U.S. Coast Guard veteran Marcia Medina with her Warrior’s Wish of an exercise bike gifted from Hope For The Warriors.

DIVIDE, Colorado,  (Jan. 17, 2023) – While battling Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome, U.S. Coast Guard veteran Marcia Medina discovered the medicines helping her wage that battle were causing her weight to rapidly increase. As she managed her PTSD, Hope For The Warriors and its Warrior’s Wish program was able to assist Medina with her fitness goals by gifting a Schwinn 270 exercise stationary recumbent bike, valued at almost $700.

Medina shared that her need to exercise to combat weight problems, would be greatly helped with a new stationary recumbent bike from the national nonprofit’s Warrior’s Wish program.

“I had a stationary bike before I requested a Warrior’s Wish and had started my biking to help me improve my weight, anxiety, depression, PTSD symptoms and severe non-alcoholic fatty liver disease,” said Medina, who was medically retired from the Coast Guard after serving for 17 years. “During my journey my bike broke and I came across Hope For The Warriors. I was so excited that I was selected for my wish. During the wish process I reinjured my back. Mobility isn’t my strong suit. The recumbent bike helped continue to stay motivated on track in my new lifestyle.”

Medina rides her new exercise bike three to five times a week for 30 to 60 minutes each time. Most of those days she listens to music to help relax during the ride and sometimes she and a friend ride together, virtually, through a phone conversation.

Those rides each week are already paying huge benefits for Medina.

“Riding helps me stay present and think about just me enjoying my exercise,” said Medina, who moved to Colorado from California when she retired. “It has helped me relieve some of my stress of living in a new state and has helped me adjust to a routine in my retired life.”

Medina is a single mom and the opportunity to get time on the bike has had a positive impact on the relationship with her 10-year-old son.

“This all helps me be happier overall and more present for him,” she said. “We have much more quality time together now.”

Her new exercise regime and subsequent weight loss has also helped her combat fatty liver disease.

“I’m so happy to say my liver is now completely healthy. I was able to completely reverse the damage my weight gain had caused,” said Medina, whose weight was once at 215 pounds. “I’m also proud to say that I am 132 pounds today. I don’t have an excuse of pain to not workout. It is an amazing piece of equipment.”

“These are the type of stories we love to hear, where something as simple as an exercise bike can turn someone’s outlook on life around,” said Robin Kelleher, co-founder and CEO of Hope For The Warriors. “We are so very proud of Marcia and the hard work she has put in to get her health back. It was truly an honor for HOPE to support her with her fitness goals.”

Since 2006, Hope For The Warriors has provided almost $2.5 million in grants, assisting with 251 wishes.

For more information on Hope For The Warriors and Warrior’s Wish program, visit hopeforthewarriors.orgFacebookTwitter or Instagram.

About Hope For The Warriors: Founded in 2006, Hope For The Warriors is a national nonprofit dedicated to restoring a sense of self, family and hope for post-9/11 veterans, service members and military families. Since its inception, Hope For The Warriors has served over 40,000 through a variety of support programs focused on health and wellness, sports and recreation and transition. One of the nonprofit’s first programs, Military Spouse and Caregiver Scholarships, has awarded 183 scholarships to caregivers and families of the fallen. For more information, visit hopeforthewarriors.orgFacebookTwitter or Instagram.