Toledo woman makes healthy strides via ProMedica wellness programWritten by Joel Sensenig | Managing Editor | email@example.com
One year ago, Shelly Banet was dealing with several heavy life issues.
Stress came from nearly all corners of the 53-year-old Toledo woman’s life. She was struggling at work as she moved into a full-time position as a pediatric occupational therapist at ProMedica.
She was still reeling emotionally after her best friend’s death from cancer the year before. Her marriage was on the rocks.
The once physically fit woman was left with little energy to cater to her own needs. Her weight ballooned to nearly 250 pounds.
Several times each week, she pulled into the drive-thru lane of a fast-food restaurant.
“My husband used to call me the ‘fast-food queen,’ and I used to get so upset about it but he was right,” Banet said. “I was so stressed that I would subconsciously go through the drive-thru as a way of getting someone else to take care of me. Because I was taking care of everybody else.”
Then she got an email from ProMedica seeking employees to take part in the company’s six-month wellness program. She decided to give it a shot.
Faced with completing a health risk assessment with a slew of questions regarding health, diet and exercise, Banet came face-to-face with some of the sources of her unhappiness.
She got together with a wellness coach in February and put together a list of goals.
One of her goals was to lose 25 pounds. Another was simply to walk several flights of stairs at work each day.
In the spring, she saw a couple of female peers walking out of Powerhouse Gym and was taken aback.
“Are there really people in there like us?” she asked, surprised that anyone not looking like a bodybuilder would frequent such a place. “Well, yeah,” they told her.
In July, she worked up the nerve to walk in herself. That day, she met her fitness coach.
The pounds started coming off, and she started doing more things she actually enjoyed: sewing and spending time with girlfriends.
“The more I took care of myself and met my needs, the more energy I had for others,” Banet said. “I used to look forward to getting home and sitting on the couch. I never imagined I would be the person who says, ‘I’m sorry folks, I’m leaving. I’m going to yoga fusion and it starts at 6:30.’”
Becky Bouillon, a wellness nurse at ProMedica, said Banet is similar to many women she works with.
“They’ve always wanted to do these things, but they’ve never given themselves permission because they’re so busy taking care of everybody else,” Bouillon said.
The wellness program is now being offered to people outside ProMedica. It addresses a variety of health needs, from diet and exercise to smoking cessation and stress management, incorporating the expertise of nurses, dietitians and exercise specialists.
Today, Banet is 35 pounds lighter than she was when she filled out those survey questions. Now, when she’s having a hard time, she’ll choose the gym over the drive-thru lane.
“That’s why she is such a success story,” Bouillon said. “In light of all these huge life changes, she has made the commitment to herself that ‘I’ve got to do this.’”
ProMedica’s Wellness Coaching program is $260 per individual and consists of six months of coaching and education; a personal health risk assessment; one face-to-face meeting with a wellness coach; and 12 follow-up sessions that can be done over the phone or online.
For more information, call (855) 251-8615 or visit www.promedica.org/wellness-coaching.