Yes, a Grandmother Can Run Races and Hike 14ers

A Fitness Success Story: Maria Portelli

What was your personal “why” for committing to changes in your lifestyle?

I have three reasons, actually. First and foremost, I wanted a better quality of life. I also wanted to ensure that I can age gracefully. And thirdly (and admittedly most important), I have a penchant for exotic beach vacations!

What has been your biggest challenge along the way?

I’ve had many injuries over the years that have slowed my training regimen. Not to mention taking vacations, which also slowed my progress and made breaking through the plateau very difficult.

What do you consider your biggest personal victory?

Two years ago, my husband was in a tragic car accident and broke his tibia. After a year of uncertainty about whether he’d ever run again, he ran a half marathon. And thanks to my accomplishments at the center, we ran it together!

In what ways have you transformed since joining the center?

I’ve greatly broadened my wellness knowledge. My personal trainer enabled me to break through long-standing plateaus, lose weight and find new ways to be inspired when I work out.

Maria Portelli 1 (1)

How has the center helped you succeed?

The center provides a consistent daily routine, starting at 5:30am with a 60-minute workout. The variety of programs helps to keep my workouts fresh and exciting.

What are your personal keys to success?

I stay on top of my diet and exercise regularly—it’s really that simple. I track my calories and monitor my exercise output every day.

Tips others might learn from you?

The most important thing is to make this a lifestyle and not a temporary fix. Learn what works for you and always have a goal. Always remember that your health and wellness are worth 60 minutes a day.

What is your motivation to continue on this new path?

When my eight-year-old granddaughter sees Grandma running in races, hiking 14ers, traveling and exhibiting positive energy, I know that all of the hard work I put in is worth it!

Maria Portelli 2



Individual results may vary.

Anschutz Health and Wellness Center