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Monday, October 20, 2014         

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Personal trainer Chris Ranes is no quitter and practices what he preaches. The owner of Fitness Ranes gym spends countless hours encouraging clients with gentle admonishments such as "Don't quit," "Push harder" and "You've got this."

Byron Acohido deals with stressful deadlines on a daily basis as the writer of USA Today's "CyberTruth" blog and column, which focuses on Internet security.

If you were to meet Marc Riglos today, you'd never imagine that less than a year ago he nearly lost his foot. He stands tall, walks without assistance, swims and leads an active lifestyle.

Carol Wendel's life has always been centered on food. Her family owned a restaurant, and food was used for comfort and in social settings, she explained.

When a medical emergency left Amber Maynard confined to a wheelchair, she quickly learned to be grateful for things that are commonly taken for granted.

Michael-Logan Jordan doesn't like to see others suffering. If he encounters a homeless person on the street, he'll buy him or her lunch.

Kristina Ho's appetite is out of control, forcing her family to padlock the fridge and lock the pantry door. But the answer to her compulsive eating isn't simply a matter of willpower.

Janice Sakihama and Judy Fukunaga, 68-year-old twin sisters, love boxing. As in lacing up the gloves and going to work on a bag.

Irene Lai lives in Manoa and attends luk tung kuen exercise classes in Kahala a couple of times a week. She also takes weekly art classes, does gardening on her terrace and works on sewing projects.

Melaca Cannella felt exhausted from her everyday activities and was sleeping more than half the day. Her skin was extremely dry and her voice hoarse. Her vision became blurry, and she forgot simple things like the PIN for her bank card.

If you're like most folks, you've created a list of resolutions for the new year — exercising more often and losing weight being among the most common.

Sharon Yoshizu and 8-year-old daughter Shaley share much more than hugs and kisses. Their lives are filled with monthly doctor's visits, intravenous infusions, weekly injections and daily doses of medication, yet you won't hear them complain much.

Students, office workers and couch potatoes are all targets for Brittney Banning.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and local events will focus on breast health and encouraging women to get screenings.

Monty Anderson always struggled in school, but that didn't stop him from earning seven degrees in 15 years, including a master's degree and Ph.D. in clinical psychology.

Carissa Kano describes herself as a "quadruple threat" during her formidable middle school years. She wore glasses, braces on her teeth, a leg brace to deal with ankle problems and a back brace for scoliosis.

Two years ago, 12-year-old Cody Sugai's typical preteen routine of school, playing video games and basketball was put on hold after he experienced a headache during classes at Hawaii Baptist Academy.

Rick Fernandez describes himself as a "macho braddah" who would never have tried yoga and Pila­tes if not for the stroke he suffered about a year and a half ago.

Lauren Watanabe considers herself a perfectionist. "I have always felt that there has only has been one distinct path for me," she said. "In my mind, becoming valedictorian, obtaining leadership roles in clubs and organizations, and paving a straight road to a stellar law career was all that I needed."

Berrie Straatman undergoes dialysis treatments three times a week at the Fresenius Medical Care dialysis center on Kapahulu Avenue but doesn't let that get in the way of his exercise routine and active lifestyle.

The first two years after being diagnosed with ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease, in 2006, Rick Raker was determined to continue his work as an electronic medical record trainer and programmer with Kaiser Permanente.

James Bell received devastating news on April 4, 2010. The 61-year-old Waimea resident was diagnosed with stage 4 glioblastoma multiforme, the most common and aggressive form of brain cancer, and was scheduled for surgery to remove the tumors the following day.

Sonja Swenson has a lot to be grateful for this holiday season. Her daughter, Mia, who was born nearly three months early, is home and celebrating the holidays with her family.

In the course of working and going to school, Andra Kubulins forgot what it felt like to be happy. The worst part was, she wasn't even conscious of its absence in her life.

Lyman Koike is living proof that 70 is the new 50. While some of his health can be attributed to good genes, his positive attitude and healthy lifestyle definitely play a part.

Joshua Omalza lost his smile last year after a work-related accident in September left him with multiple injuries, including several missing front teeth.

Shannon Wong didn't grow up with the expectation of "beauty queen" status in her future. Other neighborhood kids regarded her as an ugly duckling, calling her names like "scar face" and "split lip."


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