A walk through our wellness resources

By: Nikki Giaquinto

Todd Reeger has run four 5Ks since signing up for GatorCare’s Couch to 5K program.

Todd Reeger has run four 5Ks since signing up for GatorCare’s Couch to 5K program.

At the beginning of 2015, Todd Reeger, UF Health IT Services IT client/server analyst, decided to make some healthy changes. He altered his eating habits and began a weight loss and nutrition program. By the year’s end, Reeger had lost almost 50 pounds. But, he didn’t lose this weight on his own — he says the free activities and programs provided by the UF-UF Health Shands Wellness Committee and GatorCare played a big role in his success. Reeger spoke about each of the resources he used to help him get healthy.

Group Walks

“I really enjoyed the company during the walks, and other participants told me about additional wellness programs.”

Couch to 5K

“Since registering for this program, I have run four 5Ks and plan to sign up for a half-marathon.”

Body Composition Screenings

“These have been very encouraging for me. I have been able to see the progress of my effort.”

Turbo Fitness at the UF Health Fitness and Wellness Center

“This works great for me because I can go during my lunch break and all I have to do is make it there. Once I get there, the trainers instruct me and are there to correct my form.”

Wellness Fair

“This was another indicator that my efforts were paying off. I learned that I reduced my cholesterol from 214 to 176!”

Walking Challenge

“The challenge encouraged me to give the extra effort. On numerous occasions I found myself going for a walk or even walking in place in front of the TV to get my steps in.”

Water Challenge

“This was a good way to encourage us to drink more water. I had been drinking a lot of water before, but the challenge made me realize I wasn’t drinking as much as I should.”


“I started the Pilates class at the beginning of the year and still go every chance I get.”


“I’ve only attended Zumba three times, but I really enjoyed it. It’s a fun way to get in some cardio, and I plan to go more often.”

Nutritious You From Blue

“I was eating healthy before taking this class, but I learned so much that I am able to eat even healthier.”

Stress Less and Thrive

“This class really helped me reduce my stress levels and provided helpful methods to deal with stress.”

Reeger offered some advice that helped him along the way. “You want your eating habits to be a lifestyle change and not a diet so it can be sustainable,” he said. “You can start exercising one step at a time, literally. Instead of talking to your co-worker at their desk, ask them to go for a walk with you while you discuss the situation.”

Visit GatorCare.org and click the “Wellness” tab to learn more about free resources for employees.