MCBDD Frank’s ability to lose weight was far from a disability

Nicole Workman, Marion County Board of DD
Printed 9:22 p.m. ET March 28, 2020


It took Frank LeVenia a short time to find how deep his household’s love for him actually was, however now, nearly 200 kilos lighter, his coronary heart is heavy with love and his physique is mild and energetic. It’s all because of his household.

Frank’s story begins with the Marion County Board of Developmental Disabilities (MCBDD) when he was a small boy. He and his brother received sick and each spiked very excessive fevers. His brother was in a position to struggle off the an infection with no long-term injury, however Frank was not as fortunate. The excessive fever Frank endured left him with injury to the mind that resulted in a gentle mental incapacity that Frank and his household would take care of all through his life.

Regardless of this unlucky circumstance, Frank has lived a really full life. His household has been with him by all of it. As Frank aged, he began to realize weight. Simply two years in the past, Frank weighed 350 kilos, making the whole lot a wrestle. Strolling, even speaking left Frank respiratory heavy and winded. Frank’s sister, Robin Keaton, who’s a licensed sensible nurse (LPN), was involved for Frank’s well being and at last stepped in.

“We took a brief stroll someday and I observed how tough it was for Frank to not solely sustain however to stroll in any respect. I attempted to get him to consider exercising or consuming more healthy however he wouldn’t hear it,” Robin mentioned.

“I assumed she was simply being imply,” Frank recalled of the dialog, “however now, wanting again, I do know that she was simply attempting to assist me as a result of she loves me.”

Though Robin’s preliminary interplay didn’t lead to fast change, she stayed involved and continued to attempt to assist Frank deal with his well being.

“With the assistance of the County Board of DD, we had been in a position to get memberships to the Marion Household Y for Frank and his spouse, Helen,” Robin mentioned. “Helen received very concerned and began taking courses and liked going and exercising, however Frank received bored and discouraged.”

He would stroll on the observe whereas Helen was in her courses, however the monotony of the limitless laps left Frank not desirous to proceed. Robin wouldn’t let him hand over. She knew Frank appreciated music and thought that if she might get him to hearken to music it’d assist.

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She helped him get an up to date cellphone and located an app referred to as “Rock My Run.” Frank loaded that app up together with his favourite playlist and that’s all it took to lastly flip the swap on his street to health. Frank loved the music a lot he wouldn’t simply stroll, however dance his means across the strolling observe on the YMCA.

“All I wanted was good music,” Frank mentioned. “I began dancing and spinning and high-fiving others who had been on the observe with me. All of them liked it.”

Now, Frank is nearly 200 kilos lighter and might stroll nearly 7 miles. He mentioned he feels nice and is grateful for his sister’s persistence in his well being.

Robin can also be grateful and amazed by Frank’s progress. “I instructed him, ‘I simply need you to be round for a very long time, Frank.’”

Frank desires individuals to know that it is very important get lively. “I really feel so significantly better. I’ve extra vitality,” he mentioned.

He mentioned it’s by no means too late to start out and needs everybody to know that it’s worthwhile to be affected person. It took Frank over a yr and a half to lose all of his weight and get wholesome, however staying lively and in a routine helps.

He desires you to know that if he can do it – you may too. “Begin at present,” he added.

He additionally desires you to know that if your loved ones is pushing you towards wholesome residing habits that it’s all within the title of affection.

Nicole Workman is the director of communications at Marion County Board of Developmental Disabilities.

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