Sally Miller approaches life with zest, her contagious laughter often filling the room if you’re fortunate to be nearby. For members of the Snap Fitness location in St. Johns, Mich., she’s a familiar face and de facto head cheerleader, whether you’re young or old. “They all call me mom,” Miller said of gym regulars, ranging in age from teens to octogenarians.
Sally Miller It’s her enthusiasm and passion for staying healthy and encouraging others to do the same that earned Miller the 14th annual Silver Sneakers Swanson Award. The recognition honors a Silver Sneakers member “who has improved his or her own life through a healthy lifestyle that incorporates physical activity while inspiring and motivating others along the way.” Nominated by her son Robb Miller, who owns the gym, the 72-year-old former Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan employee is the heart and social butterfly of the family operation. Prior to becoming a Silver Sneakers member, she worked at the gym, but said she wasn’t interested in just sitting at the front desk or watering the plants. She wanted to put her impressive people skills to work, particularly focusing on ramping up participation in twice-weekly Silver Sneakers classes. Before she got involved, about seven to 10 members regularly made it to the workouts and were active at the gym. Now, there are more than 70 Silver Sneakers members visiting Snap consistently and making exercise part of their routine. Sally Miller makes it her personal mission to greet new members, send get well cards and organize birthday parties and outside events for her fellow Silver Sneakers members. She considers the group a second family of sorts. She said it’s a particularly important social component for members who’ve lost their spouses and it keeps everyone busy and connected. “It pays to keep active and if you’re going to keep active, you might as well keep in touch with friends,” she said. “The gym class has really brought us together on many levels and I really appreciate it.” Before helping her son out in the gym and joining Silver Sneakers, Sally Miller regularly went on daily three-mile walks and enjoyed gardening and crafting to stay active. Working out in the gym has helped her gain muscle tone and stability, very important for seniors, and has inspired her to make other healthy changes to her eating habits. Her overall goal is to maintain a healthy, active lifestyle for as long as she can. “It’s total health. Stay away from the doctor’s office and move, eat healthy and have a clear mind,” she said. A celebration for Sally Miller is planned for Tuesday, Aug. 21 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Snap Fitness, 2453 Ontario Dr., St. Johns, MI 48879. Interested in learning more about Silver Sneakers? Visit their website. If you liked this post, you might also enjoy:
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