real tiles (not online). I read a lot of books. I actually listen to books- as I drive, as I sew, as I exercise. My daughters live in California. I love visiting them and exploring with them. Lastly, I run races but not because I like running. I run races because somehow, I am able to convince friends to do one with me. It becomes more about the race weekend and the time spent together with friends than the actual race. Ironically a friend just reversed roles & convinced me to join her in a 50-mile race called Rock the Ridge.
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ACTIVE AGING | CORPORATE FITNESS