Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Aerobics Instructor Uses Her Noodles to Help Keep Fit

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Aerobics Instructor Uses Her Noodles to Help Keep Fit

Article excerpt

BY THE TIME she married Mark Lucchesi on June 24, jokes the former Wendi Ward, the bride was fit to be tied.

Such was not the case five years ago, after Lucchesi had eaten her way through the CPA exam. College had taken its toll on her body, and the yo-yo dieting she had reverted to in order to rid herself of the extra 20 pounds she had picked up did little to solve her problem.

Then, for reasons she still can't explain, she suddenly saw the light - in more ways than one. She realized that not only did she have to eat lighter, but that she also had to exercise regularly. Even getting the right amount of sleep became part of her fitness plan.

"It finally hit me that the whole picture has to be in balance," said Lucchesi, whose goal now is to live to be 103 - and to be healthy while she's doing it.

A major part of her health program involves teaching Jazzercize classes six times a week at the Brentwood Community Center. That's in addition to her full-time job as comptroller for Suburbia Gardens in Chesterfield.

She also enjoys biking and roller-blading with her husband, a former college wrestler who's into weight lifting and running.

"He's even more disciplined than I am," Lucchesi said of this match made in health-food heaven.

This doesn't mean that Lucchesi does all her grocery shopping at a health-food store. Not at all. For her, health food is fresh fruits and vegetables, low-fat anything and pasta, pasta and more pasta.

"My family makes fun of me because I love to eat noodles all the time," she said, adding that rice is nice for a change of pace.

Cooking Light magazine supplies her with many recipes, although she's not afraid to experiment.

Nor is she above indulging her sweet tooth - and those of her Jazzercise students - with samples of the baked treats she loves to make. Sometimes she makes "the good kind," which are low in fat and calories. Sometimes she makes "the bad kind," which she believes are still fine, as long as you indulge in moderation. …

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