Before Sacramento Police Sgt. Chris Taylor met John Hansen, the department’s fitness coordinator, running 20 minutes on the treadmill was a task, says the Sacramento Bee. These days, Taylor, 39, runs 26-mile marathons with ease. He trains for an hour or more at least four times a week. To promote fitness among officers, Sacramento contracted in 2003 with Hansen, who provides guidance on healthy diet and exercise. Hansen customizes workout and training schedules and routines for officers and civilians. He also trains with a few of them in the gym. “When you become a police officer, you are expected to have a high level of fitness,” Taylor said. “But the job does not necessarily yield a high level of fitness.”
When Taylor started, he worked the graveyard shift, like most young officers. The only places to grab a bite during those witching hours were fast-food outlets with 24-hour drive-through services. He weighed 160 pounds when he joined the Police Department in 1990. By 2004, he had gained 45 pounds. Under Hansen’s routine, Taylor has trimmed off 20 pounds. More than 200 officers and civilians participate in a Health and Fitness Challenge incentive program Hansen started in January 2005. Most participants have reduced their body fat and registered healthy blood pressure levels.