Each Friday we feature a real-life person who has embraced a healthy lifestyle from a former sedentary life. We hope their story inspires you to start living and breathing a healthy life! Today's story is from Adrienne who lives in Phoenix, Ariz.
Sarah: 2003 was the year that started the change for you, can you share with us what happened? Adrienne: In 2003, I moved to Arizona to take yet another job in television. While I'd been somewhat athletic growing up, I was always raised to think it was better to be smart, than pretty. And it showed. By the time I arrived in Arizona, I was at least 50 pounds overweight, a complete party girl, with many health issues looming on the horizon (diabetes, stomach issues, etc) and most of all, my self-confidence was shot. And I didn't realize ANY of these things.
Sarah: How did you start your healthy life journey? Adrienne: Through circumstance, a co-worker was successful following the Weight Watchers program, so I thought, "Why not?" In April of 2004, I'd removed 56 pounds to reach my goal weight, and was approached by Weight Watchers about becoming a Group Leader - and helping others reach their goals. Again, I thought "Why not?" and agreed to take the facilitation training and start part-time. Within weeks of the training, I realized that TV was no longer a good fit for me, and came to work for WW full time.
Sarah: Wow! That is incredible! Tell us about your new job! Adrienne: Fast forward eight years, and I'm now one of the Managers of the company, helping with training, media and still leading members to reach their goals each week, some even taking off more than a hundred pounds. This isn't a WW commercial, though. Losing the weight sparked me to find ME. I often say "My outside matches my inside now." I'm confident. I'm raising my family to be healthy and active, so they can avoid the struggles I had. My daughter has a fabulous self-image, which means the world to me, since I didn't have that kind of role model growing up.
Sarah: Tell us how you started running. Adrienne: After having my daughter, I was trying to find "my thing." That thing that was mine, that wasn't work. Or family. And some friends across the country reminded me about running. I'd dabbled in running here and there, but didn't think much of it. Well, having a toddler was enough to make me lace up my running shoes and hit the pavement.
It was quiet. I could think. Or not think. And my feet just kept moving. The miles became my therapy. And I felt stronger and more confident than ever before. That was fall of 2010. Since then, I've run two half marathons, and more than a dozen other races. And then, less than two weeks ago, I crossed the timing mats of my first marathon. Needless to say, I'm hooked.
Sarah: What is life like today for you? Adrienne: I'm healthier and happier at 34 than I was at 24. My goal used to be just to see my next birthday. Now my goal is to be that healthy, white-haired woman who passes the young whipper-snappers at races, while encouraging them the whole way.
Sarah: Do you have any healthy goals for 2012 and beyond? Adrienne: My goal is to run seven races. Raging from four miles to two marathons. I have specific time goals for the marathons so I'm working with a coach on that. Incorporate some cross-training and continue to live a healthy life!