Ron in Kansas City
When did you start to #LiveALittle (make the changes)?
Well, when I got my A1c done in January 2014 it had shot up to 9.9. I should’ve wanted to fix that then and there, but instead I stayed on the “medication will fix this” path for 3 more months. My doctor had put me on a new diabetes medication and thought it would do the trick. Well 3 months later my A1c had only improved to 9.4. At that point he told me that insulin injections were in my near future (3 months away) if I couldn’t get things under control quickly. So right after that I decided to get busy with making changes. The date I refer back to was April 28th.
What do consider your main accomplishments?
Well so far I’ve lost 65 pounds, dropped my A1c to 5.9, biked over 400 miles, brought my waist size from 48 to 40, shirt size from 4X to 2X and just flat out feel great and continue to want to improve.
What does everyone around you notice as 'different'? Well, it seems like everyone first off notices the physical changes. The slimming down has been pretty obvious. When I look at older pictures I realize just how big I was but at the time I really did not seem to think I was so massive.
What qualities do you look for in the people you hang out with and allow into your inner circle? Positive, can-do people. Don’t like hanging around with excuse makers. Sometimes I have to look in the mirror and remember that I was one of those people not so long ago.
If you wanted to encourage innovative ideas on changing one's life, how would you go about it? Well I feel like showing someone what has been accomplished often tells the better story. The Before/After is very motivating to me. I look at the success stories on MFP daily for my own motivation. When asked I try to tell people to start with small goals and then build on successes. For instance instead of changing your entire diet, just stop drinking pop for a week. And then when you can do that, move on to another goal or two.
How would you describe your personal #LiveALittle lifestyle change?
I just focused on making little changes. Logging on MFP was first, then after I had some data I analyzed and saw that adjusting carbs and/or calories would be a good goal. Don’t try to change everything all at once. It’s a classic setup for failure. I also decided it was irresponsible of me to not use my abilities to their fullest when others did so much with limited abilities. An example – my Dad has Lupus and has lived with it for over 30 years. He has crippled up hands and can’t walk very well at all. Does he let that stop him? Nope – he is a Master Model Railroader and creates amazing things with his crippled hands. He got himself a trike and takes long bike rides to try to keep his health that he does have.
If you wanted to create an environment where motivation can thrive, what’s the first thing you would do? Toss out negativity. It gets people no wear and wastes a lot of time. You need an environment full of “anything is possible” to prove that Anything really is possible!
How do you show that you believe in yourself?
I keep working on myself. I track things that help me stay on track. I remind myself that the Ron a year ago couldn’t do that 50 mile bike ride or that 5K in under 40 minutes. I look at my closet which has been reworked to get rid of my fat clothes. I look at old pictures to remember where I came from.
Who, Whom, and/or What has influenced you the most? Well there are several people who had a part in my motivation. I suppose my Dad as I described above. Also Ellen and Alicia really showed me what is possible when you really commit to something. I had not seen Ellen in a while and when I saw how great she looked it really was amazing. I’ve always looked up to her in the business circles we are in, but this showed me she is serious about bettering herself in all ways and she has accomplished so much!
What do you do to challenge yourself when you're not motivated?
Tough question – sometimes I can self-motivate (by looking through MFP success stories or tapping in to the MFP community). Sometimes I get motivated when my wife notices that I am slipping back in to my old ways. It’s tough to do. Still working on this!
When is breaking the #LiveALittle rules okay?
Not really sure there is a reason to break any of the rules!
What does 'working on’ yourself mean to you?
We are all works in progress. Working on myself means that I am still trying to find the me that is the healthiest and happiest I can be. Even when I achieve fitness (on whatever level that is) I will need to maintain it.
What does empowerment mean to you?
Helping others to see the power that they have in themselves. I see so many people like me. People that have not yet realized what they are capable of. Trying to help them find that motivation is what I like to do.
How and where do you find inspiration?
I read all the stories I can find. MFP and the #LiveALittle FB page give me a lot to work with.
How do you keep your feelings from clouding your decision-making? That is a tough one. I am fighting this one right now. I was laid off Friday from a company that I really loved. I am feeling overwhelmed about the future and decided to eat my feelings this morning via a very large donut for breakfast and am fighting off a lot of fear at the moment. Let me keep working on this one to see what I can do here.
What’s the best way to keep your eye on future results or maintaining?
You gotta remember where you came from to truly appreciate where you are and where you are going. As much as I say “live in the NOW!” I know that I need to remember what old Ron was like and why I made changes to him.
How do you bring courage and conviction to risky situations?
You gotta make the best decision you can with the data you have and then move forward. You won’t always be right, but you have a better shot at achieving greatness than if you play it safe and do the same old thing day in and day out.
What values are you committed to?
Love, loyalty, continuing to better myself and those around me. Laughing at myself and moving on when needed.
What do you do to live a balanced life?
I try to make time for myself. I didn’t in the past. I now know that 30-45 minutes of exercise daily really isn’t optional most days. It really keeps me driving towards my other goals. As I face time off from work during this layoff I have already told myself that I will spend some time every day working on myself.
What dreams and goals inspired you to succeed?
Again – go to MFP and read the Success Stories. So many other people have made this journey before me and their experience has offered me so much inspiration and encouragement.