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Sunday, February 20, 2011

When Was the Last Time You Saw Your Doctor?

I recently completed my first Half Marathon. I was so excited and really prepared and trained hard. As I crossed the finish line, though, I was met with the site of a man receiving vigorous chest compressions. It was happening right there in front of me, just as I was about to whoop out with joy. And sadly, he died. Right there. Literally, on the finish line of a 13.1 mile race. On a beautiful day.

So I wanted to ask my readers, when was the last time your saw your doctor? Had a check up, blood work or your annual exam?  Had your regular PAP or Mammogram? Or simply talked to your Doctor about your weight. Or your blood pressure. Or that weird spot on your back.

I have never mentioned this on my blog, because it is very personal, but a few years ago I had heart surgery to correct an arrhythmia. I am 100% fine now. But it makes me very conscience of my mortality, and that of those around me. I don't know the situation of that man, except what I googled about him later (36 year old Father, with a new baby on the way...). I assume he was out there, just like me, to get fit and healthy.  He was someone's son, brother, husband, partner and father.

So make sure you are healthy, and can handle all these new things are you doing with you body on this weigh loss journey. I'm calling this week to schedule my overdue annual. What about you?


  1. Oh my goodness, that's so sad to hear...so young. How devistating and shocking for his family to have that happen. I'm glad your heart is healthy now. I see my doctor on a regular basis, but it is a good reminder for all of us to take care of ourselves.

  2. Thank you for the thoughtful post. A friend and I were discussing this the other day: we're not too young to die. People younger than us (which, sadly, 36 is) are dying unexpectedly. We can only do so much, but, you're right, we should all be as informed about our own health as we can be. We can't think, "If I don't think about it, it can't happen." My heart goes out to that man's poor family. I can't even imagine how you'd get through the rest of that day, let alone every day after.

    I'm glad everything worked out with your heart surgery. My 28 year-old sister-in-law went through something similar. Scary.

  3. That is so sad. I don't like hearing that. That is too young.
    I had surgery for tachycardia a few years ago. I wish I had done it sooner. It's been such a blessing.
    So I have a question for you. I have been following your blog for quite sometime. I have struggled with my weight for awhile now. I don't know why I am so hesitant to jump on the Belly Fat Cure bandwagon. You look wonderful. This may be a weird question but I just have wondered if you feel trapped in this way of eating. I love fruit and sometimes a juicy peach or mango gets me through a sugar craving. I just wonder if the fear of putting weight back on after loosing all the weight you have makes you feel like you won't ever be able to eat fruit or other carbs again. Why did you choose this diet over others? I don't know anyone else that has done this diet so I thought I would be able to ask you.

  4. Good morning Amber! Wow! What an eyeopener that must have been to see. I am a nurse and as a person who would participate in cardiac arrests, even as a nurse and bystander it is awful to witness that. I cant even imagine what his wife must have been feeling as I am sure she was there to cheer him on. You are so right...he was somebodays "somebody" and I am sure he will be greatly missed by many.
    It is important to get those annual tests and physicals done. So many things can be picked up and prevented if we just take the time to invest in ourselves and our health. Kudos to you for this great post and I am so glad that you are ok now after your heart surgery.
    p.s Got my physical and annual done:)

  5. Hi Amber,

    I have followed your blog for over a year. I love the practical information you share and really feel like your blog helped so much as I navigated the BFC. I did the over 40 menu plan last year and between that and following the BFC fast track from what was posted online, I lost 25 pounds.

    This post really hits home with me because I had a very unexpected health issue come up in November which caused a major upheaval in my life. Because of family history when I saw my PCP this year, she suggested that I see a cardiologist just to be monitored. She even complimented me on my weight loss and the great shape I was in.

    Well the very first test uncovered an aneurysm of 5.6 cm on my aorta with a leaky valve. I never had any symptoms. In fact with each test uncovering more dire stuff, it was hard to take in that I was in the best shape I had been in years but had this serious thing wrong with me!

    I had open heart surgery on December 10, weeks after that first test. It was so scary. I woke up with a mechanical heart valve and a surgeon telling me how very lucky I was that this was found. I was the youngest in the heart ICU at 45 yrs old.

    I am recovering quickly because I did lose the weight and am adjusting to life on Coumadin which makes the BFC a bit tricky because all the foods I am used to eating are the high in Vitamin K. But there was no way I was going back to how I was before so my great doctor worked with me and my dosing to make the way I eat today, mostly BFC, work with the blood thinners.

    I never felt bad, never even knew all this was happening inside of me. I can't say enough how important check-ups are, women especially tend to take care of everyone else in the family before tending to their own health. Thank you for such an important posting.

    Keep the great stuff coming and congrats on that half marathon!
    Amy H.

  6. Wow Amy, this is exactly what I am talking about. You are so lucky to have found this when you did and I am so grateful for you sharing that story hear! Sending you all my best Amy...

  7. excellent reminder. i'm getting ready for my first race in May. I've gotten started on everything else, but forgot about that little necessary doctor visit. Thank you for the reminder!

  8. I've lived on this island for a long time, and quite often tourist come to Hawaii to play in the sun and surf. Over the years I noticed it's more men in their mid forty's who are having heart attacks while out snorkeling, and swimming for the day. Also the other day in the news it said, younger people are beginning to have strokes. So this information that you posted Amber is very necessary. I'm over due for a check up, and I've finally made an appointment with my dermatologist the other day. I'd still like to have my blood profile done. I'm sorry for the loss of this father & husband.