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The "Why" and "What for?"

By Michael J. Brankin


The Waukegan Wellness journey is a completely selfish one. I was reviewing an interview I shot with a farmer about our online farmers market, and I was looking at myself and thinking, “that guy doesn’t each vegetables.” Which I do, but I sure didn’t look it. I ate plenty of good foods, but I never kicked the habit of eating bad foods. Working 12-14 hour days and always being on the run, I succumbed to the American Fast Food diet. I found lots of ways to lie to myself that I could “still outwork most anyone” out in the field. It was true, but I would be sore for days. I couldn’t even look at a picture of myself without cringing. But it wasn’t until Jarmel Reece and I laid out a plan for Waukegan Wellness that I found the kick in the pants that I needed. I volunteered to be the change we wanted to introduce everyone to.


I started at the beginning of September 2021 and jumped in head first. I fasted, I changed my diet to be mostly vegan, sometimes vegetarian, but hardly any meats if I could help it. I started with Yoga 3-5 days a week. I started drinking a gallon of water a day. I walked on hot coals and broke an arrow at a Firewalk. I jumped into the ice-cold lake for Polar Bear Plunge. I had a Reiki session and I learned to meditate. I reduced any random snacking throughout the day and within 30 days I let go of 20lbs. I’ve since let go of 40lbs. I feel better than ever. I still work 12-14 hour days, but I’m never exhausted and I have more energy than I’ve had in years. I haven’t been this fit since I got married 20 years ago.


I still have a lot of work to do on myself, but I couldn’t be happier with the results. And hopefully this is what you will find here as well. Options. Options to feel and be the best you, you can be.


-Michael J. Brankin



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