9Health Trail Blazers

Busy lives, daunting family history, stressful work, confusing health insurance…no matter what it is, we all have a reason for not living as healthy as we’d like to. This spring, follow our 9Health Trail Blazers as they commit to overcoming the obstacles to pursue their health goals.  With the help of 9Health Fair and some local medical experts, can they reach their goals? 

Follow their journeys this spring and find out!
Margarita – Photos from Margarita’s younger days tell the story of an adventurous, thin woman who climbed mountains and salsa danced.  Now, life’s twists and turns have taken some of that adventure from her life and added a few unwanted pounds to her frame.  The loss of her father, an emotional move to a new house, and a stressful job have led to unhealthy habits becoming the norm. This vibrant woman is ready to make herself, and her health, a priority again.
Health goals: Lose 15 pounds by April and  improve her cholesterol.  
See her story on 9News here.

Kai – After being rushed to the ER for excruciating pain in her abdomen, Kai was put on many trial and error remedies before doctors determined she had a gastrointestinal issue.  She had recently gotten Medicaid through Connect for Health Colorado and felt ready to tackle this diagnosis head on.  As she started to seek the care she needed, she hit wall after wall – there were restrictions to her coverage that she did not expect. Giving up is simply not an option – Kai is a young woman with a life to live, and she knows she needs to be healthy to accomplish all the things she wants to.  She’s going to learn to navigate the health care system, no matter what it takes.
Health goals: Figure out how to navigate the health care system with her insurance plan, and then get to the root of her GI problems so she can attempt to live a pain-free life again.
See her story on 9News here.

Wendy – Described by her friends as “permanently happy”, Wendy has a can-do attitude that was the driving force behind a long career as a teacher. Upon retirement, Wendy decided it was to make some changes to her life, and over the course of a few years, she lost 180 pounds!  This gave her the energy and confidence she needed to be an active retiree, filling her days with biking, dog training, and volunteering. While she has come quite a long way, she still relies on a knee brace for her daily activities to manage her arthritis pain.  She knows that if she can make permanent changes to her eating habits, she can overcome her weight loss plateau and kick the knee brace to the curb – for good!
Health goals: Get to a point where she only has to wear the knee brace for strenuous activity, and lose 30 pounds.
See her story on 9News here.

James –Heart disease and cancer have plagued members of his family, so the odds are against James when it comes to family history. Unwilling to live a life ruled by medications, James thought that working out moderately would keep the diseases at bay. Then, an uncle gifted him a blood pressure cuff, and he realized there was a lot more going on inside than he realized.  A string of bad events led to him losing control of his health. Through the encouragement of his girlfriend, he decided it was time to turn it around and take control back.
Health goals: Improve blood pressure and BMI, and complete the Spartan Military Race in under 2 hours.
See his story on 9News here.

Robert – As an actor in New York City, Robert was living the life he dreamed of – until a devastating diagnosis of non-hodgkins lymphoma sent him back to live with family in Colorado for treatment. After a long road of treatment and a stem cell transplant, he beat the disease. With a wife and son to continue to be healthy for, he committed himself to a healthy lifestyle and began running marathons. He was in the best shape of his life, running 9 minute miles and feeling great. Life got busy and holidays were celebrated well; now he was no longer in the best shape of his life. Remembering the days of once being so health-conscious, Robert would like to get back to that place of feeling great and taking care of himself. 

Health goals: Get his best Colfax ½ marathon time (2 hours or under) and lose 10-15 pounds
See his story on 9News here.
Maria- Maria’s family is no stranger to diabetes. Her mother, sister, and brothers all deal with the disease.  So when Maria was also diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes, she knew what was to come – and she had to do all she could to keep the disease from controlling her life.  By making some incredible lifestyle changes, she has come a long way in managing diabetes – but she still has some work to do, especially when it comes to changing the habits of her family.  With her young son watching her every move, Maria is ready to keep herself and her family healthy through eating right and exercising.
Health goals:Continue controlling diabetes, lose 15 more pounds.
See her story on 9News here.
Shana – As a speech therapist, Shana’s days are jam packed.  Her schedule doesn’t leave a lot of time for her to make good health choices.  Wanting to avoid the diabetes and heart diseases that have hit her family members, Shana knows that better nutrition and regular exercise need to be incorporated into her daily routine. A thyroid condition leaves her with no energy to work out, but she knows that a little exercise would boost her energy level significantly – she is in a catch-22 and ready to break free!
Health goals:Make changes that become a lifestyle – eat better, be more active and ultimately run a 5k this spring!
See her story on 9News here.