Sunday, February 21, 2010

The right reasons

My initial motivations for wanting to get healthy were absolutely correct. I wanted to feel better and not worry about dropping dead of a heart attack. While I am still absolutely interested in getting healthy and losing this weight the healthy way, I have to say that my motivation has morphed a bit over the 10 months I've been on this journey.

In particular, in addition to wanting to get healthy I now also want to get hot. And actually, if I'm honest, I want to be not just hot but smokin' (hott with two t's). Over time I think this has shifted somewhat to my primary motivation rather than just a nice bonus like it was initially.

However, this weekend my focus has been renewed and some things have forced me to revisit and reexamine my motivations for being on this journey.

This weekend, crazy things have been happening to my dad's heart. On Friday, he was not feeling well. Eventually his heart started racing (his resting heart rate was about 190) and his blood pressure dropped perilously low (70/90). They could not find what was wrong with him at the hospital and he began to improve so they released him. I was home this weekend and was able to see him, but he did not look good. He looked so so much older than the last time I saw him, with many more wrinkles and just looking old, uncomfortable and kind of sickly. I feel like the stress of his premature and unexpected retirement as a result of being laid off had really taken its toll on him.

Today, he began to have heart problems again. He has been admitted to the hospital for atrial tachycardia, and they are keeping him overnight to see if they can determine the cause. I am concerned for him, and somewhat sad that he and I have some unresolved issues that I just don't see being easily resolvable, or, sadly, maybe even resolvable at all. I hate having that cloud hanging over this situation too.

My grandpa on my mom's side had two heart attacks in his late 50's/early 60's. My grandpa on my dad's side died of a heart attack when Dad was in Vietnam. My grandma on my dad's side had a heart attack as well. When my grandma on my mom's side died, they realized she had blown one of her heart valves. And, with one possible exception, none of them were obese, let alone morbidly obese like I have been! This really makes me think of how important it is that I exercise and get my healthy diet on NOW when I am 30 rather than later or never. My dad has already had some heart procedures done on him as well (I believe they put stents in to open up some partially blocked arteries). The genetics are stacked against me, so I need to do my part to counteract them.

Yes, I'd love to be hot but it doesn't matter if you are hot if you drop dead of a heart attack. I need to focus on being healthy, and hope that being hot will be a side effect. Fortunately, I believe this is likely. I need to remember why I am doing this. The real reason is not to be hot, it is to be alive -- and truly living, not just existing. I need to exercise and eat right if I want any chance of beating the genetic odds. THAT is my motivation. I am sad it has taken recent events to remind me of that, but am glad that I was snapped out of my vanity zone to remember what is important in life.


  1. That great Sarah... I
    "know" I should diet and exercise to be healthy... but what I really want is the results I can see... I'm glad you're doing this to be healthy and I hope your dad is okay!

  2. I "third" the well wishes for your Dad. Also - thanks for writing about your motivation. I'm motivated by the weight issues in my family as well, so it's nice to read about your story.

  3. Prayers for your dad Sarah. Your so right, this is for healthy not to be hott. But if that happens in the process, you can't complain. Hope all goes well with your dad's procedure.


Clicky Web Analytics