In April 2016, I was depressed, anxious, suffering effects of Lyme disease and associated physical and emotional ills. I had high blood pressure, tingling neuropathy in my hands and fingertrips, joint pain and stiffness, skin issues including shingles, as well as nightly reflux and heartburn. My weight, at 202lbs, was a significant contributor to all of these; in addition to eating too much of the absolute wrong stuff (Half a wheel of brie and an apple for breakfast? Washed down with lots of coffee with LOTS of flavored creamer? Sure!), I was drinking a lot. The hypocrisy of lecturing my teenagers on the ills of substance abuse while having 3+ drinks per day was about the only thing I found hard to swallow.

In considering options for treatment, I remembered that physical activity ALWAYS made me feel better in the past. My BBE, Rich Shriver, upgraded my “FatBit,” (which I still used even though it rarely tracked more than 3500 steps per day) and the game was afoot! I signed up for WeightWatchers Online, and established a 2x/week training schedule at Healthy Addiction. This was additionally fortified by access to great walking routes via our awesome neighbors allowing me to tromp over their property, avoiding the scary curve of Rte 156 at the end of our driveway.

Sincere thanks to everyone who encouraged me along the way. Your comments would often come just when I was struggling, and you lifted me & kept me going. I’m extremely grateful for my family’s forbearance in not only eating everything I cooked for them, but also for changing their own habits to support this journey. It was a blessing to be able to share this path with Rich, so neither of us were bored to tears or murder by each other’s lengthy observations on exercise, food, and the effects thereof.

Thank you to those of you on our region’s byways who give me a wave as you pass (and for not running me over)!

Healthy Addiction fitness/strength trainers Ben Barrett and Lino Monteiro deserve so much credit for keeping me encouraged and motivated this year. They put up with my griping, eyerolling, gabbiness, and bossiness with way more patience than most humans. Their programs have worked positive magic on my mind AND my muscles, and they made it fun!

Age: 54 (postmenopausal)
Height: 5’6″
Start Weight: 202
Goal Weight: 145
Current Weight: 148
BMI: Normal (!)
Waist: from 42.5″ to 31″
Hips: from 46″ to 37.75″
Shoulders: from 48.75″ to 42.5″
Thighs: from 23″ to 21.5″
Arms: R from 13.25″ to 12.5″
L from 13″ to 12″