Blog : Food & Health

Cleveland Veterans

Cleveland Veterans



June 26, 2017
Contact: Kristen Parker – 216-301-9462 /

MEDIA Note: Calling all Veteran’s to join us for a “Super Bowl Sundae” event hosted by NFL Legend Earnest Byner and his non-profit, “The Healing Dawgs” at the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center. Earnest Byner will be promoting the VA Resource Fair to advocate for serious issues confronting the Veterans and support the VA’s commitment to provide resources.

NFL’s Earnest Byner along with his foundation “The Healing Dawgs” and the Cleveland VA Medical Center will Host a “Super Bowl Sundae Social” and VA Resource Fair to Promote Veteran Wellness – Mind, Body and Spirit.


CLEVELAND – Veterans and their family members will be treated to a unique opportunity to meet Former NFL Player and Coach, Earnest Byner along with some other teammates for a “Super Bowl Sundae Social” at the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center at 10701 East Blvd., Cleveland, OH 44106.

The event will be held Sunday, July 30th from noon until 2 p.m. in the medical center’s Rec Hall and will include Byner sharing his inspirational story of overcoming the famous “Fumble” during the 1987 AFC Championship between the Browns and Broncos. Veterans will engage in a question and answer panel with former NFL Players from the Cleveland Browns. ”The Original Dawgs”. Veterans are invited to participate in a Super Bowl/Cleveland trivia game with prizes, and conclude with an “Ice Cream Sundae Social”.

Byner is humbled to partner with the Cleveland VA Medical Center because he understands the connections between some of the medical issues that former NFL players and former Military personnel have in common and need to heal from such as Concussions/TBI, Suicide and the epidemic of Drug Use. Byner and The Healing Dawgs will continue to partner with the community to advocate for Veterans, children and the homeless to promote healing of the mind, body and spirit, and to teach how to love from the inside. “Together we are working to provide hope for our future,” said Byner.

Veterans are encouraged to bring their discharge paperwork to verify healthcare eligibility. Representatives from Veteran resource groups will be on-hand to provide information and assistance to Veterans in attendance.

For more information about this event or to coordinate a media interview, please contact Kristen Parker at 216-301-9462 or

The Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center is the hub of the Northeast Ohio VA Healthcare System, providing and coordinating primary, acute and specialty care for Veterans. Focusing on treating the whole Veteran through health promotion and disease prevention, the Northeast Ohio VA Healthcare System delivers comprehensive, seamless health care and social services for more than 112,000 Veterans at 18 locations across Northeast Ohio.  The Northeast Ohio VA Healthcare System contributes to the future of medicine through education, training and research programs.  For more information visit

Mental and Physical Stretching

As the body needs stretching to operate optimally, so does the mind. As with the body, when it hasn’t been stretched in a while, it resists what you are trying to do. If you fight with it, then it will continue to resist. If you have the courage to breathe deep and slow thus taking the attention away from the pain then you are feeling. Focus the attention nice and slow so that there is a relaxing and the muscle becomes more pliable.

When dynamic changes have come in our society, it was painful mentally to those who resisted. Those who took the time to observe, think and breathe were more able to look at universal truths and have their mind stretch in such a way that the adjustment wasn’t painful for them.

With some changes we have to be forced to deal with and accept because we get stuck in our ways. We become less flexible when we resist evolution. The world will evolve, so we should be on alert regarding. Then when our minds are forced to stretch, it won’t be as mentally painful as it is when we are inactive or active, but don’t stretch our muscles.

We should do our best to stretch both mentally and physically, so the body and the brain can absorb the change and growth needed to live a healthy vibrant life.

Power of Adaptation


1987 play-off game…Colts vs Browns in Municipal Stadium. It was one of Cleveland’s familiar wind off of Lake Erie cold days. It had been so cold, the field was frozen. For the most part, the green that was on the field was painted.

So, what does a running back wear on this type of field? There is no penetrating it with traditional cleats. Tennis shoes may work, but I may slide where grass is actually present.

Luckily, I have been playing hard firm and fast tracks in a pair of Pony shoes. They were a mixture of astro shoes and mini cleats. I decided to go with them.

That adaptation enabled me to play one of the finest play-off games, from a running backs perspective, in Cleveland Brown’s post season history.

The power of adaptation is a remarkable tool! As humans, we have a choice how we view each day. Each experience is a chance to exercise our decision making ability.

Granny use to say ” if they give you chicken sh_t make chicken salad.” Luckily I haven’t actually had to eat that type of chicken salad, but I have used that metaphor in all aspects of my life.

Adapting to the circumstances and situations we are provided in life, is a constant choice!

When you are in a position where you have no choice in making the situation like you want it, make the situation work out anyway. The ability is within you to make the necessary adjustments.

It’s a decision!

If you feel you don’t have the wherewithal, it’s no shame in seeking advice. My advice from Granny provided a lifetime of knowledge. That knowledge ultimately turned into wisdom.


Body, Mind,Spirit

Body, Mind,Spirit


Continual Rehabilitation Poem

A body will return to its natural state of rest Naturally, it’s not wanting to stand for a test. It’s not always agreeing to do it’s best. Push it, coddle it or give it a caress.

When I pulled my hamstring during the Brown’s summer camp in 1994, I found myself looking at some of the healthy players and wondering why they were healthy and I’m not.

I had to be in the training room healing, instead of on the field competing for the starting job. Rehab was tedious. It was a weakening then a strengthening and healing process.

Working my way back from my first hamstring injury was totally different than, lets say, an ankle sprang. I thought I could work through it just like I had done with my other injuries. It was different!

Pinched nerves from my neck…no problem, ligament damage in my knee…come onnnn, dislocated fingers…piece of cake. That left hamstring!!! I tried to work through that and bam! I’m down another two weeks. It still hurts me to this day.

It still needs rehab. If I don’t workout, stretch or give it ice and the hot tub, it lets me know. Shiggadee…it hurts without that. Imagine how it would be if I didn’t rehab. The process is continual.

As we continue in the aging process, the natural inclination of the body is to lose muscle and tone. Atrophy happens quickly to a body that is at rest consistently.According to my studies, exercise in general is recommended for us all. For me, it’s most important for those that have played sports and suffered injuries. Yes! It’s going to hurt, but the alternative may be even worse.

Getting overweight, losing all your flexibility and dealing with the issues that come with those, is your alternative. Quality of life is at stake.

I’ve always been a little vain. I like to fit into some of my old clothes and like how I look in them. Is Coogi out of style? Hmmmm

Whatever the motivation, get yourself some rehab for your body, mind and soul. Self efficacy, health, vanity or rehabbing an old injury, may be your motivation. What ever it is, get it done.

NFL Play 60 does a good job encouraging our youth. Getting kids started in sports or exercise in general is key. Starting a lifestyle of exercise early is important. On the other hand, it’s never to late to get started.

Check with your Doctors first!

Take care of you so… “You” can take care of others.

Spirit, Mind, Body