Green Prescription: supporting healthy lifestyle change
Saturday, December 14, 2019
In the past 12 months our Green Prescription programme has empowered more than 1900 people across the Bay of Plenty with the knowledge, skills and community connections to help them get active and lead healthy lifestyles.
Sport Bay of Plenty is charged with administering the Green Prescription programme across the Eastern, Western and Central Bays.
With advisors across the region, our team sees first-hand the impact of the healthy lifestyle programme: Of the 1990 clients who participated during the 2018-19 financial year, 79 per cent increased their physical activity during their time on the programme, more than three quarters reported improved wellbeing and feeling better, and 69 per cent said they felt more motivated.
Numbers aside, it’s the personal stories that tell the true impact of the programme. Earlier this year we asked Green Prescription client Mike to tell us what his six-months on the programme meant for him. This is his story.
Mike's Green Prescription healthy lifestyle journey
What was your initial motivation to start your journey to improving your health?
I have always loved being active but on occasions I have lost that mojo. I tragically lost my wife early last year and became responsible for taking care of myself. It was time to get my real life back – I love sports and I love being active and I could still remember the times when I had been really active. All the choices I made with my time became my own choices and I no longer had any excuse for making poor food choices because the choices were mine alone.
What have been your accomplishments through this journey?
I have lost about 20 kilograms so far and plenty of waistline, but the major accomplishment is greater confidence and more interaction with other people. This is the real benefit. My job involves public speaking to large groups so regaining that confidence has been a big bonus.
What keeps you going and what will keep you going with the changes you have made?
Life is so much better when your ability to do things is improved. Getting out of a chair is no longer a struggle, getting in and out of a car becomes easy, spending time with family and sharing in their activities becomes special. I am in control of my own life and destiny. I love my new life and that serves to motivate me for the future.
Do you have any tips for others wanting to improve their health like you have?
Weight loss can be achieved just by making the right food choices. It all starts with food but then introducing an activity - walking is really good - will build momentum towards achieving your goal.
Why would you recommend Green Prescription to others?
Knowledge is power, in this instance power in your hands to control your own destiny. I learnt so much, things I had never been taught previously. I became empowered and enabled to control my own destiny.
Time is everything in bringing about change. These changes do not happen overnight and one must accept that this is a journey not a trip. It has been hugely beneficial to me to have that external monitoring, management and support to set me on the long-term pathway that is a lifestyle change.
About the Green Prescription healthy lifestyle programme
Green Prescription is a six-month healthy lifestyle programme that helps clients with a personalised physical activity and nutrition plan to support sustainable behavioural changes. Face-to-face, phone and group learning sessions ensure clients have the support they need throughout the programme.
Interested in taking your own healthy lifestyle journey? Talk to your GP, nurse or midwife about a Green Prescription referral.
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