Sarah Johanson, ARMC Clinical Laboratory
Tell us about your Wellness Superhero journey.
I have gone through a lot of changes in the past year. Last year in March, I decided to be proactive about my health and consequently, about my weight. Although I have had ups and downs, I have lost 50 pounds as a result of a healthy diet and frequent exercise and am still on track in terms of my goals.
What inspired you to get healthy and stay healthy?
After my divorce in 2014, I started stress eating. I have also had ongoing medical issues that have contributed to my weight gain. In March of last year, I broke down crying because a pair of pants I bought a few months prior no longer fit. I was not going to let my health dictate my happiness any longer! I had not achieved the goals I thought I would have when I turned 30, and I had gone down a path that I was not proud of. So, I decided to make a change and see what programs the hospital had to offer. I knew that if I put my mind to it, I could excel at my life goals, one of which was getting to a healthy BMI before I turned 32.
Which Cone Health wellness program did you participate in?
I participated in the discounted Weight Watchers program and the Healthy Rewards program.
Are there activities or hobbies you now participate in that you didn’t before?
I don’t have the time to go the gym with work and school full-time, so I take advantage of things I can do. On days I work, I take walking breaks and go up and down the stairs. I can now do 6 reps from LL to 3rd floor in about 12 minutes! On days when I am at home, I make sure to take a break from my school work and walk my dogs for at least 2 miles.
Have your doctor, family, friends, and co-workers provided support along the way? If so, how?
I constantly receive support and praise from my co-workers, which boosts my confidence and drives me to achieve more. When I went to my doctor for my last check-up, he was shocked that I had lost almost 40 pounds. I told him that I listened to his advice when he told me in the beginning of the year that I needed to work on getting to a healthier weight.
If you could say one thing to other employees to inspire them, what would you say?
When life has gotten you down and you feel depressed, it can be hard to pick yourself up. But it’s never too late to start and any step, no matter how small, is a step in the right direction. I started by changing my perspective and it changed my life.