The fitness program offered through UK Health & Wellness is more than just a gym membership! Read below about how we've helped improved the lives of some of your UK coworkers.

  • Just make the phone call!

    Penny Cruse became involved in the UK Health & Wellness Program because she wanted to lose weight and feel good about herself. Penny has already experienced a great deal of success in Weight Loss Matters by dropping 23 pounds and two pants sizes! She decided to join Body Shop Fitness, after learning in WLM that exercise is crucial to maintaining weight loss. Penny, who works for the UK Educational and Counseling Psychology department, currently exercises at Alumni Gym for one hour and 10 minutes two days per week. She spends 10 minutes on a stationary bike, 25 minutes on a treadmill, and 35 minutes on her resistance training program created by a Body Shop staff member.

    Like many people, Penny initially doubted she would have enough time to work out. She also thought she was too out of shape. But a friend encouraged her to "just get moving and do some kind of exercise even if it is something small." Penny realized the "all or nothing" approach does not apply to exercise, and it is okay to start slowly and work toward goals one step at a time.

    Penny's exercise goals include building cardio endurance and eventually being able to jog again. She wants to look toned and continue to increase her energy level. Since joining the Body Shop, Penny feels more energized in the evening after work, and she has a desire to do more than sit around and watch TV or read. "I feel good about myself," Penny said. "It helps my self-esteem and sense of well-being." Penny also noted that exercise is a good stress reliever.

    Penny's advice to anyone considering joining Body Shop Fitness: "Just make the phone call and get your free fitness consultation, so you will get started. Making the phone call to get started was the hardest step for me."

  • Through hard work and patience, Sean Conway lost more than 100 pounds!

    ​What UK Health & Wellness programs helped you with your weight loss? The Body Shop and staff are invaluable. Having access to the professional staff that can walk me through exercises that would benefit me meet my goals was amazingly helpful. Both locations are convenient to anywhere on campus, and the low cost of membership have been a great boon in helping me reach my weight-loss goals.

    How has the program and staff helped you? Tiffany was absolutely wonderful to work with. She helped me develop a routine that would assist me in losing weight. I also told her that I enjoy hiking, so she added some exercises that would help build up my lower body strength. Anytime I see Tiffany in the Body Shop, she seems genuinely interested in my progress and always has something encouraging to say, which is always helpful when you’re working toward a long-term goal.​

    When and why did you decide to join Body Shop? I had been a member of the Body Shop for a couple of years and have gone intermittently in that time. However, last June my doctor put me on blood pressure medication. Although I’ve been big all my life, this was the first time my weight was directly affecting my health in a tangible manner. Not wanting to take medication for a long period of time, I resolved to use my membership more fully.

    Other employees at the Body Shop were equally helpful. Anytime I had a question about proper form of an exercise, how exactly it was affecting me, or for a replacement exercise when a routine was beginning to stagnate, I could count on anyone there to assist me with a helpful attitude and give full explanations to anything they suggested.

    What was your biggest challenge? Motivation after the first couple of weeks is always something that, I think, can get people down. I tried to take a long-term view of the situation and didn’t go into it this time, like I had on previous attempts, expecting quick and immediate results. Instead I found routines that suited me and slowly ramped up the amount of physical activity I expected from myself in a day. Seeing the weight start coming off was great motivation in itself. Encouraging words and advice from Tiffany and other Body Shop members were also helpful in keeping motivated.

    Also, changing my eating habits was something that took time, but I have successfully made permanent changes to my diet, and am consistently making better choices in what I eat and how I cook, as I now almost exclusively only eat what I prepare myself with healthier ingredients.

    What are your results to date? Have you reached your goal? Although I have not reached my goal, I am within a stone’s throw of it. To date (since June 2010) I have lost 115 pounds, 14 inches (over a foot!!) off my waist, two shirt sizes, a ring size, and even half of a shoe size. I would like to lose at least another 30 pounds. I have recently, however, crossed the line of one of my major immediate goals…not having to buy all my clothes in the big and tall section.

    How does it feel to be YOU now? It feels great. I am able to get out on the trail more often and can go miles farther than I previously could. I’ve even recently taken up trail running for an added boost to my physical activity. I’m at the lowest weight of my adult life and feel great thanks in large part to Health & Wellness and the Body Shop.