Anthony Smith, L.V.N. Page ContentMarch 2016Take it slow but stay committed!Anthony Smith wanted to be a healthier example for patients and his team, so the day after Thanksgiving 2014, he began a program to lose weight. He became more active, starting with walking and working his way up to jogging. Now, he alternates between walking 5-7 miles a day or jogging for 5 miles. He went to see a Kelsey-Seybold dietitian and improved his eating habits. He switched from eating out to eating high-quality proteins, complex carbs and fruits and vegetables. Before long, the pounds started coming off and he noticed he had more energy. Within five months, he dropped 60 pounds. Anthony plans to lose another 35 pounds to achieve his first goal, and then he’ll set a new goal. “My long-term goal is a healthier me.”Have patients noticed the changes in you?Definitely. They’re always excited and compliment me and ask how I’ve lost the weight. I tell them what I’m doing and how I changed my lifestyle. I work in Occupational Medicine now, but I was originally in Pediatrics. I wanted to be a better role model for heavy teenagers and show them they can change. It is doable.How have you changed your lifestyle?I became more active and changed my diet from eating out. I now eat high-quality proteins, complex carbs, fruits and vegetables. I also started using AdvoCare weight management and sports performance products, and I went to see a Kelsey-Seybold nutritionist who gave me ideas on how to change my diet. That was very helpful and that’s what continued my success. We talk almost every day now. She keeps me motivated, gives me different ideas and recipes which keeps me on track. That is the place to start. Make an appointment with a Kelsey-Seybold dietitian. They have a lot of great advice. She gave me a meal plan and always makes a follow-up call or sends me an email to make sure I stay on point.Have other heroes inspired you?Definitely! I read every one of last year’s calendar profiles when the calendar came out and now they’re up on my work station. Here at Tanglewood Clinic, the calendar is all over the clinic.You said you’ve become more active. What kind of exercise are you doing?I exercise after work. I started out walking and now I’ve progressed to running more than I walk. I do intervals of walking and running every day. If I’m just walking, I’ll do 5-7 miles a day. If I’m running, I’ll do about 5 miles. I also joined a Fitbit group and we do daily and weekly challenges.You’ve lost 60 pounds. How do you feel?When I started to lose weight, I really didn’t notice it, but my coworkers did. My whole life changed. I have more energy, I’m more focused at work – I feel great. I feel happy.What were some of the road blocks you conquered?Portion control was a problem for me in the beginning. My dietitian and online AdvoCare coach really helped me with this. It’s been eye-opening to learn that the large portions we’ve become used to in America is contributing to our health problems.What’s next?I have 35 more pounds to go to reach my current goal. Once I reach that, I’ll set a new goal. Small, reasonable goals are a great way to stay motivated. When you reach a goal, it feels phenomenal. My long-term goal is a healthier me.What’s your advice to other employees?Start slow. It doesn’t happen overnight. You have to take it slow and don’t change everything at one time because you’ll get discouraged. Change one thing a week or every two weeks until you notice that your whole lifestyle is different. That’s what I did. Find a 1-mile track. Take a friend or family member and talk as you walk or run around it. Before you know it, you’ll have gone around six, seven, 10 times. Find what you like to do – I like to talk and be social – then stick with it. I go out in the rain unless there’s lightning.What would you say was your ah-ha moment?A healthy lifestyle is surprisingly easy. I didn’t think it would be, but I ended up thinking, “Gee I should have been doing this all along.” But I didn’t just jump into it. It’s a slow transition.