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Ian Ross

Bob Lee and Ian My Y Story photo“Where are you today, Ian?” This is how Y Personal Trainer Bob Lee greets his client Ian Ross at the start of each weekly session – a question posed to learn how Ian is feeling on a scale of 1 to 10. He’ll ask the question again when their training is completed. It’s one of several methods this duo use to set goals and review their progress. Ian has Asperger’s syndrome and while he leads an independent life in many respects (including pursuing his degree in history at Millersville University), he also benefits from his supportive partnership with Bob. Their sessions focus not just on Ian’s physical fitness and strength, but also on nutrition coaching and improving his socialization skills.

Ian and Bob work closely together during their training sessions begun about ten months ago. Yet as Ian has expanded the scope and intensity of his workouts over time, he’s also stepped outside of his initial comfort zone – seeking out independent exchanges with fellow Y members and getting to know other Y staff who enjoy checking in on his progress. Both the physical training and socialization have increased Ian’s confidence and days where he’s reporting an 8 or 9 on his “how are you feeling” scale. When Bob was away on vacation recently, he encouraged Ian to come into the Y and work out on his own. Ian was proud to learn that some Y staff had spotted his solo visits during Bob’s absence – sharing with his trainer that Ian was walking tall – confidently staying on track and feeling right at home at the Y.