Steve & Tess

Exercise , 0 Comments

© Jacquelyn Johnston, M.Ed.

Are you ONE or THREE?

Am I what? Statistics at the end of the last century used to say that half of the North American population was overweight. Today, in 2008, it isn’t 50% any more. Three out of four are overweight.

So imagine you’re part of a quartet. Are you one of the three, or are you the one who is the right weight? “How will I know?” my neighbours Ron and Tess asked me. I suggested that they google “body mass index” and follow the instructions. They did. Oops! They then tried bending and letting their hands hang lower than their knees. (Forget about touching the toes) Steve got dizzy and Tess started panting as if she had been running up the stairs. That in itself tells a cautionary tale.

If you get dizzy or you start panting, maybe it’s time to give me a call.
“But”, they said, “We exercise. We walk in the park for 30 minutes every day!”.
That may be so, but if you’re not working with weights you’re losing muscle. At the rate of six pounds or so for every 10 years of life. When you lose muscle you don’t burn food as fast. And I won’t tell you how much fatty tissue you’re gaining.

Well, both Steve and Tess signed up for strength training at the gym. That was 3 months ago. They don’t get dizzy or pant any more, but they want to keep going. Steve has lost 11 pounds and Tess, twelve! The raided their kitchen cupboards and threw out every processed item they had, replacing it with vast gaping spaces and daily shopping lists of whole foods. They have extra room for their book collection. They feel a lot more energetic, fit in eight servings of fruits and veggies every day, and are getting ready to wrestle a Sumo.

When they go to the supermarket they look at what other people have in their carts and whisper: “Can’t believe we used to stock up on that stuff”. Pop has been replaced by water, crackers with fruit. Their friends know that what they bring for pot luck will be both healthy and delicious. And did I detect a new spring in their step when I saw them yesterday?

Steve and Tess are determined to lose twenty pounds, and they are doing it on their own, with a few suggestions from me. With full-time coaching they could have lost the twenty pounds by now, but they wanted to challenge themselves on their own. Steve had a triple bypass last year, and Tess got the wake-up call when he doctor told her six months ago that she had pre-diabetes. Together, they are a powerhouse of determination and spunk.

Most people, however, find it hard to do keep this up on their own, as February 1st each year will testify. Tried everything? Put it all back on again? Help is on the way; browse through my website, then contact me for a free consultation…