When I first started work at Phoebe in September of 2012, I had never heard of a Wellness Program being offered through an employer. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but had already made up my mind before coming to work for Phoebe that I needed to make drastic changes to my health. I had just started a Run for God training program with my church and wasn’t sure what to expect. I had never run before and honestly thought that those who enjoyed running were absolutely out of their minds. I resigned myself to the fact that I was “too fat” to run and even if I had to walk my first 5k, I was ok with that. But what happened during the training time, and with the help and encouragement through the wellness program, was pretty amazing. Not only did the focus on healthy eating make a huge difference, but I really pushed myself to try to keep up with the training of the 5k program. When I ran my very first 5k, it was the Jingle Bell Jog at Phoebe in December 2012, and I couldn’t believe that I only stopped to walk ONCE for about 30 seconds during the run. From there, I became addicted to running. Not just because of the huge health benefits and weight loss I was seeing, but I loved how it made me feel, and how I felt like I had really accomplished something huge… especially for someone my size!
Since that first 5k, I’ve run 7 more 5k races, and I’m now training for my first half marathon in March of 2014. I’m a little nervous about 13.1 miles, but I know I can do it. When I started work at Phoebe I was wearing a size 24 pants. Now I’m wearing a size 16 and they are starting to get too big. Not only have I seen weight loss and better health, but my husband committed to making healthy changes with me and he’s lost over 50 pounds. Our kids are eating healthier and we’ve put a bigger emphasis on playing outside and simply turning off the TV after dinner. Who would have thought there could be such a huge difference in one year’s time?