Health, wellness coach offers motivational programs at Y

Health, wellness coach offers motivational programs at Y
Rhonda Edgerton

YMCA member Paula Berry, left, gets health and wellness input from wellness coach Ashley Goddard at a program held recently at the Wooster YMCA.


Certified behavior health and wellness coach Ashley Goddard hosted a recent workshop at the Wooster YMCA to dive into why people buckle in to self-sabotage when trying to follow through with achieving personal health goals.

“To put it simply, I’m the coach. What a coach is, is a person who makes you do things that you don’t want to do to become the person you want to be,” Goddard said. “My goal is to teach you skills for adapting when you need to stay on track for a lifetime.”

Paula Berry, a YMCA member, said she wants to be more organized. “As far as my work, I’m good at that. But my lifestyle choices are another story,” she said. “So often I am just running around between two jobs, taking care of grandkids and my home. I just feel like I know I’m not as organized as I should be as far as diet and finances.”

Goddard said, “It’s known that 80 percent of our illness comes from stress. Think about a wheel: If one spoke pulls out, the rest fall down too. It’s all a ripple effect.”

An essential step in transformation is to dive into belief systems to identify what’s really holding a person back, according to Goddard.

“If the reason for wanting to make a change is not right in front of us, most of us will fail,” Goddard said.

Goddard used a circle exercise to help people identify their goals. She had people work backward from the results they wanted to see what success would look like.

One attendee listed feeling better, losing weight, having more energy and improving health measurements (blood pressure, weight and such) as her desired results.

First, Goddard asked what financial benefits might be realized if these results were achieved.

The member said she’d likely save money on prepared foods, do less eating out and have lower doctor’s bills.

The effects on health and well-being were considered next.

“I’d probably be better rested and on fewer medications than I am now. It would also cut down on my depression in the winters,” the member said.

Effects on family and relationships were examined next with the member saying she’d probably be better able to keep up with her kids and all her relationships.

Last was what the future might look like with these results. “I guess I won’t notice aging as much, and I’ll be able to keep up with my working and volunteering,” she said.

Goddard said this exercise demonstrates how interconnected everything is. “I work with the whole person as stress, nutrition, relationships, finances, our environment, personal values and exercise all are interconnected,” she said.

Goddard offers individualized programs for people who want to make a more intense dedication to their goals.

“My program is perfect for those busy people who are looking to fit healthy nutrition, movement and self-care into their lives. Taking care of ourselves allows us to be our best self in all aspects of our lives. The domino effect is amazing,” Goddard said.

There are a number of programs by Goddard to be offered at the YMCA in the coming months.

Setting Your Kitchen Up for Success will be Jan. 27 from 6:30-7:45 p.m. Learn the tips and tricks of navigating the grocery store, organizing your kitchen, and meal planning and preparation to fit your family.

Put Sweetness Back in Your Life will be Feb. 26 from 6:30-7:45 p.m. All aspects of life are connected, from creativity and relationships to home cooking and career. When one area is out of balance, it can pull down all the other areas. See what small things one can do to create balance and sweetness in all areas of life.

Give Your Habits a Tune-Up will be March 23 from 6:30-7:45 p.m. Explore which habits are helping or hindering your goals. Leave with action steps of inserting some new habits that can make a significant difference in how you look and feel.

The programs are available to both Y members and nonmembers. Call 608-963-5670 or email Goddard at

The Wooster YMCA is located at 680 Woodland Ave. in Wooster.

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