Buckeye’s free fitness program is life changing

Taking that first step towards better health is usually the toughest, but for Buckeye resident Mellissa Amelio, it was life changing for her and her family.

Tired of long, cold Wisconsin winters, Mellissa and her family of eight packed up and started a new life in Buckeye back in 2016. After getting settled, Mellissa opened up an edition of the city’s Eye on Buckeye magazine and saw an advertisement called “Fitness in the Park”, a free program to all residents offering several different fitness classes nightly at Sundance Park.

While the idea of classes like POUND, Crossfit, Yoga and PiYO sounded quite intimidating she read further. She had many questions. What will I do with the kids? Can I do this? I have a long way to go and I am scared to death. I am so out of shape! Where do I start?

When she realized her kids could play in the park or better, participate in the classes with her, she dove right in!

“The classes were so scary at first but the instructors all had the best attitudes,” said Amelio. “I knew I was out of shape but the coaches were amazing. There were people of all ages and skill levels so it made those first steps easier to take. One coach told me ‘you gotta start somewhere and keep going!’.”

Her first class quickly became a family routine in the evenings at Sundance Park to play, exercise and be outside! Mellissa slowly started realizing other areas of her family’s routines were rapidly changing for the better too. Dinners were healthier; they were jumping on bikes or heading down to hike Skyline Regional Park to hike. Every day was a new adventure.

The results were amazing. Mellissa has shed over 30 pounds simply by mustering up the courage to just try something new. “It all started with Fitness in the Park in the summer of 2016,” Amelio continued. “And my family is now hiking, biking and walking daily.”

To see how you and your family can participate in all the great classes from Buckeye’s Community Services Department, please visit buckeyeaz.gov/rec, email us at recreation@buckeyeaz.gov or call 623-349-6350.

Fitness in the Park are free classes taking place every Monday through Thursday evening starting at 6:30 p.m. at Sundance Park, 22865 W Lower Buckeye Road. Classes starts back up January 8, 2018.

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