For the long haul

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Savannah L. Waters
  • 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

As they step on the scale, a feeling of dreaded anticipation washes over them. Beads of sweat roll down their back as they struggle to stand still, readjusting a shirt that always felt too tight.

Watching the numbers climb to their final count, every person that’s ever worried about their weight analyzes every unhealthy decision they’ve ever made as they wait for the verdict.

Christina Moore, wife of Gary Moore, U.S. Air Forces in Europe visual information specialist, has encountered this situation recently, and is determined to turn over a new leaf.

“After realizing how far I was from my goals, I knew I couldn’t do what I was doing anymore,” said Moore.

Moore was one of hundreds of participants who signed up for the seventh annual Kaiserslautern Military Community’s ‘Biggest Loser’ challenge in January, ready to reach fitness goals and start the year off right.

“The magnitude of operations on Ramstein is very large,” said Alysha Brandy, 786th Force Support Squadron fitness program manager. “The Biggest Loser challenge here is all about participation and letting the people know the vast amounts of resources available to them for their fitness.”

Living a healthier lifestyle has always been easier said than done, and the challenges people face with their diet and routine can be hard to get past, said Brandy.

“We have facilities open at all hours with pre-planned workouts ready for participants, opening doors and boosting motivation for fitness here,” Brandy said.

The discomfort Moore felt about her appearance became worse as time went on, and in addition to a lifetime of unhealthy choices and lack of consistent exercise, Moore was diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes, leaving her and her family devastated when they’d first arrived at Ramstein a few years ago.

“Upon hearing my diagnosis, I had started a diet and lost weight,” said Moore. “But I ended up not making a real commitment. I gained all the weight back and didn’t feel like I could find a routine that gave me the motivation to stay healthy.”

Each time she started a new plan, it would fall through. The mother of three daughters was determined to make this change one that would stick with her for life.

“I want to be able to take my daughters to amusement parks and ride roller coasters with them,” Moore said. “I want to go up a flight of stairs without feeling like I am dying. I want to live to see my daughters become parents.”

Participating in the competition with Moore is her 18 year old daughter, Samantha, who has autism and has struggled with weight in recent years.

“Watching my daughter gain weight as I was gaining weight made me feel like a failure as a parent,” Moore said. “I did not set a good example for my children and I need to make it right.”

The Biggest Loser challenge has given both women a steady workout plan and diet that they are excited to say feels right for them.

“I always thought my mom was over-exaggerating when she talked about our health,” said Samantha. “Since starting this new diet, I feel more energetic and happy.”

Moore admires her daughter’s resiliency and cherishes the close bond that they share. Taking this journey with her daughter has motivated them both to maintain their new fitness schedule, bringing them closer than ever before.

“She is not only my daughter but also my best friend,” Moore said. “Having her here and doing this with me means so much,” said Moore. “It’s like having my own support system, and I hope that I’m her support system.”

Each week, Christina and Samantha take aquatic classes, yoga, and shoot for more than 120 minutes of exercise.

At the start of the challenge, swimming ten laps was a strain for both. One month later their endurance has tripled and they can be found wearing wide smiles at the fitness facilities on Ramstein Air Base.

“I want to get people inspired to get healthy and into shape,” Samantha said. “I hope that they hear our story and know that they can do it too.”

For anyone who wishes to make a change in their routine, contact the Ramstein SSFC at DSN 480-0295 or commercially at 06371-47-0295 for questions about resources and other information available. 

The Moore’s say they know they have a long road ahead, but with each other for support, there’s no doubt that whatever they do they are in it together.