Bill Phillips Twitter
The opinions expressed are solely those of the author.
Bill Phillips is a 56-year-old fitness entrepreneur and writer who has been in the industry since the late 1990s when he founded EAS Nutrition. His book, Body-for-LIFE reached number 1 on The New York Times Bestseller list. He has worked with two Super Bowl championship teams, carried the Olympic torch during their 2002 relay race in Salt Lake City, and granted more than 500 wishes for sick children.
So, yes, Phillips is a stallion who has apparently spent decades of his life prioritizing his health and fitness and doing his best to be one of the good guys in the fitness industry.
And that's what the delta variant of COVID-19 did to him:
The Delta variant was first discovered in India in December and is the predominant strain of COVID-19 today. A study from the UK found that children and adults under 50 are about 2.5 times more likely to be infected with Delta. Those who have been vaccinated can still get the virus, but do far better than those who haven't been vaccinated.
On June 25, Bill's wife Maria took him to the emergency room after contracting the coronavirus for the second time, stating on Facebook:
When we got there, Bill's oxygen level was 52%. ... The doctor then tried a BiPAP machine, but the incessant coughing made it impossible for Bill's oxygen levels to stay within reach. ... he would either die on the table or we could try to intubate him. ... he was put into a medically induced coma. He was sedated, then paralyzed, and then I stood in the corner and watched the intubation happen within a minute.
On July 12th, Maria posted another FB update:
If you are not vaccinated please remember that the time has come to protect yourself and your family from immeasurable pain and trauma.
This photo is from July 12th. Covid can do that. If Bill Phillips can be put on a ventilator for a month, shedding 60 pounds of muscle, and using all of his energy and will to fight for his life, it can happen to anyone.
Bill took a few steps today for the first time in 45 days. He's still in intensive care and making progress every day. We have a long way to go and we are so grateful for the opportunity to heal.
Bill Phillips is an example of how, without vaccination, COVID-19 can beat even the fittest and health-conscious of us. To date, Bill has lost 50 pounds of muscle and continues to have difficulty walking. He's finally recovering and posted an update and warning on his Facebook page:
Sure, you can survive this Covid virus, but building your life from scratch is the part no one is talking about. My decision not to get vaccinated almost cost me my life. Don't make the mistake I made, protect yourself and your family, and get vaccinated ASAP.
The COVID-19 Delta variant is more contagious than the original strain, which ruined 2020 and killed more than 620,000 people in the United States. Recently, COVID has again ravaged communities with high rates of unvaccinated people.
Here are more worrying statistics:
Other states are seeing spikes in infections and hospital admissions: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, and Nevada. That Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that approximately 59.2% of Americans have received at least one dose of the vaccine and 50.4% are fully vaccinated.
These are facts, not opinions or political stance, or an attempt to belittle people who are hesitant to vaccinate. And the fact is, had Bill was vaccinated, this horrific and heartbreaking situation could very likely have been avoided, or at least far less severe.
If you're someone who trains hard, has a balanced, nutritious diet, and prioritizes health and wellbeing, but has stayed unvaccinated, I think Bill's experience might be worth knowing.
For those who are not yet interested in getting vaccinated against COVID-19:
Information about the COVID-19 vaccine
Find a COVID-19 vaccine location near you
For anyone wanting to send Bill a card or note:
P.O. Box 19160
Golden, Colorado 80402