Green Mountain: Then and Now
Then… Green Mountain began in the summer of 1972 when founder Thelma Wayler, MS RD, took over an empty dorm at Vermont’s Green Mountain College. There she began telling women that diets don’t work — almost four decades before the idea became accepted as it is today.
Instead, she provided women with weight loss help by letting them experience for themselves the power that eating well, moving our bodies and thinking positively offers in helping us reach fitness goals. But perhaps the most important concept that Thelma fostered was freedom of choice — how the freedom to make choices based on what we want, and then accepting the responsibility for those choices, is at the core of success in achieving goals in any area, including weight management.
Thelma also realized the importance of advice and direction based on science, not fad, with a good deal of professional insight and judgment thrown into the mix. As a result, the program has always operated under the direction of a highly professional team that includes registered dietitians, exercise physiologists, mental health professionals and physicians. Today, our staff also includes an expert in human metabolism as well as professionals in the nurturing arts, including yoga and massage therapy.
Green Mountain operated as a summer program through its first years, but as its popularity grew by word of mouth and phenomenal publicity (Thelma’s ideas drew the attention of national media, including the early Phil Donahue Show — the leader before Oprah took over), the program evolved, became year round, and new quarters for it had to be found.
and Now… Today, Green Mountain operates out of a former ski and corporate retreat on a hill overlooking Okemo Mountain and the Okemo Valley Golf Course, Set on 26 wooded acres, the lodge is a low-key, relaxing retreat with informal classrooms, well-equipped physical activity rooms, a spacious dining room, and a comfortable living room. The feeling is one of relaxed camaraderie. Up to 40-45 women can be accommodated in single, double and triple rooms. The emphasis here is on informal living rather than pampering, although massage and other amenities are available. In this way, we can offer a more personalized experience that facilitates the development and planning of effective strategies for long-term success.
The core of the program has remained similar to Thelma Wayler’s original vision. The language of intuitive eating and intrinsic exercise has codified Thelma’s approach. We have layered in newer practices, such as mindfulness and meditation to help women get in touch with their bodies and what they need. Our behavioral classes address the new challenges modern women face in juggling careers, kids, and aging parents as well as the non-stop pace of life with technology. And our fitness program complements the hiking and snow shoeing Vermont offers with exercise classes you would find at home, such as Pilates, Zumba, and yoga.
When you’re ready to begin to take charge of your life and health, learn more about how our healthy weight loss program can help you become healthier and find the success you want…for the rest of your life.