Positivity has a lot to do with weight loss. Looking back over the past blogs I realized I have been addressing more struggles (both real and imaginary) and not celebrating the victories. It’s important to be able to see the positive things in life and celebrate them as much as it is to learn from our hardships. So, I want to share some of the more positive things going on.

I choose to start with my father. Many of you who know me and who have followed this blog from the beginning know that my father’s health is on the decline. He is confined to a hospital bed at his home. He has been diagnosed with vascular dementia and is still suffering the lifelong effects of a spinal cord injury. His side of the family has also had Alzheimer’s and he is showing all the classic signs of that as well. Two weeks ago, he had to be taken to the ER for pain in his legs. He was there for several hours, treated and released. “Where is the positivity in that?” you may be asking yourselves.

When you deal with a person who has dementia and Alzheimer’s, it can be extremely frustrating for the caregivers who spend so much of their time with that person. The ones that are closest to the person usually always take the brunt of their anger, agitation, and confusion. The positivity came on the Friday night when he came home.

I stopped by on Saturday morning to see how everyone was. I sat at the island in the kitchen and listen to my mother tell me how when dad got home, he thanked her for taking such good care of him, then gave her a hug and kiss. She said it was the most loved she’d felt from him in years. So I went upstairs to see him.

When I got upstairs, he was awake and gave me a look of recognition. I sat down by the bed and we began talking. There was no slurred speech, no drifting in and out. He was fully lucid and aware of everything we were talking about. He knew where he was, and we had a great conversation. The kind of good conversations we had before his spinal cord injury or strokes. My Dad was back to his old self.

I knew that with his condition his lucidity wasn’t going to be a long-term thing. What I am grateful for is that my mother and I both got to spend time with the man my father truly is, and not what his condition has turned him into. I’m glad I got that time, no matter how short lived, with my Dad.

This morning I had my first workout with Lisa, the new personal trainer at Fusion Rehab and Wellness. She offered the staff a trial workout which I signed myself up for. The exercises I’ve been doing at home are all well and good, but I do like the idea of having to answer to Lisa for the last stretch of my journey. I feel that accountability is always a plus for me to be able to achieve my goals.

I’m not going to mince words. Today’s workout kicked my A@#. It started off well, but the further along we went, the more difficult it became. Thankfully it was only Lisa, myself and one of our other physical therapists. As I am not the most physically fit, there were times it felt quite embarrassing. Lisa was able to pinpoint where I was struggling and was able to make changes on the fly.

While I struggled today, I stay positive in knowing that this is a journey, not a sprint. All I have to do is do a little bit better tomorrow than I did today. I just need to change my mindset. I am looking forward to working with Lisa. I think it will be a very good thing for me.

I introduced Shannon (my always awesome health coach) to Lisa last week and through their conversation I found that they share a very similar mindset on exercise and weight loss. Since my journey has been successful with Shannon thus far, I feel completely at ease starting to work with Lisa on getting me back to the weight my body should be at.

So, I am looking at this as a positive. In moving forward, I will now be updating you not only on my weight loss, but on my increased exercise. This blog will continue to document all facets of my weight loss journey and I’ll share all my feelings on the exercise part of it as well. I have never had a gym membership, nor did I ever do a lot of working out. Lisa has a saying that I really like. “Exercise is a celebration of what your body can do, not a punishment for what you ate.”

This past week also saw us welcome a new face to our Fusion Family. On April 13th, we welcomed Abigail Grace Stoner into the world. Abby is the daughter of Travis and Jennifer Stoner, the owners of Fusion Rehab and Wellness. We are all excited for Travis, Jenn, and new big brother, Alex. It’s always a joy when a new life enters the world. I look forward to watching her grow and seeing how she changes the lives of those around her. If that isn’t something positive, I don’t know what is.

I wish you all a very positive week.

Written by: Craig Repanshek

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