Dr. Stephanie Persondek

Dr. Stephanie Persondek headshot
I’ve been there, right where you are standing. I’ve struggled just like you. I’ve started and stopped over and over until I felt defeated. And then I finally knew I needed to ask for help.

I cannot remember a time in my childhood I was not chubby, big boned, or fluffy. I grew up listening to hurtful comments, shaming and teasing. I developed a thick skin and learned to push on. I recall dieting as early as grade school, going to specialists and joining programs, taking supplements and contemplating procedures, even as young as middle school. I just kept gaining until I reached morbid obesity at the end of college. It finally started to affect my health.

After college graduation, I started preparing for a 3-month medical service trip to South America. I had never been on a trip by myself, and I had never been this far from home. I knew I couldn’t participate in all of the adventures with my current health. And then my fire was lit. I found my determination, my “why.” I lost 50 pounds before my trip by changing my diet and committing to exercise. And on that trip, I swam with sharks and sea lions, climbed volcanoes, paraglided over the ocean, sand boarded on the desert, flew in a 4-seater plane over ancient ruins, white water rafted in the jungle and had the experience of a lifetime. I knew my life was changed forever.

From that point, I was committed to never let my health get in the way of my dreams. I continued to diet and exercise while continuing to lose and then maintain my weight. I even became Johnny G Spinning Certified, before spinning was cool. I taught exercise classes through medical school, and I continued to pique my interest in bariatric medicine.

Now, nearly two decades after deciding to advocate for my health, I am still committed. I’ve maintained my goal for well over 10 years. It’s a constant journey. As in every journey, I have successes and challenges. I’ve developed a renewed passion for healthy food, and I have found a love for exercise and movement. My key to success is finding balance. Do what you love. Don’t force something that is unattainable. And don’t travel this journey alone. I have found support from family, friends and communities across the country. And now it’s my turn to support you.

I am committed to helping you find a program that best fits your needs. No two people are the same. We will explore together many diet and exercise plans, medication options and even surgical consults, deciding which will set you up for continued success. I only recommend evidence-based approaches that are proven, with hard work, to be long lasting and attainable.

Let’s travel this journey together. Let’s find your “why.” Let’s light your fire and find your determination. We can do this together. Nothing can stand in your way.

Read more of my journey in my blog “A Taste of Her Own Medicine,” to hear more about my “Why”
“And just like that
we were on our way to everywhere.”

– Emily Lord