Having grown up in a musical/drama-centered family, for most of my life, music has been my primary interest. In my late teens, 20s and 30s (the 1980s and early 90s) I played in bands, co-managed a recording studio, stayed up half the night, had a not-so-great diet and didn’t get enough exercise! The only real exercise I got was in Kenpo karate classes a couple evenings a week, and lugging heavy musical equipment!
But then in the late 1990s, I was nudged into a healthier direction by beginning mind-body energy studies in Tai Chi and QiGong thru my local recreation center. Around that same time, I was introduced to the energy/relaxation modality of Reiki and I also practiced meditation.
My heart health was always in the back of my mind though, as my father had a heart attack around the age of 50, and both my paternal grandparents had heart issues. So in 2009, now in my mid-40s, with the big 5-0 looming in the near future, I decided it was time to really knuckle down and get as healthy as I could. I began an exercise program, and tried to adopt a healthy eating lifestyle the best I could, with the knowledge I had at the time. Even though I wasn’t too overweight at that time, I was still considered to be at an unhealthy weight. In the few years that followed, I lost 27 pounds in a slow, sensible fashion. And even though I only knew some dietary basics, and at times would still consume a bit more sodium and saturated fat than I should have, I was feeling fairly well—I was now at a much healthier weight, I was in better shape, and was continuing to educate myself and watch my dietary habits the best I could. But it was all too late…
Because in December of 2013, “it” hit me—a heart attack! (I like to use the term, heart “event,” as it’s a much gentler description!) I will spare you the details of the symptoms and what it feels like to “slip away,” but suffice to say, I was left a bit shell-shocked, and those around me were very surprised! I wasn’t totally surprised, though, based on my family history and past lifestyle choices, which can certainly catch up with a person. But still, it’s normal to wonder “how could THIS happen to ME?”
Come to find out, I had two blockages in my right coronary artery—one was 95% and the other was 100%! One of those rare times when I received 100% for my efforts! I was probably a “ticking time-bomb” for many years, perhaps since my teens! I had two stents placed in the artery, and I was on my way to a full recovery. But recovery doesn’t come easily, and in fact, 2014 was what I call my “lost” year. I went through three months of cardiac rehab (which I enjoyed), and I focused on even more lifestyle/dietary changes. It was fairly easy for me though, as I had already adopted a healthier mindset, but by now I had a further education in proper diet and exercise, and of course, some serious health incentives! To date, I am down over 70 lbs from where I started in 2009, and my body composition has normalized at a super healthy level. My heart returned to normal function, and proper diet and exercise continues to be a part of my consciousness.
But to back up just a bit, I thought it would be a nice career addition to become a wellness consultant, and possibly start my own wellness center one day. So in early 2012 I went back to school and later that year, had earned a certificate in wellness. (I have since continued my education, becoming certified in fitness nutrition, various mind-body energy modalities, and lifestyle modification specialties.)
So here I am, in 2015, finally getting that new career path underway! And even though I was delayed a couple of years, I always like to say that everything happens for a reason, and life events, changes, etc. occur in their proper time.
I still plan to start a larger wellness center one day, but for now, I offer private (in-person, Skype or phone) coaching/consulting sessions to help with fitness/nutrition issues, holistic lifestyle choices, stress management, weight management and other wellness issues. As you can probably guess, I have become a big advocate for heart health, so if you have a family history of heart issues, or if you have already experienced issues, I am especially interested in assisting you to begin, or to stay on a heart-healthy lifestyle path! Please call or email me anytime! ~Brockton James, September, 2015