Dozens Participate In Ninth Annual 'Women On Wellness' Retreat in Fairmont


"No judgement." Those two words have described the Women on Wellness retreat for the past nine years.

Dozens of women come out to make friends and have a good time all while making a positive change in their lifestyle.

"Women are going to become so entranced on how they can change their own particular life because its all about us," said Cathy Reed, a participant.

Cathy Reed has been participating in the Women on Wellness program for the past eight years.

"The thing is you always learn something new. You can always learn to move better," said Reed. "Things change in a year for your health and you have to learn new stuff."

West Virginia ranks near the bottom in many health statistics.

WOW organizers said retreats like this help change those statistics as well as people's lives.

"We feel that a healthy lifestyle is a journey. Not a destination. Women have to take charge of that," said Betty Critch, WOW Executive Director. "We don't have control or influence over a lot of things but we do over ourselves."

The women begin their day with health screenings.

"It helps women to learn about their numbers, what their risk factor is for cardiovascular disease," Denise Palmer, WVU Heart Institute. "Unfortunately, cardiovascular disease is the number one leading death in West Virginia."

After the screenings, women choose three different movement exercises. Some activities include yoga, Zumba, and boxing.

"They are talking about some things you can do while you're sitting down," Reed said. "Things that can still help you. You can always learn something new. You can always do something with your health."

Organizers hope the woman leave the retreat ready to change their lives.

"I hope they feel motivated and recharged and have their own new lifestyle plan that they are ready and happy to start today," Critch said.

The next stop for the Women's on Wellness retreat will be in Greenbrier County. For more information, visit its website.

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