I have been big my entire life! I was a big baby, a big girl, a big teenager, and a big woman! I came from a family of large women! Wonderful women who loved people, God, community, and family. I was raised in an environment where food was love and my mom and dad shared that love and our door was always open. My fondest memories are of my mom singing and cooking, and praying that everyone would enjoy the food, and that there would be good conversation and joy. We often took baskets of food when someone lost a loved one or had surgery, or were ill etc. My wonderful mom who loved on everyone died at the age 56. I have lost dad, two sisters, a brother, all my aunts and uncles, and my God parents. All gone too soon because of diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, strokes, cancer etc. I myself have been diagnosed with Sjogren’s, fibromyalgia, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, and arthritis. Some of which I know I brought on myself from years of generational bad eating behavior.
I have a gift of loving, praying for, encouraging and motivating others! I had to learn to do the same thing for me! I had to repent for not taking care of my temple. God gave me one body and I was not taking care of it. I had to own the part I played in my obesity. I made the decision that I was going to change. I decided that I can do all things through who strengthens me! The early stages of my journey I was researching healthy restaurants and I came across CoreLife via Facebook. I loved the atmosphere. I loved how happy and healthy the customers seemed. I was literally so excited over the food choices. I felt safe if that makes sense. I was able to taste new things and ask questions. I have actually made friends in the restaurant! CoreLife is my anchor on my journey. I have brought several people with me on this journey, and it excites me to see others becoming advocates for better health too. I was 361.5 pounds and I have currently lost a total of 158 pounds!
I exercise everyday even with the pain of arthritis and fibromyalgia,and and Sjogren’s. I have a new outlook on life! I have learned that if I don’t take care of me, I can’t take care of anyone! I celebrated my year of weight loss and health transformation by participating in Gazelle Girl. I would not have imagined in a million years that I would ever do anything like this! I never played a sport, actually I never was much of an athletic kid. I was taking care of my sick mother at 13, who had a stroke and later was diagnosed with cancer. She died a year before I graduated High School. I met my husband the same year I graduated and was married the next year. I turned 56 and decided although my family mostly died young, my mother at the same age I am now…not me!!
A friend suggested Gazelle Girl run because she thought this would be a great way to honor what I had done. My first thought was did she forget about my joint and other issues? I can’t endure that kind of impact. I signed up anyway because my new motto is “No excuses, No complaints…do what you can do, don’t worry about the rest.” The race day was amazing, the adrenaline I felt was incredible! The energy was off the charts! Women of all ages! There were other first timers that I met! Oh, I need to tell you the day before the race my knee gave out!! But my thoughts went back to before I lost all the weight. I had just gotten a prescription for a walker, and I knew I couldn’t stop now. So I soaked in Epsom salts the night before and massaged that knee and carried on!
Race day was like nothing I have ever experienced. We were talking and laughing and sharing and encouraging each other. People werealong the way cheering you on, telling you you are almost there, and holding signs. There was even a small band playing, plus water booths along the route. When you finish they call your name and I heard “Rene Threats from Wyoming! You Did It!!!” I did Indeed! What a great experience. Women united and triumphant, strengthened and empowered. Wome putting one foot in front of the other, for health, for life, energy, for exercise, for friendship, and support because where there is unity there is strength!