PYP 193: Justin Lacy on Escaping the Dungeon of Obesity

Two years ago, Justin Lacy weighed 500 pounds, and could move about only on crutches — when he could move about at all. His tendonitis and lymphedema made standing painful and walking all but impossible. Following his mother’s stroke, the then-30-year-old Justin decided that he was going to make changes and get healthy, no matter what. Read more »

PYP 192: Tad Hargrave on Healing from Whiteness

Tad Hargrave is an environmental activist and marketing teacher whose heartfelt wisdom and elegant and ethical strategies inspired and guided much of my own thinking when I was in the online marketing field. We've stayed in touch over the years, and as Tad is a prolific writer, I spend a fair amount of time pondering his pensive and powerful essays on, basically, how to be a courteous and committed ally to those on the planet who are suffering. Read more »

PYP 191: Hal Hershfield on Befriending Our Future Selves

Hal Herschfield is a UCLA psychology professor, and author of some really interesting studies on the connection between what we do now and how we think about the future. Specifically, he's shown through brain scans that the more we think of our future selves as a person different from ourselves (and most of us do), the less we're willing to sacrifice today to help that future self. Read more »

PYP 190: Clay Garrett on Stumbling Toward a Healthy and Kind Diet

Growing up in rural East Texas, Clay Garrett was raised to appreciate meat. His father, an agriculture instructor, literally taught an entire class on how to produce, process and cook meat. And the "meat and butter at every meal" cuisine was never linked, in anyone's mind, to the family history of high cholesterol and cancer, let alone to the digestive issues that ruled Clay's life. Read more »

PYP 189: Dave Wiskowski on the Simple Practices that Healed His Depression

In 1987, fresh out of college, I took a job as a teaching intern at a fancy prep school in central New Jersey. One of the students who never made it across my radar was a quiet, blonde fifth grade boy named Dave Wiskowski. In his class photo, he’s not smiling, unlike many of his classmates. He told me that he was struggling with depression at that time, any for many years later. Like many people who find themselves overwhelmed by life and negative emotions, he became adept at self-medicating through food, alcohol, and self-pity. Read more »

PYP 188: Dr Chad Teeters on Becoming an Infamous Cardiologist

Dr John “Chad” Teeters grew up eating a good old meat and potato diet in his home state of North Carolina. An active kid, he looked and felt healthy and fit; his diet started catching up with him only when combined with the rigors of college, medical school, and medical residency. For his entire adult life, Chad struggled with weight, gaining and losing pounds as his activity levels and self-control waxed and waned. After competing in a couple of triathlons in 2005, he let go of the struggle and gained roughly 10 pounds a year for the next 10 years. Read more »

PYP 187: Katie Simmons on the Universal Language of Food

Katie Simmons was working as a traditionally trained chef and moonlighting as a fitness instructor when the dare happened. She was struggling - as she had been her whole life - with her weight and her health. She managed to achieve a tentative balance between compulsive overeating and compulsive overexercising, but still dealt with feeling lousy and often ashamed of herself. Then the dare - go vegan for one month - changed everything. Read more »

PYP 186: Robyn Chuter on the Healing Power of EFT

Robyn Chuter is a plant-based "recovering naturopath" and wellness researcher from New South Wales, Australia. She's particularly interested in how groups of people support each other's health journeys, and is currently running an ethnographic study on a whole food, plant-based Facebook support group to identify effective strategies and barriers to behavior change. Read more »

PYP 185: Doug Schmidt on Finding (and Sharing) the Fountain of Youth

Doug Schmidt is an enrichment teacher and health and wellness coordinator for his upstate New York school district. Now, health and wellness coordinators generally focus on stress reduction in the workplace, smoking cessation, and getting teachers to increase their physical activity by taking the stairs and parking farther away from the front entrance. Read more »