After two heart surgeries my surgeon advised me to “move 15 minutes a day”. Those words still ring true today! I moved my body changed my diet and increased my metabolism to lose 183 pounds!
My eventual goal is to help others along a similar path to a healthy low risk lifestyle. Sharing the Freedom to do what ever you chose! I am currently working to create a plan on exactly how I will proceed.
I made the front page of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Here is the LINK if you would like to read it?]]>
I was on the wrong side of all health risks. I was knocking on diabetes door, had high blood pressure, cholesterol levels were very poor. All my joints ached. My self worth, self-esteem, self-concept and any other self hyphenated word had reached an all time low. My body hurt, moving around was cumbersome, slow and stiff.
I was sad. No, I mean really sad!
Many of you reading this understand the “sad”! Sadness is a gateway for so many negative thoughts, actions and words. It is a scary place to be. — I was there!
I was tired of the yo-yo diet game. I wanted to “keep it off this time”. But, how? My best friend Matt was my scout and pioneer. He research and selected a simple diet of whole foods and ways to boost your metabolism. He started on his journey with hope and optimism. I was skeptical of that lifestyle for myself even when I saw Matt’s results week after week. I wanted to think my body was “special” and wouldn’t accept a normal healthy approach. I think that is really fear rearing it’s ugly head.
Matt was losing weight, feeling terrific and looking healthier and healthier! While I continued my yo-yo style, Matt continued to gain health and lose pounds.
Several months after Matt began, I had a “goose bump” epiphany that led me to Ground Zero. I prepared, grabbed my self by the bootstraps and was truly ready to start my journey! I called Matt, he gladly introduced me to the way he had been eating and moving his body.
Matt had lost many pounds at this point and was looking and feeling fantastic!
My journey began in January of 2010. The photo of my wife and I at the top of the home page was taken a few days before I embarked. I weighed 372 pounds in that photo.
The photo above is my wife and I 18 months later at our first triathlon. I weighed 189 pounds in that photo.
Yes, through simple science of a nutritious diet, metabolic boosting and exercise I lost 183 pounds. I have been able to maintain a healthy lifestyle since. I continue to celebrate “movement” and love the freedom my body has!]]>
Several summers ago I was driving with my wife to my niece’s wedding in Valparaiso, IN. My wife and I were having a ball in the car on our way to a celebration! I remember it like yesterday! We bought “ring-pops” (a giant diamond shaped lollipop ring) at a gas stop to feel youthful and enjoy a blast from our past. Right as you head into Gary, IN over the bridge on I94 I felt as if I were going to pass out. It came on suddenly in the worst imaginable place. That part of Gary, a bridge and four lanes of crazy Friday traffic. I was able to pull the car over to the shoulder and barely make it around to the passenger side switching places with my wife.
I mentioned the “ring-pop” because I thought maybe the sugar was giving me some sort of reaction? I had no previous troubles with processed sugar, but had no other idea. As the feeling of passing out retreated, I began to sweat profusely. Throughout the wedding I would have bouts of dizziness followed by sweating. I agreed to see a doctor when we returned back home to MN.
My doctor ran some tests and found nothing. Chalking it up to weird food, I moved on. A few weeks later it returned and became more and more frequent. Weakness and breathlessness joined in. More tests, no results. Many months passed, my weigh began to rise rapidly as my activity levels plummeted. This went on long enough to elicit my doctor to start talking about psychological evaluations. Oh boy, was I crazy? How do you know? Do crazy people know when it is happening? I was genuinely worried. Well, worry, fear, and no activity are a perfect place for poor nutrition and weight gain to coexist! Finally the heart monitor I was wearing did it’s thing and I was diagnosed with Atrial Fibrillation (a-fib). My doctor referred me to a Heart specialist in the Twin Cities.
I went to Minneapolis Heart Institute, mplsheart.com and met Doctor Katsiyiannis, a clinical cardiac electrophysiologist. He sat down with me and in terms I could easily understand explained what my heart was doing and how they could perform a surgery or series of surgeries to repair it. Nervously, I agreed.
The surgery was a 5-6 hour process called Electrophysiology Ablation. It is basically a strategical scarring of tissue to keep the electronic signals corralled to appropriate parts of the heart.
The first surgery went well and yielded results. After recovery a I needed a second EP Ablation. Again I went under with all the confidence in the world in Dr. Katsiyiannis and the staff at Minneapolis Heart Institute! The second surgery went as well as the first and the wait was on! After a healing period to insure that the surgery worked Dr. Katsiyiannis told me I was fixed! He told me to go live my life with no restrictions. Really? None? This overjoyed and terrified me all at the same time. Jokingly I aske Dr. K if he was suggesting that I lose weight (sitting in his office at 360+ pounds it was obvious)” “No”, he said “I am asking you to move at least 15 minutes a day”.
Sound familiar? Yes, that is where the name of my website was born! Thanks Dr. K!! Moving 15 minutes a day was something I could do! It was not overwhelming! It was manageable.
Well, the nutrition followed! I still to this day have Dr. K’s words ringing true in my life! The Minneapolis Heart Institute enabled me to do “anything”. They gave me a “gift”. I cared for the gift in an effort to show I was worthy of receiving it. Thanks Minneapolis Heart Institute!!]]>
I had no idea I was going to be a “triathlete”! I agreed to try one and got hooked. So, I can speak to a fitness that includes triathlon training. I can also speak to overall health fitness. I first lost the weight then began heavy training for triathlons and races. Getting yourself to the place where you can chose is key!
I highly advise you to find a group within your activity scope to join! Spending time with people who share “like interests” is very beneficial in many ways. Having someone to partake with, learning your craft from others more seasoned than you and having a certain level of accountability are a few.
I joined a nonprofit organization who’s focus is on donating to cancer research. For a tiny fee, you join for life and get two t-shirts with the club logo. Over 100% of your money goes directly to cancer research. The cost of the printing and shirts is divide up between two gentlemen that founded the organization. They consider that their donation. It is a great group of people to workout, celebrate, hangout and strategize with!
You will see me with the name screened on many of my articles of clothing!
The group is TRI4EVR. Please take a moment to check it out on-line at tri4evr.com - watch the spelling! If you are in the area and are looking for a group to help you in any discipline this is it! Please come workout with us and share in the joys of our group workouts for athletes of all levels!
Tri4ever will always hold a special spot in my heart!! Thanks to everyone involved! They reduced my intimidation about triathletes!!
As I moved through my journey I found that moving everyday was infectious. It has become so ingrained in me that if I didn’t move I missed it!
Make your exercise part of your routine as you would brushing your teeth! Yes, there will be days your dark side will try to talk you out of it or justify not moving. Flex the mental muscles to fight those lethargic temptations!
I also sought out a personal trainer to fine tune my workouts for activities I grew to love other than triathlons. Kayaking, hiking, golf, and a vita courses to name a few. My personal trainer was amazing with tips on nutrition, setting up a “core” workout to accommodate my interests! Thanks Stephanie!!]]>
I told my friend I was interested and he made me an appointment . Not expecting that I had to put my money where my mouth was and go.
I drove two hours to the Maple Grove SlimGenics and sat in Jennifer’s office with my best friend ( I requested he come with me). I still remember the tears of relief flowing down my face as she so confidently described her program. “Relief”, “Freedom” were the cheers inside my head. Finally I had done the smart thing and sought out professional, Nutritious and compassionate help!
Jennifer laid out a SlimGenics program that my heart surgeon approved of and I began my Journey with SlimGenics. By the end of my weight-loss portion the staff became like family to my wife and I who almost always accompanied me on the two hour weekly trek to Maple Grove. The SlimGenics staff celebrated my joys with me and stayed in constant contact to assure I was on track. They like to see you a few times a week, but due to my long drive and overweight back issues we agreed to meet once a week. SlimGenics understood my needs and my trials! They had been there! They knew this was not an easy road. They did everything to keep me motivated and assured that I was eating correctly.
Here’s the KICKER:
Ok, so they got me to lose weight right? Some studies show that 87% of all weight lost is re-gained back plus 10% within two years!
Nope, not SlimGenics. They are not a fad diet that drops you off the face of the earth after you loose! They are committed to nutrition and stay with you to make sure you have your new life under control. SlimGenics calls it “Balance” – I love that! They taught me how to manage the rest of my life including birthday cake and ice cream! I had the option to become a life long member and took it immediately! They will always be in my corner! Anytime I need them they are just a phone call away!
My life as you can see is completely different than it used to be. I owe a huge part of that to SlimGenics! I will always be grateful to them for my new body, mind and spirit. A special thanks to Jennifer!! – She made sure her staff treated folks like family!]]>