I’ve showed this picture before.
That’s me back in 2006.
I was 162.5 pounds.
What if I told you that between that time and the end of 2010, I managed to let my weight increase by over double? When I stepped on the scale on 1/1/11, the day I decided I was going to take charge again, I weighed 335 lbs. I haven’t been very public about that bit of information. Yeah, to a certain degree, I was a little embarrassed that I had let myself go that far, but the main reason was that (as I’ve brushed upon before) weight wasn’t really the main concern; if I was going to embark on moving toward a healthy lifestyle, it was going to be because I wanted to feel better.
The last few weeks have reminded me that using the scale to track progress is morally defeating, but, like anything, persistence is the key to achieving goals.
210 pounds. That was my goal, and it was set by me and a professional trainer from Vent Fitness with whom I had consulted.
Since returning from the honeymoon in May, I’ve been consistently dropping weight. And my persistence even kept that going through pizza season. Up until a couple of weeks ago, the rate at which I was losing was very linear and predictable, and my routine and diet stayed the same. But just when I thought I was going to reach the end, things flat-lined for a couple of weeks. I was sitting at 212 lbs for about 2 weeks. It was anguishing. I pushed through, and finally made it to the goal this past Friday.
For those keeping count, that makes 125 pounds total that I’ve lost in 1048 days. Some people I know don’t even weigh 125 pounds!
All along, I did whatever I wanted. When I wanted to eat something indulgent, I did. Sometimes, I found foods to work around cravings. Pretzel M&Ms have been helpful to keep on the almost straight and narrow, as they aren’t terribly calorie dense and hit the crunchy, chocolate, salty, and sweet cravings.
The main key was that I was active.
I’ve talked at length of how things like FocusMaster and DDP Yoga have helped me to keep moving. In the last few months, these programs have helped me to economize my time working out so that I could focus on training 12 times a week and not get burned out. You’d be amazed at how productive just 30 minutes of exercise can be. And the best thing about these programs is the ability to modify to meet my skill level. They’re also activities that I like for various reasons.
For the first 2 years of trying to get into shape, I remained very stubborn and had an old-school mentality that I had to strictly focus on cardio and weights to keep seeing results. That stubbornness led to two things: (1) over-working and (2) mentally burning out. There’s nothing worse than the feeling that you have to spend 6 times a week for 50 minutes on an elliptical trainer. I was doing that for a while, and it was inefficient and mentally exhausting.
By switching routines to more effective shorter routines, it helped me with the physical and mental drain.
Speaking of the mental aspect, the one thing that has really helped me was to remove the word “can’t” from anything pertaining to any of this. When you start putting the mental defeat aspect into it and start thinking you can’t, then you won’t. Plain and simple.
I’m amazed with the things my body can do now. A year ago, I could barely cross my legs. Now, my flexibility has dramatically improved, and I’m doing things that I once thought were impossible. I’m even able to hold black crow for more than 5 seconds.
And I’m not stopping. Now I’m starting a new mission. That is, working on building strength and flexibility and finding the balance between diet and exercise to maintain this weight. I don’t want to lose any more. I want to push the limits of what my body can do. And I will.