Success Stories

The Holiday Challenge Inspires Success


Kristie Congdon, Information Specialist, Office of Research and Sponsored Programs

“So glad for this perk as an employee and I happily report that it works as I have been able to take off 10 lbs over the year and plan to continue! Although it did not happen during the 2011 Healthy Challenge, I was able to use the info and was very happy with this holiday season, thanks for all you do!”

Mindfulness + Small Changes = Big Results

Linda Dzieciol, Office of Planning

Before: “Last year I thought I was having a heart attack walking around the Bloomsburg Fairgrounds with my family at the Monster Truck Jamboree. I felt awful. I couldn’t keep up with them. This next day, I didn’t even make it to the Giants Despair Hillclimb with the rest of my family. I was too exhausted."

After: “This year, I stayed twice as long, walked the entire Jamboree area in Bloomsburg, and the next day climbed to the top of the hill for the Giants Despair Hillclimb, stayed for the entire race, and went out later that evening.”

Changes: “I never really exercised before. My first sessions started on an old, rusty exercise bike for just 5 minutes. Eventually, I invested in a more advanced bike and a total gym. I also do Qi Gong, an ancient Chinese practice combining breathing with gentle, rhythmic exercises that mirror movements in nature. My doctor suggested a weight loss program. In 8 months, I dropped 4 clothing sizes. My big clothes went to charity last week."

Inspiration: “The mindfulness meditation classes that I attended last year with Meaghan Godwin (Philosophy Department) opened up a whole new world for me. I walked to the first class with the weight of the world on my shoulders. After quieting my mind through meditation, I walked back with a much lighter step. I could actually breathe. It made me realize that I had better start taking care of myself. Meditation showed me how to improve my well-being one step at a time. I didn’t have to rush into anything big. I could do it at my own pace. “