Birthday at Mt. Everest Base Camp

Each of us chooses to celebrate our birthdays in different ways. Of course, certain birthdays are considered milestone birthdays, sweet 16, nifty 50, and so on. With the coming of each of these milestones, some of us may choose to do something extraordinary. Something that may be on our bucket list.

For two BAC members, they decided to celebrate their 70th birthdays with an extraordinary adventure, going halfway around the world to Nepal and trekking to Mt. Everest base camp (17,600 ft)! Lynn and Jean Dayton made the commitment of going to Mt. Everest this past spring for the adventure of a lifetime!

The preparation for this adventure began last year. Lynn and Jean have been members at BAC on and off for over 30 years. The past five years they both have been participating in group classes as well as doing a little strength training but they both knew that they were going to have to do a bit more in preparation for their Mt. Everest adventure. To assist them in their training they enlisted the help of BAC Director of Fitness, Mike Locke, and with his guidance underwent a regiment of strength training and interval training on the treadmill. They also utilized their neighborhood trails and did day hikes with packs on Chuckanut. To assist them with testing their cold weather gear for Everest, Lynn and Jean visited Bellingham Cold Storage and their refrigeration units which are kept at a chilly -24 degrees F! Brrrh!!

Lynn and Jean’s Everest base camp adventure began on April 19th with their flight into Kathmandu, Nepal (4000 ft). After two days of rest, they took a helicopter flight from Kathmandu to the village of Lukla (9300 ft). From there they hiked to the village of Monjo for their first night’s stay.

One of the keys to such a trek is acclimatizing to the altitude—climb high, sleep low! For 3 days Lynn and Jean did acclimatizing hikes in Namche Bazaar (11,200 ft). Namche Bazaar gave them their first real view of Everest. This type of trip is quite a production, 6 yaks carried the team’s gear under the direction of 6 Sherpas and the owners of the trekking company. Lynn and Jean came away with an appreciation for the Sherpa people, who they describe as a friendly, helpful and fun-loving people although the children are a bit camera shy.

With the 6 Sherpas, 2 owners, 6 yaks, and 13 clients, the group made their way across suspension bridges spanning the many tributaries to the Dudh Kosi. It was during this trek to Tengbouche (12,800 ft) that they saw some of the most majestic views of the Khumbu regions peaks (Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse, and Ama Dablam). On May 2nd, Lynn and Jean successfully reached their destination, Everest Base Camp (17,600 ft) where they spent one night in their tent.

Lynn said, ”Visiting Nepal, the Himalayas, and Mt. Everest was never on my ‘Bucket List’. It hit me though, as I stood viewing the region and mountains that had been such an influence to me, that they were the inspiration to my 50+ years of mountain climbing. I started climbing just 4 years after Jim Whittaker became the first American (and 10th person) to summit Mt. Everest. So I had a teary moment or two just thinking about that. I never dreamed that I would be there especially at 70 years of age!”

“Reflecting on the trip“, said Jean, “Nepal was beautiful and the Himalayas were breathtaking. The people were very friendly and welcoming. Our trekking company made things easy for us. The Sherpas and guides took very good care of all of us. Everything was ‘Top Notch’ considering where we were and what we were there to accomplish.”

“When Lynn first came to me with this dream of his, I thought he had ‘LOST HIS MIND’”, said Jean. “Lynn and I are active but not nearly as active in our backpacking/alpine treks as we were pre-retirement. Retirement and traveling have changed our activities somewhat. We do more trail hikes and not always with packs. Both Lynn and I still get to the club, but for me, exercising in the water is much easier on my back. Mike helped us build a strong core, incorporating body weight and resistance exercises which got us prepared!! Thanks, Mike, for helping us achieve Everest Base Camp (cold and beautiful).”

What’s next? Jean says she is still thinking about it, however, she thinks it is her turn to pick and she will carefully consider her options!

Congratulations to both Lynn and Jean! We are glad BAC could help in your success!!

Life Jacket Safety

How to properly fit and use a life jacket

by Brittany McIntosh, Aquatics Director

Did you know that in Whatcom County alone, there are 26 lakes, 21 rivers, and 2 bays? That adds up to quite a few opportunities for swimming, fishing, boating, and hiking. Since we are so active around water this time of year, it’s a good idea to refresh your knowledge on boating safety. Check out our tips below and enjoy all the beauty the Northwest has to offer this July!

Always wear a life jacket

In Washington State, all children under the age of 12 are required by law to wear a life jacket while on board a vessel. However, it’s recommended by the US Coast Guard that everyone on board wear a life jacket – even if you’re a great swimmer! For tips on fitting a life jacket, take a look at our handy infographic.

Know or learn how to swim

Everyone on board should know some basic survival skills. The more comfortable you are in the water, the better your chance of survival should an accident occur. We offer group and private lessons for both adults and children on Tuesdays and Thursdays in the morning, afternoon, and evening. Ask at the front desk for scheduling or visit our website at www.bellinghamathleticclub.com for more details.

Let someone know where you’re going

If you don’t have a Float Plan, let someone who’s staying ashore know where you’re going and when you’ll be back. Write out all relevant location information including phone numbers, a description of the boat and all communication equipment on board, and an accurate location of the destination and home ports.

Assign at least one adult to supervise all children

As we always tell parents in our Angelfish classes, once you teach your child to love the water it acts as a magnet, drawing them close. You won’t be able to keep them away, so make sure they’re supervised in their play!

Carry extra supplies and safety equipment

This could include extra food and water supplies, life jackets, a cell phone, blankets, and a well-stocked first aid kit. Additionally, make sure passengers know where these supplies are located and how to use them.

Avoid alcohol

While we all want to have fun in the sun, boats are not the place for alcohol. It can affect balance, judgment and reaction speed – three things you will definitely need out on the water. More than half of all boating accidents in the US involve alcohol – don’t be a statistic! Leave the party on the shore and stay safe on your vessel.

Be wary of heat exhaustion

Wear lots of sunscreen, and bring extra water bottles. It’s also important to remember that sunscreen does wash off, so always reapply after a dip. Hats and sunglasses are always a big help, especially if you’ve got kids on board.

Summer Schedule at BAC

As we roll into the summer, and hopefully some beautiful weather, our staff has been busy assembling a summer class schedule that makes sense as members cut back on club visits during the summer months and club usage trends downward. There are many reasons for this: Children being out of school, travel and outdoor activities; not only for our members but our instructors as well. In an effort to make efficient use of our resources, we are modifying hours and class schedules for the summer months. Changes to look for:

Downtown Hours:
Monday through Friday – 5:00am-8:00pm (effective July 1)
Saturday – 7:00am-2:00pm (effective July 1)
Sunday – 7:00am-2:00pm (effective June 23. Closed on June 16.)
Holiday hours – 7:00am-2:00pm, with no group exercise classes.

Downtown Programming:
Regular Summer class reduction in the lower attended group exercise classes.

Cordata Club hours:
Monday through Friday – 5:30am-10:00pm
Saturday and Sunday – 7:00am-9:00pm
Holiday Hours – 7:00am-7:00pm, no land or water group exercise.
Monday through Saturday – Kids Club open 8:30am-12:00pm

Cordata Programming:
Summer will bring added swim lesson participants and children in the club. Look for additional programming and camps for kids; including our Active Achievers camp running July 8th-12th from 9:00am to 4:30pm. We have loads of activities lined up for this fun-filled week. We also will be running a Racquetball Camp designed by our excellent head pro Wanda Collins, August 5th-9th for beginner through advanced players.

Kids Club will be running special programming all summer long to keep BAC kids active and engaged. Check out the summer schedule posted down in Kids Club, and it will be available online when we have fleshed out all the details.

Regular summer adjustments to the Group Exercise schedule due to lower attended group exercise classes. Look for many of these classes to come back in the Fall when everyone gets back to their regular schedule.

Respectfully,
Cathy Buckley

Active Aging…Commit to stay fit in May!

Bellingham Athletic Club offers a wide range of exercise and aquatics classes. During the month of May, we will be highlighting specific exercise and aquatic classes designed for adults who want to continue enjoying an active and spirited lifestyle. Join us and experience the difference!!!

May 5-11

Zumba Gold…Cordata with Celine

This class takes the popular Latin dance-inspired workout of Zumba and makes it accessible for seniors, beginners or others needing modifications in their exercise routine. Zumba Gold builds cardiovascular health by challenging the heart and working the muscles of the hips, legs, and arms with dance moves. Wednesdays @ 8:30 am in the Cordata Gym.

RetroFit…Cordata with Theresa/Lesley

A moderate-paced, low-impact class designed for people who are comfortable with basic choreography. Focus is on simple movements. This is a great starting class for all ages, beginners, and members coming back from rehab injuries. Mondays @ 8:30 in the Cordata Gym.

May 12-18

Strong & Stable…Downtown and Cordata with Lesley

Every class features exercises that increase balance, mobility, and strength in order for you to continue enjoying an active and fulfilling lifestyle. Mondays & Wednesdays @ 8:30 am Downtown. Fridays @ 8:30 in the Cordata Gym.

Strength & Stretch…Downtown with Lesley

This class is for any fitness level. The focus is on a combination of body weight exercises, bands, and other tools to challenge your strength and full body stretching to complement your training program. Tuesdays @ 8:30 am Downtown.

May 19-25

Aqua Aerobics / Aqua Zumba…Cordata with Jill/Toni/Carrie/Cindy/Myra/Lynn/Gayle

Get a great cardio low-impact workout in the water! Great for all abilities and fitness levels. Looking for a water aerobics class with a twist? Try out Aqua Zumba! It is a fast-paced, body-toning water workout that combines the rhythm of a traditional Zumba class with the increased resistance in the pool. Check Pool Schedule for days/times.

May 26-31

Pilates/Yoga…Cordata with Jen/Michal/Freddie/Elena/Lesley

This class is designed to work your powerhouse muscles – abs, lower back, thighs, and buttocks. The discipline emphasizes correct form to help develop strength, flexibility, muscular endurance, coordination, balance, & good posture. Designed for all levels. Check Group Exercise Schedule for days/times