My name is Ethan. I’m middle-aged, and I’m from Minnesota.  It’s a wonderful place.  I’ve also lived in Ontario, Canada and Kentucky – each equally wonderful in their own ways. Trying to find a way to describe myself has always been difficult. Most often we end up being defined by others in the simplest terms and in the most convenient definitions, usually to fit a narrative not our own.  I resist subscribing to those labels and instead choose to forge my own narrative.

So who am I?

I’ve worked in management for non-profits, for-profits, higher education, fundraising etc…but the underlying theme is that my career has revolved around systems, operations, and people.  Whether it is a business, an institution, an idea, or a community, I like to see them grow and prosper. Usually that happens through the prodigious use of spreadsheets. (Just kidding! … actually, no, I’m not, I love analysis.)

I have a background in Art History and Architecture. To this day I remain amazed and fascinated by the enduring qualities in art that describe who we are as a people.

I also love music and play guitar. Watching hockey, the World Cup, the Olympics, and the Tour de France are favorite pastimes – and have been known to utter the occasional expletive at the TV even though I know they can’t hear me. 

My activities of choice are biking, walking, reading, writing, tinkering with gadgets (Q, from the James Bond films, had the best job ever!) and on pleasant days I can often be found enjoying the outside while lounging on my deck.

My Challenge:

I’m also very overweight. I have lived with that condition all of my adult life. In the last 18 months I have made great progress and lost 182 lbs (so far – with more to come) and it’s changed how I live. 

I know that many people have also struggled with weight, and for each of us it is a unique challenge.  Some may only need to lose 20 lbs …but some, like me, may need to lose hundreds.  Regardless, what works for one individual may not work for another.  The mental and physical hurdles may be immense for some and be nearly nonexistent for others.  So the end result is that each of us needs to make our own map, blaze our own trail, and figure out how to be healthier versions of ourselves.  That’s why I am here now.  

It’s my hope that this website contains enough ideas, thoughts, recipes, tools, and encouragement to clear those obstacles to progress and help you to navigate the Unplowed Road.

-Ethan (9/20/2018)