Interest group: Health & Fitness

Living with Purpose

Felicia Melton-Smyth talks candidly to Our Lives about transitioning, her AIDS philanthropic work and the most important thing she’s ever done.

A Culmination of Community

Each year the Madison Gay Hockey Association invites its members to write about the role that the MGHA plays in building their identity. 2007 scholarship winner Mark Sadowski shares his essay.

Waking Up the Sleeping Giant

Madison Gay Hockey Association Founder and Our Lives Publisher Patrick Farabaugh shares his personal story and experience behind the birth of the MGHA

Time to ACT

What started as a job turned into something bigger as WKOW 27 news anchor Mitch Weber tells Our Lives why he decided to make the Wisconsin AIDS ride a part of who he is.

I Am Grateful!

Volunteering for ACT 5 herself, Barbara McKinney discovers the commitment and courage that her late son Mike always described as “a life changing experience”

Finding Her Rhythm

With the first anniversary of Women Who Want to Dance approaching, organizer Susana Torres talks to Our Lives about coming here from Mexico, beginning to laugh, and Women Across Wisconsin

Living With Gender

UW-Madison associate professor of Gender and Women’s Studies, A. Finn Enke examines the roles that gender expression have layered into our society and how they affect our own gendered identities

A Sense of Place

After years spent searching for somewhere to belong, Eri Madder discovers how that quest—and owning an authentic life—leads back to a realization about self-acceptance

The Pink Plaque Tour

Take a stroll through time to discover some of the hidden history of Madison’s LGBT community. Dick Wagner gives you a guided tour.

Turning a Moment into Momentum

Lucia Nuñez comes out as a cancer survivor and explains how her job became more poignant as a result of her diagnosis.

The Face of Commitment

Jeanne Marshall chronicles how her feminism informed her decision to get involved with AIDS activism.

Many Pieces, One Clinic

Jill Nebeker examines the people and elements that came together to make the AIDS Network Dental Clinic a reality.

Pursuing the Path Less Traveled

Dean Health System President & CEO Dr. Craig Samitt has spent his life learning how to embrace his own differences and use them to challenge the status quo professionally and personally.

Yes We Can

Diverse and Resilient Executive Director Gary Hollander is leading a charge to dismantle Wisconsin’s LGBT population’s health risks and trying to replace them with a stronger, safer community.

What Gay Hockey Means To Me

Each year the Madison Gay Hockey Association invites its members to write about the role that the MGHA plays in building their identity. 2011 scholarship winner Jeff Godsey shares his essay.

This is What Sustainability Looks Like

Claire Strader, Farm Director for Troy Community Farm and Community GroundWorks on learning to feed herself and her community today and for the long term.

Dharma Talk

In a world full of self-doubt and the lure of distracted living, Lives Unlimited’s Mare Chapman discovered that radical self-acceptance is the path to freedom. Let her show you how.

The Embodiment of Fitness

What do Greek gods, break dancing, tear gas, and the circus have share in common? They are all mile-markers along Septimiu Teodorescu’s path to the American Dream.

Comrades in Arms

Tim Lom found in fellow Madison Minotaurs and other gay rugby teams an extended family. But first, he had to know what he was looking for.

For the Love of Good

The Mad City Sisters just can’t get enough of the stares and questions. It’s all about getting the conversation started.

Head Over Skates

Victoria Echeverria, aka Elle Machete of the Mad Rollin’ Dolls, looks at a life lived on roller skates.

Running Man

From Mexico to America, Rolando Cruz found passion and purpose in a pair of running shoes.

The State of LGBTQI Healthcare

After years of being ignored by most mainstream medical policymakers and practitioners, progress is being made in many areas—but crucial problems remain for many LGBTQI citizens.

Salvation in Sport

Cathy Noth found strength and direction through athletics, 
faith, and family.

Iron Woman

Colleen Capper runs, swims, and bikes toward a better, longer life and finds plenty of role models in the triathlon community.

Bisexuals Experience Even Greater Health Disparities

Molly Hermman explores the physical consequences of bisexual invisibility.

A League of His Own

Lee Kampa talks finding acceptance, community, and a place to grow as an out gay man and athlete in the world of Madison softball.

Physician, Teach Thyself

A group of medical students are creating kits to help doctors learn about and provide better care for their LGBTQ patients.

Whole Body

It’s a Whole Person thing, and it starts with simple tweaks to what and how you eat.

Connecting the Acronym

Molly Herrmann looks at ways we can build better bonds between LGBs and Ts, and the need to destigmatize mental health issues for everyone.

Health-Care Crusader

James Lehman is working for better LGBTQ health care by every available means.

They’ve Got Game—and Heart

Madison Blaze Women’s Football Team members Rebecca Havens and Jessica Lundgren talk about their love of the game—and the team.

Rebecca Havens and Jessica Lundgren

We Are Young

What is the status of lesbian, gay, and bisexual youth in our state? Molly Herrmann talks with Anneke Mohr about the biannual 2011 Wisconsin Youth Risk Behavior Survey.

Resilience Rewarded

Caroline Werner takes a look at recent developments in healthcare protections for LGBTQ seniors.

Net Worth

Kurtis Hopp found a tight-knit community and a way to give back in Madison’s volleyball scene.

Free to Roll

The culture and community of roller derby helped Alex Hanna get comfortable with their non-binary gender identity and kick butt on skates.

Water Rhythms

As the Mendota Rowing Club approaches its 40th anniversary in Madison, rowers reflect on their time on the water and what the sport means to them.

The Right to Care

Dylan Bryne recounts her privileges and struggles within a health care system that too often falls dangerously short for transpeople.

Creative Health Care

Older LGBT community members are forcing the health care system to better serve their unique needs.

Stand and Be Counted

Molly Herrmann explains why the new state health report on LGB people matters, and why surveys of the LGBTQ community are crucial to its well being.

An Individual Journey

The road to self-acceptance is full of speed bumps and landmarks along the way. Dale Decker helps you steer clear of wrong turns.

Conscious Living

It’s no surprise that minorities have increased problems with depression, addictions and compulsive behavior. Gay people are no exception.

Building Support

Tim Foster treats himself to some little treasures from businesses in our community.

Understanding Denial

Learning how to recognize when denial is doing more harm than good can be challenging. Dale Decker shows you the difference.

Dealing with the Deuces

In the wake of the marriage amendment, Dale Decker examines how shame can prevent that “personal connection” necessary for creating change.

A Reason to Smile

On Madison’s East side, Tamim Sifri uses professionalism and compassion to help care for his patients.

Changing the Game

Two Madison West High School seniors, Isabel Medina and Miles Walser, are attempting to push the boundaries for queer youth with a Wisconsin first: The Young Queer Sports Club.

Building Body Confidence

Learning how to understand and love your body image is often challenging. Dale Decker offers solutions that promote better acceptance.

To Be the First

Division I Badger hockey player Ilana Friedman started a You Can Play chapter to help LGBT athletes at the UW and around Madison come out and participate in sport.

Another Path to Happiness

What can you do if the traditional forms of happiness feel beyond your reach? Dale Decker suggests ways to create the presence of meaning

A Pirate’s Crusade

At 19 years old, Bob Bowers became one of the first cases of HIV documented. Now, at 45, he looks back at whom he’s become after living longer with the disease than without.

The Test

Thrown into a sobering reality, in his own words Dustin Smith tells what it was like when he learned he tested positive.

The Status of HIV

New Executive Director Karen Dotson offers a comprehensive look at the emerging needs in HIV/AIDS prevention and care, and how the AIDS Network is responding to that demand.

In Times of Grief

Are there manageable ways to make it through losing someone close? After our recent losses, Dale Decker offers methods to help cope.

An Indecent Disclosure

What keeps your HIV status and other personal information safe from the public? Tamara Packard outlines a statute in place that protects your privacy.

Getting Beyond Borders

Triathlete Amber Ault is competing for a cause

A Change of Script

Is theater a metaphor for life? Dale Decker shows how useful it can be sometimes to rewrite a rehearsed behavior.

In Search of Zen

Proselytizing from a queer perspective, academic Michael Sweet, ponders the draw to Buddhist principals that LGBT people feel when searching for serenity and a spiritual path.

The Path to Parenting

As the reality of creating our own families increases, so do the paths we take to get there. The Law Center for Children and Families reports on a variety of options and success stories.

‘Tis the Season

With winter returning and hours of sunlight on the decline, Dale Decker offers some advice on how to cope through seasonal depression.

Tackling Life, Head-On

Katie Jayce found a home and fulfilled a dream by joining the rough and tumble world of women’s tackle football.

Quitters Do Win

Diverse and Resilient partners with OutReach on “Room to Breathe,” a solution to help us stop smoking. Amber Ault reports.

Form and Formlessness of Love

Embracing her sexual identity later in life, an Anonymous Reader shares the discovery that helped her feel love.

Long Live a Grand Dame

After surviving the Vietnam War and HIV, J. Patrick thrives in Madison’s theater community.

Are You Always Leaving?

Attachment Theory helps Sue Gill illustrate how processing our sexuality can effect our ability to build and sustain lasting relationships.

Leaping Past the Hurdles

Motivation and realistic goals are only the start of your fitness obstacle course. Amber Ault reports on ways to achieve better results.

What Gay Hockey Means to Me

Each year the Madison Gay Hockey Association invites its members to write about the role the MGHA plays in building their identity. 2009 Scholarship winner Max Camp shares his essay.

Do You Tell the Whole Truth?

Can you see your glass ceiling? Jimmy Owen looks at the facts about what “little white lies” can do to our physical and emotional health.

At Your Own Pace

Amber Ault goes out for a jog with the Madison Front Runners/Front Walkers and finds support for athletes at any level.

Pedal to the Mettle

Meet Ali Dwyer. Through We Are All Mechanics, she is empowering women, one bike rider at a time.

Changed for life… changed for good

Wisconsin AIDS Ride Coordinator Angela DuPont reflects upon her involvement with the ACT Rides and what she’ll take with her as she says goodbye.

Listening and Learning

If you know how to hear it, your body will tell you what’s right. Dr. Sue Gill shows how tuning in to our bodies puts us in better touch with our selves.

Out on the Water

Slow down a bit, take a breath, maybe dangle your feet in the water for a moment, and you’ll discover this: These lakes have a social life of their own.

The Diary of Josie Lynn

What a fun way to promote this awesome show, walking around the Capitol Square during a Farmers’ Market in full drag. And that’s exactly what we did—coffee in one hand, show fliers in the other.

Taking art into your own hands

Tara Ayres explores the world of contact improv, where participants combine improvisational movement and response with dance, music and physical connection.

Come Out to Support LGBTQ Triathletes

Thousands of spectators assemble at Monona Terrace before dawn to find viewing spots along the Monona shoreline for the 7:00 a.m., 2.4-mile swim start.

Therapy Shopping

Are you in the market for a psychotherapist? Jimmy Owen encourages you to empower yourself by selecting someone who will be a good fit for you. Imagine walking into an unfamiliar office and sitting in a strange room for the first time. As you look around, you notice a box…

Madison’s Own Fairy Godmother

Michael Bruno shares his theatrical journey with Tara Ayres.

Embracing our “Genderness”

What gender role do you take on in your relationship? Your workplace? Dr. Sue Gill suggests we examine if our internal gender matches our external gender expression.

Dispelling Myths

Amber Ault examines the common assumptions about the H1N1 virus and urges caution.

Figuring It Out

US and Olympic Figure Skating Judge Robert G. Rosenbluth.

Hit So Hard

In the full-contact world of rugby’s rucks and scrums, Greta Slack found an inclusive and supportive family to call her own

Coping with Serious Illness

A Lyme disease diagnosis forced Dr. Sue Gill to rearrange everything about how she approaches and thinks about her own life and what it means to deal with chronic illness

Yoga for All

Instructor Kelly Fox talks about why creating truly inclusive spaces for queer and transgender people—in yoga and in life—requires more than just talk;
it takes mindful practice.

Calling the Shots

Madison boasts a world-class curling scene, and Lori Karst is proud to be part of the community that fulfills and challenges her every day.

Because I Love You

Molly Hermann shares intimate details of seeking healthcare as an LGBTQ-identified person and the ways in which our health providers hit and miss the mark in providing compassionate and considerate care.

Life in the Fast Lane

For Shannon Anderson, a competitive nature and love of precision found an outlet through the high-speed world of motorcycle racing.

New Lease On Life

Tamara Dinkel chronicles the physical and emotional challenges of battling an aggressive cancer, all while
coming out to her family and making several other major life and career changes.

Finding Pride

In his Madison Gay Hockey Association award-winning essay, Drew White reflects on the internal struggle that brought him to Madison and the community he found on—and off—the ice.

Care in Transition

Alex Hanna explains how access to the various pieces of necessary health care can be extremely limited or nonexistent for many transgender people seeking transition care.

Because I Love You

Molly Hermann shares intimate details of seeking healthcare as an LGBTQ-identified person and the ways in which our health providers hit and miss the mark in providing compassionate and considerate care.

Food for Thought

Jeanne Benink explores the ways we develop a taste for different kinds of love.

Pursuing The Path Less Traveled

Dean Health System President & CEO Dr. Craig Samitt has spent his life learning how to embrace his own differences and use them to challenge the status quo professionally and personally.

10 years of Our Lives

Our Lives turns 10 years old this July, and this issue marks the start of our year-long retrospective. We take a look back at some of the people, stories, and changes that have marked the past decade of the LGBTQ community here in Madison, the state, and beyond.

Ride for Life

Simone Justice found her life’s drive in cycling and is determined to see the sport better reflect and reach out to minority communities.

First, Do No Harm

Dr. Kathy Oriel strikes out on her own in order to provide quality and compassionate medical care, particularly for those too often left out of the system.

Mission Driven

Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin President Tanya Atkinson takes a holistic view of social justice and healthcare advocacy, with plenty of love and laughter along the way.

The Family Habit

Tobacco companies specifically target communities that suffer higher levels of minority stress, leading to higher rates of smoking among LGBTQ people.

Access Granted

Wisconsin’s Group Insurance Board votes to remove exclusion for transgender health care coverage.

Strength and Healing

FORWRD Training co-owner and founder Raquel Sanchez is taking an approach to fitness based on patience, inclusivity, healing, and joy.

Taking Stock of Health

The LGBTQ community faces unique and ongoing challenges in the quest for equitable health care. What progress has been made, and where do barriers remain?

Authentic Gains

Hybrid Athletic Club and Bakke Athletics owner Kjersten Bakke was taught from a young age to embrace her curiosity and the unknown, and to be true to herself. These lessons helped shape her somewhat unlikely life trajectory.

“I’m Not Going Back”

Lack of LGBTQ education especially deters trans patients from seeking healthcare; advocates prescribe continuous education.