Screen shot 2016-03-31 at 1.23.12 PM

Each week we will feature a University of Alabama employee to find out how they get moving and stay healthy!

Week of June 26th, 2017: Paige Linne, Western Equestrian Coach, Financial Affairs

Screen shot 2017-06-23 at 10.58.00 AMPaige grew up in Arizona before going to school at Texas A&M. During her undergraduate years, she rode for the varsity equestrian team; while working on her masters she had a chance to coach a club team, which is when she found her purpose pouring into the lives of students. She has hiked the Grand Canyon once (to the bottom) and will be backpacking it again this August.

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

Since I just moved to Tuscaloosa and started work, I can’t say it’s quite a routine yet…but I have been getting up early in the morning on weekdays to weight train and do some cardio. I have found that it helps get my mind right before work, and if I can wake up and have a strong workout then I’ve already accomplished something that day and am off to a solid start. On weekends I like to do either a hike or a long walk, I have a retriever who has a ton of energy to get out so she enjoys that.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

As a coach, I’m a big believer in building people of character, not just talent. A lot of those beliefs come back to pushing yourself to be better every day, which I do my best to live by and not just preach. I also love the feeling of strength and empowerment that a good workout can give you, and it’s a good anchor when our lives get crazy.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

The snooze button! First thing in the morning we generally aren’t feeling incredibly motivated or inspired, but I try to remind myself that if I want my riders to be hard workers and get better every day, I have to expect it of myself too!

What is your favorite physical activity?

Riding, of course! I have ridden horses since I was a kid, so that’s a huge part of my life and will continue to be therapeutic for me. There’s just something about being outside with those amazing animals that can make everything in life seem better. Being from Arizona originally, I also love hiking. If anyone has some good trail recommendations in the area, I would love to hear them!

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

During my college career, I blew out one knee and fractured the other along with a ligament sprain. Coming back from both of those injuries was really challenging physically and mentally, but in the end, they made me a better person and I’m glad to have grown personally as a result of them.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would really love to do a big extended backpacking trip on the John Muir trail!

Week of June 19th, 2017: Cecile Komara, Assistant Professor, Human Development and Family Studies

Cecile teaches courses in Early Childhood Education and Child Development and has been at the University for 10 years.

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

I go to group exercise classes at the Student Recreation Center. Sometimes, I walk on the treadmill and lift weights. I try to work out every work day evening, so about 5 days a week.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I have a work-out buddy from the same department. We motivate each other to workout each evening.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Evening meetings are the biggest barrier. Also, at the end of the semester when I get swamped with grading.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I enjoy dancing and group exercise. My favorite is DAZE class!

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I recently (fall semester) inflamed my plantar fascia in my right foot. Walking has been hard. My most recent UA accomplishment was to finish the Couch to 5k in an hour. My most personal accomplishment in May was to be able to walk comfortably while touring China (see picture).

What is one item on your bucket list?

To lose weight.

Week of June 12th, 2017: Sarah Wever, Academic Advisor/Ph.D. Student in Higher Education, College of Engineering

Sara weaverSarah says, “I have been at the University of Alabama for 5 years. I was a Masters student from 2012-2014, then a clinical fellow in the Department of Communicative Disorders, a full-time Ph.D. student in Higher Education Administration and graduate research assistant, and now an academic advisor for the College of Engineering while I am finishing my Ph.D.! The University of Alabama has provided me with a lot of opportunities and I even met my husband here!”

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

My Fitbit has been a huge factor in keeping me motivated! I love the UA Fitbit challenges!! I walk or jog 5 days a week and have recently joined the new YMCA downtown. My husband and I lift weights 3-4 days a week there. We try to walk or ride our bikes to the gym too! I also have a treadmill at home that I use whenever I want to watch TV.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

My main goal for staying fit is my health! I always look long term and I know that if I take care of myself now it will pay off later in life.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?sara weaver 2

Balancing being a full-time Ph.D. student with a lot of homework and working full time. However, I try not to let myself use that as an excuse! If you really care about being healthy and fit you will make time for it.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Walking is my favorite thing to do- I could walk for hours and hours. I like to walk with my husband, dogs, friends, and recently my new co-workers! I started using the Stair Mill at the YMCA and I am really enjoying that new challenge.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I wanted to start lifting weights with my husband again because we had taken a break and were making excuses. We live downtown so the new YMCA was the perfect place to join! We have been going together every week now.

What is one item on your bucket list?

Run a marathon. I have done 5ks, 10ks, and a half marathon. Running a marathon seems impossible but it would be awesome if I could get myself to do that one day!

Week of June 5th, 2017: Leif Cole, Referrals Specialist, UMC Family Medicine Northport

downloadWhen Leif is not working or running,  he enjoys reading and he is also a huge animal lover!

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

I run my neighborhood most mornings before work. I recently joined Fitness One to participate in their classes and to weight train. Meal prep is also an important part of my routine.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

My main motivation is how it makes me feel. Physical results and mental clarity keep me moving and striving for more.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

The main barrier is time. Not having enough hours in the day to do all that I want and all that is needed.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Running is what I enjoy most.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Joining the gym!

What is one item on your bucket list?

To always strive to be a better version of myself

Week of May 29th, 2017: Peter Jensen, Assistant Professor, Communication Studies 

Peter says, “I identify as being from the midwest more than any state, I’ve lived in: Indiana (twice), Kansas, Nebraska, Wisconsin, and Missouri.

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

I make it a point to walk everywhere I can during the day, including grocery shopping and to and from campus. I also run and go to the gym a few times a week. I can be a bit of a “grazer” sometimes, so I try to limit the kind of food I have in the house.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I really enjoy walking and exercise because it forces me to take time off away from work and staring at a computer screen.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

I used to do triathlons, but my knee started giving me problems several years ago. That, combined with how much time I spend sitting can lead a lot of unhealthy habits.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I really enjoy walking the most, but I’ve gotten back into climbing after a hiatus.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

After finishing my Ph.D. I was in the worst shape of my life. My health has improved considerably, but there’s still a long way to go.

What is one item on your bucket list?

Travel outside of North America and Europe.

Week of May 22nd, 2017:  Candace Peters, Academic Advisor, School of Accountancy

Screen shot 2017-05-19 at 3.16.14 PMCandace has worked at UA for 9 years.

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

I run/walk usually at lunch during the work week and my favorite place to run is Sokol park and the Riverwalk.  I also take the stairs whenever possible.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

My family.  My husband runs marathons and my teenage daughter runs cross country and plays soccer. I try to spend as much time with them as possible, so I often exercise with them even though I am usually far behind them.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Full-time job and graduate school.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I like to do any activity that my family can do together.  Exercising is a lot more fun when you are with the ones you love.  They help hold me accountable. 

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Not lately, but I hope to graduate in August and start focusing more on my physical health.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I don’t know if I have added this to my bucket list officially, but I have considered running a half marathon.  As my husband and daughter train, I would love to be able to join them on their longer runs.  Right now, 3 miles is when I call it quits, but maybe one day I can say I finished as least a half marathon.  Who know…anything is possible, right?

Week of May 8th, 2017: Scott Sharp, Coordinator – Informal Recreation, University Recreation 

UREC_SharpScott-e1493218928175Scott has worked at the University for 3 years. He enjoys scuba diving and has been on a dive with Caribbean reef sharks.

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

I weight train 4-6 days per week and try to do cardio 3 days per week. I don’t really care for the treadmill so I prefer to do my cardio outside. If I’m doing a distance run I like to run around campus or at river walk, they’re both pretty and offer a lot of scenery so it helps keep your mind occupied. If I’m doing sprints I’ll go to the intramural fields at the SRC. I’ve also gotten into the elliptical lately, it’s low impact so the stress is minimal on your joints. I also meal prep for the week. I try to make 8 separate meals Sunday night to have for lunch and dinner throughout the week. This saves a lot of time and money.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

The physical and mental benefits that I derive from staying active are the main motivators. I can really tell if I miss a couple days of physical activity, my energy levels are lower and I don’t sleep as well. On the opposite end, the feeling of fulfillment when you finish a workout and you’re exhausted but you feel so great for the hard work you just put in. I believe you should challenge yourself every day, not just through exercise but through your work and other interests that you have.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Not having a consistent schedule can be a pretty big barrier. I don’t work a typical 8-5 so I prepare the night before and make exercise a priority.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Weight training is definitely my favorite form of physical activity. There are so many ways that you can change your program to consistently challenge yourself that it never gets dull. A close second would be sprints and other plyometric work.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I had chronic elbow pain in my left elbow for nearly four years. Despite multiple x-rays, cortisone shots, an MRI and nerve conduction test we couldn’t figure out what the problem was. I would alternate taking a week or two off from training and try to get back into it but the pain never went away. I didn’t want to take extended time away from weight training but it was the last resort. I took four months off then began a rehab program from Drayer. I basically started all over as if I had never touched a weight, at least that’s how it felt. I’ve been weight training again consistently for nearly 8 months and I’m lifting more weight than I ever have and my elbow hardly ever hurts.

What is one item on your bucket list?

To visit Italy and Greece.

Week of May 1st, 2017: Susan Caples, Associate Director, Enterprise Operations

Screen shot 2017-04-28 at 8.20.02 AMSusan says, “I am so blessed to have worked at UA for almost 30 years. It has been a wonderful journey filled with change and challenges! I get so much energy from our students!”

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

Pilates Reformer at the Rec Center is my favorite! Twice weekly, I attend a class led by Jennifer Taylor – she is so encouraging and accommodating to every skill level. It has truly helped my balance and my core strength. I also love to walk – around campus and in my neighborhood.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I turned 60 this year and I really think the best is yet to come! I love to stay busy and active and involved – I want to be able to enjoy this next phase of life!

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

I really don’t have any barriers other than time management!

What is your favorite physical activity?

Long walks in the fall or spring with a good friend!

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I have been a lifetime member of Weight Watchers for more than 25 years. I began attending meetings on campus again in January and have lost almost 20 pounds.

What is one item on your bucket list?

Seeing as much of the world as time and money allow!

Week of April 24th, 2017: Gary Taylor, Associate Professor, School of Accountancy

IMG_1435 (1)
Gary and his wife, Jennifer

Gary says, “I practice Stoicism. Part of my Stoic practice involves a morning meditation and a bedtime reflection. In the morning I write down what I am thankful for, anticipating events that may affect me, and not getting worked up about things that don’t matter. Each evening, I reflect on the day and how well I did in practicing my Stoicism, specifically analyzing things as they truly are without adding unwarranted positive or negative perceptions to the event.

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

I lift, do yoga, run, and do high-intensity workouts with Andy Paxton, a trainer at the rec center. I have also done pilates reformer.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

The desire to enjoy the goodness of life for as long as I possibly can. This requires both mental and physical wellness.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

In the early 2000’s, I contracted ulcerative colitis resulting in the removal of my colon.  In 2014, I was diagnosed with PSC – a liver disease associated with ulcerative colitis. In 2016, I had hip replacement surgery.

What is your favorite physical activity?IMG_1536 (1)

High-intensity workout competitions I do with Andy and yoga. The yoga is as much for mental stimulation as it is physical.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Following my hip surgery, I have started running again. I have almost gotten back to the pace I was at before I needed hip surgery.

What is one item on your bucket list?

To get to a place where on a daily basis I can honestly say that (to paraphrase Epictetus) I rejoice in what I have and do not concern myself with things I do not have.

Week of April 17th, 2017: Cody Adams, Architectural Draftsmen, Building Information Services

17307 (1)Cody says, “I feel very blessed to be part of The University of Alabama, the last year and a half have been awesome. It’s exciting to be part of a group of driven individuals who all love what they do.”

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

I try to hit the gym at least 4 days a week, and on the weekends were usually doing something outside, even if it’s just mowing the grass, I try to stay active.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

My health. I had gotten pretty bad out of shape to the point where I was losing muscle,  and becoming overweight. I had to get back in the gym and start mixing up my cardio with my lifts, and I also started timing my workouts to ensure that I’m keeping a good pace. So far it’s working out really well, and I feel much better.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Definitely laziness, it’s hard to keep dedicated with routines especially in the hot summers, but those are the day’s you just have to put your head down and get it done.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I really enjoy lifting, it gets the adrenaline going, and really helps to clear my head.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I’ve actually dropped my blood pressure and cholesterol levels in the past year, which has been awesome.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would really enjoy traveling out west and see the Grand Canyon, The Rockies and some parts of California.

Week of April 10th, 2017: Elsie Smith, Project Accountant Sr., Financial Affairs/BACPP

Elsie Smith (1)Elsie married her college sweetheart and is nearing her 30th wedding anniversary.  She has a son and daughter and her daughter and son-in-law are expecting their first child.  Elsie has worked in the accounting field for almost 30 years and she loves what she does!

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

I normally workout or walk at least 5 days a week.  I get up at 4:30 each morning and either hop on the treadmill for 3 to 4 miles or workout to walk at home Youtube videos which incorporate aerobics to work the whole body.  My goal each day is to have 8,000 steps by 8:00 am because as an accountant, I am generally sedentary all day.  I try not to go to bed without hitting my daily goal of 10,000 steps.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I am going to be a first-time grandmother in about 5 months and I want to be around to see that baby grow up and be able to enjoy my time with it.  I want to be able to take the baby to the park and keep up with it and at my previous weight and activity level that would have been a problem.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Sitting at a desk all day along with a bad knee wreaks havoc on my activity level, but I just keep pushing forward.  Some days I have to push through the pain or take a day off.  If I miss one day, I just won’t give up. As soon as I feel better, I get back to the moving as much as I can.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Walking has to be my favorite activity because I can just put my earphones in and listen to some soothing music and shut the world out for just a little while.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Since I took control of my health, I have been able to get off blood pressure, diabetes, and cholesterol medications! I have lost almost 80 pounds in a little over a year and I feel great!

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would love to go back to Jasper, GA and be able to hike up the mountain to see the waterfall that I wasn’t able to see the last time I visited there!

Week of April 3rd, 2017: Lori Greene, Instructor, Human Nutrition & Hospitality Management

Lori_wellnessLori has worked at the University for 10 years.

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

I am a lover of Fitbits and have had one for almost 5 years. My busy life does not always allow me to work in structured exercise every day, but my Fitbit helps to keep me moving more than I would without it.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

My family and the beautiful outdoors motivate me to get outside and be active.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Time!! It is no doubt hard to make physical activity a regular part of life as a wife and mother of 3 plus a full-time job.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Swimming or other water activities such as water skiing. I also love Body Pump and Cycling classes.

What is one item on your bucket list?

One day I want to participate in a Disney Run event.

Week of March 6th, 2017: David Wilson, Director of Alumni Funds

David with his wife, Elizabeth
David with his wife, Elizabeth

David has worked at the University for 26 years.  In 1982, David met his wife of 31 years at the Ferguson Center when they were both student workers.  He has two children-David II graduated from UA in 2013 with a degree from C&BA and Pete is a current freshman at UA in the College of Engineering, working on an MBA in the STEM program.

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

Since my college years at UA, I have been running almost every day of the week. I joined the UA Aquatic Center and attempt to run during lunch. If unable to run during lunch, I go after work.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I do a lot of personal thinking when alone running. Running is my quiet time during the day and I have been known to run for 1 – 2 hours before stopping. It helps me focus on issues that are on my mind. My wife tells me if I do not run, I become cranky. Also, I want to enjoy an active life during my retirement years. My wife and I plan to do a lot of travel and we need to be healthy. My wife has been exercising with me, which I really enjoy. If she can get in really good shape, I hope one day she will offer to carry the luggage on trips. This will never happen!!!

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Sometimes work keeps me from being able to be physically active; however, this is usually only for a day or two.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Running is my best physical activity. Playing golf and being able to walk 9 or 18 holes is fun. I use to play a lot of tennis and basketball; however, my ankles are not aging well so I do not get to play much.

Screen shot 2017-03-03 at 4.52.05 PMAre there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Yes, losing weight to meet my goals for the WellBama promotion. I enjoy my hamburgers, steaks and buffet lines but had to pull back for the weight in. I accomplished my goals and that night went to a buffet for dinner. Yes, it was a fantastic dinner.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I want to be able to coach my grandkids soccer teams.

 

Week of February 27th, 2017: Rachel Caver, Administrative Assistant, Financial Affairs

rachel caver
Rachel Caver and her daughter

Rachel has worked at the University for 10 years, and says, “Sometimes we take our health for granted and I refuse to ever do that again.  In the Summer of 2015, I was diagnosed with colon cancer, had surgery to remove the tumor then began chemotherapy which lasted until Feb. 2016. Now, I am proud to say I am cancer free!! Since going through that, it has really changed my way of thinking about my health and wanting to take better care of myself for me and my family.”

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?  Now I walk on my lunch hour from Queen City Ave to the Quad, sometimes further and workout in the evenings at my house, when it is possible at least 5 days a week. I feel healthier and stronger than I have felt in a long time.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active? I realize how important it is to stay strong physically and emotionally and exercise is what works best for me.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active? Life gets a little crazy from time to time and when that happens I just start again the next day.

What is your favorite physical activity? Strength training and walking with my friend.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately? Yes, I feel so much better and I have lost 10 lbs.!!

What is one item on your bucket list? I want to travel with my soulmate once we retire.

 

Week of February 20th, 2017: Alvin Niuh, Assistant Professor, Human Nutrition and Hospitality Management

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

IMG_3557I get bored easily, so I do a variety of things to keep it interesting. Running is my normal “go to” activity, but I also do a weekly yoga class, and spinning class. Recently I joined the “Y” and started doing a short 45-minute High-Intensity Training class …which is kicking my rear end.  I’m usually doing something physically active 5 days a week.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Trying to turn back the aging clock…just kidding.  Staying active is an easy thing for anyone to do. No gym membership or expensive exercise equipment are needed to stay active. For me, I actually find it relaxing, and when I’m running with friends… it becomes a social event.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

I love the cold weather, so in Alabama, trying to remain physically active in the hot and humid summer months is certainly an issue, and I do not like being active indoors too.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I like running because it’s something I can do anywhere, anytime, and do it alone. I have done a few Ragnar team relays and those are lots of fun too especially with a good group of friends.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Yes, my goal is to just remain healthy and avoid any injuries. I can gladly report that I’ve not had any serious injuries or health issues to-date, so being active must be working.

What is one item on your bucket list?

Depends on which category you’re talking about. In the wellness category, my goal is to attempt an Ultra event.

Week of February 13th, 2017: Gloria Ellis, Office Associate II, Logistics and Support Services

Gloria has worked at UA for 20 years and says, “I am a 68-year-old employee who is blessed that I can still work and be active.”

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week (where, how often)?

My favorite activity is walking. I have found that it relieves stress and is good for my joints and bones. I love to walk in the sunshine which is a good source of Vitamin D and the fresh air always does wonders. I also walk indoors when the weather is not good. My favorite time to walk is at work. I walk in the morning before I begin work, break times, and at lunch when I can. I use the stairs as much as possible as well. The stairs are good for the heart.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

The greatest motivation is to stay as healthy as I can. I am diabetic and try to keep my AlC in check. I also have arthritis and walking helps my stiffness.  One objective in older age is just to move…move…move. My mother always said to move while you can!

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

I would say a lack of discipline at times, particularly on the weekends. I try to find other ways to walk…housework and grocery store. This is not a once in a while thing…it’s needs to be on a consistent basis.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Walking.   I also love to dance at home with music.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I have done well in maintaining my weight, increased water intake and watching the amount of food I eat.

What is one item on your bucket list?

To maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Week of February 6th, 2017: Charlotte Petonic, Assistant Director of Health Promotion & Wellness, Student Health Center & Pharmacy

Charlottes First 5K at Disney
Charlotte’s first 5K at Disney

I LOVE Disney! I did not understand they hype until I moved to Tampa, FL for a job and a friend took me to Epcot for the Food and Wine Festival. We saw on older 90’s band play and then watched Illuminations, the fireworks display. I fell in love with Disney during the fireworks show. I purchased my first seasons pass weeks later. With my love of Disney and my goal of completing a 5K, I signed up for my first 5K at the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend in February of 2015. I got to prance through Epcot dressed as Minnie Mouse for my first 5K ever! It was beyond magical!

What do you do to keep active and be healthy throughout the week?

I work out at Orange Theory Fitness (OTF), three times per week. I love to walk my dog around campus, and competing in Work Week Hustle Challenges with my friends and coworkers on the FitBit app.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

If we are being honest sometimes it’s hard to find the motivation to exercise, but nothing makes me feel more confident and proud of myself than crushing a really hard workout at OTF or crushing my step goal for the day.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

TIME! Sometimes it feels like there will never be enough hours in the day to get everything done.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Walking around campus with my dog. The campus is just beautiful and everyone is so friendly when you have a dog.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?CPetonic 5k (1)

Currently, I am working on completing one 5K a month for the entire year. So far I have completed my first one this past weekend, 1 down and 11 to go! Right now I am more of a power walker with brief spurts of jogging and I hope to be able to jog the entire time on my last one. I am also recruiting buddies who would like to participate in 5K’s with me. No matter your fitness level we could always high-five at the starting line and cheer each other across the finish line. If you want to join email me at crpetonic@ua.edu.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I want to see all 50 states by the time I turn 50.

Week of January 30th, 2017: Ann Tinsley, Administrative Assistant, Capstone College of Nursing

Ann walking her Irish Doodle
Ann walking her Irish Doodle

Ann has worked at UA for 5 years and also works with her sister at Capstone College of Nursing (CCN).  Neither of them is a nurse but their other sister and Ann’s middle son are both graduates of CCN.  Ann can’t stand hospitals or the sight blood, but she feels fortunate to be able to assist with the education of such a noble profession.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I walk 3 mornings a week with a friend and my dog.  We have a route that is about 2.5 miles.  The other two days of the week, I swim laps for 45 minutes with my sister/co-worker at the Recreation Center before work.  A couple of mornings a week, I try and add a weight/muscle toning workout using a 30-minute beach body video.  My sister and I are also participating in Weight Watchers @ Work. 

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

As I age, my body has aches and pains that I did not experience when I was younger.  Staying active keeps those aches and pains to a minimum.  In other words, the more I move the better I feel.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Occasionally my knees and hips get aggravated but I just scale back or change what I’m doing.  But the swimming seems to not aggravate my joints as much.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Swimming is my preference at the moment, but I do love a walk in the sunshine.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Weight Watchers @ Work and exercising has helped me lose 15 pounds since September.

What is one item on your bucket list?

Running a 5K was a bucket list item of mine but that was accomplished back in 2014 at WellBAMA’s Crimson Couch to 5K.  Thank you WellBAMA!

Week of January 23rd, 2017: Bobbie Ables, Accounting Assistant, UA Printing Services

Bobbi Today!
Bobbie Today!

Bobbie has been working at the University for 9 years.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I have an elliptical machine at home that I work out on a few times per week.  I also have a treadmill that I use, but the elliptical is better on my knees.  I started taking ballroom dance lessons 3-4 times per week.  The lessons are through Crimson Tide Ballroom Dancing on Sunday afternoons at no charge and Tuscaloosa Ballroom Dancing on Tuesday nights for a fee.  The Northport Community Center also has dancing and a live band on Thursday and Friday nights for a small fee of $5 per person and usually has food and drinks.  I recently renewed by UA Recreation Center membership.  I wanted to add more variety to my workout routine and work on different areas of my body instead of doing the same thing at home.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Exercise is a stress reliever for me and makes me feel better.  I also need to keep up with my 6-year-old grandson and 3-year-old granddaughter.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Finding time to exercise can be hard.  Also, a few injuries have hindered me but, I am getting back on track.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I enjoy playing softball and working out.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Bobbi Before!
Bobbie Before!

Being more active and involved in a variety of activities has lead to healthy weight loss.  I have also been able to stop taking some of my medications. I experienced weight loss in an unhealthy way dealing with the loss of my husband of 27 years to cancer.  It was very stressful and I was not eating properly or exercising.  

What is one item on your bucket list?

One of the things that I would like to do is visit Niagara Falls.

Week of January 16th, 2017: Rhonda Hester, Office Associate II, College of Continuing Studies/Safe State

RhondaRhonda was one of the top 5 steppers in the 12 Days of Wellness Fitbit step challenge with 249,474 steps.  She has worked at the University for 17 years.  She is married with two children and became a grandmother while completing her degree from UA.  She graduated from UA in December of 2014.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I set my fit bit alarm to go off so I will not sit at my desk for a long period of time. I walk six flights of stairs in Martha Parham three to four times a week; walk to the water fountain on the other side of our building daily; I walk to lunch three to four days a week; My daughter and grand-daughter live across the street from our home so I make several trips back and forth every afternoon where there is a hill between us and I walk in place while watching TV. I drink more water and have cut down on the sodas.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Health issues and the lack of funds to continue buying clothes due to weight gain were my main motivations. Trying to keep up with my grand-daughter helps me stay active. Being a part of WellBAMA reminds me I need to exercise, stay active, and keep moving.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Time is my own barrier to keeping physically active. I have a desk job and when I get home my second job comes in to play: cooking, cleaning, and then off to bed. I have to set alarms to remind me to get up and move during the day!

What is your favorite physical activity?

My favorite physical activity is walking.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

The health related goals that I have achieved lately has been drinking more water and walking every day.   I have not lost many pounds but I have lost inches!

What is one item on your bucket list?

One item on my bucket list is to not be overweight any longer.

Week of January 9th, 2017: Vicki Evangelou, Office Associate, College of Education

vicki-evangVicki was born and raised in Chicago to Greek immigrant parents.  She can read, write, and speak Greek.  At the age of 19 she moved to Tuscaloosa to attend UA.  Living on her own as a student, she began to gain weight from eating a lot of fast food.  She wan’t active a began to pick up bad habits like smoking.  

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

At 20, I weighed the most I have ever weighed, 220 lbs.  When I was 21, I quickly realized I needed to change.  I stopped drinking, smoking and started incorporating more activities to my daily routine.  I walked more, bought a bike, cut out fast food and soon I noticed a change.  I also started to take group exercise classes at the Student Recreation Center.  I became hooked.  I also started doing fitness programs like Turbo Kick and Insanity.

From the  combination of group classes, fitness DVD’s, healthy eating habits and support from friends and family, I have lost 80 lbs over 5 years.  I a ma AFAA certified in group exercise and personal training.  Recently, I became a Beachbody Coach.  My goal  as a coach is to form a relationship with my clients outside of the gym.  Let them know my story and hopefully I can change one person’s life for the better

Some mornings, I go to the gym and take a 6 am group exercise class.  At lunch you will most likely find me walking around the Quad.  I try to get a minimum of 10,000 steps daily.  I pack my food for the workday.  This really helps me stay on track with eating right. On the weekends, I love to take long walks or take my bike to Sokol Park and ride the trails.  

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I have many things that motivate me:

  1. My old self – I never want to be unhealthy like that again.  It has been a long and hard journey to get this far and I don’t give myself the option of failing and going back to old habits.
  2. My friends, family and clients – I am lucky to be surrounded by a great network of support.  We all want each other to succeed so we encourage and motivate each other to be active.  We text each other when it’s time to move around the office and we talk about some issues we face.  It is so important to have a support system when you are trying to get back into shape.
  3. Wellness – My family has a history of strokes, cancer, diabetes, etc.  Studies have shown the best thing that you can do for yourself to have a long life is to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Injuries.  I have had torn tendons and sprained ankles.  Also the cold weather just makes me want to stay  under the covers forever.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Hiking! I love being surrounded by nature.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

In July, I ran the Napa to Sonoma Wine Country Half Marathon for my birthday.  I did it under 2 hours and did it without stopping.  I never thought I would ever run a half marathon in my life, but I did it!

What is one item on your bucket list?

See the Northern Lights

Week of December 19th, 2016: Tracy Barton, Marketing Associate, College of Continuing Studies

big-and-and-meTracy was the top stepper with 397,024 total steps in our first Fitbit 12 Days of Wellness step challenge.  She has 4 children, a grandchild and has been working at UA for the past 6 years.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week? 

Once my feet hit the floor in the morning, I don’t stop moving.  While doing housework, I am running or walking in place. If I am having a conversation with a co-worker at work or waiting at the copy machine, I walk in place to get more steps.  I walk before work, try to walk during lunch and in the evening. 

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I can feel and see the difference when I exercise and make good healthy eating decisions.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

It’s all mental.  You need to make the decision to just do it, stay consistent and make no excuses!

What is your favorite physical activity?

I love walking

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I made Crimson level in the WellBAMA program for the first time and I have lost 70 pounds in 6 1/2 months. 

What is one item on your bucket list?

To visit Italy!

Week of December 12th, 2016: Mike Brass, Manager, Recreation Fields and Grounds, University Recreation

mike-brassMike was born and raised in England and has worked at the University for 24 years.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week? I run 6 days a week, usually in the early morning.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active? I think it’s just something that I grew up with, sports were mandatory at school, and now I think it’s more of a habit.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active? Injuries will catch up with you, especially after years and years of repetitive use.

What is your favorite physical activity? It used to be soccer , now it’s running.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately? I’ve enjoyed the WellBAMA program because it forces me to pay more attention to diet and keeping the health numbers where they need to be. 

What is one item on your bucket list? Back in 1997 I started to attempt to finish a marathon in every state. I still need about 15 more, but it’s not as much fun when your times start to get slower. 

Week of December 5th, 2016: Leah McCool, Administrative Specialist, College of Education Dean’s Office

leah-mccoolWhat do you do to keep active throughout the week?Almost every day at lunch I walk with a coworker for 30-45 minutes.  Also, twice a day we set aside time to do 1 1/2 minute planks.  We will add an additional challenge to do with the plank like a 30 day squat challenge.  We are currently adding a wall sit challenge.   

What motivates you to exercise and stay active? Having friends to exercise with and nag me if I skip a day.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active? Having younger children, I am not able to exercise anytime that I want and all of my free time away from work is focused around them. Also, I am lazy!

What is your favorite physical activity? Running (even though I am not good at it)

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?  Last year, I lost 30 pounds within a couple of months and have managed to keep it off for over a year.

What is one item on your bucket list? To run a half marathon

Week of November 28th, 2016: Jared Taylor, Conference Manager, Bryant Conference Center
jared-taylor

Jared is a 2011 graduate of UA and former UA Cheerleader. He will graduate again from UA in August 2017 with his Masters degree in Human Environmental Sciences.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

Every day after work, I drive over to the Rec Center and spend anywhere from 1-2 hours working out. I follow a pretty set routine that combines weight lifting and circuit training.  I also love early morning runs through my neighborhood with my dogs.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I often think about the oder version of myself and how that person looks and feels. I try to base my choices off of wondering if the older me would respond by saying, “thank you.”  Also, we have the same hours in a day as Beyonce, so anything is possible.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Finding time and motivation is always a challenge.  I contemplate just going home right after work every day, but I always remember how great I will feel after working out.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I love to run….Especially around campus on a game day morning.  I love feeling the energy in the air and watching the sunrise over the quad.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Recently, I have been much more conscious of the food that I eat.  I have always been physically active but changing my way of eating has done more for my health and physicality than any workout.

What is one item on your bucket list?

One day, I would like to hike the Appalachian Trail…or at least part of it.

Week of November 14, 2016: Margaret Stran, Associate Director, Adapted Athletics

screen-shot-2016-11-11-at-8-13-25-amMargaret has worked at UA for 13 years. She was one of the co-founders of the UA Adapted Athletic Program in 2003.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I regularly swim laps about 2 times a week, lift weights 1-2 times a week, rows on the rowing machine 1-2 times a week.  I also like to play tennis and kayak when the weather is nice.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Exercising just makes me feel better and it helps me maintain my weight.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Finding time to exercise.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I really like swimming and being in the water. My body feels good and my body doesn’t hurt when I’m finished swimming.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I am very intrinsically motivated and have always worked out. I love playing sports.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would like to finish visiting all 50 states. I only have four states left. I would also like to tour France.

Week of November 7th, 2016: Lorne Kuffel, Executive Director, Institutional Research and Assessment

Lorne has been with the University for 9 years.  He is pictured here with his wife, Mani.

lorne-kuffelWhat do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I exercise most days. On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I work out with weights at the Student Recreation Center. On Tuesday and Thursday I’m in a noontime Pilates Reformer group. Then on the weekends, my wife and I walk with our dogs.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I just feel better when I exercise. It helps my body feel healthy and my attitude is much better. I’m a nicer person to be around when I’m exercising regularly.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Making the time to exercise can be challenging. Work and other obligations can easily get in the way of working out. Sometimes you just need to force yourself to get away and go do it.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Definitely walking with my dogs. I used to love running, but after back surgery and a knee replacement I’m happy walking now.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Yes, I’ve stuck with Pilates and it has greatly improved my core strength. I know I look a little silly doing it, but it has really been beneficial.

What is one item on your bucket list?

To just keep moving and laughing.

Week of October 31st, 2016: Mary Kelley, Assistant Professor, Capstone College of Nursing

mary-ann-thompsonMary has worked at UA for over 13 years.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I usually exercise in the morning at a local park. I get up early and walk and jog for 30 minutes five times a week.  If I have an early day at work I exercise in evening at a local gym.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I want to lose weight and stay healthy.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

My busy schedule working long hours sometimes prevents me from exercising.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I love kickboxing because I can get my heart rate up fast and I  can see results in toning. I  have taken kickboxing  classes in the past, but lately I do aTae Boa video.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I am trying to eat 5 fruits and vegetables every day.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I have always wanted to see Hawaii.  I will walk the beach, visit  the volcano, and eat delicious food. 

Week of October 24th, 2016: Katherine Nichols, Instructor, Mathematics Department

Katherine has worked at UA for over 10 years.

katherine-n-2What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I started road biking about 3 years ago due to knee issues that prevent me from running.
I now bike about 3-4 times a week and work with a personal trainer at UREC 2 times a week.  I work out with a personal trainer 2 times a week at the UREC for strength and cardio training.
I will have to say that I have not had 2 workouts the same.  It always fresh, changing and never boring.
I have been working out with a PT for the past year and the strength training has improved my biking.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I really enjoy food and like to eat.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Time is the biggest barrier.  Sometimes you have to choose between activities and some cut into physical activities.  As the days get shorter and daylight savings takes place, it will be hard to ride during the week.
Winter  and weather will the challenge to keep active these next few months till it warms up for Spring.
I guess I will be spending more time in the UREC.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Biking. I have been biking with the Tuscaloosa Cycle Club (on Facebook).  It is a great support system and no rider is left behind.  The bike club members have been supportive and has helped me improve on my biking.  I road 11 of the 13 centuries of the Alabama Backroad Century Series this year. (ABCS have several shorter options too.)  It is an improvement from last year which I completed only 2 centuries.  Biking has been a great way meeting new people and seeing parts of Alabama that I would never see driving.  There are several local routes that I ride during the week: Capital Park to Sander’s Ferry to Hwy 11 and back.  Also, Capital Park to County High School and back.  On weekends we have longer routes, I have ridden to Gordon and back,  or from Moundville to Greensboro to the Pie Lab and back.  There are many local routes that great to ride. t is hard to pick my favorite ride but riding the Chief Ladiga/Silver Comet from Anniston to Atlanta (100 miles) on a bike and returning the next day was fun.  The Chief Ladiga/Silver Comet is a rails to trails route that is bike friendly.  And it is fun to say that you road a bike to Atlanta. 

katherine-nAre there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I am trying to lose some weight after having two surgeries.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I want to bike through foreign countries.

Week of October 10th, 2016: Rachel Thompson, Director, Emerging Technology and Accessibility

rachelRachel is a WellBAMA Ambassador and serves as a yoga liaison for the Campus Yoga program helping set up the room for each class. She has been at UA as a staff member for 12 years.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I run on the elliptical and treadmill at the Aquatic Center during lunch each day.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

It makes me feel good. I have noticed I am less stressed and have more energy and fewer aches and pains.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Time. I know I am not going to exercise after work, so I use my lunch break to exercise instead.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Dancing and swimming

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I try to spend a few minutes each morning doing yoga to start my day.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would love to take a train trip across Canada and open a Bed & Breakfast.

Week of October 3rd, 2016: Chris Lee, Academic Advisor, College of Education

kodak-065
Before

Chris has been at the University of Alabama for 6 years.  Before making strides to improve his health, Chris weighted close to 300 pounds.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I wear a Fitbit device which really helps me get at least 10,000 steps in each day. I try to do better than that and earn achievement badges through Fitbit. My highest badge was 30,000 steps in one day.

After
After

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

My overall happiness. It’s easier to buy clothes too. I notice little things like I have more energy throughout the day and I’m not as tired at the end of the day. I can go to the football games and not feel worn out at the end.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

My busy schedule. If I am not close to getting 10,000 at the end of the day, I will try to park further away from the store or take an extra lap around the grocery store before I check out. I always take the stairs. I can’t remember the last time I took the elevator.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I walk everywhere and I like to go the Aquatic Center and run on the treadmill.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I ran a 5K in 45 minutes!

What is one item on your bucket list?

I want to run a 5k in 30 minutes

Week of September 26th, 2016: Paul Justin Brown, Systems Analyst, Financial Affairs Information Technology

careerfair-16-1Justin graduated from the MIS program here at The University of Alabama in May. Shortly after in June, he joined our Financial Affairs Information Technology team.  Justin feels very privileged and excited that I am able to continue being a part of The University of Alabama.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

To stay active during the week I try to do something outside daily after work hours. Whether it is walking/running in the evenings, playing some pickup games with friends, or even mowing the yard.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

My family and simply the quality of life.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

I had back surgery in high school so I have to be careful on what exactly I do physically.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Sports are my favorite physical activity. I love running up and down the court/field playing basketball, soccer, or any other sport.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I am a new staff member here at UA (going on 4 months now) so I just now have had the time/opportunity to join the wellness program and get involved. I have completed my class session, health screening, and I am currently participating in the Strive 4 Five program.

Goal wise, I have been watching my calories eating better lately and drinking LOTS of water.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would like to visit many countries throughout Europe.

Week of September 19th, 2016: Robin Boylorn, Associate Professor, Communication Studies

robin-boylonWhat do you do to keep active throughout the week?

During the week I strive to reach 10,000 steps a day, at least two times per week, through walking and jogging.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

It is very important for my overall wellness, especially since I have hereditary hypertension. Through physical activity, I can lower my blood pressure, which is very encouraging. I also believe that exercising is a stress reliever.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Interruptions! When I go on a trip or vacation it is difficult to find the motivation when I get back home. Other obligations also keep me busy, and I keep an unconventional schedule, so finding time to exercise can be tough.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I enjoy long outdoor walks, and when I can, I like to go hiking in the mountains. It’s beautiful. I also like to bike, although I haven’t done it in a while.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I lost 5 pounds recently so that was an exciting goal to achieve. I try to drink more water, be intentional about getting rest, and I especially try hard to keep my blood pressure under control.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would love to go to Paris someday!

Week of September 12th, 2016: Melissa Cox, Outreach Programs Coordinator for the College of Community Health Science’s Rural Health Leaders Pipeline

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I love staying healthy through many different types of exercise! I run, walk, bike, use the elliptical and do yoga. Overall through these exercises, I strive to do about 45 minutes to an hour, 6 days a week.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I am motivated by the fact that we cannot take our health for granted! Also, I thoroughly enjoy staying active and exercising.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I love to run!

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

While I have done a half-marathon and two triathlons, there are no races I am currently training for. I would love to start training for a triathlon with my husband soon!

What is one item on your bucket list?

I am ready to finish my PhD at the end of this semester!

Week of September 5th, 2016: Megan Welborn, Program Manager, Academic Outreach Program Development & Marketing

MCWWhat do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I try to exercise at least four-five days a week.  I like to take long walks around my neighborhood, and my husband and I also jog together.  We are both really competitive and enjoy playing golf and tennis together, too. 

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

 After exercise, I love the way I feel.  What I enjoy most about staying active is the extra energy I have.

 What is your favorite physical activity?

I enjoy playing golf and tennis with my husband.  I enjoy the competitive nature of both sports, but I also love that we can spend time together.  It’s great to participate in physical activities that we both enjoy while maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle.

 Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

 I set a goal to lose 10 pounds.  Thanks to exercise and a strict change in my diet, I have now lost 15 pounds.  My clothes fit better, and I am much more confident in my appearance!  And most importantly, I have so much more energy! 

What is one item on your bucket list?

I want to go to Australia!

Week of August 29th, 2016: Susan Noble, Administrative Secretary, Engineering Student Services & FEP

Susan NobleSince starting at UA 11 years ago, Susan has earned her undergraduate degree along side both of her children. She also earned her master’s degree, and gained knowledge to take ownership of her own health goals and outcomes. UA has beena great fit for her.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I do elliptical at GFG and try to do it 5 nights a week. I probably really only average 4.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Hereditary high cholesterol and the desire to be able to stay active and healthy as I get older. I realize I can’t wake up in retirement and hope I’m healthy enough to enjoy it – I have to prepare now for the future.

I also listen to Audible when I exercise which is motivating because I love to read and I can “read” and exercise at the same time. I only “let myself” listen to my stories when I exercise – it’s like a reward to myself for exercising.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

I worry that I short-change my family because my exercise does cut into my time I would be at home. My husband has no problem with it and encourages me, but I still feel guilty about it.  Also, just pure laziness and lack of motivation some days. My couch calls to me with a siren’s song all day long!

What is your favorite physical activity?

Does reading count? Flipping pages can be hard work!! I currently like the elliptical simply because I know it’s effective, I see the results, I can get in there, get it done and go home. Plus, since I fractured my knee cap it’s an activity that doesn’t put too much strain on my knee. I also like hula hoop and am semi-awful at it but it makes my husband laugh.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I got my BMI down from 26.22 in April to 24.59 (Crimson!!) in May. That was my strongest goal. I’ve lost 17 pounds, but more self-satisfying is the fact my clothes fit so much better and I feel better.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I’d love to spend a month in Ireland or Scotland visiting castles and studying history.

Week of August 22nd, 2016: Marcia Hay-McCutcheon, Associate Professor, Department of Communicative Disorders

Marcia Hay McCMarcia has worked at The University of Alabama for 8 years.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I like to go to the University Recreation Center early in the morning. I’m usually there by 5:50 am each weekday and I use the machines upstairs, go to boot camp or do sessions with a personal trainer. If I can’t get to the gym each morning and if the weather is good I’ll speed walk on the river on Saturday or Sunday.

 

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Keeping healthy and fit are two big motivators. I find that when I don’t work out I am dragging by the end of the day. Also, I get better reports at my annual physical exams when I work out and eat healthy. My doctor is a lot happier with me!

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

It usually revolves around how stressed I am. When I’m more stressed I usually don’t sleep as well as I normally do and as a result it’s harder to drag myself out of bed in the morning. So, I need to remind myself to chill out!

 

What is your favorite physical activity?

Growing up in the sixties the kids in my neighborhood and at school loved to skip and we would play Double Dutch whenever we could. So, today I really enjoy skipping in boot camp class. It’s something that I can do fairly well and it makes me smile when people decades younger than I am struggle with the jump rope!

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

A couple of years ago I lost 25 pounds and have been able to successfully keep off the weight. I’ve kept the weight off by weighing myself regularly, by staying active, and by trying to avoid too many sweets. I love sweets but they don’t help me in the long run!

What is one item on your bucket list?

I want to zip line in Costa Rica one day! That would be an adventure!

Week of August 15th, 2016: Camisha Adams, Information Technical Specialist IV, Financial Affairs Information Technology

Camisha AdamsCamisha has worked at the University of Alabama for nearly 9 years.  She has a standing desk in her office that helps her stay active throughout the day.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I often attend classes at the Aquatic Center during my lunch hour. On the weekends I like to walk/run on the Shades Cahaba Trail in Homewood.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I love to keep active. Interacting with friends and family is very important to me.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Time is always an issue. I commute 100 miles roundtrip to work each day. I have made this commute since 2007. I have a home gym with a stationary bike, weight bench with fly and leg extensions that I use when I do not workout at the Aquatic Center.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Running/Power walking. I have completed 8 half-marathons and numerous 5k and 10k events.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I have maintained a 10 lb weight loss for the last 57 days.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would love to visit New Zealand. I have a trip planned to visit Australia later this year. I hope to spend a few days in New Zealand during this trip.

Week of August 8th, 2016: Kevin Richards, Assistant Professor, Department of Kinesiology

Dr. Kevin RichardsWhat do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I aim to exercise three times per week at the gym in my apartment complex. I typically exercise in the evenings after work.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

My motivation to stay active and exercise is to upkeep my health and my physical appearance.

What is your favorite physical activity?

My favorite physical activity is softball, baseball, etc., really anything which involves a ball. If it involves a ball I am better at it!

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Getting back to exercising on a regular basis.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would like to visit Italy.

Week of August 1st, 2016: Katy Galloway, Director, Office of the Vice President for Financial Affairs 

Katy GallowayKaty has worked at the University of Alabama for over 11 years.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I exercise in the mornings before work either on the treadmill or exercise DVD.  If possible, I also like to walk on my lunch hour.  I always take the stairs and find reasons to get up from my desk even if it is only for a few steps–any movement is better than none at all.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Exercise is a stress reliever for me and I think it is a good way to start the day (if it gets done before work).  The biggest motivation is when I can see the difference it makes –when my clothes are a bit loose or as my endurance improves.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Life gets in the way sometimes.  We have children and we both work outside of the home and so it is difficult to make time for exercise.  More recently I have experienced small injuries that have interrupted my routine, which is very discouraging.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I have a love/hate relationship with Jillian Michaels’ Bodyshred workout.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I would like to maintain my exercise routine and eat a  “cleaner” diet.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would like to visit the Maldives one day.

Week of July 25th, 2016: Danny Miller, IT Tech Spec III, System Administrator

Danny Miller with CalebWhat do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I swim at the Aquatic center three times a week for 30 to 35 minutes. I also ride my bike twice a week about 8 miles in Fayette, AL on some back roads. Sometimes on Sunday, my son and I go on a hike for about 3.3 miles. The trail has some incredible inclines and declines.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

I exercise and stay active so that I may meet my weight loss goals each week. It also makes me feel good and less guilty when I eat something that is not on my diet.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I would say that riding the bike is my most favorite. I feel like it does me the best cardio wise. I also like to hike with a pack.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Yes. Since I started losing weight, my cholesterol has gone down into the normal ranges, my A1C is down to 5.0. My BMI is coming down slowly.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I have never really had a bucket list. I guess if I had one, one thing might be attending Philmont Scout Ranch with my two sons on an 80 mile hike in twelve days.

Week of July 18th, 2016: Lisa Pritchett, Planned Giving Specialist, The Office of Planned Giving 

Lisa PritchetLisa has worked for the University for 8 1/2 years.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I park in the campus drive deck and walk .5 miles to my office building. I do this about 4 times a week. I end up walking 2 miles each day and enjoy walking through campus. I also walk my dog around the neighborhood, weather permitting, every evening. I’m also trying to add strength training/weights to my weekly routine.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Several of us in Advancement have become “Friends” using the Fit Bit app and challenge each other to reach higher goals; it’s become a fun group to be a part of and you can hear us ribbing each other in the hallways. I feel better when I’m active. With a desk job it’s easy to sit all day, so I have to make myself get up and take walking breaks around the building.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Time- always juggling; desk job-sitting inside all day; and age- more creaks and sore muscles and joints these days.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Playing tennis is what I would really like to do. I only get to play on vacation or when my son wants to play with me.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I’ve have gotten 11,000 steps a day for 7 consecutive days; 10+ staircases each day for 5-7 consecutive days and over 20,000 steps two days in a row.

What is one item on your bucket list?

To reach 30,000 steps in one day.

Week of July 11th, 2016: DeAndre Spencer, Mental Health Professional, Brewer Porch Children’s Center

DeAndre SpencerDeAndre is a WellBAMA Ambassador since 2013 and has worked at Brewer Porch Children’s Center for 11 years.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

“I workout at Northridge Fitness. I engage in resistance and cardiovascular training 6 days a week. I like to stick to functional exercises to maintain overall health.”

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

“Noticing a difference in the way I feel both physically and mentally motivates me to stay active.”

What is your favorite physical activity?

“My favorite physical activity is strength training which my favorite being leg day in the gym.”

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

“I managed to lower my blood pressure through diet and exercise which allowed me to decrease my blood pressure medication” 

What is one item on your bucket list?

“I recently became a certified personal trainer and a weight loss specialist through the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM).”

Week of July 4th, 2016: Mike and Andrea Pope

Mike and Andrea have been at The University of Alabama for two years. Mike is a clinical instructor for the STEM path the MBA program. Andrea is an Office Associate II for the Career Center.

AndreaandMikePopeWhat do you do to keep active throughout the week?

Mike: I run 3 miles in the morning 5 days a week.

Andrea: I walk 30-45 minutes in the evenings after work. Together we walk the loop around the Quad at lunch 4-5 days a week.

Both: We typically walk for an hour around campus on Saturday or Sunday.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Mike: I used to work in industry so I exercised as a means of stress relief. Now it has become habit. It is also nice seeing different aspects of campus while on our walks that we would otherwise not see.

Andrea: Weight Watchers at Work has helped motivate me, you can’t lose the weight without staying active. I recently received a recognition certificate at an American Heart Associate 5K for my progress. A simply recognition that you doing a good job is motivating to keep going.

Both: We both help keep each other motivated; we have even walked the Quad with umbrellas. We also like to see improvement in our WellBAMA numbers.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

Andrea: I have had two ankle surgeries, which still cause some pain, but we have learned to make physical activity part of our routine.

What is your favorite physical activity?

Mike: I enjoy backpacking.

Andrea: I enjoy walking and gardening.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

Mike: Seeing an improvement in my WellBAMA numbers.

Andrea: I have lost 36.8 lbs from August to April.

What is one item on your bucket list?

Mike: I would like to complete the Appalachian Trail in sections (Georgia is complete)!

Andrea: I would like to collect a jar of sea glass from a tropical beach.

You may contact Andrea at extension 5848 or acpope1@sa.ua.edu and Mike at mapope1@bama.ua.edu if you would like to join him to stay active.

Week of June 27th, 2016: Mark Shepherd, Senior Facility Analyst, Financial Affairs

Mark ShepherdMark is on his 21st year at the University of Alabama and is a Senior Facility Analyst for Financial Affairs.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I walk my dogs .67 miles every morning and I go to the Aquatic Center weight room Monday – Friday at lunch.

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Quality of life.

What is your favorite physical activity?

I enjoy working in the yard. 

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I have recently lost 30 pounds.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I would like to go surfing in Hawaii.

Week of June 20th, 2016: Brian Smith, Computer Support Specialist, EM Testing and Technology

Untitled

Brian has worked at The University of Alabama for 7 years.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I ride my bike to and from work every day. I also ride distances at least 4 times a week sometimes riding distances every day of the week. I also do a lot of 100-mile bike rides. Most of them are done in Alabama. I have done one in Texas and one in Arizona

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

In 1995 I was in a car accident resulting in a traumatic brain injury. That left me with a lot of balance issues. I have to use a wheelchair to get around. I can walk on a walker but that is very slow. What motivates me to stay active and exercise is that I don’t get the benefit of walking to keep my weight down and ward off diseases.

What are your barriers to keeping physically active?

My situation with the traumatic brain injury and being in a wheelchair. Also, not having a license or a vehicle to go too far off places.

What is your favorite physical activity?

It has to be cycling. When I am riding by myself, it gives me time with my thoughts. When I am riding with a group, it is a great social outlet.

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

I have lost a bunch of weight. I have improved my cardiovascular system and made my heart stronger.

What is one item on your bucket list?

I want to cycle from California to Florida one day.

Week of June 13th, 2016: Yvonne Seagrest, Billing Coordinator, Brewer Porch Children’s Center

Yvonne SegrestYvonne Segrest has worked at UA and Brewer Porch Children’s Center for over 17 years. She serves as Billing Coordinator at Brewer Porch Children’s Center.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

“We have a small group here at BPCC that exercises in the afternoon 5 days a week. We do cardio and weights using a variety of exercise videos.”

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

“My age and exercise makes me feel better.”

What is your favorite physical activity?

“I enjoy cardio” 

What is one item on your bucket list?

“To retire and travel more.”

Week of May 2nd, 2016: Millie Jackson, Associate Dean for Research & Instruction, University Libraries

Photo by Sara Sanger
Photo by Sara Sanger

Millie has been with the University of Alabama for 8 1/2 years.  Among her may talents, she teaches yoga.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week ?“I do several activities, some depending on the time of year. I practice yoga daily and teach yoga when I have the opportunity. I also workout at IronTribe in the mornings 3-4 times a week and cycle or swim the other days. Now that the weather is nice again I am trying to ride at least twice a week.”

What motivates you to exercise and stay active? “Improving my health is the biggest motivator.   I have watched my sisters and other family members struggle with diseases that preventable with diet and exercise.   I began concentrating more on my health in 2009 when I began working out regularly at the UA Rec Center and started to change my diet.” “I have written about my personal journey at milliejackson.wordpress.com.”

What are your barriers to keeping physically active? “I have arthritis in my knees which prevents me from running like I did at one point but there are plenty of other things to do.”

What is your favorite physical activity? “I can only have one? I really love to swim, which is hilarious if you know me. I was terrified of the water until six years ago when my trainer, Sam Morgan, taught me to swim. Now I love swimming in the pool and in open water.”

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately? “I have gone back to a whole food plant based diet and I am cooking more at home. I love the access we have in Tuscaloosa to fresh vegetables so I experiment with recipes a lot.”

What is one item on your bucket list? “I really hope to live on the West Coast in the future.   I have family and friends there and it would be nice to be closer to them.”

Week of April 25th, 2016: Pamela Pruitt, Education Director, Brewer Porch Children’s Center

Pamela PruittPamela is the Education Director at Brewer Porch Children’s Center with over 30 years of experience in the field of education.

 

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

“I enjoy walking and I also work out with my daughter as much as possible. We take a Zumba class together through PARA.”

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

Staying active makes me feel healthier.” “ My daughter motivates me with friendly weekly reminders.” “My husband and son also support my exercise plan by encouraging me to stay on track.”

What is your favorite physical activity?  I enjoy Zumba. I like the music, movement and the fellowship.”

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?  “I have been moving more and I feel better.” 

What is one item on your bucket list?  “To visit every state in the United States.” “I would like to travel out west more.”

Week of April 18th, 2016: Jaime Garza, Substance Abuse Counselor, Student Health Services

Jaime is in his 4th year at the University of Alabama as a Mental Health Professional II. He is one of the founding members of the Maximizing Potential through Academics, Community, and Treatment (MPACT) program at UA. UA is currently the only University in the country that provides such a program.

 

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

I do Crossfit workouts every morning (Monday – Friday) at a friends house. I also strive to walk throughout the day and use movement as a coping mechanism for stress during the workday.”

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

“I stay active and exercise to achieve personal health goals and ensure I can be around for my kids.”

What is your favorite physical activity?  “I enjoy lifting weights and jumping rope.”

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?  “I lost sixty pounds over the past six months.”

What are a few items on your bucket list?

“I would like to see the Northern Lights.  I would also like to hike the Appalachian Trial in segments from the bottom to the top.”

You may contact Jaime at extension 5696 or jgarza@cchs.ua.edu if you would like to join him to stay active.

 

Week of April 11th, 2016: Mike Esco, Exercise Science, Department of Kinesiology

Michael-Esco-280x320Mike is a second year Assistant Professor in the Department of Kinesiology.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

“For exercise I attempt to do as much work as possible in ten minutes. I accomplish through a combination of resistance, and body weight movements. I also strive to take 10,000 steps every day.”

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

My family, and my job. I feel that I should live the life I preach.”

What is your favorite physical activity?  lifting weights.”

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

“Getting back to a consistent and manageable exercise routine after taking this new job.”

What is one item on your bucket list?

“I want to live to 120!”

Week of April 4th, 2016: Julia Lewis, Custodial Services, College of Education

IMG_2503Julia Lewis has worked at The University of Alabama for over 11 years. She works as a custodian in the College of Education. Wearing her pedometer everyday, she gets close to 10,000 steps a day during her work hours.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week?

“I walk 30 minutes for my lunch break and then at least another 30-90 minutes on my treadmill when I get home. Sometimes I keep walking on my treadmill until it cuts off. I also do my kettle ball exercise video two times a week for strength training. I love to get up and walk early on Saturday mornings.”

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

“I exercise to keep my diabetes under control.”

What is your favorite physical activity?

“I love taking long leisurely walks.”

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

“My goal is to get 20,000 steps each day. I try to get 10,000 steps when I’m working and then at least another 10,000 steps when I am off work.” “I usually go home and walk on my treadmill.”

What is one item on your bucket list?

“I have always said when I retire; I am going to travel the world. I would like to visit each state in the U.S.”

Week of March 28th, 2016: Anna Velleggia, Career Center, Culverhouse College of Commerce

IMG_0531We were pleasantly surprise to learn at our recent WellBAMA screenings that the staff members at the Career Center, Culverhouse College of Commerce, were participating in their own Strive For Five competition during the month of February. On the last day of the competition, the group celebrated with an office breakfast and two small monetary rewards were given for the weight lose and activity.  We wanted to find out from Anna Velleggia how she stays active and how exercise plays a role in her everyday life.

What do you do to keep active throughout the week

I do the elliptical machine at home, attended group exercise classes at the Recreation Center 3-4 times per week, and I walk outside 3-4 times per week.”

What motivates you to exercise and stay active?

“I’m lucky because I actually like working out and it’s a great way for me to de-stress and stay in shape.”

What is your favorite physical activity?

“I love my step class and body attack class and walking outside with my husband and puppy when the weather is nice.”

Are there any health related goals you have achieved lately?

“I’ve been eating more fruits and exercising 6-7 time per week.”

What is one item on your bucket list?

“Go to Italy.”