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HAWC offers Group Lifestyle Balance class in New Year

(courtesy graphic)

(courtesy graphic)

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- As the New Year tolls, the variety of resolutions Airmen and their families consider to better themselves can range from weight loss, to create a budget  or maybe to volunteer more.

For those in search of a healthy lifestyle change, the Peterson Health and Wellness Center offers a 12-week Group Lifestyle Balance class schedules to begin Jan. 5, 2015 at the HAWC.

The course is open to anyone with access to Peterson who wants to learn techniques from a dedicated lifestyle coach about safe weight loss through fun exercise and healthy eating. Participants can expect to do group workout sessions, receive healthy food samples and participate in hands-on activities to enhance learning.

"Initially we meet for 12 weeks and we meet every single week - same day, same time and in a variety of places," said Dana Johnson, HAWC health educator. "I teach them how to change one small thing at a time. Something they can live with forever and keep up with."

Although she meets with them every week for 12 weeks, the program actually lasts for an entire year. Her goal for the class is to help participants get on the right track by learning to shop for healthy foods, utilize proper fitness techniques, and balance the two.

"The ones who have stuck through the program have done great," she said. "I show people there are different ways to measure their success. For some of them, they are happy they don't eat out five days a week anymore or they eat more fruits and vegetables."

For many, it's an eye opener to the unhealthy foods they were eating and habits they didn't realize were harming their health. Johnson said her favorite part of teaching the class is how far participants come with eating healthy and becoming more physically active.

After the initial 12 weeks, Johnson said she checks in with participants about every 8 weeks to track their progress. At the end of a year, she said many want to do it again because of how much they learned and the accountability.

"People say, 'this is the first time I've done a weight-loss program that I feel I can stick with,'" she said. "I tell them this isn't even a weight-loss program. This is a lifestyle overhaul."

The major benefits from taking this class are the participants have more energy, read nutrition labels, and are more aware of what's going into their bodies. They learn to make better choices about their eating and fitness habits, Johnson said.

"It's so rewarding hearing they are successful and they can recognize all the wonderful changes they've made," she said.

The Group Lifestyle Balance class is scheduled to begin Jan. 5, 2016 and meet at 5 p.m. every Tuesday. Participants must be at least 18 years old and enroll by Jan. 4, 2016. If interested, please email or call 719-556-9642.

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