SPORTS, FITNESS & DANCE

Breaking Barriers NOT Bones: Life With Osteogenesis Imperfecta

Rare Disease & Syndrome

Tony Jacobsen

Being Born Broken

My name is Tony Jacobsen, I was born with Osteogenesis Imperfecta (O.I.). It’s a rare bone disorder that makes my bones brittle. I’ve broken bones nearly 70 times throughout my life, I’ve had 12 surgical procedures, and I have 4 steel rods in my bones; one in each femur and one in each tibia. Since most of my breaks happened when I was younger, I spent the majority of my childhood in a wheelchair. Once I entered high school, my legs became a little stronger, so I was able to get out of the wheelchair and start using crutches.

Taking My First Steps

When I turned 24 years old, I had a final operation on my legs and it was at that point, I was actually able to walk and take my very first unassisted steps. I was happy that I was able to get out of the wheelchair and off the crutches, but from that point on, I led a very inactive lifestyle because I was scared. I didn’t want to break any more bones. I had built up a lot of mental and emotional barriers that kept me from being physical.

Broken Spirit at 42

Throughout my 20’s and 30’s, I didn’t do anything physical and I didn’t eat well. I was really trying my best to not even think about my disability. When I turned 42, I found myself in the worst shape of my life. I had ballooned to 170 lbs, I was taking medication every day for heartburn, and I couldn’t walk up a flight of stairs without using the handrail. To top it off, I went for a physical that year, had an EKG done and I was told that I might have had a small heart attack. I was devastated. I knew something had to change. I had to change the way that I felt about my disability. I couldn’t be scared anymore. I spent so many years denying who I really was and I knew that I had to embrace my disability if I ever wanted to disable it.

Breakthrough to Transformation

I finally flipped the switch. I started exercising safely and eating better, and I worked hard. Not only physically, but I pushed through the mental and emotional barriers that I had created within myself about my physical abilities. Within 8 months, I transformed. I got stronger, I dropped 40 lbs, and I started doing physical activities I never would have thought possible. I was the kid in a wheelchair who people thought would never walk, and I ran in my first 5K! I was the guy on crutches who had trouble walking up a flight of stairs and now, I’m jumping! I’ve been able to transform and break through major barriers in my life; Not only physically, but emotionally and mentally.

My Mission to Help Others

And now that I see and feel the power that comes with transformation, I want to help others do the same. Through my books, my speaking engagements, as a certified personal trainer, and through my online programs, I’m doing everything in my power to share my story, give guidance and support, and really spread the message that you too can disable your disability and live the healthy, high-powered, happy life you deserve!

Get In Touch

Visit my website to purchase my book and find my online programs: http://www.disableyourdisability.com

I'm also available for interview and speaking engagements: http://bit.ly/tonytalks

Watch and subscribe to my YouTube channel: http://bit.ly/tonyonyoutube

And connect with me on social media:
Instagram/FB/Twitter: @iamtonyjacobsen

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