A healthier you starts here.

Nine years ago, Linda got a big wake up call from her doctor. Her partner had recently passed away after battling illness for three years, she was dealing with stress in her job and her only coping mechanism was over-eating and poor food choices. Linda’s doctor had diagnosed her with Type 2 Diabetes. It was a pivotal moment for Linda and she asked her doctor for some time to turn things around before starting on medication.  That’s when Linda found out about YMCA Forever Fit classes and started attending regularly.

After going to classes for a few months, Linda was able to get her health back on track. Linda was so dedicated to the program that two of the instructors took her under their wings and encouraged her to go through training to become an instructor herself. Linda’s life was transformed and she was able to avoid diabetes medication.

“At the time when I got involved with the Y, I was at a low level of depression and sadness, and heading for disease,” Linda says, “Because of the Y, I’m on a journey that is filled with light and joy!”

The difficult times were made easier by the support she had from the participants in her classes, but her health challenges were not over. In 2012, Linda was diagnosed with breast cancer and continued to teach throughout her treatment. “My people encouraged me,” she says. “They kept me strong.”

“We’re not just a class, we are friends,” says Linda with a beaming smile. She plans to keep teaching for years to come, following in the footsteps of Ida Hebert, a former YMCA yoga instructor in Ontario who holds the Guiness World Record for oldest yoga instructor. “I have her picture up on my fridge. That’s going to be me!”