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January Thaw

Join us for January Thaw!

January 8 to January 12, 2024

The start of a brand-new year often inspires many of us to refocus on what’s most important. For many of us, we choose to refocus on our health and well-being.  January Thaw offers more than personal development, it provides an opportunity for you to take part in events that foster human connection, create a sense of belonging, and a shared experience.  All things that contribute to our community well-being and help us create the culture we want to feel.

Below are a list of offerings that WHAM designed with you in mind. View all session descriptions or register using the January Thaw Registration Form.

Monday, January 8

Walk with WHAM

WHAM Committee Members
12:05 to 12:35 Monday-Friday, Meet outside the Campus Center

Join WHAM and your fellow colleagues to kick-start or continue your walking routine while getting some fresh air and sunlight!  We’ll meet outside the Campus Center each day and walk from there to explore the neighborhood and get in some steps.  This is a great opportunity to meet new people, enjoy the beauty around us and return to work feeling refreshed.  

Sign up for this event to receive the calendar invitation and just accept the days you plan to attend. We’ll move the walk indoors to the Leonard Center track if it’s too icy. We encourage you to bring a friend/colleague along, even if they haven’t signed up.  Please wear good boots/shoes for walking and bundle up!

Barre Workout

Ariel Linnerson, WHAM Instructor
12:00 to 1:00, Leonard Center, Studio 1

Ballet-inspired moves are adapted to fit all bodies in this high intensity, but low impact workout designed to strengthen and sculpt your legs, glutes, abs, and arms! We will use the ballet barre for balance as we tone our legs and light hand weights for our upper body. No dance experience required and all fitness levels are welcome! 

Ariel has been teaching Barre, Yoga, Pilates, TRX, Zumba, dance and dance-based fitness classes since graduating with a BFA in Contemporary Dance from North Carolina School of the Arts in 2003. She has been a Macalester WHAM Instructor since 2012. Ariel believes that consistency, sustainability, and variety are the keys to a lifetime of health and fitness and her goal is to make each class fun, engaging, and challenging for each student!

Tuesday, January 9

Understanding the DEADLIFT

Angela Nguyen, NASM Certified Personal Trainer, CNC, WLS, WHAM instructor
11:00 to 12:00, Leonard Center, Deno Fitness Center

Deadlifts are one of the fundamental exercises in a strength training program. Whether you’re a novice or seasoned athlete, they help build bone density, strengthen muscles in the glutes and hips, and stabilize the core muscles, which can help reduce back pain. Yet a deadlift can be an intimidating and challenging exercise to perform correctly.  WHAM would like to help you maximize your confidence in performing this exercise on your own while minimizing your risk for injury. 

This class will teach the lifter the fundamentals of the deadlift, from Romanian deadlifts to barbell deadlifts. You’ll follow a progression to build a solid understanding of proper technique and discuss how you can prepare for a deadlift under a loaded barbell. With each variation, you will gain knowledge from stance, grip width, tension, common faults, and cues to correct them. We will also address a functional warm-up needed to get the most out of your deadlift. This class is recommended for the beginner looking to learn the basics, and the more experienced lifter seeking advice on mobility, warmup, technique, and optimization. 

Mind, Body & Breath

Greg Hines, Certified Yoga Therapist, WHAM Instructor
5:00 to 6:00 pm, Leonard Center, Studio 1

When was the last time you scheduled some strategic recovery?  WHAM offers you this complimentary session to help you create a pause in your day, and allow your mind and body to naturally restore itself.  Our certified yoga therapist, Greg Hines will invite you to open to a sense of agency and awareness through a combination of breathwork, physical practice and mindful mapping of the body. Movement patterns, prop supported poses and mindfulness exercises shed insight to awaken more conscious living.

Wednesday, January 10

How to Use a Neti Pot

Dorothy Jordan, Development Associate, WHAM Committee Member
10:00 to 11:00, IDEA Lab Kitchen

WHAM invites you to learn about a natural, drug-free way to reduce sinus congestion and allergy symptoms by cleansing the sinus passages using a neti pot and saline solution. With proper supplies and body mechanics, using a neti pot is quick, easy and comfortable to do.This session includes a demonstration. Individuals are welcome to bring a neti pot from home if they want to practice using it. Note: Neti pots and neti salt are HSA/FSA eligible expenses.

Cross Country Skiing

Macalester’s Nordic Ski Club
3:00 to 4:00, Battle Creek Recreation Center, 75 Winthrop St S, St Paul, MN 55119 (New Location)

Interested in learning to cross-country ski or just want to ski with Macalester colleagues? Join WHAM and the Macalester Nordic Ski Club for a ski at (note new location) Battle Creek Recreation Center, where they make snow! We will have extra skis and boots in various sizes if you don’t own skis, otherwise you can bring your own. If you need a pair of skis, send an email to  [email protected] or meet in the Leonard Center parking lot at 2:30pm to grab a pair in your size. Otherwise, we will meet at the Battle Creek Recreation Center at 3. Note that a $15 all-access pass is required for skiing at Battle Creek since they create snow, which you can purchase in-person or online at:

Thursday, January 11

Create a Vision Board

Dorothy Jordan, Development Associate, WHAM Committee Member
9:30 to 11:30, DeWitt Wallace Library, Harmon Room

Vision boards are a creative way to help us tap our inner wisdom and connect with our values, intentions, and goals. Creating a vision board signals to our brains – “this is what I am looking for” – and subconsciously helps us notice opportunities we might otherwise miss. 

In this session, each person will be cutting images from magazines and pasting them onto their personal vision board. Please bring a pair of scissors with you. All other supplies provided. Feel free to bring additional magazines to share and to broaden the selection.

Food Packing Volunteer Opportunity

WHAM Committee & Every Meal
1:00 to 3:00, Every Meal 2723 Patton Rd, Roseville, MN 55113

WHAM invites you to join our team of volunteers to help support nutrition and reduce food insecurity for children and families in the Twin Cities.  As a Food Bag Packing Volunteer, you’ll join other members from our wonderful community at the Every Meal Volunteer Center in Roseville to help pack food. In this high-energy and high-impact volunteer opportunity, you’ll form assembly lines and pack bags containing approximately four meals of good food that is nutritious, delicious, and relevant. Every food bag we distribute to hungry children in our community is packed by volunteers with a variety of shelf-stable fruits, vegetables, proteins, and grains. Every Meal has grown from serving one school with a weekend food program to implementing multiple food gap programs serving over 10,000 children across 400 locations… and counting. In 2020, Every Meal celebrated its 10 year anniversary and six million meals provided to children in Minnesota.

Upon registering for this event you’ll receive instructions on how to join Macalester’s team and sign the release form. Please note, a limited number of volunteer spots have been reserved. Staff and faculty are responsible for their own transportation to and from the event. Carpooling with colleagues is encouraged and more fun.

Feldenkrais® Awareness Through Movement®

Krista Langberg, NTT, Macalester Theatre and Dance Professor, WHAM Instructor
3:30 to 4:30, Leonard Center, Studio 1

WHAM invites you to try this complimentary sample of the Feldenkrais Method® before our Spring Session registration opens on January 16. This transformative practice is open to all levels of ability and experience. Whether you are looking to improve your coordination and mobility or find relief from chronic pain and postural tension, these classes are an excellent way to expand your sense of well-being and possibility. Since how you move is how you move through life, these improvements will often enhance your thinking, emotional regulation, and problem-solving capabilities. Awareness Through Movement (ATM) class most often takes place lying down on mats, but occasionally in a sitting or standing position. Similar to Tai Chi or gentle yoga, Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement classes use slow, mindful movements to achieve powerful effects in terms of strength, flexibility, and holistic integration of body and mind. As you attend to the improving quality of movement, unnecessary muscular tensions throughout the body can reorganize and release. Participants are often amazed at the quick and clear changes that occur through the neuromuscular repatterning that happens in an Awareness Through Movement lesson.