YMCA Healthy Kids® Day

Meet kevin headen

Spiraling in the right direction

Kevin Headen showed up at the Y looking for more than a gym. “I wanted to feel safe and not intimidated,” he explains. “I felt comfortable at the Y.” It’s hard to imagine this fit and confident 39-year-old being concerned about fitting in. But eight years ago, the former athlete weighed in at 315 pounds.

“After college, I was sedentary, working crazy hours and not eating right,” he recalls. Everything spiraled the wrong way. “Then one night – with a video game controller and a bag of fast food at his side – Kevin’s legs went numb. “In that moment, something clicked, and I knew things had to change. I was afraid.”

So Kevin took a walk – every day. He kept moving, changed his eating habits, and a few months later, he found the Y. This time, he says “everything spiraled in the right direction.” Today, at 190 pounds, he’s a regular here at Friars Road. “I love the Y. There are people with different experience levels, shapes and sizes. I talk to trainers about techniques, or ask advice from other members. Exercise is such an important part of my life now; I don’t feel right if I don’t work out. I feel connected at the Y.”

His advice: “start small, stay with it, and don’t give up on yourself.” — February 2015