UK Partners with HMR to Promote Healthy Weight to Kentuckians and UK Community

LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 14, 2016) – Jeanne Bouvier, a retired UK HealthCare nurse of 25 years, didn't know how her weight gain could have happened to her.  She thought, "I'm a nurse and should know better. How did I let this get away from me?" She realized she had to get over thinking that way and do something about it before it started to affect her overall health.

"We are all human. Weight gain can happen to anybody," Bouvier said.

Bouvier has been active all her life but about three years ago, she noticed it was getting harder to do physical things. It bothered her that while participating in a football clinic -- to better understand the game her son played as a walk-on wide reciever for UK -- she lacked the strength and stamina to take part in the mini drills.

She saw displays for Health Management Resources (HMR) in UK Chandler Hospital and decided to attend an introductory session. "I'm sold on the program," Bouvier said. "HMR has teased out all the ideas that work and thrown out the fads and other junk. If you are serious about losing weight, HMR is a serious program. It will work if you do the things they ask of you."

The HMR Program for Weight Management, a medically supervised weight loss and weight management program, has operated in cooperation with the University of Kentucky since 1985, bringing its proven lifestyle-based approach to central Kentuckians, helping them lose significant weight and teaching the skills to keep the weight off long-term. HMR was recently named a No. 1 Best Fast Weight Loss Diet in U.S. News & World Report's Best Diets of 2016 rankings.

Dr. L. Raymond Reynolds, professor in the Department of Endocrinology and Molecular Medicine at the UK College of Medicine, serves as medical director for the local clinic and also serves on the national medical board. Additionally, Reynolds is program director of the Endocrinology Fellowship at UK and was named as one of the Best Doctors in America 2015-2016.

"The HMR program is clearly the premier weight management program in the U.S., due to continuous improvements based on experience, data analysis and a dedicated, passionate skilled staff. HMR has helped thousands of people with wide variety of concerns achieve a greater quality of life," Reynolds said.

Kim Berryman, a registered dietician and program operations specialist at HMR in Lexington, says the program provides the jump start many people need when beginning a healthier lifestyle program.

"The program achieves fast weight loss in a livable way, by encouraging people to eat more and stay satisfied. This makes it easier to stick to the program in both the short and long-term."

Berryman adds, "A common misconception is that losing weight quickly is not healthy, not sustainable, and will just lead to future weight regain. To the contrary, numerous clinical studies demonstrate that following a lifestyle change program which promotes fast initial weight loss can result in better long-term success."

HMR has three phases. Phase 1 is very highly structured, but time limited, with a high level of support and accountability. The objective is to follow the diet 100 percent, which results in rapid weight loss. Phase 2 is more relaxed, as the focus becomes learning and practicing healthy behaviors to maintain the weight loss. In phase 3, participants begin managing a healthy lifestyle on their own, with more flexible options for support and accountability. UK employees who participate in the program will receive a 50 percent discount on Phase I classes.

The program is having a profound impact on Richard Pitcock, an accountant for some of UK's medical and surgical departments, and his wife Donna.  Richard knew he was overweight but for the first time in his life, he was called obese. The word 'obese' resonated with him. He never thought of himself in this way.

"My wife and I have three grandkids and we knew we needed to do something about the extra weight so we can feel good and be active with them," Pitcock said. "I've read about HMR in some UK publications and I have a friend who has been successful with the program."

"The program is easy for me and my wife because we do it together - we attend meetings, grocery shop and exercise together."

Richard and Donna Pitcock are strongly committed to their weight loss program and made it a goal to burn 2,000 calories a week. In addition to biking, they like to walk and they participate in many 5K walks for charity, completing 10 so far this year.

Richard's office at UK's Coldstream campus is on the third floor of a six floor building and he says he always takes the stairs, even visiting the restroom on another floor, averaging 17-18 flights of steps a day.

Last July, Richard and Donna decided they wanted to add a new activity and discovered a new found passion for ballroom dancing. 

"Dancing involves the whole body and you have to focus on the core and frame. It's fun and challenging and forces you to concentrate on movement. We'll do it for the rest of our lives," Richard Pitcock said.


His biggest challenge with the program right now is finding a good balance with his exercise, weight, and calories burned. After losing over100 pounds, Richard's waist size went from 46 inches to 34 inches and his 34 inch pants are loose. Now that he has exceeded his weight loss goals, he is currently trying to gain a few of the pounds back.

Even if Richard gains back a few pounds, he still has to wear a heavily padded double-belly for his extracurricular activity of playing Santa Claus for UK's annual Circle of Love, a program that provides Christmas gifts to underserved children in Fayette County and Central Kentucky. As Santa, he also visits with patients at Kentucky Children's Hospital for their annual Breakfast with Santa. He thinks he may have to buy a full fat suit for next year.

The Pitcocks and Bouvier say the HMR program is not hard because there is a lot of support and supervision as long as you stay committed to the program.

"It's just so much easier now to get through my day," Bouvier said. "I have more stamina and don't think twice about taking the stairs; and my clothes fit. I'm actually the same size now as the day I married. Will power and going it alone will not get you through the long-term. You need ongoing support and a way to be held accountable."

Richard Pitcock adds that at age 68, he and his wife are 'well-seasoned' adults in the HMR program, so age is not a factor for starting a diet and exercise program. He says it's more important to just get started.

 "Attending the meetings is crucial because it causes accountability and you learn a lot from the discussions."

To learn more about HMR, go to and connect with HMR on Twitter, Facebook, and You Tube. To connect with HMR Weight Management Services in Lexington, contact Kim Berryman at 859-422-4671.

Media Contact: Ann Blackford at 859-323-6442 or