Nancy Hallenbeck, 59, of DeWitt, is an accounting technician at the Michigan House of Representatives. Her family history of osteoarthritis, as well as pounds she had accumulated over the years, prompted her to get moving.
“Even though I have always been active, I felt like I really needed to strengthen my bones,” she said. “Plus, I desperately wanted to get rid of those very uncomfortable pounds I had accumulated. Last year, with both of my children out on their own, I started on my weight loss goal. I got myself a Fit Bit, increased my exercise and started paying attention to calories. I have lost 35 pounds so far.”
She said she walks every day at lunch with her co-workers and participates in Jazzercise four to five days a week.
“I love Jazzercise because it is never boring,” she said.
Hallenbeck keeps track of her intake and likes to cook with different foods.
“My husband and I enjoy a wide variety of cuisines and I find different ways to use vegetables to keep meals from getting boring,” she said. “We eat a lot of fruits and vegetables and have added more fish to our weekly meals.”
She indicated that she eats in moderation, and by being aware of calories and increasing her exercise, she is able to occasionally splurge.
“When you start really paying attention it’s easier to walk away when you realize most things are not worth the extra calories,” she said. “I also try to balance my splurges with the amount of exercise I’m getting and go lighter on other meals that day.”
She said she makes sure to find time to do the workouts and feels it is the key to her healthy lifestyle. “You have to take time for regular exercise; it is critical for maintaining physical and mental health as we age,” she said. “I wish I had done this years ago. It really has not been as hard and restrictive as I always told myself it would be and that gives me the motivation to keep going.”