Todd Brown is named the "Biggest Loser" after losing 120 pounds in 90 days during the "2012 VISN 20 Weight Loss Challenge" sponsored by the VA Puget Sound MOVE! program. Brown weighed in at 400 pounds before working with Karol Brown and the MOVE! program to lose the weight.
By Lorin T. Smith
Thursday, May 24, 2012
Todd Brown knew a change had to be made when he saw the picture of himself dancing with his daughter at her wedding. He weighed in at 400 pounds, a far cry from the lean figure he remembered during his time as an Army Special Forces soldier. After seven surgeries, doctors told him he was going to live the rest of his life in pain. Becoming depressed from the news, Brown turned to food to keep the pain away. As the years went on, the Army master fitness trainer gained more and... more weight, and topped out at 400 pounds. It was not until his daughter’s wedding, that he realized that if he wanted to be around for his grandchildren and great grandchildren, he would need to lose the weight and find a way to keep it off, forever.
“I finally got pissed off and said that is not me, I am not a 400-pound guy, I refuse to be that guy,” Brown said.
Two years ago, he joined the MOVE! program at VA Puget Sound Health Care System and started to exercise under the supervision of a physician and a nutritionist. VA Puget Sound staff taught him how to eat right, exercise properly and live a healthier lifestyle. He participated in MOVE! events, including the yearly weight loss challenge. On May 23, during the “2012 VISN 20 Weight Loss Challenge” celebration at VA Puget Sound – American Lake Division, Brown showed that the impossible is possible – he had lost 120 pounds in 90 days, and was crowned this year’s “Biggest Loser.”
Brown, along with more than 130 other Veterans, worked with MOVE! program Manager and Clinical Dietician Karol Brown to lose weight healthily. During the past three months, VA Puget Sound MOVE! participants lost 736 pounds, and nearly a weight loss average of 3 percent. Participants who weighed in at least once a month received T-shirts and a Certificate of Appreciation at the event, with more than 30 attending.
The event was a way to encourage Veterans to lose weight and make healthy lifestyle changes through the MOVE! program. MOVE! staff offered weight loss plans, regular interaction with a dietitian, including Telehealth (over the phone consultations) and healthy living classes to keep Veterans motivated and staying on their goals.
“The real winners are our Veterans, who worked so hard to lose the weight and we are here to help them keep it off,” Karol Brown said.
The MOVE! program offers classes at both Seattle and American Lake campuses. For more information about MOVE!, call (800) 329-8387 or (253) 582-8440 ext. 76683, or visit the website at http://www.pugetsound.va.gov/services/Move_Program.asp.