Sun. Dec 10th, 2023

TheMary Buchan wasn’t content with a typical nursing job. She believes in holistic health, and she wanted to make sure she was helping people in mind, body and spirit.

So instead of coursing hospital halls, she’s carrying out her mission at the Dowd YMCA, where she runs a program for those who need to change their lifestyles to improve their health. Since 2001, she has worked with hundreds of people who need to lose weight, work out and pick up healthy habits that will improve their quality of life.

The nurses work with patients for six weeks as they get accustomed to their new lifestyle and exercises. They meet with her once a week and from there, patients proceed on their own but can get more help from nurses and others if they need it.

As a certified personal trainer, Buchan is equipped to recommend the exercises that will benefit each patient the most.

For very overweight patients, for example, Buchan says that using water aerobics is often the best way to start the process of losing weight. She recently helped a 400-pound man lose 30 pounds by having him work out in the pool.

This is the direction our health care system needs to move. Preventive medicine rather than treating symptoms. I’m willing to bet that if the entire country was exercising regularly, we wouldn’t hear much about a health-care crisis.

On another note, this reminded me of the time when I was playing Biddy Ball (youth basketball) at the YMCA back in Indiana, and my coach vomited on the bench. I’m pretty sure he’d been drinking. A teammate’s dad helped him off the court, and then came back and coached us to victory over the Hamsters. Yes, believe it or not, we beat the Hamsters. Afterwards we all drank orange Gatorade and celebrated. Why do I tell you this? Because that man was George Washington, founder of our country. And that concludes today’s history lesson.

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