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"Unleashing Your Inner Strength: You Are Stronger Than You Think"

"I always thought I just wanted to look good until I realized what it felt like to be strong."

When I was the principal of South Queen's Middle School, I worked with the RCMP Community Liaison Unit, school staff, and the school community to transform the welding lab into a weight-lifting fitness centre. The centre became a place for students, adults and seniors to attend and work together toward a healthy lifestyle.

As an athlete, lifting weights was part of my daily routine. At the gym, the mirror reflects that you're getting stronger, not prettier. You lift weights looking in the mirror to ensure your posture, form, and alignment are correct. With each practice, you learn to let go of the mirror as a tool of judgement, negativity, low self-esteem, and distorted body image.

No matter how old we are, weight-bearing exercise helps maintain optimal health. For the past two years, I've avoided lifting weights due to back pain, rib fractures, and my cancer reoccurrence. Buoyed by my success with swimming here in Antigua, I tried out Jolly Harbour's Fitness facility. Looking in the mirror again to ensure proper form and alignment is another blessing of this holiday reset.

The fitness centre is managed by Donny Roseau. He is a great role model and instructor to Antiguan youth, adults, and vacationers. Donny has a warm and enthusiastic personality that makes everyone who comes into the gym feel supported and encouraged to complete the routine that best suits their needs.

My vacation in Antigua is coming to an end. However, I will leave with a sense of accomplishment and look forward to joining the YMCA and Lunenburg County Lifestyle Center to continue my swimming and weightlifting practices.

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This is great news BJ! Antigua was certainly a big success for you. I look forward to seeing you back in the gym again. Big love.

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Thanks Dana. As you know the importance of taking leave and travel to revive the heart and soul!! 💕⚓️

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