Get Over The Fear of Starting

Three years ago I never thought I'd be writing my first blog as a Wellness Warrior for Dr. Oz's website. Three years ago I could barely run to the plane. I could barely do a push up. I was over 265 lbs and was in denial about my poor health. My cholesterol and blood pressure were all high and my doctor told me I had to loose weight or I would be on medicine the rest of my life.

Three years ago I never thought I'd be writing my first blog as a Wellness Warrior for Dr. Oz's website. Three years ago I could barely run to the plane. I could barely do a push up. I was over 265 lbs and was in denial about my poor health. My cholesterol and blood pressure were all high and my doctor told me I had to loose weight or I would be on medicine the rest of my life.

Until one day I looked at myself long and hard in the mirror and said, "Who am I? I have got to take control. I have to get over the fear of the biggest, hardest project I could possibly think of...dropping down to a healthier weight."


I was in complete denial of who I had become. Yes, I'd been heavy my whole life. As a child, they used to call me "Big Bonnie Balloon Butt." But I had gained significantly more weight in my 40s when I reached menopause. I had been building my freelance illustration career and had a very sedentary lifestyle. And I was living outside of my body. I felt as if I had this big life with friends and my career was taking off; but I was trapped inside this big body with no clue how to get out.

I was scared. I didn't want to have a heart attack like my father. I had a lot of living I wanted to do. I decided I had to overcome the fear of this daunting task before me. I was stubborn. I didn't want to wear sneakers. I didn't feel comfortable in work out clothes; or any clothes for that matter. But I wanted to change. I wanted to gain control of this woman who I had become. I felt like I needed balance. I needed the inside of myself to match the outside of myself once and for all.

So I began. I turned myself on. I decided fear and fat were not going to be a part of my world any longer. I decided that I wanted to tread more lightly in this world. I talked to my therapist Amy about my fears and she gave me great advice. She said, "If you can do something for 18 days straight, then it becomes a pattern and you'll keep going. And so, I started walking, and walking and walking.... and 18 days later, I was still walking. In a few months, I had burned off 30 lbs! Simply by walking.

Now, I have continued to walk, exercise and eat better. I now weigh 143 lbs. I have overcome the fear of starting. Now I have walked proudly onto the stage of The Dr. Oz Show...and into the next chapter of a life that I have reclaimed.

It is my sincere hope and strong desire that my personal triumph will inspire others to take the first step on their own journey to a healthier and more fulfilled life. This is my mission to help others believe in themselves. 

4 Steps to Shedding Your Pandemic Pounds

Forgive yourself, and start walking toward a healthier you.

For those of you who have put on the Pandemic Pounds or added several new COVID Curves, you are not alone. Alarmingly, the American Psychological Association has recently published that almost half of all adults in their survey now have a larger physique. In fact, 42% of people reported gaining roughly 15 pounds (the average published was surprisingly 29 pounds but that included outliers) over the past year. Interestingly, 20% of adults in this survey lost about 12 pounds (I am surely not in this group). Clearly, there is a relationship between stress and weight change. In addition, one in four adults disclosed an increase in alcohol consumption, and 67% of participants distressingly revealed that they have new sleeping patterns.

This past year has brought about what has been called the 'new normal.' Social isolation and inactivity due to quarantining and remote working have sadly contributed to the decline in many people's mental and physical health, as demonstrated by the widespread changes in people's weight, alcohol consumption, and sleeping patterns. Gym closures, frequent ordering of unhealthy takeout, and increased time at home cooking and devouring comfort foods have had a perceptible impact. In addition, many people have delayed routine medical care and screening tests over fear of contracting Covid-19 during these visits. Unfortunately, the 'new normal' has now placed too many people at risk for serious health consequences, including heart attacks and strokes.

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