David Freeze: Another month of work for Brooke and Vivian

Published 12:00 am Sunday, May 7, 2017

Clearly, both Vivian and Brooke are getting fitter. Our principle exercise together is an early morning run on Tuesdays and Fridays. I measure the time and distance and usually mark their 5K performance. Vivian has learned to get started without racing too fast through the first mile and then fading dramatically during the last half of the run. Brooke is like the sailing ship, “steady as she goes.”

By now you know that Vivian Koontz is the events coordinator for Salisbury Parks and Recreation and Brooke is the circulation supervisor for the Rowan Public Library. They just completed four months of a year-long commitment to wellness.

“I’m OK with where I am at this point. I am definitely seeing results and so are others. I need smaller jeans! I feel like I am pushing myself more and more and I am excited about the next workout, not dreading it,” said Vivian.

Brooke added, “I think what we have done so far is fantastic. I am starting to feel stronger and have noticed muscles emerging from under the fat! If I can keep up this rate of progress, I may actually meet my year end goal.”

Most of the work so far has been with running and cycling classes, with an occasional assist from individual riding on a stationary bike.

Nutrition is always important and eating too much offsets the exercise. I asked the ladies to find a way during April to build in at least a strength class per week and hopefully two. So far, this hasn’t happened but is high on the radar for May.

A group class is a good motivator but both are aware of the highly popular “Seven Minute Workout,” a planned strength workout using only body weight and a chair that can be done individually just about anywhere.

May looms as an important month as the ladies move forward. This will be our last full month together before I head off on another bike adventure in June. We’ll do body measurements near the end of May and those will be a huge part of actual success. Also, during May, both Brooke and Vivian plan to test their new fitness by racing at least one 5K. Vivian had an outstanding beginning by racing the Rock Your Socks at Knox 5K on April 9. Her 4th place age group finish out of thirteen women was good enough to make her want more. Both Brooke and Vivian will be racing in the Buck Hurley 5K today.

With thoughts of May and summer, Vivian said, “I would like to drop five to ten pounds and add in some different types of workouts. I would like to go into pool season confident with how I look in a bathing suit.” Brooke said, “I want to lose eight more pounds and drop my per-mile racing time to 12 minutes. I also plan to race the Bare Bones 5K on May 27. It is not so much that the workouts are getting easier, but I know that my mind and body are willing to work harder than they used to.”

As I mentioned earlier, inches will be a key segment of measured results. At this point, and I suspect for the year, the biggest and simplest goal for both Brooke and Vivian is weight loss.

Totals for April were mixed in this area at our twice weekly weigh-ins following vigorous exercise. Vivian’s weight essentially stayed the same, not especially surprising, with a net loss of 15 pounds for the year. Most people who commit to a long-term improvement don’t show losses every month.

On the other hand, Brooke keeps rolling. She is down an exact 30 pounds in four months, now in level 2 of obesity and just nine pounds from level 1. She blew through level 3 like a whirlwind.

Brooke’s favorite statement when she sees the steady scale progress is “Now, that’s what I am talking about!”, always delivered with a big smile. Brooke’s year-long goal is a normal BMI (body mass index) and at this rate, she is well on the way. An additional weight loss of 46 more pounds over eight months is required to hit that “normal range.” Brooke said, “I continue to track my calories on My Fitness Pal every day. I’m working out 5-6 days a week in order to keep losing weight.”

So, on we go. We’ll be back at the end of May with more to tell.


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