Monday, September 28, 2009

To Be Truly Healthy

When I lived in Salt Lake City a few years ago I went downtown one Saturday morning and auditioned for The Biggest Loser.

I had a phenomenal time with the people there, both BL hopefuls like myself, as well as with the casting staff.

Through a variety of call backs - on-site, phone, and video, I was just about to be, it appeared to me at least, cast on the show.

However, by the time they called me, that last, climactic time, to tell me, it had been months and months.

And I had gained over 100 pounds.

I got their message and never called them back.

Too fat for the show I thought, I'd lost my chance. They wouldn't want me anymore now that I was over 500 lbs.

Well, I may have been right, but more importantly, it doesn't matter.

I'm grateful I didn't go on the show. It's the same kind of gratitude I have around not getting Gastric Bypass despite the incessant urgings of family and friends over the years.

I have a lot to work through, and weight is only the symptom. And I want to do it all in a healthy way. That is the only real way for me, now: healthy.

I don't want to lose 200 pounds in 2 months spent w/o my job, day-to-day life, and normal responsibilities.

And I don't want to have a surgeon alter my body in order to induce medically-approved starvation.

When I didn't get on the show and when I kept turning down weight loss surgery, I had years of unpleasantness ahead of me.

It was painful. I suffered more failures, gained more weight, caused more anguish to myself and those who care about me.

But, I'm not in that place anymore.

I'm moving in a new direction now, and have been for some time.

And as to how I came about that new direction?


Through trials and tribulations and learning and growing.

So now, I don't want what the American Medical Association and the Biggest Loser want for me.

Now I want to learn about moderation and working hard to accomplish a goal that matters, for me. I want to love myself and treat myself with enough kindness that losing weight is a secondary result. I want to heal emotionally/mentally/spiritually AND physically so that I will be able to sustain my success for a lifetime.

And I will.

Recently I have been seeing this banner ad for Jillian Michael's website.

Well, last time I saw it, just for fun, I clicked it.

I had no expectation to do more than walk through a couple of the registration steps to see what it was about.

Well, on her homepage you get started with your "free" weight-loss plan. Again, no expectations on my part, so I put in the data: age, height, email, goal weight, and, of course, my current weight: 550 lbs, and I proceeded to CLICK THERE IT'S FREE!!!!.

Read what it said.

There in the screenshot above. The pinkish box on the right side. That box popped up when I clicked.

It's an error message.

It says: "Hey, please take care of the following: Please enter a valid weight."

Simply. Priceless.

Well, 550 is my weight. It's as real and valid as can be.

I obviously had some struggles during the last few weeks. And I hadn't weighed myself since 9/9. I knew however that I'd gained weight. I could feel it. How much I didn't know.

Thankfully, after getting back on track early last week, I've been back on in a big way. So, I'm back at 550 lbs, 1 pound heavier than I was when I got back from my trip.

I'm grateful I didn't do more damage, or maybe grateful that I was able to recover from the damage I did do so fast. Either way, I am grateful.

And moreover, I am excited.

Excited because my future is bright.

It may not have a weight loss reality show gig to offer, or a magical medical procedure to help.

No, it has so much more.

This week, as only any of us can do - one day at a time, I will continue to move into that future with exuberance and joy.

I am reclaiming my life through my actions.

That is beautiful.

That is healthy.

And I wouldn't have it any other way.


  1. Great post and I really needed to read this today. It is a hard long road but it is a road worth traveling eh?

  2. Your on the right track...slow and stready wins the race!

  3. Good for you on working through your weight loss journey step by step. You are in my thoughts!

  4. Your words touched me is so true, the weight is just a symptom...and we need to heal emotionally/mentally/spiritually AND physically, in order to sustain success for a lifetime.

    You are soooo spot on! I am happy for you. Thank you for sharing with such depth and honesty.

    I started at 460, and have similar "funny" things happen online when I tried to fill out little boxes asking for stats...

    Thank you for sharing your journey with me it is very encouraging to see you grow and learn...I am not sure how old you are, but you have wisdom. I have a feeling is was hard and painfully won, but you have it. Bless you on your journey. I know you will succeed.

  5. Oops, it helps to read! You are 27 yrs have learned a lot for such a "young" age. And you are helping others by sharing it.

  6. Anything worth having is worth working for. I've seen a lot of people in my life get gastric bypass only to gain it all back because it doesn't teach you how to live.

    The hardest part of this whole thing is dealing without the overnight success. I lost my patience a long time ago (I blame high-speed internet) and learning to get it back is the only way I'll ever be able to stay on track. It's all a learning process...a really annoyingly long learning process.

    In the meantime, if I see Jilian, I'll kick her ass for you. Stupid registration boxes!

  7. I've went through a similar situation on a website before...only it told me that I should go see my doctor when I put my weight in the little box. LOL. As for everything you wrote about not wanting surgery and not going on a show...those are my same sentiments exactly. I've thought about doing those things, and sure they'd probably work for a time, but weight is the symptom of bigger issues. Much peace and success to you on your journey friend...and thanks for being an encouragement to all of us that are in the same boat. :)

  8. I'm glad you're back. I've always loved your words. What a good post. This is the first time in my life I've really made the connection that my weight was just a symptom of my inner turmoil. To think it's taken me 40+ yrs to realize that. I'm so happy you are realizing it while you're young. Just keep reminding yourself too that this is a journey with no end and we all will have peaks and valleys along the way. You are doing really good just keep giving yourself love. This really is about loving ourselves.

  9. What a crappy bummer about the website. I hope you sent Jillian an e-mail calling her an excludist. And if that's not a word, it should be.

    Your journey is an inspiring one, and your attitude/outlook is just phenomenal. <3

    ~Jenn (Ex Hot Girl)

  10. I have half a mind to email Jillian myself.

    I think you are so incredibly brave. I am 26 and I have had many of the same experiences. I have a very large family and I can not begin to count how many times people have begged me to have the bypass. When I first moved into my house with my husband the woman across the street actually came over while drunk to try and convince me to have one. Yeah, I didn't even know her name. She didn't know me beyond the fact that I need desperately to lose weight.

    And it is so tempting isn't it? To get some magic switch turned on inside that makes you lose weight by making you "starve the healthy way". I don't want the easy way! I want the hard, long road to maintaining my health forever. I want the lessons. I don't want to need surgery after my surgery to start over because I haven't learned anything! I wouldn't have changed myself at all.

    Kudos to you for your amazing grasp on you and life so far.

  11. Great blog, I hope you dont mind if I follow you, I found you through Loretta.
    You're totally right, weight is a symptom, it is so much more than diet or exercise.
    You are now moving in the right direction so you are in a better place than you were 100 pounds ago! Now you will actually succeed! My mottos are Its not where you ARE that counts, its where you're GOING! I am the queen slow poke of weightloss...but its ok, slow is better you are more likely to keep it off.
    Good luck to you!
    (my blog is not listed under my name but you are welcome to check it out, its

  12. You have such an honest voice that sometimes I feel like it cuts right to my soul.

    As a person that absolutely despises the BL I am so glad that you are not going to be on that show. Reading about how the contestants carried a girl that collapsed over the finish line of a mile race just screams 'it's all about the ratings'.

    Our society is so obsessed with the quick fixes. It totally disgusts me.

  13. "I am reclaiming my life through my actions.

    That is beautiful.

    That is healthy.

    And I wouldn't have it any other way."

    I love your mindset! You'll achieve anything you DECIDE to achieve with the above philosophy, period! ACTION ACTION ACTION!

    I truly hope you get a minute to visit Coach Your Mind... as I'm speaking right to you!

    Our mindset is totally in our control... and is more powerful than you'll ever know!

    You're an inspiration, and someone I'd love to have as a guest speaker to my students.


  14. Hmph! I think it is probably because she was a whole 40 pounds overweight as a teenager (or whatever)...

    You have been doing amazing things, and this time it is sticking. One pound won't get you down!

  15. I've never read your blog before. I am going to follow along with you. I think I will like your attitude.

  16. I just came across your blog! I have been overweight the majority of my life. In August I started a weight loss journey of my own. I will be 46 years old next week. I was at my highest weight ever....347 pounds. My goal is to lose 212 pounds.

    As I've gotten older, I've started having many health problems. I know there's a long road ahead, but I'm ready for the challenge. It means our lives! I love your positive attitude. I think you're very inspiring. I will keep reading!

    Here's the link to my blog: