Hello! My name is Ron and I decided to start this blog for a couple of reasons.
First off I want to track my progress on this journey towards better health and also I figured it would help motivate me towards my goal. At my last Doctor’s visit for my yearly I weighed 410 pounds. I was also informed that I was pre-diabetic and had hypertension. On my 12 lead EKG it was also showing some right ventricular enlargement of my heart. I know this because I work as a Paramedic and my Doctor and I both spotted it right away on the EKG results.
Back in 2008 I came across a program called “Couch to 5K” and it was a series of podcasts for the iPod intended to help someone who wasn’t a runner become a 5K runner. I started off with the Couch to 5K program and ran 3X a week on Mon-Wed-Fri on an old treadmill on our enclosed front porch. I began this at the start of winter and spent many a freezing hour out on that old beat up treadmill.
I remember the first time I Ran/Walked one mile I thought I was going to cry. You see, in High School I had run Track and Cross Country and had really let myself go. I could barely get through the first mile of the C25K program. When I started back then I weighed in at 384 pounds. I was a father of three small children and a husband to a very tolerant Wife. I say that because she spent many an hour during that winter watching TV with me staring at her through the porch window as I ran on the treadmill. As the winter progressed and spring crept up the weight began to slide off. By May I was down 100 pounds through a combination of eating better and the running. I was also up to 4 miles of non-stop running so I entered my first 5K and finished with a time of 28 minutes. I had set a goal of under 30 minutes and had no idea where I was at time wise until I rounded the corner to the finish line and spotted the race clock they had set up. I remember that day vividly as I couldn’t stop smiling afterwards.
After my first 5K in the Spring of 2009 I ran a few more 5K’s and then decided to train for a half marathon of 13.1 miles. I trained all summer for that and ran my first half marathon in September of 2009 in Erie,PA. I had dropped down to a weight of 221 pounds which meant a total loss of 163 pounds in 10 months. From there I continued to run marathons in Cleveland, Buffalo, Erie again, and even the Marine Corp Marathon in Washington DC with my Wife.
In the summer of 2013 I began to feel tired and my body constantly hurt from all the running. Marathon training programs take a huge amount of time and effort out of you. I was wore down and anyone who has trained for one knows the commitment involved. It is like having a second job at times. A typical Saturday involved a 4 hour run around our scenic lake where I live. Still the hurt was still there especially in my left knee. I had it checked out by my Doctor and it was discovered I had a bunch of arthritis in there. I phased out of running which I had loved and the weight began to creep back on. At first you say to yourself, “It’s only 10 pounds”, but then that becomes 20 and more.
Which leads us to where I am today. I backslid and I guess I really can’t make any excuses for that. You and I know I can try to blame the knee issue I had developed but the reality is the burden falls on my shoulders.
So now I begin this journey again. I know the route and I am confident. The last time I did this I was on a low carb high protein diet. I did feel sluggish most of the time but my determination drove me. This time I will be doing a plant based diet my Wife and I have recently begun based on the work of Dr Esselstyn in addition to walking until I get to the point that I can start to try and run a bit. I will post regular updates here if anyone is interested and keeping this blog will help motivate me also I think. I will also be posting recipes my Wife and I use for our plant based diet as we go along. Please join my Wife and I both on this journey.
Let us begin!