Healthy U students use variety of workouts

By Nicole Cooke

April 25, 2014

Students in the Healthy U class of 2014 are making a lot of progress just three months into the program, and it’s largely because of the wide range of workout styles they have implemented in their everyday lives. From Curves to CrossFit Sedalia, it seems they have tried everything.

Some students have had some setbacks during the first quarter of Healthy U, but that didn’t stop them from working toward their fitness goals.

“We gave out our first Suck It Up Buttercup award (last) week,” said said Megan Webb, Healthy Living Action Group Co-Chair. “We gave it to Nicole Thomas. She had an injury but, on her own, started swimming and started using a desk bike. I’m impressed with her ability to carry on with a setback.”

Among those with injuries is Kaneesha Butler, who recently hurt her ankle, but still managed to make it to Wednesday’s CrossFit Sedalia session, along with fellow students Zach Wulf, Sarah Siegel and Trisha Green. The four students attend CrossFit every week if they can, and several other students have tried the intense workouts as well. Wulf said he’s “addicted to CrossFit” and attends sessions twice a week.

“A couple students have tried CrossFit, and it’s fun to see them learn to do something new,” Webb said. “It’s exciting to see the process.”

Each hour-long session is led by Travis Jobe and Katie Jobe, who are CrossFit level one certified instructors and are the owners of CrossFit Sedalia, which operates out of Total Fitness Gym. Healthy U students attend the novice classes, which start with warm-ups and are followed by instruction on the workout of the day. Wednesday’s warm-ups were alternating push-ups and lunges with a partner, and the workout of the day was 20 minutes of rotation through pull-ups, burpees, front squat lifts and kettle bell lifts.

“I really enjoy CrossFit,” Butler said. “It’s a love/hate relationship. Sometimes I hate going, but you feel so good about yourself after.”

All four Healthy U students looked worn out by the end of the session, but managed to make it through all the required workouts. Siegel even spent a few extra minutes at the end of class getting instruction from Webb and Katie Jobe on how to improve her pull-up technique.

The extra time spent in the gym is paying off. Most of the students said they’re noticing results from the Healthy U program.

“I can see changes, and I can feel it, especially when I try on clothes,” Wulf said.

“It’s going fantastic,” Steve Sobaski said. “My weight is down, my strength is up, my energy level is better, and my shirt size is down.”

Students have been keeping track of their weight loss on their own, but most don’t track inches lost until they are measured by Healthy U volunteers at quarterly evaluations. Many were pleasantly surprised after last week’s check-in. Siegel was happy to find out she had lost a significant amount of inches — 27.25 total — which was more than what she thought.

“It’s going good, I’m excited, especially after (getting measured),” she said. “I was very surprised. When I look in the mirror I don’t see it. My clothes fit differently, but I don’t see it.”

Just as important as their workout routines is their nutrition. Each participant has a fitness coach and a nutritional coach to help keep them on track, and all students keep a food journal.

“A food journal is important because it’s the only way to know what we eat,” Webb said. “It’s hard for coaches to work with students on getting better if they don’t know where they’re starting. It’s been a challenge for a lot of people, writing food down, but everyone is working hard on that.”

Now that they’ve spent three months with the Healthy U program, better nutrition habits and working out four to five times a week is becoming routine for the students.

“There’s been a lot of changes, but it’s getting a lot easier,” Dawn Williams said. “It’s becoming a lifestyle. I always try to work in a workout. If I miss a day, it bothers me, and it wouldn’t bother me before I started this.”