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Success Story: Wendy!

by Lisa on February 20, 2011

As I read Wendy’s story, I just get this big grin on my face…she is a true inspiration and proof that it is possible to take control of your own health! I met Wendy when I was wellness coaching full-time in the corporate setting. She was 22 years-old, and gearing up for her wedding day!  Now, it is a year and a half after her first 5K, and Wendy keeps surprising me with her enthusiasm and accomplishments.  I know that even without my guidance, Wendy would have met her weight loss and fitness goals. She’s amazing—and I’m so glad I played a part in her journey!

Take it away, Wendy!

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Before

Initially, I dedicated my time immediately after work to start working out at the Fitness Center at work. I also signed up for a few of employee fitness courses and enjoyed participating in them. They helped to change up the pace of things so that I wouldn’t get bored from just using the elliptical or the treadmill every day. I also changed the way I ate by incorporating more fruits and vegetables and eliminating fast food. By making these changes, I lost 30 pounds. Then, I met Lisa, one of the wellness coaches at my place of employment. I still had 20 pounds left to lose to meet my weight loss goal, and she helped me accomplish this. She spent a lot of time with me, discussing ways to stay focused and lose my final 20 pounds. With her encouragement, I began challenging myself by running. I had never run before, but Lisa assured me that I could do whatever I set my mind to. It was one of the most difficult things that I have ever done and it pushed me harder than I ever thought I could be pushed. I began by just running a minute or two at a time on the treadmill and developed from there. In August of 2009, I participated in my first 5k race, with a time of 34:35. I continued my running and ran another 5k in August of 2010 with an improved time of 27:57. Shortly after that, I participated in the 2010 Rochester Marathon Relay, where I completed the first leg (6.5 miles) of the marathon. I have lost (and kept off) 50 pounds since I began my lifestyle change.

I was motivated initially because I was getting married and I wanted to look and feel great for my wedding day. Once I began changing my lifestyle, I could see and feel the difference, and it felt amazing. I was motivated by the progress that I made each day and I hated seeing myself go backwards. I couldn’t allow myself to make excuses or give up my workout time. I worked hard, and I wanted it to all pay off. I felt fabulous about myself on my wedding day and I knew I could never go back to my old lifestyle. I am motivated on a daily basis by the self-confidence and energy that I gain from working out.

Wedding Day!

There were times when I felt like I worked extremely hard but would see no results on the scale. Although it was frustrating, I knew I just had to keep going, and eventually I would see results again. If I gave up at those difficult times, I would never be where I am today.

Working out (specifically running) is a great stress reliever for me. Running gives me time to do something that feels natural and clear my mind at the same time. I make sure that my workout times are a priority for me and do not allow my job to interfere. If I know that I am not going to be able to fit in my daily workout before or after work, I make arrangements to fit it in on a day that I wouldn’t normally work out. It just takes a little bit of planning ahead, but it is completely worth it!

After the Marathon Relay (Wendy is on the right)

As far as tips for others, make sure to consider what you’re eating. Although exercise is an extremely large part of a healthy lifestyle, the choices that are made with food are equally important. I learned to recognize how vital it is to read food labels for certain ingredients that would hinder my weight loss. I am also much more aware of how important it is to buy organic. I now choose groceries as if I’m “casting my vote” for products that I support and that I want to eat. Last summer my husband and I joined a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) and enjoyed the fresh fruits and vegetables from May through October while supporting a local farmer. I have changed the way I look at and view food, and this in turn has changed the way I eat.

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Thanks Wendy!


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