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Hopkinton Waitress Commutes Two Hours Daily To Beat Diabetes

HOPKINTON, Mass. – (Feb. 9, 2011) – Can a balanced diet and exercise help overcome type 2 diabetes? That’s what Hopkinton resident Carol Pontremoli is trying to prove.

Part of an observational study conducted and subsidized 50 percent by the Fitness Together Massachusetts Owners Group, Carol, a 50-year-old waitress, was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes three years ago. She believed her diagnosis was part hereditary and part improper nutrition.

“After I was diagnosed, my doctor told me to lose weight but simply dieting didn’t work, so he prescribed medications,” said Carol. “There was no real advice or direction or how important it was to take the medication at specific times on how to take better care of myself. I had a lack of knowledge and couldn't figure out how to do this on my own.”

After nearly two years of doctor visits and medications, she did something she has never had the courage to do before – ask for help.

“I saw an advertisement on TV for the diabetes study and decided to go online and fill out the application,” said Carol. “I’ve never done anything like that before. I didn’t tell anyone about it either, not even my husband. When I was chosen for the study it came as a huge shock.”

In order to participate in the subsidized observational study, Carol had to work with one of 43 participating Fitness Together studios in the area. The closest one to her was an hour away in Natick, Mass., but Carol decided it was worth the mileage.

Now, just over three months into the study, Carol has lost three pant sizes and feels better than she ever has. “I’m on my feet six days a week waiting tables so by the time I got home all I wanted to do was lay down and relax. I never realized it was my diabetes making me so tired all of the time. Now I stay active and go to Fitness Together after work.”

Carol has even inspired her husband to take control of his life as well by joining the Fitness Together studio in Westborough, Mass.

The Fitness Together Massachusetts Owners Group, which is comprised of 43-area Fitness Together franchised locations, formed the special health study under the guidance of Joan Hill, a Certified Diabetes Educator and Nutritionist, to see how six months of resistance training and cardiovascular exercise, combined with nutritional coaching can impact type 2 diabetes. All client results will be shared with the American Diabetes Association of Eastern New England.

“We wanted to invite type 2 diabetics into our studios and offer our personal, tailored and safe exercise and nutritional guidance program to help improve their lives for the better,” said Steve Lichtman, owner of four Fitness Together franchises. “This isn’t just about losing weight. It’s about battling an illness in a smart, responsible and healthy manner.”

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