Paramedic models fitness for others
Serving others is what it’s all about for Kevin Krienke, an 18-year veteran paramedic with Williamson County EMS and the winner of the county’s 2015 Wellness Leadership Award.
He promotes physical fitness because he believes that the citizens he serves deserve nothing less. The quote I will not fail those I serve is something Kevin takes seriously. “As a paramedic,” he explains, “I might have to perform CPR for an extended time or hike down a trail to carry someone out, and I have to be in shape to do so.”
Kevin models a healthy lifestyle for his employees because “if I expect them to be physically fit, then I need to be that plus some.” With that commitment in mind, Kevin formed the Williamson County EMS Fitness Group, a volunteer peer support group that encourages and motivates members to push themselves to keep fit. The 20-member group participates in weekly workouts and quarterly fitness assessments and has collectively lost weight and improved individual fitness levels.
It can be hard to stay motivated, but Kevin says that it helps for him to think about his wife and daughters: “Fitness is important to me because I want to live a long, healthy life so I can provide for my family and have the ability to run and play with them long after retirement.” He also says it helps to try new things.
Kevin believes that it’s important for him to “lead from the front,” meaning that rather than sitting at a desk and telling others what to do, a leader gets more people to follow him or her by setting the example. He says, “There are managers, and then there are leaders.” Kevin Krienke is clearly a leader.