Carson medical workers focus on health |

Carson medical workers focus on health

Teri Vance
Special to the Nevada Appeal
From left, Kelly Fluitt and Kelly Burton, both nurse practitioners at Carson Medical Group, say being fit themselves helps them better serve their patients. Burton has lost 65 pounds since November and was the groups biggest loser during its weight loss challenge.
Teri Vance / Special to the Nevada Appeal |

Since Kelly Burton, a nurse practitioner at Carson Medical Group, started counting calories and walking in November, she has lost 65 pounds. Thirty of them came since the medical group hosted a weight loss challenge beginning in January, making her the biggest loser of the group.

“What I’m realizing is that this is the rest of my life,” she said. “It’s not like finishing an exam and being done with the class.”

She joined about 115 people who ran or walked the Healthy Strides 5K open to staff members and their families on Saturday, beginning and finishing at the Carson Medical Group campus on Medical Parkway.

“There’s been a ton of support here,” Burton said. “It’s really nice.”

Michelle Tibma, spokeswoman for the medical group, said the individual departments have held unofficial weight-loss challenges for several years.

“This year, CMG combined its efforts into one Weight Loss Challenge effort,” she said.

Close to 60 employees participated in the challenge, which included weekly weigh-ins and body-fat analysis, from January through March. Weekly healthy tips were distributed, and two group fitness classes were held each week.

“The average total percent of body fat lost for this group of individuals was nearly 5 percent,” Tibma said. “That’s well above the norms for typical weight loss programs.”

She said the race was a natural progression of the challenge.

“The Weight Loss Challenge was a big success and started the discussion of how to keep this healthy momentum going,” Tibma said. “Thus we decided to have a company-wide 5K called Healthy Strides. We provided staff with a training schedule and offered Saturday meet-ups to help those who wanted assistance prepare for the 5K.”

Burton, whose husband has also lost 23 pounds, said her knowledge and enthusiasm will make her a better nurse.

“You emanate a healthy lifestyle,” she said. “I’m able to explain to my patients better and help them understand what to do.”

Fellow nurse practitioner Kelly Fluitt agreed.

“You have to walk the walk to talk the talk,” she said.