Sarah Maxwell, a first- year PhD student in the Pharmaceutical Sciences program in the College of Graduate Health Sciences, decided to participate in the Healthy Living Program in order to push herself to make time for her health. It was a decision that the Gladeville, Tennessee native is glad she made. At the end, she lost a little under 15 pounds and three inches off of her waist.
UTHSC’s Department of Campus Recreation created the Healthy Living Program in September, 2015. The program has held eight sessions since its inception. A total of 71 participants have completed the on-campus, 12-week program designed to educate, motivate, and give some structure to individuals who want to change lifestyle behaviors for the better.
Once a week, participants talk about nutrition topics and fitness, and are exposed to different forms of exercise. The group setting encourages camaraderie among participants, who are experiencing similar accomplishments and missteps, too. Upon completion, participants are encouraged to keep in touch with their accountability partners, and are invited back once a month to participate in the following group’s sessions.
The group aspect was Maxwell’s favorite part of the program. “It provided support that was helpful,” she said. “We learned a lot of ways to make simple changes in our diet that make a larger impact overall, giving more thought to what we take in, in relation to what we actually burn through the day. I would tell anyone who is interested to join the program that you can only benefit from it, and it is enjoyable.”
The next Healthy Living Program session will take place in late August or early September. More information will be sent out this summer. For more information on how to join the Healthy Living Program, contact Suzanne Apperson at firstname.lastname@example.org.