Take the American Heart Association's 12-week Go Red BetterU Challenge today! Join Julie, Laura, Molly, Pamela, Paula, Renee and Ruthann in this journey to better health. BetterU is a free online tool that provides resources and tools for women who want to improve their health. Start! now so you can be on the path to becoming a BetterU!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

On the Path in Week 2

      Time for a little progress report here while working on this new path. I am truly experiencing a positive difference in overall well-being at this point with the changes in diet and exercise. I met with a Greenfield Reporter (my local hometown newspaper) last week, and they had the article about me on the front page of the paper yesterday (you can go to the Greenfield Reporter and look at the archive for Jan. 17). Wow -- never thought I would appear on the front page of a newspaper -- feels really funny.
     The opportunity to meet with two women's health specialists from St. Vincent's has been a very special experience for me and my life -- I have simply never spent any time in my life in consulting a doctor about my health, because there has never been any issues to discuss (knock on wood). I have gotten a few 20 second pieces of advice on eating more fruit and fresh vegetables, but that's about it. We could not have been in the hands of any other people as phenomenal as Adrienne and Julie -- both personally and as dedicated health professionals. I am so touched by their personal attention -- they both really give it their all and go above and beyond in extending their care and knowledge. I was fairly astounded by what I learned from Adrienne -- I have been learning and teaching nutrition for the last 35 years as a nurse. I have been very active in many exercise programs, dance classes, hiking excursions, and sports the majority of my life. BUT -- I sure learned some new tricks and every minute spent with Adrienne was a gift!
     Julie did some serious work with me!! She met me right where I am at, and worked with me on a plan of attack. My cholesterol is a bit high, and my LDL is (YIKES) frightfully high --- they are a good reflection of what my eating patterns had been prior to embarking on the journey!! I could easily eat 100 grams of fat (and not the good kind) at *every* meal -- not kidding!!! Was not concerned about anything I was eating! Now I am sticking to Adrienne's suggestion of 25 grams a day. More than anything, both Julie and I did a dead focus on my smoking habit -- as being the number one priority above diet and exercise. My chances of becoming a serious women's heart statistic are very good right now. That's what I'm going to be -- just another sad statistic if I don't face this issue NOW! Well, after some discussion, Julie has started me on Chantix, and I took my first one today! That is a HUGE accomplishment for me -- because I do not take any medication unless I am dying, and it is very difficult to convince me otherwise. But I rightfully admit that I need HELP -- and I am going to give this a chance, even though I do feel bad about resorting to chemical help!!!!!
     Anyways, and again -- all of us challengers have been so blessed to be in the hands of these phenomenal health care providers!! They really have treated us so special -- and they have made a difference in my life -- not just for this three month challenge -- but for my entire journey ahead!! That's the path I am carving out on this walk, and I really look forward to reaching out and touching others' lives with some inspiration and new knowledge!  

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