Monday, March 12, 2012

Health News


Greetings!
On June 26, 2010 I began my lifestyle changes for once and for all. I am following the sound advice of nutritionist Marion Nestle to eat less, move more, eat lots of fruits and veggies and go easy on the junk food. Last week I had my annual physical. I am thrilled to share with you some of my results.

Labs: One of my initial motivational factors when I started my lifestyle changes was my acknowledgement that I was at high risk for diabetes. My mother and brother both are Type II. When I started to get healthy my blood sugar came in just at the top of normal. I am happy to report that my fasting blood glucose level is down 15 points. The good news does not stop there.  My lipid panel shows great improvement, too, with cholesterol levels down 23 points with my LDL (low density lipids) down 15 points, both back in the normal range including my LDL. My HDL (high density lipids) cholesterol is at 50. So nice improvement overall.

My test results are evidence that eating less and moving more are making the difference for me in both visible and invisible ways. I am a slow and steady loser. Overall I lost just under 40 pounds (that 3 pound gain from my three week break is now down to 1). Given that I started on June 26, 2010 (20 months ago) that makes an average of only 2 pounds a month. Not much by the month on the scale overall, but over time it has added up. I do nothing extraordinary except count calories, exercise and eat a ton of fruits and veggies. I have learned to plan for events in my life whether a birthday party, a concert, sporting events or just coffee with colleagues. I budget calories for that event or I bring my own food. This is my life. I chose to partake in all my normal life events and do not let the food control me.

Because I can: This year I will celebrate my new emerging health and fitness in two ways. Diabetes is quickly becoming our nation’s greatest health risk. Besides the two adults in my family with Type II, my godson has Type I. Because I believe that I have, for now, side stepped this chronic and  debilitating illness, I will continue to build awareness and raise money for research by participating in the Tour de Cure. This year I will ride in Minneapolis on June 2. I am planning a metric century ride of 100 kilometers or 62 miles. That ride will push my level of fitness. To date my longest ride is 32 miles. I start my official training program on March 31. I am sure that the trainer cycling and cross-country skiing are helping me to get ready for my official training. I hope to ride in the Venus de Mile in Boulder, Colorado at the end of August, too. It is a great fundraiser for greenhouse scholars. I am targeting either the 51 or the 67-mile ride. The Boulder ride will stretch me farther as a cyclist because this ride features elevation (1400 to 2600 feet depending on the ride). It is an all women’s ride and promises to be quite the event. Both event logos are found in the side bar. I welcome your generous support!

Two years ago, I could not have even dreamed that I would be fit enough to do things like those two rides. Now exercise is part of my everyday life and I target physical events as a way to challenge myself but, more importantly to raise money for causes that I believe in. Participating in these kind of events are a win for me and a win for the organization. To me getting healthy and working toward better fitness paid off in ways that I could never imagine. I am planning these two rides because I can. Now. 

What about you? How do you celebrate your emerging fitness?

Have a graet week! Thanks for reading. TTFN,
Michele

19 comments:

  1. Oh, good news all around, Michele. Clearly, you are a living testimonial to the power of eating right and exercising with your awesome results weight-wise and blood-work-wise. I, too, hope to begin my bike training in earnest March 31st and am loooking forward to doing the Venus with you - though I'll probably only do the 33 miler. Still, we can have fun before and after!!!

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  2. Wow, Michele what a great post. Full of good new and inspiration. Congratulations on your splendid lab results. I'm sure it was a pleasure to go to your appointment with such sure, steady success (out from) under your belt.
    Love your planned long rides. My longest rides are in the low 30s also, but I've got a lot more work to do before I foresee planning double that. I'm thinking that maybe I can bike enough this season to justify getting a trainer for myself when the good riding weather starts to disappear.
    re the high elevation biking, my young cousin was on the women's olympic cycling team. She told me that they often trained in Colorado and that she never experienced altitude sickness problems after she started taking a preventive dose of vitamin E. Not sure of the details, but maybe you could find it on the Internet.

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  3. Michele, what a wonderful medical report! We go for days and weeks and feel we are getting nowhere in our health quest, but there are good things going on with our bodies that are not visible. And you certainly are brave to attempt those lengthy bike rides. No wonder your health is improving! You inspire me, and hopefully real soon I will be getting my bike back into my life. Have a great week!

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  4. I am thrilled for you. It just goes to show that when we take care of our bodies, they take care of us! You will certainly have a longer, healthier, more active life as a result of your hard work. I also love your acceptance of the amount of time it will take you to lose. This is your life, and you have learned how to live it! What an inspiration to us all!

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  5. Not much better than hearing doctor give better numbers, is there?? Way to go, girl!

    You might know my fitness goals involve hiking. I've upped my annual mileage goal for 2012, but in addition, would like to increase single distance hiking. Last year, the hiking I did was mostly in the 8-10 mile range with a few 11 mile hikes thrown in. In 2012, I'd like to do at least one 13 miler. With that distance, there are so many more trails I can hike in the Smokies.

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  6. You are the tortoise in the fable and we can all take a lesson from your gradual approach. How many others have in that same timeframe maybe lost faster but then often gained some or all back!

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  7. That cycling ride in August sounds pretty hard core. I looked up the website and it's nice that it's not a race. We don't seem to have any bike rides around here, we've just got races.

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  8. Hi Michele. SOOO happy for you. You are a true inspiration. Enjoy your healthy week.

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  9. Great job and great lab work....you go girl!!!!

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  10. I am so happy for you! Seeing health changes like these is priceless, it really, really is!

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  11. Congratulations on your great lap reports. That is such a good feeling, when everything is back into the healthy numbers, right? And it´s because YOU chose to change and you keep fighting for a healthy weight. It´s so good that you could share this good news with us. I´m sure it will motivate others to keep fighting too.

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  12. Awesome, awesome! I'm proud of you! Congratulations!
    Dawn

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  13. Wow ~ Great numbers!! Way to go!!! You are improving your health every day. So excited for your rides. You will have success, I have no doubt.

    I celebrate my victories every day. There's always some new thing that has changed or is happening!! I'm so excited about the journey that I can't sleep at night!Which is not the greatest!! But what can you do?

    Keep up the great work my Friend, you are amazing!!

    Stay focused!!!!!

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  14. Isn't it just amazing. Small changes. Moving towards life, balance, happiness and good things happen. Thanks for letting us celebrate with you. I love the reality. I eat right, I exercise. Sounds simple - it is the getting to the point where you WILL do that. Once you get there - it is sort of easy - maybe simple, strugglish and then easy. : )

    Congrats on better health my friend.

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  15. You are aweomse Michele. 40 pounds is wonderful and so good for you. You are beautiful. You will do fantastic on your ride and maybe after Mike gets to school and settled I can donate to your wonderful cause.
    Take care Michele and have a blessed and wonderful evening!!

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  16. You are so amazing! Loving life and feeling good is an amazing gift. Keep it up! I live in the bush in Alaska and don't have the opportunity to participate in races at this time, but I will never forget the joy and tears that fell down my cheeks when I finished my first half marathon! Being strong and in control is pure satisfaction! Girl Power! Gotta love it.

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  17. Michele, that's fantastic news. And better yet, you have EARNED it!!!

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  18. Michele, I missed several good blog post around this time and one of them was your great news.

    I know my last physical with my doctor was great news like yours and I felt the big payoff from all of my work.

    Slow and steady is definitively winning your race!

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