staff fitness picks

Performing well on the job requires feeling good. Mt. Lebanon Municipality is proud of its good health and safety record, which is due in no small part to the employees’ commitment to wellness. Here are a few things mtl staff members and our colleagues from other departments do to boost our physical and mental fitness:

Keith McGill, Municipal Manager

I work out three times a week with free weights, an elliptical and a Total Gym. I used to do it to keep in shape, but now it’s more of a stress reliever.  I usually keep my phone on me because inevitably I start thinking about something I need to do for work and if I do, I send myself a text message as a reminder.


Nick Sohyda, Fire Chief

We have a demanding job, so we all are required to work out at least half an hour a day. The older you get, the harder you have to work out to be able to do the job. Working out has evolved over the years from aerobic exercise and lifting to what we call “functional fitness.” We train to do our job.


Eric Milliron, Commercial Districts Manager

I walk at least two miles (or more) at lunch to clear my head and prepare for the second half of the day. These walks are often a mix of callbacks from earlier in the day that I was not able to get to, or simply listening to my favorite tunes. These walks also allow me a chance to see how the business districts are functioning and can remind me of different ideas on how to improve them.


Susan Morgans, Public Information Officer

I have had several ski-related, dog-related and just plain clumsy-related orthopedic injuries and surgeries. I have found that a complete return to good health requires taking physical therapy seriously, going regularly and following up with the “homework” the therapists prescribe. A good attitude helps, and thankfully, most physical therapists are incredibly encouraging.


Laura Pace Lilley, Assistant Public Information Officer

I love exercise of all kinds: running, walking, yoga, Pilates and free weights. But after asking muscles to do the impossible, it’s heaven to get a sports massage—an intense, tension-releasing, circulation-restoring, occasionally uncomfortable kneading of tissues. And then I chug water. I defy anyone to have one of these massages and not feel more open to positive thoughts and actions afterwards.


Shannon Venditti, mtl Art Director

Outside of my typical running, biking and yoga routine, I try to start my day with a walk. I usually venture to the park with my daughter. I’ve found it lightens my mood, eases any stress and sets a good intention for the rest of the day!


Merle Jantz, mtl Managing Editor

I’ve always wanted to do the Rachel Carson Challenge, a one-day, 34-mile hike of the rugged trail north of Pittsburgh.  Each year I have intended to do the pre-challenge 8- to 15-mile training hikes, but my resolve drops as the hikes approach. This year, I made the mistake of mentioning my plans to some friends, who have called my bluff. We’re walking the trail in bits every Sunday.


Mary Abbott, Tax Office Manager

I do mindful meditation (the practice of sustaining attention on body, breath or sensations, or whatever arises in each moment) through iTunes U, a section of the Apple iTunes Store that offers educational audio/video files for free download. The one I use is produced by UCLA. You have to download the iTunes U app, but then it comes right up and you can pick one or several.


Judy Macoskey, mtl Photo Editor+Designer

I’ve disliked running ever since my sixth-grade gym teacher told me I was no good at it. Then last year I joined a group at Fleet Feet Sports, met some great people and discovered I not only enjoy running, but I’m getting pretty darn good at it if I say so myself, going from a 5K to a 10K to a 10-miler to the half marathon last month. So there, Mr. O’Dell!


Dan Kirk and Phil Avolio, Public Works Administrators

We are out in the community and active most of the work day, but when we’re in the municipal building, we make a point of using the steps instead of the elevator.


Pat Cannon, Recreation Program Manager

I am always walking for my work at the Rec Department—last Fourth of July I logged 32,800 steps.  And I dog sit for my daughter, so that gives me one extra walk each day.


What do you do around Mt. Lebanon to keep active? Post your pics on Facebook, Twitter + Instagram and tag mtl magazine to be featured in the next issue!