I have followed Gary Snow’s fitness efforts on Instagram for some time now. Once I learned that Snow had previously recognized his many risks for heart disease early and worked to optimize his heart health, I just had to include his story in my new book, Optimize Your Heart.
Below you’ll find select extracts from Chapter 4, where I use Snow’s efforts to turn motivation into goals and, finally, healthy habits.
For Gary Snow, an IT technician for a law enforcement agency, it was a realization that he had reached his highest weight of 304 pounds, had high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and even a fatty liver—all at the age of just 40. “My doctor told me that all my blood work indicated that I was not only morbidly obese but in severe danger of a heart attack,” recalls Snow. “I had to make a change or else I would likely not live to see my kids finish school or get married.”
Gary Snow started running races, from 5Ks to full marathons, to keep himself motivated towards better heart health. “My overarching goal, I think, is to continue to live healthy to be a good example to my children and those around me.” Snow continues, “As far as immediate goals, I always try to keep a race in front of me. Having something to train for helps keep me focused.”
“Just know that there are no shortcuts. The hardest part is taking that first step and keeping yourself determined to be a healthier you,” encourages Snow. At last check, he has lost over 110 pounds in the last six years, and has run both the Boston and New York marathons. Snow realized that, just like running a marathon, you often find even the most difficult journey is better when you use the help of others. “Surround yourself with a supportive network and lean on them when you need to.”
Great job Gary! Inspirational!
You can follow in Snow’s footsteps–running the Boston Marathon is optional–by picking up a copy of Optimize Your Heart.
If you have a story that you think will be an inspiration to others, please let me know!