If you go down to Larson Lifestyle Center on a weekday afternoon, you might meet Katie Tahay in the weight room. The junior English language arts education major from Colorado exercises there five days a week.

“At first I wanted to do an evening routine, but that didn’t work out. Then I realized that I have this hour between classes. I thought, ‘I’m going to use that hour.’ So within that hour, I run for 30 minutes, and then do weights for 15 minutes and in those last 15 minutes, I get ready for my next class. I do this Monday through Friday and take breaks on Saturday and Sunday.”

Tahay began her exercise habit last year when she took Concepts of Wellness from Dr. Nancy Petta. She credits the class with giving her the commitment to work out every day. She said, “My fitness life became a lifestyle because of that class. We had an assignment where we had to work out 30 minutes a day four days a week. Once I started there, it became a habit, something I had to do. If I didn’t, it felt like something was missing.” Her favorite part of exercising is the way it makes her feel. “I feel better about my body and myself. I see the changes. Exercise is also a way for me to be more alert. After I run and do my workout, I feel awake. I’m not as groggy and I have energy to finish the day.”

“My go-to exercise is the treadmill,” Tahay shared, “I also do a couple weights. I do the basics, a couple arm exercises, and some crunches. One class I’m taking now, Weight Training, requires a test on crunches, so I’ve added them to the routine.”

Tahay feels that there is a connection between education and exercising. “There’s education in the whole idea of exercise,” she said.  “Exercise is a learning process. Running is self-explanatory, but when it comes to weights, you have to learn what each weight does—what it does work, what it doesn’t work. You also have to learn what you can handle.”

Although Tahay studied at the University of Northern Colorado her freshman year, she transferred to Union in August of 2020. She describes her decision to transfer as inspired by God. “I chose to come to Union College by faith. As a freshman, the idea of coming to Union showed up. I was hesitant to step out of where I was comfortable, but I also knew I wasn’t at a school where I belonged. When I got here, I realized this was where God wanted me to be. He brought me to Union eventually and it is a blessing to be part of this campus.”

Tahay thinks the wellness center expansion Union is planning will be an excellent addition to campus. “It sounds exciting, especially the indoor track and other equipment they want to add,” she said. “The equipment they have now is good, but there could be more. It’s good to know that they are trying to expand, because sometimes it gets a little crowded in there and the space would be nice.”