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    Posted December 19, 2011 by
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    CNN Fit Nation: Triathlon Challenge

    Watch Detroit Tri!

    Three weeks ago when I first heard Dr. Sanjay Gupta talk about CNN Fit Nation and the Triathlon Challenge, I was laying on my couch with a headache and my dog licking my face begging to go for a walk. Dr. Sanjay succeeded in making me feel terrible about myself and I decided it was time to train for a triathlon. I began training right away and the routine went like this:

    Day 1
    • 8:00 AM – Dr. Sanjay makes me feel terrible about myself and I profess to my dog and wife that I will be running a triathlon by next fall (wife rolls her eyes and dog is excited that he gets to go outside on a run).

    • 9:00 AM – Running shoes on, dog on leash, and out the door we go.

    • 9:05 AM – Dog is pulling me on the leash as I am trying to breathe!

    • 9:10 AM – Say a few choice words under my breath about Dr. Sanjay and walk back in the house to hopefully avoid eye contact with my wife until after the shower.

    This happened periodically over the next two weeks, until after a night out with clients for a Christmas party I woke up to Dr. Sanjay Gupta talking on the TV. Not sure if it was a nightmare or if my wife had set the DVR and was doing this to guilt me into running, but I decided to grab the computer and do some research.

    I then looked at the pictures of myself over the past 10 years going from an All-State high school athlete, to a college football player, to a 26 year old insurance salesman whose waistline continued grow out of control; I decided it was time for me to take action and the only way to be sure I will succeed is to have CNN forcing me to get off my butt!

    Being very goal oriented I have developed two goals I hope to accomplish:

    • Goal #1 – Get healthy, learn how to eat, live a healthier lifestyle, and enjoy being active again.
    • Goal #2 – Use this journey to spotlight all of the positive changes going on in Detroit.

    Moving to Josh 2.0 and Detroit 2.0 – Watch Detroit Tri!
    Detroit’s downfall has been well chronicled in the national media and I followed this from across the country with great intrigue. As a twenty-something college graduate, born, raised, and educated in Michigan, I was on the first plane out after my college graduation in search of the bright lights and exciting opportunities of the metropolitan life which did not seem possible in “The D”.

    My new career consisted of frequent travel, where I spent much of my time in restaurants, bars, board rooms, sporting events, planes, and coffee shops. I learned two important lessons in this time; first I had to be prepared for the reaction when saying I was from Michigan and be ready to listen to all of the negative opinions of Michigan and Detroit which would inevitably follow. The second phenomenon I discovered from my travels, was young, successful business people who were born, raised, and educated in MI are all over the country, because they did not think these opportunities were available in Michigan.

    These lessons made me want to move to the Detroit area and be part of the positive change. My beautiful wife and I were married in May, and while I could not talk her into moving downtown Detroit, we settled in the nearby suburb of Royal Oak and have been impressed with all of the positive actions going on in the metro area.

    As part of my training I will look to meet, interview, and have training sessions with business leaders, non-profits, politicians, and young entrepreneurs who are pushing Detroit into Detroit 2.0. These discussions will then be part of my social media reports as we track my progress in training and the progress of Detroit!

    My hope is that as the pounds fall off so will the negative perceptions that have long plagued my home state and the city of Detroit. Opportunities for young, talented, and driven people to succeed are everywhere in this area. I will bring America along for the ride as we learn how to become part of the Fit Nation together and discover the city that as Chrysler so eloquently put it, “Has Been to Hell and Back”!
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