Just as life seems to “sneak up on us,” so too can an unhealthy lifestyle. One day you’re sailing along, not really worrying or focusing on things we should be focused upon, such as what we should eat, how mguch we should eat, how much we need to exercise, how active we are every day, etc. And then “bam!” Life hits you right in the mouth with a big dose of reality!
Well, this is what happened to us! My daughter, Julie, and I both developed unhealthy lifestyles after years of neglecting ourselves and our bodies. My health demise began after an unhealthy lifestyle, following my retirement from the U.S. military service in 2001. I had a successful career in the U.S. Navy, spanning 22 years of dedicated service in the field of law enforcement. I was a role model and leader to my family and the people I was assigned to lead. I prided myself on always being fit and I scored “outstanding” on every fitness test. I was even a military SWAT team leader for tactical/physical training, and I served as the fitness and health coordinator for my subordinates. I have a love of the game of soccer and I have played and coached soccer my whole life, including coaching high school and youth soccer. I began to struggle with my health and fitness after the military because the accountability standard was no longer in affect. I stopped any assemblance of a fitness regimen. I played soccer occasionally, and coached, but it only slowed my weight gain. The lack of nutrition, proper diet, and physical fitness increased my weight gain and it finally caught up to me. I began to feel helpless. I stopped going to social events, avoided the spotlight, stood behind people when photos were taken, and “cropped out” my body in photos before posting them on social media. I blamed it all on aging. But the truth was… I had become grossly obese.
Julie’s health decline began long ago, as a young girl, and it peaked after she gave birth to a son in 2006. As parents, we sometimes think we’re helping our kids by being overly nurturing and giving them everything they want, not realizing it may harm them in the long run. With Julie, I wasn’t paying enough attention to ensuring she was eating healthy and getting enough exercise. And she was the oldest daughter, and she spent a lot of her time, focusing on her siblings and being the “young” grown up in our home. It was a sign of who Julie would become… a person who always took care of others first, before caring for herself. She picked up this trait from me, and I inherited it from my mom, Sally Jarnecke. The unfortunate aspect of always placing others needs first, is we sometimes neglect our own wellbeing, which was Julie’s case. As the years wore on, she began to gain weight. When her son was born, like many women in her condition, she was the heaviest she had ever been. And like many other women, it was extremely difficult to lose pounds she put on during her pregnancy. She tried diet programs and exercise programs, but nothing seemed to get off major amounts of weight or keep lost weight off her. Like me, she eventually resigned herself to believing she was overweight and was going to remain this way the rest of her life. Boy, did she have a surprise coming!
With all of our weight gains came poor health in the form of many poor health issues. We both had stopped exercising. We even quit what we loved most, coaching youth soccer. We each had several embarrassing “overweight” incidents. Mine included; popping my bicycle tire on my new bike during my first ride with my grandson, tearing my groin muscle trying to race my grandson down my driveway, and stepping on a scale at the doctor’s office and weighing in at an embarrassing 252 lbs.!
We tried to lose weight on our own using various diets, but it had little effect or no impact on us. Weight loss would sometimes occur, but only through massive effort, and it never stayed off for very long.
In came Rana Daugherty, my sister, to the rescue! Rana introduced us to a lifestyle system called “Isagenix.” After some initial skepticism, we both signed up, and it turned out to be the greattest decision we had made in quite some time! We found Isagenix to be extremely simple to use and understand. There was an abundance of information available on their websites to educate us on the value of the system and the nutrition it afforded us. We experienced immediate improvements with the loosening of our clothing, the numbers on our scale dropped dramatically, our facial and body composition changed, and we both experienced this amazing boost of energy!
At 90 days, we posted some photos on FB, and we were inundated with phone calls, texts, and emails from family and friends, asking us our “secret.” We were more than happy to share it with them. As we progressed through our challenge, more people began to take notice, and our confidence in sharing grew, as did our motivation to achieve our weight loss goals. After we lost 80 lbs (without any form of exercise whatsoever) we were able to return to exercising, running and biking every day, and the coolest part… we started coaching youth soccer again! We now go outdoors and do activities with our family frequently. These products have enabled us to sleep better, feel less fatigued, and we always have plenty of energy. Isagenix has restored a quality of life we never thought we would experience again in our lifetime.
Today, our “why” or our “purpose” in life has evolved into one of helping others. Getting back to a healthier version of ourselves inspired us to create this website to reach out to others, hence the name “my former self.” Our return to health has truly enlightened us and made us acutely aware of just how excessively obese and unhealthy our society and culture on America has become. And we’ve decided to make it our mission in life to help as many people as we possibly can achieve the same great health and fitness we both enjoy today. We want everyone to have an opportunity to return to the healthier version of themselves. To once again become…”their former self.”