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Staff Sgt. Sarah Lloyd is one of the lead organizers of “I Have a Dream … To Become Healthier,” a new program to be offered at the RAF Lakenheath gym.
Staff Sgt. Sarah Lloyd is one of the lead organizers of “I Have a Dream … To Become Healthier,” a new program to be offered at the RAF Lakenheath gym. (Charlie Reed / S&S)

Losing weight and getting fit: two of the most cliche New Year’s resolutions of ’em all. Even more predictable is that most of us who resolve to do so will never end up reaching our goals.

But Staff Sgt. Sarah Lloyd is out to help change that as one of the lead organizers of "I Have a Dream … To Become Healthier," a new program to be offered at the Lakenheath gym next month in conjunction with the Health and Wellness Center.

So people can already sign up?

Yep, and it’s free, so there’s no excuse not to try it. We’re limiting it to 40 people though, so we’re hoping to get all the slots filled.

So how does the program work?

We’re basically doing full-body assessments on the participants in late January to get some baseline information on their height, weight (body mass index), etc. And then we’ll offer a lot of monthly events and classes through the end of April and special offers just for the people in the program, like discounts on personal trainers. … I’m teaching a boot camp class, there will be one on how to read food labels and one to introduce them to the gym equipment and how to use it, and how many reps to do and that sort of thing. A lot of people who aren’t in shape feel intimidated when they walk into the gym and we’re going to do our best to show them how to do things the "right" way.

Is there a prize for the person who makes the most progress?

It’s an incentive program, so we’re working with marketing to get some prizes arranged for the top female and top male. That’ll be based on total body fitness, not just weight and measurements. … But at the end of the day, it all comes down to personal motivation. You have to do things for you and set goals for yourself. Nobody can do that for you. It starts with recognizing that it’s going to take a little work.

What’s the biggest factor in terms of people who "fall off the wagon," so to speak, when it comes to regular exercise?

Injuries is No. 1. People will go in and bust a bunch of reps not really knowing what they’re doing and not taking into account the need to work opposing muscle groups and things like that. They get hurt and then they stay home. They get intimidated. Again, we’re trying to prevent that from happening so they can exercise safely and really have no excuse for not committing 45 minutes of every day to fitness.

Sounds like a lifestyle change?

It is. Certainly. I lost 110 pounds myself. I know what it takes to keep it off. It takes work. I have to work out every day, and I can’t eat whatever I want. People who want to get in shape have to realize they’re going to have to sacrifice a little bit to reach their goals and make the time for exercise.

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