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As school children, we learned the value of the “buddy system.” As adults, many of us find that buddies still help us be safer, healthier, and have more fun. Thanks to their mutual support, a group of buddies in Alliance Coal’s Lexington office couldn’t wait to see their Heart Age numbers at the end of 2013!

Mary Lyndon Bashore, Pam Sparks Leonard, Tracy Daniel, Sandy Current, and Sharon Sloan have made positive lifestyle changes over the past year and were eager to see how their hard work paid off. Under the guidance of Nurse Kim Roe, who was an active participant in their group effort, the ladies have already hit many individual health goals. They are excited about their progress and committed to staying young at heart.

What started as part of a Lexington-office Biggest Loser competition a few years ago, evolved into on-site Weight Watchers meetings. But it didn’t stop there. Nurse Kim proudly explains, “All of the women really supported each other,” she says. “They went out of their way to help each other succeed as a group.”

Feeling accountable to others made a big difference, Pam says, especially when it came to working out at the nearby YMCA. “Having someone to go with or meet there always provided a little extra motivation,” she explains.

An available workout buddy was just one of the many benefits. “It helped that somebody always had a new healthy recipe to share,” says Tracy. “That made meal planning a lot easier and more interesting.”

The ladies’ team effort has really paid off. Group members have lost weight, reduced other health risk factors, and shaved years off their Heart Age, too! The “buddy system” works. Why not invite one or more buddies to join you in improving your own Heart Age in 2014?

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