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Finding fitness support as a military spouse 

Are you hoping to spend more time focusing on your health and wellness?    

Some of the most significant barriers to success to achieving personal fitness can be knowing where to find fitness resources or finding those resources only to have to pack and move shortly after. Fortunately, military spouses have access to a variety of gyms, fitness classes, and spouse clubs that can help them achieve their goals no matter where their latest PCS move lands them.  

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Check MilMap:  

If you’re ready to find health and wellness resources near you, check out MFAN’s MilMap. MilMap has great information about events, activities, and organizations near you. All you do is type in your zip code and the map populates with resources nearby. We also encourage you to share what has worked for you. Is there a running club nearby that you love? Or maybe your town has a great fitness program that you enjoy. Help other military families learn about local programs – add information about local happenings then our team will review the information and publish it in MilMap. We all know how challenging it can be to move to a new area, so MilMap can help you help others learn the lay of the land.    

Stop by your installation:   

One of the quickest ways to find nearby resources is to check out your base Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR) Services. These programs often provide FREE access to base fitness facilities that include a variety of exercise equipment from treadmills to free weights. Also, many facilities offer free or low-cost group fitness classes in which you can participate. 

Visit gyms off base:  

Looking for something different than what the base provides? Many communities just off base have one or more gyms that you can become a member of, and many of those facilities offer discounted rates for service members and their families. These facilities also often offer childcare as a part of individual membership packages.  

See what benefits are out there:  

Some banks, especially those serving the military community, offer programs and resources such as discounted gym memberships. Your workplace, school, church, or neighborhood community center may also provide access to a gym or classes on health, nutrition, and fitness. The best way to find out what is available is to ask!   

Get online:  

If working out in public makes you want to throw in the towel, you aren’t alone. Fortunately, there are a variety of digital fitness services you can stream through your tv or access through your computer or phone. These programs are great on their own if you can’t seem to find the time to make it to the gym or in addition to on or off base fitness facilities. Many base fitness facilities are adding similar services to their resources so you can access these resources at your convenience if the group fitness schedule doesn’t fit your needs. 

If you enjoy learning online, MilYou is a program you can use at home to not only improve your physical health but to strengthen your relationships, mental and emotional health as well. Wellness is about more than just your fitness level, and this program will help you look at your health and wellness in a holistic way while connecting you with the information and resources you need to succeed.    

Find a workout buddy:  

If you are looking for a workout buddy or trying to make new friends, look for a base fitness club, or put out a request for a walking buddy on your neighborhood social media group. One of the more popular options is Stroller Warriors Running Club™ which is a free running club for spouses on bases across the globe regardless of their current fitness level. Another benefit to an organization like Stroller Warriors is that once you do get your next set of orders, there is a good chance that there will be another chapter for you to join at your next duty station.  

Access to fitness resources doesn’t have to stand in the way of you achieving your health and well-being goals. By using resources like these, you are well on your way to making your goals a reality!

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About The Author

Erin Kahn

https://militaryfamilyadvisorynetwork.org/staff/erin-kahn/

Erin Kahn is the network manager at the Military Family Advisory Network. She is an active duty Marine Corps spouse has dedicated herself to serving the unique needs of the military community that surrounds her through running, community service and relationship building.

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