Growing up, Sarah Josselet liked anything outside, anything with animals, and anything with a little speed and excitement.
When she retired from a 38-year career in nursing, the Haskell native could hardly manage to get out of bed, much less make rounds, walk through the grocery store, or tend to her garden.
A year later, the healthy living convert has lost 89 pounds, 21 medications, eight pant sizes, depression, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, leaky gut, allergies, and a great deal of hypertension.
“This is a new chapter in my life,” the 64-year-old said. “I’m able to walk and work and think. I’m more active than I’ve been in a long time. And I’ve lost 89 pounds, which is even more amazing. I was almost starving myself and still not losing weight. Now I’m not starving at all and I am losing weight.”
Sarah’s health decline began about 30 years ago with persistent and pervasive joint pain. Trips to the doctor resulted in the newest medication for arthritis, which would help a little bit for a while, but it wasn’t solving the problem.
“I believe that was the beginning of my fibromyalgia,” Sarah said. “They called it chronic fatigue syndrome. Nobody knew what it was, so they just treated me for arthritis.”
In the intervening years, Sarah also contracted Lime disease and cytomegalovirus; suffered from allergies, IBS, and leaky gut; and in a 12-month period had nine surgeries. Her doctors began addressing her digestive issues, first with shots to desensitize her from certain foods, which didn’t work. For two years, a gastroenterologist further medicated her.
“He was trying to slow my gut down, and in doing so he slowed me down to the point where I just really didn’t care if I got up or not,” Sarah explained. “I was in bad shape, and my body was absolutely falling apart.”
Add to that the stress of her job—director of nursing at a busy facility in Marble Falls, at which she took care of everyone but herself—and it became more than her body could handle.
“The main reason I retired (in December 2013) was because my health was such a severe situation,” Sarah said. “I wasn’t taking care of myself—I wasn’t getting adequate rest or exercise, I was eating poorly, I had very bad habits. My body was just toxic, poisoned. It was just too much.”
But at the end of her rope was pforymWELL. A years-long friend of co-owners Melody Ogletree and Cheryl Benoit, Sarah accepted their invitation to move to Lubbock temporarily in March to work with them on two fronts. She joined pforymWELL professionally, but more importantly, she joined the movement of transforming her health through lifestyle changes.
The lab work told them what they already knew: her cellular inflammation was off the charts, causing most of her digestive issues. She began taking Clear Change™, a medical food program designed to detoxify the body and provide adequate fuel for cleansing, daily activities, and overall well-being. She received coaching from the staff on what to eat and what not to eat. She read a book on IBS. And she began to feel better.
“We started seeing some improvement and started leaving out foods that may be bothersome to me,” Sarah explained. “I basically was on a Mediterranean diet and didn’t eat wheat or dairy. It just took off from there.”
After the detoxification program, Sarah started the Healthy Transformation weight-loss program and continued her shift in lifestyle and education, and her progress toward wellness. She went from skipping breakfast, not eating lunch until late afternoon, and eating leftovers from unhealthy family meals to eating breakfast, grocery shopping, and watching her sugar intake. She shifted from medications to supplements, saving money and side effects. She gave away her now too-big clothes. And she began to feel energetic again.
“Changing my whole routine was difficult,” she admitted. “I gave up 12 cups of coffee a day, Dr Pepper, and almost all processed foods. I started taking responsibility for what I ate and how I felt. I learned to drink water for the first time in my life and to use lemon, olive oil, and vinegar for my salad dressings. I’ve learned how to make great choices with food and portion control.”
“I was somewhat overwhelmed in the beginning, but the more I learned and the more I studied, the easier it became. It’s just a way of life now. I go to the grocery store with a totally different attitude. I buy most of my food in the fresh fruit and vegetable section, with just a few things from the outer edges of the store.”
The transformation isn’t just anecdotal. The lab tests provide scientific proof that her body is healing.
“In March, everything was red on my report card,” Sarah said. “In October, exactly six months later, it shows that my body is responding. My hemoglobin A1C and bad cholesterol have dropped. My lipid pattern is improving. My weight and body fat are decreasing. It’s still not perfect, but all are changing and improving.”
“I just turned my life around, and they’re the reason, they’re the support, they’re the coaches who said to do this and drop this. I really feel like I owe them my life.”
She wants to pay the inspiration forward.
“It’s been great being here in their office, meeting some of the people who are just beginning this journey, and being able to talk to them. Hopefully I can be as supportive of them as Melody and Cheryl have been to me. It’s pretty exciting.”
Where do you go for healthy inspiration? Magazines? Pinterest? Facebook? Now you don’t have to look further than South Plains native Joyce Hicks.
At 77, Joyce models determination and grace. Seven years ago she lost her husband of 50 years to cancer, but she kept living life.
“He was a very fine man, but I don’t dwell on what I lost, because I feel like I had it as good as you can get,” she said. “I still keep my own house, work in the yard, put up decorations, cut my own hair—I have for 40 years—and give myself manicures. One friend calls me Miss Independent.”
Then she whipped breast cancer two-and-a-half years ago. The weight loss seemed like a positive at first, but it didn’t stay that way.
“It seemed like I could eat anything and not put weight on, so I did that to the max,” she admitted with a chuckle. “Then it seemed like all of a sudden—it’s shocking how fast my pants wouldn’t button!”
She’d lose, then gain, lose, then gain. Try as she did, she couldn’t keep the weight off on her own. So in January 2014 she enrolled in pforymWELL’s Healthy Transformation weight-loss program.
“I had been complaining about my weight,” she explained, “but I didn’t know what to expect with the program. I just know that how we eat is important to keep our body healthy. I’m trying to make it a way of life, at home and when I go out. At 77, I don’t have time to keep yo-yoing.”
The practical program uses a doctor’s prescription, nutrition, simple exercise, and one-on-one coaching and emotional support to lose weight and to provide the nutrients your body needs. In the first six weeks, Joyce lost 16 pounds.
“At first it was harder, but now it’s easier than I thought it would be,” she said. “When you feed your body what it needs, you’re not hungry. When you eat sugar, you want more snacks and sugar. Now I look at the pie and it doesn’t look good, because I know what it’s going to do to me. I think sugar and flour are about the worst things we can do to ourselves.
“Now I have enough energy—this week I cleaned my house from top to bottom: ladders, lifting, moving. It’s a good feeling. I’d been walking one-and-half miles three times a week, but I was lax before the program. This week I’ve been working so hard I haven’t had time to walk!”
Keren Weaver, the lifestyle educator and nutritionist for the program, isn’t surprised by Joyce’s success.
“Joyce was already health-oriented, and she was ready to change,” Keren said in admiration. “She’s just a delight. She has a fabulous attitude, which has so much to do with it. She did get bored with eating greens, but I taught her how to cook them and put them in smoothies, not just eat them raw.”
Joyce didn’t set out to be an inspiration, but she’s a natural.
“I feel I’ve gotten a lot out of it by seeing what you really need to eat and how easy it is,” she said. “I’m making progress, and that’s what it’s all about. Plus the staff is very nice. When you go in you get the royal treatment. I’m very glad I’m doing this.”
Note: Yes, the name rings a bell. Troy is the nephew of pforymWELL co-owner Melody Ogletree.
Troy Ogletree needs thick skin. The junior radio/TV/film major at the University of Texas pours his heart, soul, creativity, and talent into a transparent vessel of entertainment for all to see, knowing full well the audience may overflow with naysayers, critics, and consumers poking holes in that container.
Cheerful-faced, bright-smiled, dancing-eyed, and with short hair that swoops up to one side on top like he’s walking east with a north wind blowing, it’s easy to envision the 20-year-old performing in films or television shows. In fact, he already has. The San Antonio native played Romeo in Walking with the Dead, a spoof on the zombie craze written by his brother, Tim, set to release in 2015. Troy also appeared in Supernatural Activity, a 2012 comedy of an adventurous paranormal investigation.
Less expected, Troy raps.
“Three or four years ago, rap started trending toward more intellectual lyrics, more wit and humor,” he explained. “I started writing a little bit but never really had the confidence to start rapping. It’s tough to do. About a year ago I put my first video on YouTube. Since then it’s kind of grown a lot, which has been really cool.”
By “kind of grown a lot,” the burgeoning rapper means his channel is up to almost 90,000 total views. Next on his list are live performances.
“I haven’t performed live in front of an audience yet,” Troy said. “I’m starting to try to do live rap shows and concerts, because we’re in the Live Music Capital of the World.”
But Troy also wants his thick skin to be clear, a goal he shares with every teen in America. So when what he was using wasn’t working, he turned to his wellness-care aunt.
“I was talking to Mel about my skin and trying to get it better,” he said. “She told me about SophytoPro and how it was almost entirely organic and how they don’t put all the chemicals that a lot of companies use. And it was cruelty-free, and that was cool. She sent me some, and it definitely improved my skin a lot. I’ve used it for four or five months now. When I ran out, I ordered more from her.”
With a bit of nudging, Troy rapped about SophytoPro.
“I took the product description to see what was in it, what their slogan or theme was, what they took pride in, what separated their product from others,” he said. “I tried to make it not cheesy—kind of witty and fun. I think writing is my strong suit, so I’m glad I got to write it and put my own spin on it.
“Hopefully I’m the first rapper to market this product—breaking down barriers!”
SophytoPro, the best product that I know.
Matter of fact, it’s so good I wrote a flow.
Oh so unique ‘cause it’s cruelty-free.
How many steps? Only 1-2-3.
Wash your face, dry it, and then spot treat.
Don’t forget to moisturize, so fresh so clean.
Smooth like velvet, I just can’t help it.
Not only have I seen results but I’ve felt it.
Try it if you want skin soft like snow
Better than the rest: SophytoPro!