Welcome to My Blog...

A warm and simple, welcome.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Turn the "Beet" Around...

It's hard to know where you stand and what you do. Best foot forward isn't always the case. But, putting one foot in front of the other is the best way I know to continue to move forward.

I am on this journey of wellness and sometimes, it feels rather lonely. It's easy to become isolated from your "before" world because if food was the mainstay in friendships, that crowd feels awkward hanging out with you. My plant-strong world is dynamic, and just that, strong, but it is a world where I sometimes feel far away from others.

So, today, I got a request to "hey, send me a before picture of you." I fished around, and let's face it, you are not exactly camera friendly when you weigh nearly 300 pounds. I was always that person who was hiding behind a plant, or the tallest person in the room. But, a few years ago, a local running store did a story about me. I have a ten year history as a marathon walker, and my picture sits in their store. Not just a picture, but rather a portrait. In this black and white photo, I am wearing a 3X fleece top. And, I remember thinking that the fleece top was probably a miscut, and that it was really like an XL, or better yet, a large. I mean, I couldn't possibly be that big. But, pictures don't lie.

I sent the picture to my friend who needed it for a lecture. Then, I sent him a picture from today (snapped in the bathroom)...and was in shock when the pictures were back-to-back. I had NO idea how far I had come. I have no idea how I got to today, but it is a good place to be. Truth be told, I actually had tears in my eyes. Who knew that plants could change my life so much. Who knew that I could even stay on this journey? I have a black belt in dieting...and was stellar at a diet. I could lose a truck load of weight in record time, then, double gain what I had lost, and then some. That was my life pattern.

My plant strong adventure is a daily must. People always say, "Don't you want a piece of cheese?" On a diet, you'd say, "Yea, hand me a piece." On this plant strong journey, the thought wouldn't even cross my mind. In fact, I find cheese revolting.

I am very proud of this journey. It is like a marathon. I pace myself, I take in the scenery. I've learned to not take the inventory of others. Look, if Jane Doe wants to blow out her arteries with a cheesesteak, it's on her. I have nothing to do with her choices, or anyone else's. I only have to look at my own food selections, my exercise, my relationships, etc.

My heart is filled with gratitude for where I am today. And for where I will be tomorrow. Yesterday isn't that important to me.

I owe deep gratitude to many. And that list is way too long. But, if you taught me how to read a food label, understand the pillars of being plant strong, encouraged me to use a pressure cooker, or know the importance of fair trade...then, you know who you are.

No recipes today. No thought for the day. Just love and gratitude. That's all. Just pure love and gratitude.


  1. Love this, Char. Love YOU. You've come a long way baby!

  2. It was a very emotional day for me...I remembered taking the picture with the medals, but in my head, that is what I thought I looked like today. When I saw the then and now comparison, it took me quite by surprise. Thanks, Meg for your kind words.

  3. I love you Char, and am humbled by your journey. Your warmth, honestly, openess and thank heavens, you ummm quirk side are something beyond the word special

    About those medals?

  4. Heck yeah, you've come a long way, baby! (and now I've just seen that someone else said the same thing, oh well...it must be the truth then.) And although I had already seen the light I thank you for helping me to reach it. Plant-Strong!

    p.s. congrats on all the medals...damn!

  5. Beautiful story. Thank you. Your spirit shines right through your photograph.
    I, too, am a vegan - of recent vintage. Not a heavy woman, actually an athletic one, so it came as a surprise to all, including my cardiologist, that I had a major artery which was 95% blocked. It was stented and I was placed on meds ---- and more meds ------ and yet again, more meds.
    I was becoming sicker and sicker. In March of this year I became a vegan. One by one I withdrew the tablets, and have never felt better in my life.
    If this can become an inspiration for others with coronary artery disease, then I am happy. You can actually reverse symptoms of this disease by becoming a strict vegan - sooooo worth it.
    With love and gratitude from me too.

  6. char- you rock!

  7. Thanks,Char. I'm also a silver haired vegan. Sort of slid into this way of eating from vegetarian (way too much fat). I agree with Geli. This CAN be done-and no more Crestor!!!!

  8. When I see those CRESTOR commericals on TV, I feel sort of sad for those not in the vegan know. Power to the plants...

  9. What a beautiful testimonial. Thank you so much for sharing!