In this edition of ‘In the Spotlight,’ let’s talk with Carrie Leuenhagen. Carrie was a recent finisher and 1st place winner in the Fall 2019 Healthy Running Program’s 6-Week Challenge.
What immediately struck me about Carrie was that she was ready to go. There was no convincing or pushing needed because she brought motivation and drive to each and every session. She is very driven, hard working, and consistent. These are only a handful of the reasons why she was able to complete 95% off all tasks over the 6-week period.
Carrie decided to join the program to improve consistency within her routine, re-establish a good foundation of fitness, and lose weight. Within 6-weeks of structured strength training and corrective programming, she increased her lower body endurance on the Split Squat Hold by an average of 50-seconds per side, core strength on the Side Plank by an average of 23-seconds per side, upper body strength on the Push-Up by 10 repetitions, and upper body strength on the TRX Row by 15 repetitions. Nothing short of great results since Carrie consistently followed the plan week after week and made no excuses while doing it!
Without further ado, let’s shine the spotlight on…
Q: What do you do for work?
A: “I am a Talent Acquisition Specialist for one of the automotive suppliers, Visteon, out in Van Buren Township. My whole career was as an elementary education teacher and then 3 years ago, I switched to recruiting. I have been with Visteon since July of 2019.”
Q: When you aren’t working, what are some of your favorite hobbies?
A: “I love to read and listen to audible. I am always reading or listening to personal development/growth books. I just want to get better. I enjoy podcasts as well.”
Q: What are the top reasons you enjoy running and staying active?
A: “I have run literally since I was 11 years old when I first ran cross country and track in sixth grade. Running helps me clear my mind, make decisions and destress while also enjoying friends, the outdoors and challenging myself. I have run 5Ks to full marathons and really enjoy the half marathon distance. I love to be active not just because of the physical reasons but because it truly helps me manage stress and be energized to be my best self.”
Q: If you could live anywhere in the world where would that be? Why?
A: “I truly love the south of France. I haven’t been there since just after college but I would love to spend some time there again in retirement.”
Q: When you first started working with Garrett, what were the goals you wanted to achieve?
A: “Unfortunately, I had just had a physical and realized I had put on some weight. I knew it of course, but that’s when I faced it. I am blessed that I can go up and down the scale and people don’t really notice—but I NOTICE- and I don’t want to keep adding 5lbs until I have a problem. So I wanted to start losing weight and gain strength and then start to figure out what my running goals would be.”
Q: What was it about the 6-week program that you felt like would be a good fit for you?
A: “I have a long drive to work and the location was right on my way home. I literally knew nothing about it but Garrett’s information about the program popped up on my Facebook. I liked having group training once a week and at home workouts the other days. I knew I needed a coach and some accountability.”
Q: Were there any specific motivating factors to incorporate a more structured strength training/injury prevention program into your routine?
A: “While I have always been a runner, I have not been consistent about weight training. This program helped me to enjoy it for a change!”
Q: What are the most noticeable improvements you’ve seen so far?
A: “Ironically, I didn’t run all that much during the 6 weeks. Once I picked it up, I could tell an immediate difference in my efficiency. You would have thought I had been doing tons of miles. I just ran 7 miles yesterday and felt strong.”
Q: What is that one thing you dislike the most but continue to work on because you know it will help?
Q: Accountability is one of the biggest aspects of the 6-week program. Were there any key ingredients that allowed you to stay so consistent that you came in 1st place?
A: “I loved the app! It helped me so much for consistency and accountability. Plus the ability to see the videos to be reminded how to do the exercises was a big plus. The Sunday check-ins helped me to consider weekly how I did with water consumption, getting in the workouts, etc. when I otherwise might not have reflected on it. I enjoyed competing for the prizes too! : )”
Q: Looking ahead, do you have any big goals or races you are working towards in 2020?
A: “Currently I am training for the Allstate Hot Chocolate 15K in Detroit in April. I am also doing the Run the Year challenge with an on-line team.”
Thank you for reading this ‘In the Spotlight’ segment. And, a big shout out to Carrie Leuenhagen! To learn more about the Healthy Running program, please click here.