Many find walking and running outdoors an enjoyable activity to do in their free time, but some have a strong passion for it, like Site Coordinator of the Flint Community Training Program (FCTP) Loretta Lane. She has always enjoyed walking and doing aerobics around the community of Flint where she is a lifelong resident, having attended Flint Northwestern High School, and Baker College. Shortly after she graduated from Baker College she began working in various roles around the City of Flint, starting with working at a construction company, then at Citizens Bank, and finally retiring from General Motors.
Along with many other Flint residents, Loretta completed a handful of Crim races, but in 2015 she realized that her strong passion for outdoor walking and fitness was leading her to do more in the community. About 8 years ago she went to her pastor at the time, Bishop Urundi B. Knox at Ebenezer Ministries of Burton, and asked if the church could become a part of the FCTP for Crim. He agreed, and the rest is history.
She has been a Site Coordinator of the FCTP for nearly 8 years with Ebenezer Ministries of Burton (now known as Triumph Church Burton Location Ebenezer Ministry Campus under the leadership of Senior Pastor Solomon Kinloch Jr. and Pastor Delrico Loyd), growing the group to over 200 people through the years. Loretta loves interacting with the groups she leads every year and speaks highly of them. "I think that one of the biggest reasons we have had so much success in growing our groups so large over the years is just the strong passion that people have for wanting to walk/run and the amazing experience each trainee receives during the program," says Loretta. "The training program offers immense benefits like fellowship, the chance to meet new people, cheering others on, and it is just something positive to do. I have greatly enjoyed getting to change the ‘I can’t do’ mindset to the ‘I can do’ of many and watch people succeed physically while enjoying exercise.”
Loretta welcomes anyone to participate in the program, regardless if you attend the church or not. She has a strong passion for helping people reach their health and fitness goals and getting to work within the community that she lives in. There is no doubt that healthy lifestyles create healthy communities, and Loretta is not just living that but also helping others do the same.
A big benefit of the training program is the friendships that you develop throughout the program. "I really enjoy that we all cheer each other on during our training every Tuesday night. It is awesome to all root for each other and lift each other up," says Loretta. “I want to thank all of the group leaders, especially those who have been with me from the beginning to the present.” With her leading the 5K walking groups this year, Loretta's group travels all around Genesee County to run or walk in places like Bicentennial Park, Kettering University, Davison, or the University of Michigan-Flint.
Loretta continues to share her passion for living an active lifestyle with others. “She is an incredible asset to our community," explained Joe Dimambro, Director of Races & Training at Crim. "Her dedication to improving the lives around her is unparalleled, and she has an uncanny ability to be able to engage the community to get involved in various activities."
Loretta’s work in our community is driving change for many, including future generations such as her two grandsons. Modeling the healthy lifestyle that Loretta leads, her grandsons have taken that baton and continued to run with it. “It is amazing what they eat, things grown adults won’t even eat,” Loretta explained as she shared how their diet consists of many organic foods. “They only eat organic peanut butter because otherwise, it has ‘too much sugar’ they say."
It is examples like this that demonstrate the change Loretta is making across the county, not only with her training group but also in everyday situations where she is able to lead and guide. Loretta has built a large sphere of influence through her church, offering such activities as yoga, aerobics, and praisercise with awesome instructors leading the courses. It is because of her consistent presence that our community is getting better every day.