Member with health coach

Winning from within

“You’re beautiful, just beautiful!” Security Health Plan member and health coach exclaimed upon meeting one another in-person for the first time.

To feel beautiful and healthy again was an accomplishment for member Laurie Lutz. Lutz took part in Security Health Plan’s telephonic health coaching program to achieve a healthier weight, guided by health coach Angie Pero.

“I was in a slump again,” said Lutz. “But when I talked with Angie, I felt like she was right next to me, encouraging me.”

After a lifetime of battling to maintain a healthy weight, Lutz’s recent company-wide lay-off and another round of radiation had tipped the scale higher – as stress does for so many. “But I had survived breast cancer. I had given up smoking and drinking to be cancer free. I doubted myself, but I wanted to change to be healthy,” said Lutz.

Health educator Angie Pero said the health coaching program is all about finding your internal motivation to make a positive change.

“Health Coaches use a researched technique called motivational interviewing to help members who are ready to change health habits. We’re a kick start – any good idea has to be your idea to work for you. Ninety-nine percent of people already know why they should change their unhealthy habits. We just help make those reasons yours. It’s all you,” said Pero.

“I was kind of scared until we met the first goal,” said Lutz, but she was able to find her motivation to make a change: “I wanted to be healthy after cancer. But I needed to increase my confidence in myself to make those changes. I learned I can’t focus on the negative. I have to think positive.”

Lutz had already lost 60 pounds through her participation in a Weight Watcher’s program, but she couldn’t seem to get over that last hill toward her healthy weight goal. That’s when she took the online WebMD Health Assessment offered to Security Health Plan members for free. The assessment helps you take stock of your current health status and make a plan of action for areas you want to improve.

“If you say you’re ready to make a health change when you take the assessment, a health coach will reach out to support you,” said Pero. “We want to help you be healthy – but you make it happen. For Laurie, whatever she said she was going to do, she was going to do.”

With the accountability, encouragement and education Pero offered on healthy portions, nutrition and activity, Lutz lost her last 9.6 pounds to meet her final health goal.

“Now I can run after my granddaughter without getting out of breath,” said Lutz. Hiking in the Grand Canyon is next on her list.

 “I’m so glad you called me, Angie,” said Lutz. “You stay in your job! You are excellent at motivating people and reassuring them. I want to give you a raise, because now, I feel really good.”