Turning the big 50 did not feel like we thought it would. Joanna and I both turned 50 within 3 months of one another and just lacked the energy, drive and self esteem we had in our earlier years. The 40’s was a rough decade for me. I had to battle back from three back surgeries in my early 40’s and then began feeling the effects of undiagnosed hereditary hemochromatosis. Unknown to me, iron had slowly built up in my system and was beginning to have a severe negative impact on my body, health and both of our lives. Fortunately once diagnosed, they were able to manage the iron by drawing a pint of blood every two weeks. This went on for roughly six months which further added to my fatigue and weakness and Joanna and I fell into a normal routine of dinner, TV and sleep with virtually no exercise.
Before I started the Transformation Challenge I felt like I was in pretty good shape but my “before” pictures told me otherwise. I guess we get so used to making excuses and seeing what we want to see that we ignore what is obvious. Even though I have always worked out, I wasn’t necessarily working out the right way or eating the way I should. We get so caught up in our day to day lives that sometimes we forget that we need to take care of ourselves.
Fourteen years ago, almost to the day, I was told I had Motor Neuron Disease (MND). MND is rare. There are two different types, the most well know is Lou Gehrig's disease. Simply put they are degenerative neuro-muscular diseases that cause your muscles to waste away due to loss of nerve cells in the spinal cord.
I remember that day well. It was two days before my 35th birthday. It had taken 18 long months for the diagnosis. I knew something was happening with my body but had no idea how serious it was. I noticed little things first, for instance I could no longer rise up on my tip toes, and my calf muscles hurt/ached even when I hadn't exercised.
When I started to think about getting involved with Get Age Fit and how it could benefit my health, I really had no idea the journey that I would be starting. Being a business owner of a boutique in Salado and also a part time RN I have a really busy life, not to mention taking care of my home and family! I had come to a point in my life where I knew I needed to do something to feel better each day so I could accomplish the things I needed to. I desperately wanted to lose weight, change my eating habits and exercise but was not sure how I could accomplish all of it. After attending one of Theo’s meetings and reading the testimonies from the people in the book Body for Life, it all just seemed too good to be true, yet I felt such a trust with Theo and the team he has with him I wanted to begin the journey and see where it would take me. I made the decision to commit to the program and see if I could accomplish anything close to what the people in the book had.
We are celebrating our 30th anniversary in 2018. The key to our setting and achieving goals is that we are both on the same page and make a commitment together. Over the years, this has translated into a broad range of activity. We lost weight, incorporated more aerobic activity starting with walking and over the past 5 or so years have started taking active vacations that include hikes in various places such as Zion and Olympic National Parks. We enjoy travel and learning about the history of the various places we have visited.
We made some big changes in our lives over the past 10 years to improve our overall health. We went to a low-calorie diet to lose weight, and we did, but that was unsustainable and the weight slowly started to creep up. Especially after a vacation, where we had a very high level of activity and were burning fuel but changing eating habits when we got back was a challenge. Cardio is good, so we incorporated running/walking intervals as well as cardio workouts into our list of activities at home. Still, we were challenged to keep to a regular schedule. Our meals, while generally healthy, still included a lot of sugary food and carbs. The balance was not there.