Basin Electric’s Intranet features several blogs written by employees. One, called “Energize,” is written by Nicole Perreault, graphic designer and multimedia specialist II.
Last week, she featured Lynn Beiswanger. Read and watch his fitness success story here.
When did you start incorporating wellness into your life?
I have always incorporated wellness into my life but really began to increase my focus in 1998.
What motivated you to make your health a priority in your life?
Even though I had taken care of myself most of my life, there were a number of years after making a job change and trying to raise a family that I didn’t take time out for myself for exercising. Also, my nutrition choices weren’t bad, but I just ate too much and too often which allowed for a significant increase in my weight. My day of reckoning came when I asked my daughter, who was about to graduate from high school, what she wanted for a present. She looked me right in the eye and said, “I want you to get your health back, Dad.” That was a huge slap in the face, but one I’ll always remember. That was the beginning for me to assess my lifestyle and what direction I wanted it to go.
How has your health, weight, energy level, etc. changed since you started living a healthier lifestyle?
Once I turned things around and made a lifestyle change, which included looking at my nutrition and hydration plan, incorporating exercise and reflecting on my spiritual life, I began to feel better than I had in years. My energy level was up, my disposition generally was better and as they say “Life was Good.”
What was the most difficult part of changing your lifestyle?
Making the time to do it right was the most difficult part of changing my lifestyle. It’s about baby steps and that’s what I did. I made little changes over a long period of time. That’s why you look at from a lifestyle perspective not an instant gratification perspective.
Why do you feel it is important to eat healthy and workout?
The combination of eating healthy and exercise sustain me in my daily living. If you feel better, everything you do during the day seems to go well and you maintain a constant energy level throughout.
Describe your weekly workout routine.
I enjoy participating in triathlons so my routine incorporates running, cycling or spin class, swimming, strength training and some type of workout to maintain flexibility.
What is your favorite workout?
I enjoy endurance events so my favorite workout is when I’m training for a half Ironman. We “get” to swim for an hour, ride bike for 2 hours, and finish off with a 1 ½ hour run. Now that’s what I call a good training day.
Do you have a family? Any children? Pets?
I have my wife Carol, daughter Deanna with her husband, J.B., and grandchildren Matea and Nash, and a son, Derick with his wife, Andrea. All maintain an active lifestyle of some sort and we’ve participated in a few 5K and half-marathon events. My son has completed two marathons, one of which was the Denver marathon and we ran across the finish line together which was a special moment for me.
How have they responded to your healthier lifestyle?
See the information above. They embrace it themselves.
Are you involved in the community, hobbies, clubs, etc.?
I am co-chair of the Bismarck Marathon. I facilitate an HEP C support group for the Bismarck/Mandan area as well as for western North Dakota. I sing in the choir and read. I run with the American Liver Foundations Run for Research Team at the Boston Marathon. I also enjoy riding the tandem bike with my wife Carol.
How did you find time to incorporate exercise into your schedule?
You schedule exercise into your schedule just as you do your meetings, hobbies, etc. It’s important to lay out a plan that incorporates short, intermediate and long term goals for yourself and then revisit those on a regular basis.
What is your advice for other employees looking to improve their overall health and wellness?
The biggest challenge is taking the first step. Once you take that first step and make a commitment to changing or improving your lifestyle, you then just take it one day at a time. Sit down and lay out a plan you can live with. It’s important to be reasonable and not so aggressive that you will burn out and stop. You should celebrate the little changes and remember that this is a lifelong journey you’re on, so stop looking for the magic pill and instant gratification. Best of all, enjoy the positive way you feel and celebrate the greatest gift of all, the gift of life.