‘I Wanted to Get Busy Living’
CoverTN member Andrew Smith's primary reason for wanting to lose weight was "loftier" than most. He wanted to be able to run in the Country Music Half Marathon in Nashville, a qualifying event for the Boston Marathon.
To do so, Smith knew he needed to lose weight and get healthy. A former high school cross-country athlete, he began gaining weight in college and had reached 427 pounds by early 2010. He had developed low self-esteem and had to buy costly clothes from "Big and Tall" stores.
"I kept thinking to myself, 'You're too young to be so out of shape and unhealthy,'" recalled Smith, 35, of Hermitage, Tenn. "I also remembered the famous quote from the movie The Shawshank Redemption: 'You can either get busy living or get busy dying.' And I wanted to get busy living."
A year and a half ago, Smith started doing what he calls the "10-minute couch potato workout" to ease into working out. This includes leg lifts, back stretches, pushups, and other exercises. By this past summer, he had dropped 200 pounds. He now weighs 225 pounds. Smith credits his weight loss, in part, to CoverTN.
“I previously had insurance through my old job but could not get recent coverage – due to my weight – until CoverTN was established. So, when I started going to the doctor, he recommended I lose weight," he said. "I began exercising and making lifestyle changes. I started watching what I ate, cutting out carbs, and limiting sugar intake and calories. I didn't follow any particular diet. It was just my own little regiment that I came up with.”
Smith counts many benefits from his weight loss. He feels better. He has energy to take his puppy for walks. He will be able to run in a half marathon. He even has more money in his pockets, now that he doesn't have to pay as much for his monthly premium.
“I was able to get my premium reduced after I lost weight," he said. "That's great because in these tough economic times, every little bit of savings helps and adds up.”