Get to know Hannah Franklin, the Plant City Y’s new Wellness Director.
Well hi there!
I am Hannah Franklin and I am so excited to join you here monthly. Not only will we focus on fitness, but also everything fitness encompasses and symbolizes.
I have been interconnected to fitness my entire life. My love for fitness started when I took my very first weightlifting class at a gym in Lakeland when I turned 12. I was ecstatic to be a part of something bigger than myself. Not only was everyone there for accountability, but also a desire of social interaction and camaraderie. My love for fitness only grew from there.
When I reached high school I joined the Cross Country and Track teams. I knew I wanted nothing to do with a sport that required hand-eye coordination, thus my running journey began. Little to my dismay, I realized you need to work out consistently to see results, much less compete. Who would have thought? My first year as a runner was a disaster. I had absolutely no clue how to fuel my body or how to train properly.
The summer after my first year of running, I began to train consistently and smarter. I began to eat foods I knew would fuel my body and stayed consistent with a training plan. Day by day, I was challenged as a runner to push past any mental barriers to increase my pace and distance. When I began my senior year of high school my coach encouraged me to take his weightlifting class, which made me stronger not only as an athlete but also as a person. I loved challenging my body to see what it could it do. At the same time, I loved helping others on their journey to reach their full potential.
I coached for three years until I transitioned later as a Y Personal Trainer, and now I proudly serve as a Wellness Director for the Plant City Family YMCA.
Weightlifting and running have led me to where I am today and have made me stronger both mentally and physically. The two biggest factors that kept me going through the toughest days were the support from my teammates and how incredible my body and mind felt after I completed a workout. Fitness has impacted my life in more ways than I can explain and I know it can do the same for you.
There are both physiological and physical benefits to working out regularly. Mayo Clinic recommends we get physical activity 30 minutes a day for three to five days a week minimum to help with the following:
• Releasing feel-good endorphins
• Increasing energy
• Gaining confidence
• Sleeping better at night
• Lowering anxiety and stress
These recommendations serve as good reminders during the month of September, which is National Suicide Prevention Month. At some point in each of our lives, we or someone we know has dealt with anxiety, depression, fear, fatigue, stress or any other mental health issues varying in severity. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline phone number, if you or anyone you know needs it, is (800) 273-8255. Our lives are so precious and we can do so much with what we are given!
If you are not the “workout” kind of person, that’s OK! Exercise doesn’t have to be working out in a gym lifting weights or walking on a treadmill. Exercise can be anything that gets your muscles moving and your heart rate up. Find an activity you truly enjoy and use that as a starting point; It could be riding your bike, yard work, rock climbing, an obstacle course with your family, playing in the yard with your pet, the list goes on. Whatever you decide to do, do it. Start somewhere.
You’ve got this.
Hannah Franklin is a Wellness Director at the Plant City Family YMCA.