From the Editor

Letting It All Hang Out

By Rosanne Dunkelberger  

224. – 36.15. – 43 inches.

Those are my stats – weight, BMI and waist measurement – and it’s official. I’m obese. By every chart, statistic and formula ever devised, I’m obese – and teetering on the edge of “morbidly” obese.

So when I talk about the fat state of Tallahassee, I’m speaking from decades of personal experience. Being a smart and fairly well-informed person, I have also heard, ad nauseum, about how fat America is getting, how fat our children are getting, how bad our diets are, how to lose weight, why healthy eating is important, why exercise is important . . . and on and on and on.

I am sick, sick, sick to death of hearing about it.

Why then, did I decide to devote 27 pages of this magazine to the issue of weight management, asking our readers to run through the drill one more time?

Because it’s that important.

Because this is the time of year that anybody who is overweight – and the stats tell us that’s about 61 percent of Floridians – might be resolving to lose those extra pounds. Because what sounds like nattering and nagging and finger-wagging might actually start making sense this time around.

But mostly, because it’s time for me to lose weight – and I want to drag you, faithful readers, along for the ride.

I was never a beanpole, and I obsessed about my extra 20 pounds as a teen and young adult, but I put on an extra 50 pounds-plus in my 30s and have drug it around for the past two decades, resolving to focus on weight loss after I dealt with jobs and kids and getting my house in order. “Mañana,” I said to myself.

Being blessed with good health, fashion sense and a body type that hides a multitude of sins, I was able to rock along for many years feeling good and looking good with only the occasional radar blip that something was amiss – such as a creeping blood-pressure problem and the gestational diabetes I developed when pregnant with my daughter.

Now the chickens, as they say, have come home to roost. My 50th birthday is March 1. I have Type 2 diabetes. My blood pressure is high. To get a decent night’s sleep, I strap a mask on my face to deal with sleep apnea. I can’t do a cartwheel.

For me, it’s time. It’s past time.

I’ve actually been seeing nutritionist Freddy Kaye for the past year and a half. Lost about six pounds so far. But don’t blame him. He can help people lose weight. Taking his advice, my son lost 85 pounds. My daughter lost 36.

Now it’s my turn – time to quit talking and start doing. I have made a resolution I’m calling “50 by 50” – lose 50 pounds by that 50th birthday. I have told my friends and family, and now I’m telling you.

Freddy always has encouraged me to walk daily, and I have found the most convenient time to be right before the workday. So if you see a fat gal walking on Miccosukee or Blair Stone roads at around 7:45 a.m., it’s probably me.

The food part is a little more problematic. Again, Freddy encourages the use of a daily food diary, which I never can keep up with. So I’ve enlisted the aid of my daughter to serve as my enforcer. Every night, she has to sign off on my filled-out page.

As I attempt to become a big loser, I’ll be consulting this issue’s special section on weight loss and healthy living. Triston Sanders researched, interviewed and gathered up the most up-to-date, helpful information available. Read it and feel free to join me for this journey. Hopefully we’ll be seeing “less” of each other in the New Year.

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