Campus Recreation News > A Family That Plays Together, Stays Together

A Family That Plays Together, Stays Together

A Q&A With One of the Recreation and Wellness Center's First Families

Last Updated 5 Year(s) ago

Meet the Rice family.

Father Ray, mother Jeanine, and daughter Candace Sealy are working out together to gain muscle, relieve stress, and maintain a healthy lifestyle. We got the 411 on how this Auburn Family makes time for fitness and each other at the Auburn University Recreation and Wellness Center. 

Ray Rice, Auburn University retired

CR: Tell us how you first got involved with the Recreation and Wellness Center.

RR: After retiring, I had more time on my hands and I wanted to start exercising to help control my weight and to gain muscle strength.  I realized if I did not make an extra effort to exercise, I would not maintain a proper weight and my strength would suffer as well, which is important as you age.  Also, our youngest daughter decided to finish her college education at Auburn University and the Recreation and Wellness Center was part of her tuition cost.  We decided to join and to exercise with her.  She had participated in different weight training and exercise programs, as well as had exercise apps that aid in developing exercise routines that work different muscle groups. These apps also provide variety to our workout regimen so we are not bored with our routines. 

CR: What keeps you coming back?

RR: It is a joy to exercise with our daughter. We are competitive against one another, and we have fun kidding with each other regarding who can lift the most weight; of course I can easily beat her!  (I have to get a jab in because she will get one on me!) Also, the weekly exercise regimen is helping me keep my weight under control and I feel like I have added some muscle, or at least have not lost any during the time we have used the Recreation and Wellness Center.

CR: What does your regular workout routine look like?

RR: It is a mixture of aerobic and resistance exercises to build muscle and burn calories three times a week.  It consists of a 10-minute warm-up on an elliptical machine, four to five weight resistance exercises, 15 minutes on a different elliptical, four to five more weight resistance exercises, and ends with 15 minutes on the treadmill.  Candace changes up the resistance exercises by using both free weights and resistance machines. We do 2 to 3 sets of 10 to 12 reps of each exercise. The routine changes every 4-6 weeks to keep it interesting and does not allow our muscles to get accustomed to doing the same thing over and over.  This not only provides us with variation, but keeps our program from becoming boring by providing new challenges for us to compete against each other. 

CR: What motivates you to stay on track?

RR: Weight control is my major concern, as well as trying to at least maintain or slightly improve my muscle mass in order to improve stability, which is important with my height.  I also feel it improves my overall health and fitness which will improve my quality of life by allowing me to do more physical activity.  Visiting with our daughter is an added benefit we really enjoy. Another import thing is to make sure my baby daughter cannot beat me in lifting weights, at least with most of them.  Sit-ups are NOT my strongest point. 

CR: What would Mrs. Rice say is your one guilty pleasure?

RR: It would be ice cream with strawberries and most sweets. I have overeaten most of my life and controlling the amount of calories I eat each day takes constant attention and diligence. I limit sweets to special events and making sure I have only small portions. Burning calories allows me to eat a little more I could not otherwise eat without exercising.

Jeannine Rice, Wife to Ray and Mom to Candace

CR: What would you tell someone who is thinking about joining the Recreation and Wellness Center?

JR: There are plenty of different exercise equipment for you to use and very little, if any, wait time. The different equipment allows you to change up your routine and add variety to your workout.  There are plenty of both aerobic and resistance exercise equipment including a large array of free weights. Whether you are a beginner or into serious weight lifting, there is something for everyone.  The staff is very friendly, helpful, and welcoming when you arrive.  The tours are very good and allow people to see the many amenities the Wellness Center has to offer. If you like handball, table tennis, basketball, etc., there are many sporting activities available to you. If you really want to challenge yourself, there is a rock climbing wall as well!

CR: Have you made changes in your health and fitness lifestyle since you joined?

JR: I have tried to watch my caloric intake and get in as much exercise as possible.  I have added an exercise routine to my schedule and spend as much time walking on the indoor track as I can. I prefer using low impact exercise like walking and the elliptical machine. 

CR: What changes stand out the most?

JR: Going to the gym has given me more stamina and strength to do my normal daily activities.

CR: What do you enjoy doing when you’re not exercising? 

JR: First and foremost I enjoy spending time with my two daughters and five grandchildren. I enjoy having them over and anything that allows us to share time together. One thing I enjoy doing is planning activities, such as attending Auburn University sporting events, with my grandchildren and having fun with them.  We also enjoy traveling as much as possible and seeing different areas of the country.  Travelling on cruises has allowed us to see many of the Caribbean islands, Alaska, and Central America.

Candace M. Sealy, Masters Student

CR: When your friends find out you exercise here, what do they say or ask?

CS: My friends live in other parts of Alabama and even in other states. They are mostly jealous of how beautiful the Wellness Center looks and the fact the atmosphere is so pleasant, definitely not your typical gym vibe. My friends have also asked me when am I going to tackle the rock wall and I may never accept their challenge because I have a fear of heights. Although I have teased my dad on several occasions that he needs to try it and I will watch! He would never let me live it down if I did not do it with him so I may not need to tease him too much on the matter, or I may have to eat my words!

CR: What is your personal “fitness” philosophy?

CS: I believe exercise is the fountain of youth for anyone willing to keep their body strong through weight lifting, cardio, and a healthy diet. Staying active is one of the most important things we can do for ourselves. I have exercised on and off for over a decade and have taken private lessons in Pilates, Gyrotonics, Power Plate, and weight lifting. I love it all and each has its own way of challenging the body. I also received a FitBit for my birthday and I try very hard to hit my 10,000 steps daily goal. Healthy eating has always been a part of my lifestyle, but sadly I have slipped since going back to college. I have recently started back a healthier-eating lifestyle and I am slowly dropping my “freshman 15.” Going to the gym is not only helping me shed those unwanted pounds, but it also has become a stress reliever from classes and studying by clearing my mind and giving me a break from sitting in front of the books. The cherry on top is seeing Mom and Dad which makes exercising fun! I definitely recommend exercise partners to keep you accountable, to pull out some competiveness, and to shake things up.

CR: What might someone be surprised to know about you?

CS: Before I was an Auburn student I was a photographer in Montgomery, Alabama, for 7 years. My studio was named Sweet Pea Photography and some of my pictures were even featured on toy packaging for Hasbro and ads in Limited Too catazines. I also dabble in cake making and decorating, from 3D character cakes to desserts of all sorts, for my friends and family. It is always a challenge to see if I can top the current cake without a major catastrophe and it brings me joy to see the faces light up at birthday parties when I nail it!

CR: What is your favorite Auburn memory or experience?

CS: My favorite memory of Auburn University would have to be tailgating as a child and going to the football games. You know back when tailgaters could park anywhere on campus, we would let down the back of Dad’s truck, and eat these huge hoagie sandwiches Mom would make and all of the yummy sides. After eating, I remember walking to the Auburn Bookstore to buy face paint and sitting eagerly outside Haley Center as my Mom painted tiger paws on my cheeks. I was beaming from ear to ear, with my paper orange and blue shaker in hand ready to watch the game!