Strive to Thrive contest resumes after OhioHealth Ontario Health & Fitness reopens | Strive to Thrive


MANSFIELD — After 10 weeks of being on pause, the Strive to Thrive contest will resume on Aug. 10 and close out the final three weeks of the competition. 

In March, the competition came to an abrupt and unexpected halt due to COVID-19 shutting down many facilities, gyms included. 

While Gov. Mike DeWine allowed gyms to reopen starting May 26, OhioHealth Ontario Health & Fitness Center did not reopen until July 22. 

“Being part of OhioHealth, they were looking at the larger picture for the hospital system itself, and during the time that we were shut down a lot of

How Anisa tackled obesity, health, fitness and GBV


If you met Anisa Essop 15 to 20 years ago, you probably would not recognise this survivor of gender-based violence (GBV). Essop weighed 128kg, was depressed and in an abusive marriage to a drug addict.

Today, at the age of 42, she has left that relationship firmly in the past, weighs 67kg, and teaches others how to take control of their health and fitness.

Amina Essop fitness trainer
Image: Thousand Word Photography

Anisa Essop’s fitness mission

The qualified fitness trainer says her overall mission is to help others achieve their personal fitness goals.

Essop has been a trainer for the past 19 years, but

Tips for staying fit when stuck at home | Senior Covid


Staying at home and keeping active may seem like an oxymoron, but it’s vital for seniors to build exercise into their daily routine.

Too much sitting and not enough movement leads to the loss of muscle mass, joint flexibility and balance — three things that are paramount for seniors to remain mobile and eventually return to their former lifestyle.

The good news is by mixing a little creativity with motivation, it’s possible to maintain fitness levels during COVID-19, said Shawn Smathers, fitness coordinator at Haywood Regional Health and Fitness Center.

“Seniors should shoot for a minimum of 20 to 30

HEALTH AND FITNESS: Getting back in shape | Features


It’s been a long spring and summer! The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted most normal activities including, for many people, regular exercise. The closure and recent limited reopening of most fitness facilities has made maintaining exercise habits difficult. While some people used this as an opportunity to become more active, many more fell out of their normal exercise routine.

Athletes have long known that even a short break from training results in significant decreases in fitness and performance. You may have noticed this yourself after taking time off. Research shows that taking time off from exercise can have a negative impact