Lance Breger had it all…or he thought! Not only was he a full-time head personal trainer, but also simultaneously running two startup wellness businesses. The ‘it’ Lance thought he had was his health and working 7 days a week, sacrificing sleep for emails, viewing meals as productivity speed bumps and existing in a chronic state of stress proved otherwise as he crashed – hard.
In February 2008, Lance was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit at George Washington University Hospital for a peritonsular infection. The extreme pain of speaking and swallowing plus the fear of potential throat surgery was the backhanded slap of mortality needed to change his life and priorities forever.
Now as the Founder and CEO of Infinity Wellness Partners, a comprehensive corporate wellness company (2 employees, 20+ contractors) he uses his life as the teaching tool for clients combining his previous health crisis with 17 years of industry education and experience to spread holistic health across the corporate landscape throughout the world.
1. Professional Development
Stressful school bullying led Lance to use weight training to transform his body/mind and he unexpectedly discovered a life purpose and passion. Lance received his Bachelor’s in Kinesiology from University of Illinois and Master’s in Health Promotion from American University. At age 19, Lance achieved professional certification from the National Academy of Sports Medicine as a personal trainer. Lance’s education includes certifications as an American Council on Exercise (ACE) Health Coach and C.H.E.K Institute Holistic Lifestyle Coach. Lance serves as an ACE Master Instructor and is an IDEA Health & Fitness Association Program Director of the Year.
2. Demonstrated Success
Lance broke the health promoter mold by expanding beyond the gym and into disadvantaged elementary schools in DC. He created a 501(c)3, Infinity Wellness Foundation and afterschool curriculum called WellKIDS for childhood obesity. Between 2008 and 2013, Lance’s nonprofit comprised of community health professionals led 5,000+ inner city youth through 60-minute lessons of breathing, moving, eating, and stretching.
Lance saw the next health promotion opportunity with adults in corporations, motivating the creation of Infinity Wellness Partners, Inc. (IWP) and the onsite program called WorkLIFE targeting adult metabolic syndrome. Since IWP’s 2011 inception, Lance and his team have partnered with over 60 organizations to bring onsite and online fitness, nutrition, mind/body, and ergonomics training to thousands of professionals across the country.
Lance very first corporate client, a medical nonprofit of 100 employees in DC, has completely transformed during the five-year partnership. As a fully-insured organization, leadership has been conservative to protect all parties with HIPPA laws and IWP’s recommended data collection has been slow, but steadily progressing.
A health behavior survey collected and analyzed on 50 staff members between 2015 and 2016 indicate improvements on health and lifestyle behaviors that contribute to directly to metabolic syndrome:
What began as a weekly fitness class evolved into an onsite and online robust, comprehensive wellness program, strategy, and culture:
Integrating WELCOA Benchmarks have been essential to the program planning, design, implementation and evaluation process. Three examples are below:
The culture has completely evolved through the following:
Leadership begins by living the part and Lance uses a 80/20 Rule (80% healthy / 20% living life) with 6 foundational principles to manage a healthy and holistic lifestyle:
The experiences and resources that helped Lance achieve leadership status was:
His advice for other wellness practitioners is:
To address the universal challenges and obstacles in corporate wellness programs Lance used the following innovations:
5. Compelling Vision
A tremendous opportunity for the health industry lies in expanding beyond physical and mental wellness to include emotional and spiritual wellness. It is the emotions that power or prevent human action and contribute to long-lasting change. One’s spirituality is the most deeply-held beliefs on how to live that impact behavior at the core. By not including emotional and spiritual wellness education and training we are not yet providing whole-person health promotion programming.
Lance is dedicating the next five years to spreading holistic health, including emotional and spiritual wellness across the corporate landscape. The vision that gets him out of bed every day inspired is to give professionals the opportunity to safely explore the role of emotions and spirituality in their health and lifestyle through holistic corporate wellness programming.