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In a Salute to International Coaching Week, Healthyroads Offers Six Reasons Employees Should Work With a Health Coach

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SAN DIEGO, May 20, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- International Coaching Week (ICW) an annual global celebration set for May 20-26 this year shines a spotlight on the many benefits of working with a professional coach.

Every year thousands of people – from corporate executives to secretaries to budding entrepreneurs – reap the benefits of working with a personal coach. Personal coaches can bring a fresh perspective to the day-to-day challenges of life, help guide an individual to achieving greater satisfaction with life, work or relationships, or can help a client take key steps to attain important goals, such as career or health goals.

During International Coaching Week, Healthyroads, the award-winning wellness subsidiary of American Specialty Health Incorporated and a pioneer in the development of telephone health coaching as an employee benefit, encourages employees to take advantage of the free or low cost health coaching programs offered by their employers.

"Thousands of employers today understand the benefit of inspiring and motivating their employees to know their health risks, quit tobacco, manage their weight and stress levels, or just live a healthier lifestyle," said Elizabeth Thompson, MPH, RD, vice president of coaching programs at Healthyroads. "Health coaches are trained to listen, to encourage, and to help guide members in taking those first steps to begin a program of good health. They also help celebrate their victories, and motivate them to continue reaching for new health goals."

The Healthyroads® program offers health coaching to more than 15,000 enrolled members nationwide, helping many change habits to achieve significant health improvements. For example, in a one-year follow-up with members using a Healthyroads Coach® to achieve weight loss goals, 60.2 percent of those members had lost weight. 28 percent of them lost more than 10 pounds and 11 percent lost more than 20 pounds. Similarly, Healthyroads also sees excellent outcomes in its tobacco cessation program, showing a 58.6 percent six-month quit rate. Only about four to seven percent of people are able to quit smoking on any given attempt without medicines or other stop smoking help, according to the American Cancer Society.

If you want to achieve your health goals, check with your employer to learn whether your company offers a health coaching program. Here are seven great reasons to get started today with a health coach.

1. Professional health coaches help you set realistic and manageable goals.

2. Health coaches offer specific plans to help you break down your goals into daily or weekly, highly achievable steps.

3. Good health coaches offer ongoing, consistent and positive encouragement through weekly or monthly phone calls with you.

4. Health coaches can help you understand the emotional or personal triggers that can trip up your progress, and teach you coping mechanisms to help you overcome those triggers.

5. Health coaches can help empower you in many areas of life, from weight loss to smoking cessation, stress management, nutrition planning and exercise.

6. Health coaches help you understand the concept of healthy living which can result in true health improvement rather than focusing only on a single goal like weight loss.

7. Health coaches provide the kind of personal motivation designed to meet your needs and keep you moving toward success.

Want to learn more about health coaching? Check out our Healthyroads coaching program at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlfVXJqdGng.

Don't have a health coaching program? Talk to your employer today about adding health coaching to your company employee benefits program.

About Healthyroads

Healthyroads, Inc., a subsidiary of American Specialty Health Incorporated (ASH), offers a wide range of population health solutions, including: the award-winning Healthyroads telephone-based lifestyle and health coaching programs, member engagement promotion programs, program management, health risk assessments, biometric screenings, claims analytics, risk stratification, outreach, incentive management programs, competitive group challenges, worksite wellness programs and/or an integrated online wellness portal, Healthyroads.com. Healthyroads offers these programs to more than 5.7 million members nationally. For more information about Healthyroads programs, visit ASHCompanies.com or call (800) 848-3555. Follow us on Twitter at @Healthyroads, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Healthyroads, on Instagram @Healthyroads, on Pinterest at http://pinterest.com/healthyroads/ and on YouTube at www.youtube.com/healthyroads.

ABOUT AMERICAN SPECIALTY HEALTH

American Specialty Health Incorporated (ASH) is a national health services organization that provides fitness and exercise programs, population health solutions and specialty health care programs for health plans, insurance carriers, employer groups and trust funds. Headquartered in San Diego, CA, with offices in Dallas, TX, Indianapolis, IN and Columbia, SC, ASH has more than 1,000 employees and administers services for more than 32 million members nationwide. Additional products offered through ASH and its subsidiaries include Silver&Fit®, FitnessCoach, Active&Fit®, ExerciseRewardsTM and others. For more information about ASH, visit www.ASHCompanies.com or call 800-848-3555. Follow us on LinkedIn or Twitter at @ASHCompanies.

CONTACT: American Specialty Health Lisa Freeman 800.848.3555, ext. 3722 Direct: 310-390-3070 lisaf@ashn.com

Source:American Specialty Health