Shayna Schmidt | Sept. 25, 2018

We all know how easy it is to neglect prioritizing our own health. In case you currently find yourself in one of those slumps, here are two great reasons to start up your healthy habits again: National Women's Health & Fitness Day (Wednesday, September 26) and National Family Heath & Fitness Day (Saturday, September 29). The purpose of both of these holidays is to promote involvement in physical activity in support of one of the goals of the U.S. Surgeon General’s Report on Physical Activity and Health. 

National Women's Health & Fitness Day

Women’s Health & Fitness Day was started in 2002 by the Health Information Resource Center (HIRC), a national clearinghouse for consumer health information professionals. It is the nation’s largest annual health promotion event for women of all ages. Always held on the last year in September, this unique national program — with participation by local organizations throughout the U.S. — focuses attention on the importance of regular physical activity and health awareness for women. The event is similar in concept to its “sister” event — National Senior Health & Fitness Day — the nation’s largest older adult health promotion program held every May. Women’s Health & Fitness Day is also technically part of a new National Women’s Health & Fitness Week, to be held annually the last week in September.

On Wednesday, 500 groups across the country will host women’s health and fitness events at senior centers, hospitals, health clubs, park and recreation districts, local health and service organizations, schools, retirement communities, houses of worship, and other community locations. An estimated 50,000 to 75,000 women of all ages are expected to participate in these local activities.

What's the point?

The goal of this event is to encourage women to take control of their health: to learn the facts they need to make smart health choices, and to make time for regular physical activity. Because of its grassroots nature, the event provides an excellent opportunity for local organizations to showcase the health-related programs and services they offer to women in their communities.

National Family Health & Fitness Day

Organized as a public/private partnership by the Health Information Resource Centers, Family Health & Fitness Day was conceived, in part, as a response to the U.S. Surgeon General's Report on Physical Activity and Health. This landmark report made it clear that health benefits can be obtained from moderate physical activity on a regular basis. In addition, the Surgeon General's Report stated that the majority of Americans, and especially children from 12 to 21, are not exercising nearly enough.

In past years, this event has included exercise demonstrations, health fairs, family walks and more. Most programs involve family activities as well as education and information about health and fitness topics.

Before the 2016 event, Pat Henze, FHFD director stated, "Our goals for Family Health & Fitness Day are to emphasize the importance and fun of regular physical activity and to encourage families of all ages to take advantage of the many health and fitness programs offered in their communities."

Ideas to help you celebrate!

In honor of a healthier you, check out these ideas to help you celebrate your body, mind, and well-being––and get the journey to a stronger you started!

  1. Find a Local Event. Over 500 community groups across the nation will be hosting health and fitness related events between the two holidays on Wednesday and Sunday. From exercise demonstrations to health information workshops, there will be something for everyone––so grab a friend and join an activity! Get in touch with your local health and fitness organizations, such as senior centers, universities, or park and recreations departments to find out what's happening in your area.

  2. Make Conscious Choices. Even if you can't escape a busy work schedule to get to a gym, there are many ways you can celebrate your health throughout a standard workday. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, walk home instead of taking the bus or train, or choose a parking spot further away from the door. Got a wearable? Have an activity competition with your co-workers!

  3. Schedule a Checkup. The HHS Office on Women's Health recommends booking an appointment with a doctor or nurse for a well-woman checkup and any preventative screenings that might be eligible for your age group. Staying on top of any required tests and health concerns now can save you a lot of stress, time and money in the future.

  4. Try Something New! Always wanted to work with a personal trainer but never got around to pulling the trigger? Now's the time! Signup with a Livekick trainer today. Changing up your workouts means your body never adapts and plateaus, so seize the day and give us a shot.