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  • Welcome to the VT Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness & Sports!

    Who We Are
    The Governor's Council is a physical activity promotion and advocacy group comprised of approximately 20 volunteers, appointed by the Governor and representing a broad spectrum of Vermonters.

    Our Mission
    To promote health and wellness through physical activity for all people living in Vermont at all fitness and ability levels.

Learn to Turn: One woman’s reflection on how skiing changed her life

I remember the first time I ever skied. I was about 8 years old and my father had just fallen madly in love with the sport. He took me out of school to learn on a week day in the Poconos and I ended up in a private lesson by chance. I wasn’t what you would call an athletic child, so I was definitely nervous about my performance, not to mention intimidated by the slopes, equipment and the cold. After getting suited up, a friendly instructor took me by the hand and spent two hours teaching me to how to ski and making me feel comfortable on the slopes. By the end of the lesson I had a decent grasp on the motions and could make my way down a green circle making wedged turns. I ended the day by taking my first full length run with my father. I didn’t know it then, but that day was life-changing for me.

Skiing became an integral part of my life in the years following and I joined the junior ski patrol at the ripe old age of thirteen. Skiing gave me not only an active outlet, but confidence in my day-to-day life helping me through adolescence (which isn’t easy for anyone). It also gave me direction when applying to college. Head north, I figured. I landed in Vermont and even began my first full time job as a ski patroller in Bolton Valley. Almost 15 years later, I am the Director of Public Relations and Programs for the Vermont Ski Areas Association.  From that first lesson to today – skiing has helped me grow, learn and mold me into a happy, healthy, and successful human being. I couldn’t be more thankful to my father for getting me out that first day and changing the course of my life forever.

With my father learning to ski in his 30’s and my introduction to the sport as a child, I fully support the Learn to Ski and Snowboard initiatives in Vermont. Anyone can pick up a winter sport and not only become more active in the winter, but possibly change their lives or their children’s lives forever.  To learn more about Ski Vermont’s $29 learn to ski and snowboard packages that are available during the month of January, visit www.SkiVermont.com/Learn, and remember that staying active this winter means staying healthy!


Sarah Wojcik, Director of Public Relations and Programs for Ski Vermont 

Sarah Wojcik is the Director of Public Relations and Programs for Ski Vermont and is an avid downhill and backcountry skier, Council member and sometimes artist, dancer, bird watcher, comedian and roller skater. She has lived and played in Vermont since 1999 and never plans to leave this beautiful playground.

Learn to Ski & Snowboard 2015

UPDATE: Thank you for your interest in the $10 Learn to Ski and Snowboard program.  We have used all 300 codes and cannot offer further discounts.  Please go to www.SkiVermont.com/Learn to see available $29 packages for the month of January.


 

Young Vermonters: Welcome to a new way to love winter in Vermont!

What can $10 get you these days? How about a beginner ski or snowboard lesson for a Vermont child, including rentals and a lift ticket?

This January, the Vermont Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports will sponsor 250 Vermont children with $10 beginner packages to encourage our youth to get sliding this winter and adopt an active lifestyle throughout life. Participants must be under 18, a Vermont resident, and will receive a downhill ski or snowboard lesson, rental equipment and a beginner lift ticket.

Participating resorts include: Bolton Valley, Bromley Mountain, Jay Peak Resort, Mount Snow, Q Burke Mountain, Smugglers’ Notch Resort, Stratton Mountain, and Sugarbush Resort.

Please note the coupon can only be used at these resorts.

Parents, please fill out the application form for this program, here → KidsLearntoSkiVT.

You will receive a discount code or codes via email within 48 hours after filling out the form and will be instructed to visit SkiVermont.com/Learn to purchase your discounted package and schedule your child’s lesson.

Interested in learning yourself or missed out on the $10 children’s deal? The Governor’s Council is proud to work with Ski Vermont to provide these packages, and is a supporter of the national Learn to Ski and Snowboard efforts in January. Ski Vermont offers learn-to packages throughout the month of January for $29 – for adults, kids and anyone in between! Learn more at SkiVermont.com.

Looking to slide on snow another way? On January 10, 2015 enjoy free Nordic skiing and snowshoeing for beginners on Winter Trails Day. Winter Trails Day is a national program endorsed Ski Vermont and the Governor’s Council; it encourages children and adults to discover the great fitness and social benefits of these fun, easy-to-learn winter sports. Learn more at www.snowlink.com/wintertrails.aspx.

Olympic Nordic skier and Vermonter Andy Newell also supports the Winter Trails initiative, so check out his video.

Resolution Revolution: Set Goals You Will Meet This Year

woman lifting weights

January brings a fresh start and a chance to redefine yourself. If you’re like most people, you resolved to lose weight, quit a bad habit, become more organized, or get out of debt. And, like most people, you might have made these same resolutions before, but have yet to meet them. Make this year different — set achievable goals, and create a plan to reach them.

Goal setting helps you gain mental control by choosing where you want to go and finding ways to get there. Here are some tips to stay on target:

Think Positive. Write your goals down using active, positive language. If a goal is not written, it is merely a wish rather than a concrete objective, and you assume no accountability to make it happen. Putting it in print helps crystallize your thoughts and focus your energy. Use action words such as “eat” and “attend.” Apply a positive statement rather than describing what you won’t do. Instead of “I’ll quit smoking” or “I’ll stop eating sweets,” resolve to “chew a piece of gum after lunch instead of lighting a cigarette,” or to “eat fruit each day in place of 1 sweet item.”

Clarify. Describe what you will do in certain terms. For example, instead of resolving to “get in shape,” plan to “walk for 30 minutes, 5 days next week.” When you are specific you can narrow it down to exactly what you want and proceed to accomplish it.

Set benchmarks. Make your goals measurable and monitor your progress as you work toward them. Aim for small, target objectives to along the way. Include dates, times, and amounts so you can measure your achievement. If you do this, you’ll know when you have reached your goal and can take satisfaction in having done so. “I will read 4 books of more than 100 pages before next Christmas” gives you a gauge. “I will become a better reader” does not. What gets measured gets done.

Be realistic. Your goals should make sense for your lifestyle, skill set and starting point. If your exercise program has never included running, then resolving to run 3 miles a day right off the bat is a recipe for failure. However, it’s practical to plan on going for a slow, 30-minute jog two days next week, and incrementally increase your jogging duration, speed, and frequency. This is a do-able plan. You will get to your personal finish line 1 step at a time.

Be accountable. Set timeframes for the goal and each small step to reach it. Use language like, “by the end of the week” or “in 3 months. Setting time limits makes each action more urgent, so you feel pressed to do it. Without end points, your commitment is too vague, and you tend to put it off because you feel you can start at any time.

Create a support network. Find a sympathetic partner, who also wants to lose weight, quit smoking, or eat more healthfully, and make plans to accomplish each step together. Hire a personal trainer to help you design a fitness strategy. Tell family members, co-workers, and friends about your goals, and ask them to champion your efforts. You’re more likely to stick to the plan if you know someone else is counting on you to do so.

Recognize success. Track your accomplishments in a journal and keep up the good work. Recall how you looked and felt before you began walking daily or eating more healthfully, and pat yourself on the back for a job well done.
Use the new year as an opportunity to set goals for yourself, and set yourself up for success. With a step-by-step plan, you’ll get where you want to go and feel energized all the way there. Let’s ring in a happy new you!


Janet Franz

Janet Franz, Chair, Vermont Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports

 Janet Franz has served on the Vermont Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports since 2004. She is a freelance writer covering health, recreation, and community news for print and online media. She is a wellness educator, group exercise instructor, and personal trainer who works with clients at health clubs, worksites, and community spaces around Chittenden County

2014 Worksite Wellness Awards and Conference

 

2014 WorksiteWellnessBooklet

 

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Thank you for your involvement in the 19th Vermont Worksite Wellness Awards. I’m proud to present awards to so many Vermont employers who have made healthy behaviors a priority. Clearly, Vermont companies understand that a fit workforce leads to a stronger community and a robust state.

The worksites we honor here include ski resorts, municipal offices, banks, radio stations, universities, retail stores and more. They are diverse, yet driven by the common goal of improving the health and wellness of their valued employees. Their innovative programs go far in preventing chronic conditions, lowering health care costs, and improving quality of life for all Vermonters.

Let’s celebrate these accomplishments in keeping Vermonters physically fit. I encourage you to share your strategies, learn from each other, and continue all that you are doing to make Vermont a healthy state and a great place to work.

Peter Shumlin

Governor, State of Vermont

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Thank you for your dedication to the health and wellness of Vermonters at work.

Evidence reveals many health and economic benefits of worksite wellness. Employers that support healthy eating, physical activity, quitting tobacco, breastfeeding, and health screenings improve employee health, enhance productivity, and contribute to healthier families and communities.

The Vermont Department of Health is pleased to offer its new Worksite Wellness Resource, Creating a Healthier Worksite, available at healthvermont.gov. We invite you to call on us and make use of our resources, tools and training to develop and grow your own wellness programs.

Today we will celebrate our collective efforts to keep Vermonters among the healthiest of Americans, and learn from the Worksite Wellness Award winners. Congratulations to all!

Stay Well,

Harry Chen, MD

Commissioner of Health

2014 WorksiteWellnessBooklet

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Vermont Employers Honored for Wellness Programs

On March 27, business leaders at 91 Vermont worksites received awards for their onsite efforts to promote physical fitness and a healthy work-life balance. Governor Peter Shumlin, state health commissioner Harry Chen, and Janet Franz, chair of the Vermont Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, presented the awards. More than 300 people attended the ceremony at the Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center in Burlington.

Through the annual awards, the council acknowledges efforts made to enhance productivity, bolster a healthy environment, and improve the lives of Vermont citizens.

“Vermont employers have come to understand that physically fit workers are more productive and invested in their careers. Business leaders see the benefits of worksite wellness programs to their bottom line,” said Janet Franz.  This year we will honor more worksites than ever before, and the winners will share their best practices at the conference.”

Here are the honorees, sorted by the number of people employed:

1-10 EMPLOYEES
Circus Smirkus
Southern Vermont Area Health Education Center —SILVER
Town of Waitsfield —SILVER
Village of Derby Center —BRONZE

11-50 Employees
Addison County Solid Waste Management District
Hearthstone Quality Home Heating Products —GOLD STANDARD
Hickok & Boardman Financial Planning and HR Intelligence —GOLD
Morningside House, Inc, dba Morningside Shelter
OpenTempo —BRONZE
Town & Village of Ludlow —SILVER
Town of Castleton —GOLD STANDARD
Town of Charleston —BRONZE
Town of Fair Haven
Town of Killington —SILVER
Town of St. Albans
Trudell Consulting Engineers —GOLD
Vermont Foodbank
Vermont Housing Finance Agency —SILVER
Vermont League of Cities and Towns —SILVER
Windham Southeast Supervisory Union —BRONZE
Youth Services

51-150 Employees
AsicNorth —BRONZE
Choice Strategies, a Division of WageWorks —SILVER
Chroma Technology Corp —SILVER
Hallam-ICS —BRONZE
Hickok & Boardman, Inc. —SILVER
Lund —BRONZE
Northeast Kingdom Community Action, Inc.
Northfield Savings Bank —SILVER
Omya Inc. —SILVER
Renewable NRG Systems —SILVER
RockTenn —BRONZE
Seventh Generation, Inc. —SILVER
Town of Bennington —BRONZE
Town of Colchester —SILVER
Vermont Electric Cooperative —GOLD
Vermont Hard Cider Company, LLC —BRONZE
Vermont Public Radio

151 – 500 Employees
A.N. Deringer, Inc. —BRONZE
BioTek Instruments, Inc. —GOLD
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont —GOLD STANDARD
Central Vermont Home Health and Hospice
Champlain College —SILVER
City Market —BRONZE
Counseling Services of Addison County
Engelberth Construction, Inc. —SILVER
Essex Town School District —BRONZE
Franklin County Home Health Agency —SILVER
GE Healthcare —GOLD STANDARD
Grace Cottage Hospital —GOLD
Johnson State College —BRONZE
King Arthur Flour —SILVER
Lamoille County Mental Health Services —SILVER
Lyndon State College —BRONZE
Marathon Health, Inc. —GOLD
Mascoma Savings Bank —BRONZE
North Country Hospital —GOLD
Northeast Kingdom Human Services, Inc. —SILVER
Perrigo Nutritionals
Rutland Mental Health Services —SILVER
Sonnax Industries —SILVER
SymQuest Group, Inc. —BRONZE
The Co-op Food Stores —BRONZE
United Counseling Service of Bennington County —SILVER
Vermont Energy Investment Corporation
Vermont Mutual Insurance Company —SILVER
Vermont Student Assistance Corp. —GOLD
Wake Robin —BRONZE
Woodstock Inn and Resort —BRONZE

501 – 999 Employees
Burlington International Airport —BRONZE
City of Burlington, Vermont —BRONZE
Dealer.com —GOLD STANDARD
Mt. Ascutney Hospital and Health Center —SILVER
National Life Group —SILVER
Northwestern Medical Center —GOLD STANDARD
Norwich University
PC Construction Company —GOLD
Sugarbush Resort
The Vermont Country Store —SILVER
UTC Aerospace Systems —SILVER
Washington County Mental Health Services, Inc. —BRONZE

1000+ Employees
Central Vermont Medical Center —SILVER
Chittenden Solid Waste District —BRONZE
Fletcher Allen Health Care —GOLD
GE Aviation —BRONZE
Green Mountain Coffee Roasters
HowardCenter
MVP Health Care —SILVER
Price Chopper/Golub Corporation —SILVER
Rutland Regional Medical Center —SILVER
State of Vermont —GOLD

ASIC North

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