Commit to Fit | Week 2

Author | Commit to Fit 2012 Winner, Karl Mason

I am still buzzing from actually being picked for the 2012 Commit to Fit program. I know the program is not a “quick fix.” I am realistic in approaching this. I have my expectations in check. I know the work needed for transformation and know the road is long and tough. I am committed and ready to dedicate myself to that work. I have changed mentally. I value myself more than I ever had in the last 43 years and ready to find the true Karl who has buried alive under roles of fat.

Do I dare say I love myself? Sure... I do actually love myself because I have accepted that I am a good person with a good heart, soul and mind who will not allow myself to be solely defined by being fat.  There are many more dimensions which make me up. Stop asking me why I am so fat. Ask me about my obsession with the Pittsburgh Steelers (Go Ben!), Colts or Packers. Ask the secret to a perfect French macaroon (I won’t actually tell you that one…). Ask about my travels, my paintings, what bums me out. Ask me out! LOL. One of my biggest goals I hope to achieve is in attaining that overall sense of well-being I have never felt as a fat kid or as an adult. “Commit to Fit” will be the catalyst to allow me to focus my energy into making smarter choices to a cleaner, longer and more satisfying life, filled with exercise and great nutrition. I have been given this amazing opportunity to prove that with the Commit to Fit program with DIAKADI and MV Nutrition, I can become an all-around better me.

I work at PrSo as a Team Lead/Case Manager. The Case Manager manages patient cases from beginning to end coordinating with many people including patients, physicians/staff, pharmacies and insurance companies, to name a few. The objective is to assist in getting the patient successfully on a prescribed therapy. A critical aspect is the ability of the Case Manager to identify successful next steps to successfully manage the case to completion. The Case Manager is also responsible for assisting the customer in navigating the system through education and information. I have just realized how ironic it is that I have been case managing many other lives for years successfully but have not applied the same principles to my own life on a consistent basis. Karl has not been case managing Karl effectively!

How awesome that Mike Clausen and Billy Polson of DIAKADI and Sarah Koszyk of MV Nutrition, along with everyone at both organizations, are on my Case Management Team! The universe has smiled on me definitely! I am looking forward to learning all I can from each expert and begin incorporating that into my life. I want to thank all of you again! The past few days have been super scary but super exciting as I am beginning the program.

Friday was my first meeting with Mike at DIAKADI. I tried to mentally prepare for the moment when I would have to walk into the gym. Shoes. Check. New gym outfit. Check. Water bottle. Check. I walked up the stairs to DIAKADI, my heart pounding before I even entered the gym. Entering was ok. FAT KID!  Go eat some cake! Damn voices! Mike immediately put me at ease, saying everyone had to start somewhere. It was true. I just thought I would be farther at this point in life. But sadly, I am not. I learned that was ok. I was starting. Go start something.

Mike seemed happy that I had some flexibility for a big guy (my words not his) and said I had great form when doing my squats. I was secretly proud! My Russian Twists needed some work and I did the best I could while working with the bar the first time. Mike studied how my body moved in order to develop a better program for me. Mike was there every step of the way, teaching me, providing tips and most importantly encouraging me. I was actually believing I could do this. I WAS IN A GYM! No one was staring at me (which is a whole other blog entry in and of itself!). No one was laughing or mocking. Did I expect a towel snap? Actually being there and doing it felt great. More than anything, Mike helped me realize nothing was/is holding me back but fear. Fear paralyzes. I have been paralyzed for so long. Today, Mike case managed me right into my first steps at the gym. I am not as afraid as I have been. Yes, there is still fear but part of my growth will be in learning to manage that fear, eventually abolishing it from my life for good. As the reality of that sets in, the pain has begun to set into my legs and shoulders…what a new feeling!

Soon after the gym, I met with Sarah at MV Nutrition. AMAZING! We seemed to click. I felt totally comfortable discussing various topics with her about my eating habits, my relationship with food, with people, with myself, how I wanted to better those relationships and learn new information. She even already is keeping a confidence! She shared her expertise in a realistic approach towards eating and nutrition.  “SUSTAINABILITY” is the key word for this week – for life.  Sarah is teaching me the fundamentals of nutrition which she will build upon in the upcoming months. We have set sensible, attainable small goals over a period of time. I can achieve them! Sarah focused only on a healthy breakfast and snacks this first week. She advised she did not want to overwhelm me with change. I usually would do the exact opposite. I usually figure go the extreme as soon as possible and get through it. That thought process obviously hasn’t gotten me anywhere health wise in over 40 years. It was time to start trusting another key player in the Case Management of Karl.

My case management team has their hands full with me I am sure in the upcoming months. They have committed to me and to the Commit to Fit Program. I am committing to them and to the Commit to Fit Program. I will be aggressively participating, learning every step of the way until I will be my own best case manager! I look forward to that.