>> Member Milestones >> Dave Swanson

Dave Swanson

Posted September 1, 2021 by Bellin Health

Dave is 62 years old and works as the President & Owner of Transport Refrigeration, Inc. He is married to his wife Mary and together they have a son, Steve. Dave travels for work and works long hours, which made it difficult for him to have any kind of personal life, let alone take time to exercise and work on fitness. In addition, this work-oriented lifestyle year after year started to take its toll on his body. He gained significant weight and developed sleep apnea and diabetes. Being overweight, Dave also developed problems with both knees and both rotator cuffs. On top of all these obstacles, he also experienced SVT, a heart rhythm issue in late 2018. Dave was literally in a position where he could hardly walk due to being overweight, out of shape, and knee pain.  In the past two years, he had to have one knee scoped and one rotator cuff repaired. Being overweight was causing Dave to constantly re-injure his knees. Dave was also so stiff from lack of exercise and stretching that he could hardly turn his neck. It was actually hard to turn his head to look for oncoming traffic when he was driving.

Dave’s primary motivation to begin his fitness journey was his upcoming retirement at the end of 2019. As a business owner, he let his personal health be less important than working. Dave decided that he wanted to focus on his personal health prior to retirement rather than continuing to put it off. His goal was to “be healthy” when he retired, so he could start to enjoy retirement right away.

To start the process, the first thing Dave wanted to overcome was putting his personal health as his number one priority. The decision to do so allowed him to make a change. On an ongoing basis, the main obstacle Dave has is he is entering a seasonal lifestyle having a home in Green Bay and in Florida. The big challenge will be taking what he has learned and finding resources in Florida to help him stay on track. When Dave finally decided he needed to lose weight and get in shape, he thought the best approach would be through a weight loss program and a physical training program. Because of all the health concerns noted above, Dave thought these programs should be “medically supervised”. During his annual diabetic exam with Brooke McComb, APNP, Brooke gave him literature on the Bellin Health Fitness and Bellin Weight Management programs. After review and consultations with both groups, he enrolled on July 8th in the HMR® Program for Weight Management with the help of Taylor Bowers at Bellin Health and scheduled a personal trainer, Morgan Kokta at Bellin Health Fitness Center in Ashwaubenon. The weight management program included weekly support sessions and weekly medical assessments. The fitness program included one-hour sessions with a personal trainer three days a week. Both of these programs held Dave accountable and educated him at the same time. In the fitness program especially, he found it easier to make the time when he had an appointment to keep. In addition, Morgan has a great balance of being an educator and a motivator. Both Bellin programs have put Dave in a good position for continued success as he transition into his seasonal lifestyle between Green Bay and Florida.

Since the beginning of July, Dave has surpassed all of his initial goals and have set new goals. He originally wanted to lose 50 pounds and regaining strength in his legs, work on cardio and regain flexibility, currently he has lost 70 pounds and his BMI is below 30 for the first time in 35 years. Dave still wants to lose five more pounds for a total of 75 pounds. Dave has regained his leg strength, flexibility and has an energy level/stamina that he has not had in 20 years. Dave’s long-term goal is to make life changes to maintain fitness and a healthy weight. Dave’s advice is, “At the end of the day, you have to put your mind to it and decide that you are important enough to take care of yourself, put yourself first when it comes to your health.”