Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

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January 15, 2013

Greensburg man reshapes life through weight loss

Wants to pay his success forward

Greensburg — With 75 pounds lost and 77 to go, Eric Capper is well on his way to getting his life back.

At 31, Capper has been dealing with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and migraines, health issues that weren’t due to develop for another 15 years.

He was always in a bad mood, and his clothes were always tight, which isn’t surprising considering that Capper weighed 427 pounds at his biggest.

“I was always a big person, since elementary school,” Capper said, “I didn’t really notice when it was five or ten pounds creeping on every year.”

Capper said he had a big eye-opener when his father died of a heart attack at 51. Fifty-one was too young, said Capper.

His life was put into perspective when he thought of his wife and two-year-old daughter.

“My family was never small, but nothing like me. I didn’t want my daughter to go through that, not having a father at 21,” said Capper.

The transition into a healthy lifestyle hasn’t been difficult, Capper explained, not when he finally made a concrete decision to lose the weight, with no waffling and no excuses.

“You’ve got to have the mindset that this is what you want for yourself, because realistically, diets don’t work,” he said, “What makes you feel better? Eating a cheeseburger because you’ve had a bad day, or getting on the scale and seeing five or six pounds are gone?”

He'd tried a few diets several times, but diets don’t teach someone how to be healthy.

“Take Shape for Life”, while a weight loss program, also focuses on life after weight loss, according to Health Coach and Nurse Practitioner Patty Glick.

Glick stressed the importance of planning and of using the newly-acquired health as a tool and pathway to becoming happy.

“You want to lose weight, okay, great,” said Capper, “But why? How’s life gonna be different? What are you going to do with your friends and family that you don’t do now?”

Glick described a number of factors that can lead to excessive weight gain, many which have affected her: The food industry, which has mislead people as to what a portion of food is on top of providing high-fat and quickly-consumed junk food; the multi-million dollar weight loss industry, which began capitalizing on  “magic” food and pills in the ‘80s; and general ignorance on creating balanced meals.

“A large fry may actually contain three portions of fries,” Capper used in example.

“Weight loss is step two of a six-step program,” said Glick, “The program is about lifestyle change, not necessarily weight loss.”

Glick herself has lost 55 pounds, and has kept the weight off for nearly five years. She said she can water ski again, something she lost when she became too big to balance on the back of the boat.

“I was stuck in survival mode,” said Glick, “I was losing my life and myself.”

Glick eventually changed jobs and became a health coach, something she loved to do, instead of going through the motions.

Using “Take Shape for Life” should not be the result of a New Year’s resolution, according to Glick and Capper.

“Losing weight is too broad of a reason, you’ve gotta have something more meaningful,” said Capper.

For Capper, he looks forward to being able to play tennis with his wife, running around the front yard with his daughter, being able to ride a bike, and being able to sit in plane seats comfortably.

“I love to go out and shoot hoops,” Capper said eagerly, “This summer, I’m going to the park to shoot hoops.”

Still being 350 pounds and having started his weight loss journey in October 2012, Capper hasn't quite obtained his goal, but says he feels 180 degrees better.

The amount of medication Capper was on has lessened; he needs to buy new pants, and he’s no longer depressed.

There had been no source to the depression, Capper said, other than the fact he couldn’t bear to look in the mirror and his body was always in pain.

Capper contributes his weight gain to not eating healthily.

He drives a truck and would get bored and end up eating two lunches, all processed food. When he returned home, he and his wife would be tired and would go out to eat.

“I was probably eating six to 7,000 calories a day,” Capper said. He's now down to between 950 and 1,000 calories a day, and has yet to walk into a gym. Capper’s wife and mother are now participating in the program after witnessing his success.

Capper wants to pay his success forward to help other people get their lives back. He's currently a health coach and welcomes any questions that people may have about the “Take Shape for Life” program.

He can be contacted at 812-614-1687 or at ekcapper@yahoo.com.

Contact: Tess Rowing 812-663-3111 x7004.

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