Chelsea Annis starts her training runs early, before 5:30 am, in the Wausau Branch Wellness Center where she says she thrives on the energy of the other YMCA members who start their day there with her.
“Everyone is welcoming,” she said, “everyone helps everyone.”
Chelsea and her husband Eric joined the Woodson YMCA when their son Wesley was an infant. Eric’s work schedule used to mean he traveled much of the time so she leaned on the support of Mini Care.
Old routines were upset during the pandemic and now to get her 4 to 8-mile training runs in, Chelsea sets her alarm for 3:30 a.m. It would be easy to snooze instead but she feels accountable to be there, checking in with the front desk staff.
In the weeks after the Y was closed last spring, Chelsea ran at home instead and said she felt a “mental fog” that made it hard to stay motivated.
She was eager to get back to the familiar faces at the Y even if it meant she would be wearing a mask while training on the treadmill.
“It’s a simple thing I can do and I don’t mind,” she said. “It feels clean and really safe and I need to be cautious going home to a 2-year-old.”
Chelsea, 32, is now training for her first half marathon she will run with her sister this April where her family lives, in St. Louis. She said she learned to love running when she first started to train about ten years ago. At that time, her goal was to complete a 5K.
The Y has been a healthy environment to achieve her personal fitness goals, even during the pandemic.
“If it’s important to you, you make it happen!”
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