EDITORS NOTE: CopsAlive.com is proud to announce a new partnership with Police Chief Scott Silverii, Ph.D. This week we are posting the first in a series of fitness blogs written by Scott as he works to improve his personal fitness. We invite you to participate yourself in any way that you want to improve your fitness and ability to survive a career in law enforcement and we encourage to support Scott with your comments and emails. Scott started his journey on his blog last week and we are partnering with him from now on.
I started posting this on my blog just 2 weeks ago to motivate myself to regain healthy habits, encourage others to join in by setting their own goals for holistic health, and creating a forum for sensible information and accountability.
Last week, I spoke with John Marx at CopsAlive.com who offered to partner. They provide fantastic practical information ranging from health to spiritual survival. Our plan is to post every Monday. I will give you a brief update of my progress, CopsAlive.com will provide awesome information, and you guys will share your thoughts, progress, and challenges in the comments.
To catch the readers up at CopsAlive.com, I posted my first week’s goals and status below.
Nothing overly scientific, just common sense and sensible. I’m looking forward to a healthy partnership with John and his staff at CopsAlive.com.
Week 2 Update is also included below. Thanks and please join us by sharing your goals, challenged and updates.
My Original Post
I weighed a super healthy 180 lbs the day I was sworn in as the Chief of Police. One year later, I was at 225 lbs. Sound familiar? Granted, that first year as Chief also included my last year of a PhD program. Still, having dropped from a 260lbs powerlifter to a 180lbs triathlete (very recreational) showed I had the ability.
Christmas morning 2011, I hit the scale, and it hit back with a reading of… 225 lbs. I stepped off determined to drop at least 20 lbs by my next birthday in March. Missed that goal.
One year later, I stepped on that same scale. In the one year since getting hit with a 45 lbs weight gain, I had lost a total of 0.6lbs. Yes, a slim 224.4 lbs was no consolation.
Compounding this additional weight was the annual visit to the ticker doctor. A shocking BP of 159/107. I was under order to drop 20 lbs and get the BP under control or it was meds time. Who me? a lifetime athlete always enjoying an active, healthy lifestyle? Yes.
So here I am 3 months later, bouncing between a low of 218 lbs and a bigger pants size, BP settling around mid 160s/107s and a bike still collecting dust.
I’m not going to post skin pics like a teenage girl wanting to fit into her spring break bikini. This is a thoughtful effort to hold myself accountable and build a network of others in need of motivation and helpful information for reclaiming the victory of health.
You and I are very similar. I’m not far from turning 50, and although living a full life, I know my best years await me. I want them to be healthy.
The Plan for Enjoying a Healthy Life
Here’s the plan. Each Monday I will post my progress. I’ll share my body weight, overall eating habit, levels of activity and whether or not I could squeeze the ring onto my right hand. My hands are an immediate barometer of weight. Hint; I cut my knuckle unscrewing it last week.
Nothing medical or technical, just common sense efforts for accountability.
I will ask for your support and teamwork to get my health back in control. I’m including the form below and ask you to set your own health goals. Also, I welcome anyone with sensible health advise to join the effort. I’m willing to include your practical information to my weekly posts.
Week 2 Recap:
Weight: 220 lbs
– Met & exceeded goal of 4 days
– 1 – 45 minute walk around the university (everyone is buzzing about town, great ennergy to tap into)
– 1 – 30 minute cycling on indoor trainer (finishing load of clothes, so dryer added to room temp)
-1 – Free weights at the awesome new health complex on campus (State of the art)
-1 – 45 minute cardio session on machines.
– Avoided secretary’s desk candy dish
– Switched late night ice cream to froze yogurt
– Still eating every lunch & most diners out at restaurants (still VERY expensive)
– Overall, made improvemets but with PLENTY of room to go.
– Oh yea, Major birthday bash over the weekend included great New Orleans dishes from Rio Mar.
-A few days at home, but squeezed it over the healing knuckle later in the week.
Monday – Sunday Goals:
– Weight at 218 lbs
– Cut back on extra portions & more meals at home
– Exercise 4 times with increasing duration
– Wear UNO ring without sawing into knuckle.
CopsAlive.com Wellness Tip:
Set your own six month fitness goals. Where do you want to be six months from now physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually so that you are in the best position to survive your career in law enforcement?
We encourage you to put your fitness plan into writing and set daily, weekly and monthly goals. Then schedule fitness training time into your daily activities. Because of our comprehensive Armor Your Self™ training program we recommend that you schedule time to condition yourself mentally, emotionally and spiritually as well as physically in order to protect your “self” from the toxic effects of police work.
CLICK HERE to download our free and comprehensive “Count Everything” Excel Spreadsheet.
As we were preparing this posting we discovered the CNN Fit Nation promotion and noticed that one of the six people chosen to participate was a 25 year corrections officer.
Background on CNN Fit Nation:
Every year CNN selects iReporters to race in a triathlon with Dr. Sanjay Gupta and the Fit Nation team. This year we’re giving six lucky readers a road bike (with all the necessary accessories), a wet suit and a gym membership to help them prepare for the Nautica Malibu Triathlon on September 8.
One of the six is Rae Timme a 57 year-old mother of three and 25 year veteran of the Colorado Department of Corrections. For the last 3 1/2 years Rae has served as the warden of a medium custody men’s prison and is planning on retiring two weeks after the Nautica Malibu Triathlon.
Rae said on the CNN site that she has read all the scary statistics about the mortality rates of people who work in corrections and found that they have the second highest mortality rate of any job; on average, a corrections officer’s 58th birthday will be their last. That motivated her to apply for the CNN Fit Nation team.
In research done by John Violanti Ph.D. on the mortality of police officers he wrote that “It has been argued that police officers are at increased risk for mortality as a result of their occupation. The average age of death for police officer in our 40-year study was 66 years of age”.
Rae quoted information from Corrections.com:
Correctional Officers (CO’s) have the second highest mortality rate of any occupation.
33.5% of all assaults in prisons and jails are committed by inmates against staff.
A CO’s 58th birthday, on average, is their last.
A CO will be seriously assaulted at least twice in a 20 year career.
On average a CO will live only 18 months after retirement.
CO’s have a 39% higher suicide rate than any other occupation,
And have a higher divorce and substance abuse rates then the general population.
Sources: “Stress Management for the Professional Correctional Officer”, Donald Steele, Ph.D., Steele Publishing 2001 “Corrections Yearbook 2000, 2002”, Criminal Justice Institute, Middletown, CT “Sourcebook of Criminal Justice Statistics 2003”, Bureau of Justice Statistics, 31st edition, NCJ 208756 “Suicide Risk Among Correctional Officers”, Archives of Suicide Research, Stack, S.J., & Tsoudis, O. 1997 Metropolitan Life Actuarial Statistics, 1998 Society of Actuaries, 1994
Source: http://www.corrections.com/news/article/30096-beating-the-odds accessed 3-8-13
Learn more about Rae Timme by CLICKING HERE.
You can follow Scott’s journey here and on his Bright Blue Line blog at www.scottsilverii.com as well as Like Fit Nation on Facebook and Follow @CNNFitNation on Twitter
P.S. As you follow Scott and Rae you will hear a lot about Body Mass Index (BMI) which is a quick calculation of body fat based on height and weight that applies to adult men and women
You can learn more about BMI on CopsAlive by CLICKING HERE where you can also find a link to a BMI Calculator to help you determine your own current level of fitness.
So as these people start their journeys to good health, where are you in your journey? How is your BMI? What do you need to do to get to your fitness goals?
Follow us here on CopsAlive as we follow Scott, Rae and provide you with the support, encouragement and suggestions to help you build not only your level of physical fitness but your mental, emotional as well as spiritual fitness. In short we are working to help you stay as safe as you can on the job and to create conditions that will best help you survive a career in law enforcement.
CopsAlive is written to prompt discussions within our profession about the issues of law enforcement career survival. We invite you to share your opinions, ask questions and suggest topics for us in the Comment Box that is at the bottom of this article.
At The Law Enforcement Survival Institute (LESI) we train law enforcement officers to cope with stress and manage all the toxic effects and hidden dangers of a career in law enforcement.
Our “Armor Your Self™: How to Survive a Career in Law Enforcement” on-site training program is an eight hour, hands-on, “How to” seminar that helps police officers and other law enforcement professionals armor themselves physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually to survive their careers in police work. To learn more CLICK HERE
The concept of “True Blue Valor™” is where one law enforcement officer has to muster the courage to confront a peer who is slipping both professionally and personally and endangering themselves, their peers and the public. It takes a system of organizational support and professional leadership to support and foster the concept of courage and intervention. We will train your trainers to deliver this program to your agency.
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