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Boilermaker-bound and 50 pounds lighter

By CAROLINE GABLE

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - Having a long term goal can jump start an exercise program, or help you stick with one. A Utica woman is on pins and needles ahead of the Boilermaker 15K Road Race, but the hardest part of the work to complete the journey, may actually already be behind her.

Ashley Collom decided four months ago that she was going to run the Boilermaker and the thought of crossing that finish line has kept her going.

However, at almost 300 pounds, her weight presented a problem. So, she hired trainer Danielle Centolella at Powerhouse Gym, who started her on a program to turn her life around.

Back in April, Collom couldn't run half a mile. Through hard work, consistency, and a lot of sweat, though, she is going to be lacing up her sneakers this weekend for the 15K. Collom has lost 50 pounds in her training so far. It is weight she says she won't miss as she sets out to complete the race that's given her life a whole new start.

"I have had more energy and my kids notice it," Collom said. "I can play with them, and I'm not laying around doing nothing. I can jog with one kid in the stroller, the other rides his bike. Life is much more enjoyable."

Collom's trainer Centolella will be running with her on race day, motivating her every step of the way. Collom says she's come a long way, but she doesn't think this Boilermaker will be her last. Instead, she is looking at it as just her first.

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