Join Me and the OAC-Let’s Ban the ‘F Word!’

Good Morning, Loves!

I was so, so excited to check my email and all of my social media channels and learn about the Obesity Action Coalition’s latest campaign: The ‘Ban the F Word” movement has arrived!

Anyone who went to high school with me can tell you that I adamantly refused to use or acknowledge the word “fat.” I thought that it was such a harsh, degrading word….one that can often cause more harm than being “the f word” can in the first place!

I am honored to have been selected to receive a Weigh in for Healthy Change scholarship to attend this years OAC “Your Weight Matters” convention in San Antonio, TX. Thanks to Eisai Pharmaceuticals, I am able to attend Advocacy Training to be a better, more informed and effective proponent in the fight for better treatment and options for those struggling with Obesity. This latest campaign is a huge leap for changing the everyday misconceptions that excess weight defines people moreso than their character and actions.

Check out the press release:

Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) Launches “Ban the f word” movement to end fat-shaming

Tampa, Fla. – The OAC has launched a national movement – “Ban the F Word” – aimed at putting an end to fat-shaming. The movement is anchored by an online petition that individuals are encouraged to sign, pledging their support to raise awareness of fat-shaming and put an end to it.

“Weight bias has long been accepted in various areas of life such as healthcare, entertainment and more. With the rise of social media, a new trend has started in the way of fat-shaming. The goal of the OAC’s campaign is to raise awareness of fat-shaming and encourage the public to support our movement to end it,” said Ted Kyle, RPh, MBA, OAC Chairman.

With a membership of 50,000 individuals, the OAC is no stranger to addressing weight bias. Developed in 2005, the OAC has taken on high profile weight bias issues such as, fat-shaming apps, a Tennessee insurer’s IQ testing requirement for bariatric surgery, and ESPN’s Britt McHenry’s stigmatizing comments regarding body weight.

“The word ‘fat’ is most appropriately used as a noun. The fact that today we use it as an adjective and shame people dealing with the disease of obesity is highly unacceptable. As Chair of the Weight Bias Committee, I know individuals, especially children, are often targeted and shamed for their weight. Ban the F Word will raise awareness of this alarming trend and hopefully put a stop to its pervasiveness,” said Melinda J. Watman, BSN, MSN, CNM, MBA.

In April 2015, Ms. Watman appeared on CBS’ The Insider where she discussed how obesity is one of the last acceptable forms of public humiliation.

“Fat-shaming doesn’t discriminate based on race, gender or socioeconomic status. We encourage all Americans to stand with us and end fat-shaming,” said Joe Nadglowski, OAC President and CEO.

To learn more about the Ban the F Word movement and sign the petition, visit www.BantheFWord.com.

About the OAC:

The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC), a nearly 50,000 member-strong National non-profit organization, is dedicated to improving the lives of individuals affected by the disease of obesity through education, advocacy and support.

I urge you to sign the petition and share on your social media outlets! Let’s BE the change, and take a stand to ban the “f” word!

See Sondra Sign-off-stacked

The OAC and #GivingTuesday

Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) GIVES Away more than 500 memberships

IN HONOR OF #GIVINGTUESDAY

 

“Because of you” year-end giving campaign launched to help support oac efforts

 

Tampa, Fla. – The OAC was proud to take on the challenge of #GivingTuesday and give back through pledging 250 FREE memberships to those who need it most. The OAC received an overwhelming response to this initiative and gave away more than 500 memberships in less than 24 hours to individuals wanting to learn more about their weight, improve their quality of health and lend their voice to the Nation’s only non-profit organization whose sole focus is representing individuals affected by the disease of obesity.

“We are extremely proud of the fact that we were able to provide more than 500 individuals with memberships in the OAC. The OAC was pleased to pay-it-forward on #GivingTuesday and help hundreds of individuals join the Coalition. We thank everyone who helped us spread the word about this initiative and grow the OAC voice,” said Joe Nadglowski, OAC President and CEO.

The free OAC membership drive was the first part in a month-long effort by the OAC to inspire individuals to become engaged in the Coalition and support its efforts. Throughout the month of December, the OAC is encouraging individuals to donate to the OAC with its “Because of You” year-end fundraising campaign.

The OAC is asking for all individuals to show their support of the OAC’s efforts by making a tax-deductible donation that will directly fund the OAC’s mission-oriented efforts in education, advocacy and support. As a 501(c)3 registered charity, the OAC relies on the support of those it serves in order to continue making an impact and fighting for change in obesity.

“The reality is that we simply could not make the proactive impact we do in education, advocacy and support on a yearly basis if it weren’t for the fundraising support of our members. We rely on the members of the OAC to help us make a difference for all those affected by obesity. The ‘Because of You’ Campaign is a great way to give back to the OAC during this time of year. We thank you for your support of the Coalition and our efforts,” said Ted Kyle, RPh, MBA, OAC Chairman.

To learn more about the “Because of You” year-end giving Campaign, please CLICK HERE. To donate to the OAC today, please CLICK HERE.

About the OAC

The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC), a nearly 50,000 member-strong National non-profit organization, is dedicated to improving the lives of individuals affected by the disease of obesity through education, advocacy and support. To learn more about the OAC, please visit www.ObesityAction.org.

Taking Care of #1…YOU!

Hey Everyone,

It’s been awhile, but SO many amazing things have been happening!

I recently got the opportunity to get a new amazing job, and so far, it’s been everything I could have hoped for. With a more accommodating schedule and less stress, I will be able to dedicate more time to SeeSondraSlim and being a bigger advocate for the “fight” against Obesity.

The last 4 weeks and all these transitions, and trainings, and busy days have led me to realize that I have not been taking the best care of myself. Between the regain of some of my weight, the slacking on my blog, and the general poor feeling I’ve had the last few months, I knew something had to change. I didn’t want to be in a position where I could blame the place where I spend 80% of my week for the issues and feelings I had been facing, but the fact of the matter is, since I started my new job, I’ve lost 5 pounds, been sleeping better, and I have already been offered several opportunities and resources to help me take my life, and SeeSondraSlim to a whole new level.

Sometimes, you just have to step back and assess what areas you may be spreading yourself too thinly, and in which you aren’t paying enough attention to.

And so, I’ve made a pact with myself, to dedicate more time with myself, to take better care of myself. Be it a coveted trip to the Farmer’s Market and a day of meal prepping, or the deluxe pedicure instead of the regular one, or splurging on the $5 smoothie I love the most…I’m going to do it!

Also, I’ll be dedicating “Office Hours” to myself for the SeeSondraSlim mission to continue, and hopefully become a bigger vehicle of Obesity Advocacy.

Take some time with YOU today, to see what it is you want to make more time for. Give yourself the opportunity to recharge and reassess. You won’t regret it!

SeeSondraSignaturePRINT

#YWM2013 Wrap-Up: A Weekend to Remember!

Let’s be honest: Anyone can begin a “weight loss journey.” Anyone can start and maintain a blog.

But, me? I truly feel there needs to be an underlying passion to really advocate and educate an audience when it comes to the importance of these lifestyle changes, milestones, and victories!

I am so grateful that Sean and I were able to make it to the Obesity Action Coalition Your Weight Matters Convention in Phoenix this year.

I met so many amazing people, and learned so much useful information that I am excited to use to keep going through my transformation, and hopefully, utilize to inspire you on YOURS.

There were multiple speakers and educational sessions that really taught me a lot, and also, some that validated the feelings I have had at my heaviest, and as I transition to the newer, healthier, fitter me.

Sadly, we weren’t able to make it to Thursday’s Member Mingle and Advocacy Training, but we arrived just at the beginning of the breakout sessions on Friday morning, and from the moment we walked into the conference hall, I could feel the energy!

Our first session we attended was “Weight Bias: Changing Public Perception Starts with Me.” I felt like this session was the best way for us to start the day, because a lot of people don’t realize that images and stereotypes of Obesity are perpetuated by society without even thinking about it. How many times have you held a bias towards someone who was Obese, or even too thin? We all do it, and more importantly, we can all help BREAK THAT CYCLE! I am pretty well-known in my circle of friends for being very vocal when people try to attack my size or the size of others in general (just attack-y people in general). I feel a need to really put these people in their place, and make them realize that 1) people can HEAR them and 2) it’s NOT ok to treat people that way. What I walked away from this session, is that I can use the information and resources I have from organizations like the OAC, or even my personal experiences, to educate people, and break those biases.

Other sessions we attended?

Everyday Advocacy: Simple Ways to Make a Difference,” “Planning, Shopping, and Dining: Practical Tactics for Good Nutrition,” “Who’s Staring Back at You in the Mirror: Improving Self-Perception,” “Understanding and Managing Food Addiction,” “My Everyday Routine Matters: Sleep, Stress, and Other Factors Impacting Weight,” and “Weighing Success Beyond the Scale: Identifying and Maintaining a Healthy Weight,” and “Expectations of Your Body After Weight Loss: Plastic Surgery and Other Options.”

All in all? So much good stuff! The OAC will be providing attendees with access to the powerpoint presentations within a week or so, and I’ll be sure to get access of all of you, so that you can see all the amazing lectures and statistics we got to learn from!

Friday evening, there was a Welcoming Ceremonies Dinner, and Sean and I sat at an empty table by the door. We were later joined by 4 others, who just so happened to all be representatives from the Platinum Sponsor of the convention, Eisai Pharmaceuticals. This company has just launched a new weight loss drug that uses neuro-science and triggers the signal in your brain that tells you that you are “full.” They were so interested in my opinion of the American Medical Association declaring Obesity a disease, and what my thoughts are on their product.

It felt so AMAZING to be sitting with this group of professionals and talking to them about something that I wish would have been a more prevalent option back when I was talking about Weight Loss Surgery with my Primary Care Physician. I was honored to have my opinion regarded so highly, and it was an awesome networking opportunity, as well. One woman shared her personal weight loss success with me, and said she was going to have her sister check out my blog.

In general, I made some new friends, and they happened to be some of my most favorite WLS/Health/Weight Loss bloggers! It was AWESOME! Twitter shout-outs were happening all weekend!

It was 114 degrees all weekend, and Saturday night after the awards dinner as I was headed to the bar with some new friends, it was actually raining, and there was lightning…but it was STILL 100 degrees! Crazy!

The resort was beautiful. The OAC truly picked an ideal location, and we enjoyed all of the amenities of the resort that we were able to use during our visit.

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One cool thing about the event was that at the Welcoming Ceremonies Dinner, the location and date of the 2014 Convention was announced!

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Will YOU be there? Because if so, you’ll run into me! We are already planning to make sure we can fit this into the budget, and I am hoping we can make it our first real vacation together, as well! No way we are going to Orlando and not going to their Sea World (and maybe even DISNEYWORLD!?!?!)

We shall see what happens 🙂

This event got me even more excited and inspired for my next convention in October, and it is really cool that some of the new friends I have made will be there, so I won’t be the totally new kid this time around! I cannot wait!

If you’re interested in starting your experience with these amazing, inspiring, educational events, you still have time to register and join me at the Obesity Help Convention in Anaheim October 4-5 and experience the magic for yourself!

That’s all for now, but stay tuned for those amazing presentation powerpoint links coming soon!

Sean and I are off to use our “Planning, Shopping, and Dining: Practical Tactics for Good Nutrition” education this weekend, and prepping all of our meals for the week after we hit up Costco and the Farmer’s Market to do some nutritious damage.

Now? Time to work on the thigh lift post you’ve all been asking for, before this Percocet kicks in again and makes me snooze for the next 6 hours!

‘Til Next Time!

XOXO

Life as I Know It (Or, AHH! It’s Almost August)

I am proud to announce that SeeSondraSlim was founded 2 years ago, today. 2 years ago, my weight loss journey took on a whole new meaning, and I am proud that it has gained a following and earned some street cred. It has been a wild, crazy, and emotional ride. It has been everything I hoped for, and it isn’t over yet! It has been absolutely AMAZING, and that’s because of YOU. Thank YOU, from the bottom of my heart!

In other news, it has become blaringly obvious to me that I am a grown up.

For one thing, I don’t get a summer vacation anymore. I miss those! For this reason, it has also come to my attention that no matter how ridiculously slow some days seem, the weeks and months pass by so quickly!

It’s like, I look up, and BAM! Summer is almost over. I had excess skin removal surgery on my stomach over 3 months ago.  I have my thigh lift/stomach revision in 19 days, and before that? 15 days until I attend the Taylor Swift concert with my Bestie, 16 days until Sean and I head to Phoenix for the OAC Your Weight Matters Convention, and then we come home and BAM! again. It’s almost September.

The past couple of weeks I have been a blogging procrastinator because I had been preparing for what will go down in my life as one of the best weekends EVER. My best friend Alex got married this past Saturday! As her Maid of Honor (which, I was truly too honored to be), I planned a fun night out last Thursday for the Bachelorette Party, we had  rehearsal dinner Friday, and before you could say ‘chapel’ it was time to see her walk down the aisle.

I’d post Bachelorette photos, but they violate girl code, and totally encapsulate what I feel like was a successful night between 6 good friends. I was fortunate to be a part of a bridal party made up of some amazing, hilarious, and super fun women. There was no drama, no shenanigans (the bad kind, that is), and I feel like that is  true testament to who my best friend really IS.

However, I will share the room setup for the party…if only because sometimes I impress myself with my creative skills. Lol.

The main table. Lanterns, Sangria, cupcakes, gift bags, and my tower of wine glasses (one wine glass was harmed in the making of this display).

The main table. Lanterns, Sangria, cupcakes, gift bags, and my tower of wine glasses (one wine glass was harmed in the making of this display).

The day of is something that shall forever be engraved in my memory. Everyone looked amazing, the weather was perfect, and the ceremony was beautiful. It’s something special to watch the people you love dedicate their lives to being together. It touches something in your heart….it’s like watching The Notebook, without any sad parts!! AMAZING!

The  GORGEOUS Bride and I outside the hotel, right before we headed to the ceremony site!! AHHH!

The GORGEOUS Bride and I outside the hotel, right before we headed to the ceremony site!! AHHH!

The five HOT Bridesmaids! :)

The five HOT Bridesmaids! 🙂

Alex gave each of us girls a gorgeous Coach clutch as a thank you, and I was floored to learn that not only had she and Josh gotten me a special Maid of Honor gift…but it just so happened to be what!?! The runner-up dream swimsuit from my previous Dream Bikini post!

YAY! Hawaii in roughly 3 months! I am rockin' this baby while we are there!!!

YAY! Hawaii in roughly 3 months! I am rockin’ this baby while we are there!!!

Now that the wedding is over, I am focused on preparing for all the concert/convention/surgery madness coming in August, and starting my savings/shopping/packing plans for Hawaii in October. While we are there, I am hoping to conquer one of my biggest fears: heights. Myself, Alex and our friend Zainab are planning on going on a hike that ends in cliff diving.

I have seen Forgetting Sarah Marshall, so I am assuming by the time I get to the top of a cliff, I will totally want to dive into the water…and it’s the super easy way to get back down. This doesn’t subtract from the terror that strikes my heart momentarily when I imagine looking out a nothing but sky, and down at nothing but water! But hey…I will do it anyways!

I am super excited that our Phoenix trip is roughly two weeks away! With all the things my time has been devoted to for the last couple of months, I am really happy to be going on a road trip with Sean and spending some quality time together! Plus, the convention line-up looks AMAZING! I am having a hard time deciding which speakers to see….and can’t wait for the Awards Dinner and workout schedule….plus, the water park on-site at the resort! Considering August in Arizona can be a brutal thing, I will welcome that. If all works out as planned, I may even book myself a spa service while we are there! 🙂

Most importantly, so many exclusive products will be at the convention, and I am excited to learn about new things, and be able to share info about helpful products and resources with YOU, my wonderful readers! And? Shelly Vicari, from ‘The World According to Eggface,” my personal blogging idol will be there. It’s gonna be good stuff!!

That’s all for now, but I promise I am working on getting back on my ‘A’ blogging game. SeeSondraSlim has tons more good stuff in store, and I cannot WAIT to share it all with you very soon!

‘Til Next Time!

XOXO