Friday, December 31, 2010

Zeusmeatball is signing off...

Until 2011! hope everyone has a happy and safe New years eve and a great 2011!

Another year down and hopefully another few pounds.

That's all I got for 2010...

As Ever

Survey says! and he weighs....

On December 3rd I decided that I would at least until April weigh in only one time per month to show my progress on ye olde blog and since it happens to be a Friday and the last day of the year onto the scale I went. I was hoping to end at 319 pounds because at that weight I would be on track to hit my "to be 275 pounds" goal by April first and I thought that I had it! but alas something happened that I am unaware and this week my weight moved very little and in fact went up slightly from where it was last week. This morning I woke up and went straight to the scale to see what the verdict was and I was greeted with a 324 on the dimly lit blue display screen, that equates to just under a 10 pound loss for the month of December. My beginning of the month weight was 333.8 so this mornings weigh in is a solid 9.8 pounds over the last four weeks which isn't bad at all considering that Christmas fell within that time frame and I did have a couple drinks on Christmas day. My lowest number on the scale this month was 320.4 pounds last Friday morning and 322 on Tuesday and that number crept up to the 324 that was there this morning so I don't know if the couple beers that I had on Christmas wreaked havoc on my system and I just haven't recovered or if something else is happening to make the number push upward over the last few days.

As of right now I am 49 pounds away from hitting that goal of weighing 275 pounds, I will need to lose an average of 3.7 pounds per week from now until April first if I am to make that goal date. Losing 3.7 pounds per week is unlikely but not impossible and that will remain my goal because I say so! Making it as lose to or below that number is going to be treated like its my job, in fact I think that I will try and come up with some kind of "weight loss bonus" for if I am able to do it kind of like my Tattoo or the motorcycle that I am buying when I get to my ultimate goal weight. My experiences with losing more than 200 pounds and keeping it off for more than 2 years now have stuck with me, I make the best choices that I can for any given situation where food is involved and its time for me to push past this comfort zone that I have come into.

When I started losing the weight I was a 500 plus pound man that had no idea on what or how to approach weight loss and a healthy life, now I know what it takes and have a good idea on some of the terms that must be met in order to be successful. My drive was shifted somewhere in the beginning of this year as I settled into being able to do what I want to and I was just enjoying life which is after all a big part of why losing the weight was important because without that life just ain't fun. This year I am in push push push mode once again and making it to my original goal weight is VERY important to me again comfort be damned, indeed I am comfortable in my own skin at this point and am seemingly unchallenged by some of the things that would have stopped me in my tracks just three short years ago.

Three hundred twenty four pounds is what I weight at this very moment in time and that is light years away from the five hundred thirty four pounds that I was when I began this trip to the half even if it is only three actual years. The next time that I step onto the scale for ye olde blog will be January 31st, that date is a Monday but its a month away so it shall be the date chosen and I am hoping that I can get down to that 305 pound mark that I reached back in May by then. Three hundred and five pounds? are you crazy kind fellow? I don't mean to doubt you but that's 19 pounds in 31 days right? Yes, yes it is and its what I am going to shoot for, if I don't get it I am ok with that but if I aim high I suppose it may just push me harder, and a fella can dream right? I will need to lose 3.7 pounds per week to stay on track with my April first goal and 4.7 pounds per week to hit that insane 305 pounds this month mark but I'm going for it, I must, I have to and I am.

There is the weigh in for the month and my ideas for the next step in my regimen, will I make those goals? that I am unsure of but the thing that I am sure of is that I will do everything in my power to reach my health goals, might I stumble now and again? sure thing bubba but the most important thing is that I keep on keepin on until I get there.

That's all I got for today.

As Ever

Thursday, December 30, 2010

A Weight loss story 3 years later, oh yeah and a weigh in!

So here we are and tomorrow is the day, you know the one where I weigh in for the blog again, its been about a month since I last stood on the scale and reported here and its been a decent month in lieu of Christmas being involved. I have again adopted a strict version of my plan, I eat my allotted calories, workout each day and drink enough to cover all of that not to mention getting enough sleep each night and its been decent to me. Addicted to the gym once again am I but its worth mentioning that I am really missing my bike rides out on the trail and to make matters worse Wify got me a new Garmin 305 forerunner for Christmas! I still need to get the bike mount for it because she said "I wasn't sure if you would want it so I didn't get all of the accessories to go with it" You what??? its exactly what I needed to make my rides more than just rides.

My new Garmin Forerunner 305 on my wrist, yes its huge! fortunately for me it will be on my bike more than most of the time.

I have been writing my thoughts on weight loss in this blog for three years now! Man does time fly! and I have changed myself physically in that time but maybe more importantly I changed the way that I think about certain things and I believe that is the key to living healthily. When I began down this road I weighed 534 pounds and was unsure that there was an alternative to getting a surgery to help me get the weight off of my bones but I decided that taking things into my own hands and forcing a change was what I needed to do. I am not even close to the same person that I was back in Jan 2008 when I started writing here, when I began I looked at food as more than what it is and it was a pleasure item, now I look at it in a way where for the most part food is fuel and nothing more.

There will be hundreds if not thousands of people scouring the internet for dieting help in a few days, tis the season I suppose and many of them will find a TON of information on how to lose weight along with some ads for Miracle pills and plans like the Jujuberry 7.2 plan. Some of the lucky ones will find out that changing the way we look at food and exercise is a great place to start with a new regimen of balanced eating and getting more movement into each day, there is no miracle pill! none, Zero, Zip, Nada, Zilch! Perhaps someone will find my blog and read a few posts and see that it is possible to drop the weight that literally holds us back from doing what we want to and need to do in life and maybe they will start down a path to better health themselves. I can't tell anyone what will work for them, I have no written out plan with step by step instructions for weight loss but I really do like the fact that there are things written in my blog that can help people out that are in a situation similar to the one I was in when I began writing my thoughts here.

There he is, the guy that so many months ago decided to make a change with how he lived.

I have completely changed...wait I said that already, but its so true I thought that I would say it again! I actually get excited when I find a new exercise to try out or when I realize that I picked up speed on my bike or the workout in the gym got easier, there is so much that I do these days that i was unable to do back when I weighed 534 pounds. There was a time when I literally loathed random people that would walk down the street that I lived on "Who would want to go for a walk just to do it? Morons" seriously! that thought actually formed in my head. I am still just above that 300 pound mark with my current weight yet I am seemingly unlimited in what I can do, I mean I ain't the fastest fella out there but I can run if I so choose right now and that's not something that I could have said when I first started. This coming year will be the year that I hit that mark in the sand, yep 275 pounds here I come, the plan is to go beyond that figure and the way that I feel right now I have a feeling that I will get there.

My world has changed in more ways than even I believed it would with the weight that I have lost and the whole ride is right here in plain sight which is one thing that I know has helped keep me on track over the past couple of years. I don't beg for people to follow me (though I do enjoy seeing that number grow!) and I have never fallen into the whole game of trading posts for posts on any of the more popular blogs to drive traffic, My blog is for me first and foremost, call me selfish if you must! all of the people that I get messages and emails from is an AWESOME bonus of me writing. I have made friends along this journey online as well as in real life and again its something that I never would have expected when I sat down that first day and typed out my very first post on a blog that I never expected to make it past a month maximum and that is what you call cool folks!

Tomorrow morning will show in a poundage number what I have done this month for my weight, whether it is up or down it will be posted for anyone who cares to take a look and the band shall play on, this 275 pound line drawn in the sand is getting crossed sooner than later if I have anything to say about it.

That's all I got for today.

As Ever

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Just a fat guy with a laptop..nah....

In eleven days I will have been writing in this blog for three years, I appreciate everything that I have learned in those three years and to say that my life has been changed in that time would be an understatement. Back when I began down this road to better health I thought about how far away a year was, then thinking about how much I weighed I wondered how many it would take for me to get where I needed to be with my weight and came to the conclusion that it didn't matter as long as I took that first step, so I did. Remembering back to when I was up above 500 pounds and the way that I felt all of the time could upset me if I let it because the state of mind that I was in back then was not where I should have been, imagining that I could lose the weight was just that, it was an unreal feat in my head.

Today I am probably as healthy as I have ever been in my life and am completely happy and appreciate everything that I have because of the decision to do something about the extra weight. This blog has served as a platform for me to anonymously in the beginning and not so anonymously after about the first year lay it all out there and put my thoughts and struggles as well as the triumphs into type written word. Trust me when I say this, it is not really my personality to put things out there for anyone to see I am for the most part a pretty private person which is why a lot of my life that is not weight loss related does not make my blog. I have a feeling that this year will be very interesting for me on the health front as well as personally and the two may clash or meshing perfectly could be in my stars but that's to be found out in a few months.

Making my goal weight of 275 pounds in 2011 is important to me, something personal that is happening makes it that way and I am going to do everything in my power to make it so. It's simple right? as long as I eat right and do my part with the exercise the weight should come off and it will. In the three years of me writing this blog I have received so much support from people that I don't know on a personal level past the comments and email that I get from you all and there is even 377 of you that chose to click the follow link on the sidebar of my blog! I can remember when I hit 100 followers and it felt unreal that there were 100 people that cared enough to follow along with my random fat dude typage each day and I am now approaching 400 "followers" not too shabby for a fat kid from a bad neighborhood.

Nine days from now we will have reached the last day of 2010 and I will post up the weight for the month, I have put in the work and am sticking to the plan so I am expecting a decent drop from the beginning of the month weigh in. In the grand scheme this is just another post from the fat kid, but for today it serves as the chicken scratch that will make up post number 816 and with that the end has come to this episode of as the fat guy turns.

As Ever

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Decisions and a new project for the winter.

Keeping on track has become less of a chore lately, food equals fuel and that's all is how I see it right now. Wake up, eat breakfast, do chores, hit the gym at some point, drink enough water/Green tea and get enough sleep is my life and I can't let anything get in the way of that. Christmas is here in a few days and there will be a huge dinner I am sure but I will not go over my calorie limit and will make the best choices from the dishes made, in the past I gave myself the Holiday dinners as a day to just enjoy but I want to show myself that food is fuel and I can enjoy the time without over doing the intake. Changes need to be made if success with a weight loss plan is to be had no matter what plan that is, counting calories, south beach, low carb even miracle pills have limits, if you are not willing to change things up a bit then the weight will not come off period.

1995 Specialized Hardrock Sport, its in pretty decent shape besides a broken twist shifter.

Back view of the new Specialized.

Find something that you love to do and make it a form of exercise, sometimes that's easy as in a person such as myself that loves riding a bicycle or someone that finds joy in running but even walking is enjoyable! I honestly believe that whole once it becomes a habit its easy thang but I also believe that ALL habits are hard to break even the good ones so once we make exercise a habit it becomes just as hard to break that habit as any bad habit that helped get us into a rounder shape. Speaking of biking, I came across another Specialized Hardrock for more than a great price so it's added to the fleet and I will enjoy refurbishing it over the winter and will likely sell it at some point for a decent profit. From my best guess using Bikepedia and going off of components on the bike it is a 1995 Hardrock sport and the only issue that I see with it is a twist shifter that will need to be replaced which shouldn't be too hard to fix and lots of cleaning it up so that it looks as new as possible.

I am lucky, I find working on older mountain bikes almost as fun as cruising down a rails to trails path so I can really get caught up in what I do for exercise in more than one way. By making what I enjoy a part of my weight loss efforts I think that I give myself a leg up when it comes to staying strict with the intake and exercise because if I let myself go backwards riding my bicycle down the trails may not be possible. My life has completely changed since deciding to take control of what went into my body and adding a good solid dose of exercise to just about every day and I wouldn't trade what I have created for myself for anything.

I believe that anyone can do what I have done if the effort and discipline is put in, I was a 534 pound guy with a disk injury in his lower back eating whatever, whenever he wanted to, exercise was but a dream and a shortened life span was surely in that guys future. Making excuses for why I was that way is what was keeping me there and the day that I put it into the simple terms of eat less move more is the day that I began healing myself. Do I have days where my back literally feels like it wants to lay me down on my ass? you bet I do but dwelling on that will only get me into a place where I know that I don't want to ever revisit and it ain't happening. Making excuses got me in a place where I weighed more than a quarter of a ton so I don't do that any more, Being negative and focusing more on that than what I could do for myself also helped me to get there so its just not how I get down these days.

We all have the power to make the right decisions regarding each of our own health and all of the choices that go along with that, will it be cake? or a piece of fruit for dessert tonight? I got my apple ready.

As Ever

Monday, December 20, 2010

How do ya like them apples?

So where were we, oh yeah, I was losing weight and getting healthy and you were reading along with your morning cup O tea. I found something this weekend that was pretty sad, it was my sons birthday and we decided that laser tag would be a good idea so a party was set up and and the big day came but alas I had a problem. On the menu was pizza and unlimited pitchers of soda not to mention the cake, of course I had a solution which was to bring a Turkey subway and a gallon of green tea, easy right? You would have thought so but the small fellow behind the counter with an over exuberant smile and high pitch voice said "sorry sir we don't allow outside food" I explained that pizza and unlimited soda wouldn't work for me that I have certain things that I need to eat and they didn't offer anything he got on the phone to "make an exception" but the party planner came by at that point so we went to our room. Again it was explained to me that "no outside food" was allowed so I said ok and put my tea on the counter in the room, yeah sure I will eat the pizza and drink soda because the smiling people say so.

Long story short of course I ate my contraband food and drink while the kids had their pizza but I found it kind of sad that the only options at a kids party was pizza and soda. I understand it, I mean I am not a food snob in the way that some people are saying things like "pizza is bad therefore no one should have it" and I don't believe having a food that is not exactly good for us once in a while is all that bad of a thing, I love me some rum cake and that's just the way it is but having some healthier options should always be offered. I did get to feel like a bad ass for sneaking in some healthy food to replace what came with the party package and we did joke about how how I was being a bad example to the kids playing the rule breaker role and eating healthy even though it was against the "rules"...wait, not a bad thing. When George Thorogood stopped playing for me and I tossed the wrappers in the trash I did have a tiny piece of the cake and got an earful from Wify for that because of all of the debating with the smiley twins about why I needed to bring the green tea in, but I put it into my excel sheet so its all good.

That is one of the biggest apples I have ever seen next to a normal sized apple.

After the party we ran a few errands while Grandma took my sons friends home after playing an extra game of bowling at the laser tag place and we ended up at the supermarket where I found some super sized apples. Buying one of these behemoth Fuji apples of course had to happen and it weighs more than a pound! 18.4oz to be exact for the one that I brought home and it wasn't even the biggest in the box! I love apples and cannot wait to dig into this thing.

Saturday was a good solid day of! I helped my father move from the first floor of his house to the third floor so to say that I was walking some stairs would be putting it lightly. I woke up Sunday and felt a bit sore from it but not in my legs, my biceps were tight and sore, but this morning my calf's and thighs are feeling it and my weight bumped up a couple pounds from yesterdays weight which I am sure is just water retention from the soreness so no worries. I have 11 days until I post a weight for the blog and we see (well you see) how well I did or how sucky I did for the month on the losses. I know that it's going to be a good month mostly because I know the tight ship that I have been running where my health goes but also because I do check in on the scale for myself almost daily.

The month of December seems to be a long one for me and I am unsure if its because I set myself up with that 31st date to weigh in again or if its Christmas but it will be in the past all to soon and the good food choices that I will be making will be a lasting look for me. Once upon a time I was 534 pounds, now I can literally run up and down 3 flights of stairs all day and only have a little soreness in my legs for my effort where as 3 years ago I wouldn't have been able to help at all. Lives change when we change our lives and make better choices with simple things like what fuels our bodies, put shit in and we will feel like shit, put in good solid food choices and its amazing the way we feel, I live it every day.

You CAN live how you like, it does not take a ton of money, it does not mean that you have to join in on a pre-paid weight loss plan, you don't need Jenny Craig, Weight watchers, Doctor knuckleheads next greatest thingamajig or book, or have pre-packaged food delivered to your door step, a little commitment and a lot of discipline goes a lot further than you might think. I can't tell you that the way I lost weight is the best way or the only way but I can tell you that I eat awesome tasting foods, I indulge now and again and have had great success with the way I do it. Whichever way you decide to hop on the better health train just do it! and do it today not tomorrow and don't wait for January 1st! start now! what have you got to lose besides weight?

That's all I got.

As Ever

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Progress? perhaps and the push will be harder.

I know a guy that took a peek at the scale and could not be happier with the progress that has come in the last two weeks, its the same fella that looks back at me in the mirror each morning. Sometimes I like to look at old pictures from when I weighed 500 plus pounds just to keep me grounded as to how far I have actually come in the last couple of years, every time I look I am amazed. Though the memories are mine, I can clearly remember the struggles as if they were yesterday but somehow I have a hard time believing that it was me in that body. To think about just how much 534 pounds is and then imagine that I use to lug it around with me everywhere that I went may just be the most insane thing that I can think of because it was in fact a feat in itself that I was able to walk up the flight of stairs to get to my bed room.

I have been so focused lately that even though Wify took a day off from work yesterday so that we could finish up Christmas shopping I told her that I needed to be dropped off at the gym at some point because I wasn't willing to miss it for anything. I brought my own food along to carry me through the morning and we had Subway for lunch, my calories for the day came in at 1745 total and there were no huge gaps between meals. Seeing that photo that I took a couple weeks ago photoshopped next to the one where I was down to 305 pounds really kicked my ass, it forced me to realize that no matter how comfortable I am right now in my own skin, and the extra skin, that I need to keep going hard until I get where I need to with my health.

The gym for me has been mainly cardio with some light weight lifting tossed in for good measure, I have started doing push ups at home again like in the beginning and that's been my workouts. I miss riding my bike, That bike is sitting lonely in the bedroom begging me to take it out for a ride but I am afraid when the man in the magic box says that its 2 degrees outside with the windchill I must pass. Yeah yeah, I know that I should HTFU and just get out there and at least take a short ride but that's not what I want! I need to take a nice 20 mile ride down the trail again, I miss it and has become one of my passions. The gym doesn't touch the bike in enjoyment factor but that doesn't mean that I don't enjoy my time at the gym because I do! some of the staff could use some training with their people skills lately but I am not there for anything other than bustin' my arse so no worries on that...for now.

Focusing on myself again I know that I will be where I want to be in short time, pushing myself to get down to that goal weight of 275 pounds in basically my job right now and I am not planning on stopping until I get there. The goal is just that, a goal, I have a feeling that I will get below that initial low goal weight and I have a goal of hitting 267 pounds too because at that weight I will have lost 50% of my total high weight.

Will he get there? will this once 534 pound man be able to remove 50% from his highest weight? I have a feeling that its just a matter of time so stick around and watch.

That's all I got.

As Ever

Monday, December 13, 2010

Dream a little dream.

You will have to say no to the cake, the Cheetoes and perhaps even the pint of Ben & Jerrys Dublin mudslide on this road and there will be blood sweat and tears, not necessarily in that order along the way. Losing weight in my opinion has to be a full time commitment otherwise we lose site of what it is that we are attempting to accomplish, its like being pregnant you either are or you aren't there is no "kinda" when you have close to 300 pounds to lose, Kinda is fine for maintaining but to lose its got to be more than that. Getting comfy on the couch with your sweet heart is one thing, please enjoy! but getting comfy and slacking off with a weight loss plan just ain't gonna cut it Francis so slowly drop the Doritos onto the floor and step away from the bag.

I saw this in the supermarket and I am not sure if this is "diet food" BUT I can tell ya I ain't touchin' the stuff! even if it is "Microwavable".

As of late my "kinda" has turned into down right "holy hell get out of that guys way" on the diet front, to say that I am focused does not even begin to describe where I am currently. I refuse to miss a day at the gym, which really is par for the course but I have been focusing on Cardio mainly with limited but still present weight training lately because I am still above 300 pounds and feel it has to be where I focus for now. Getting ahead of myself could slow me down and until I get below 300 pounds its the cardio first train for this guy because like that photo from August 2007 that started me down this road the image that I took last week pissed me off. My life has changed in more ways than I can put into type written word here for you since making the decision to work on my health and get the weight off and I can only imagine how it will change when I get down to my goal weight and below.

Just me at the gym workin' on me at the gym.

I Honestly cannot remember when exactly it was that I weighed less than 300 pounds but I know that it was younger than my Freshman year in High school. I am pretty certain that there will be no fireworks or parades when I get to my goal weight but I am 100% sure that I will be in a different place than I was when I weighed 500 plus pounds, and almost certainly things will be different than they are now even. I am looking forward to pulling an XL shirt over my head and having it fit, The idea of wearing a pair of jeans where the waist is smaller than 40 is something that I can't wait for and these are things that more than most of the people on the planet take for granted every morning when they get dressed. Silly little goals in a big mans head that mean more than he will ever say aloud is part of the drive that keeps me pushing onward even when stress tells me to give in and strap the bag of Doritos to my face and inhale its contents.

I believe that as long as I keep what I know about losing weight and getting healthy in the front of everything that I do in a day that I will be successful in reaching all of the goals and expectations that I put in front of myself. Any person can have a healthy life if they want it, there will always be bumps in the road and we all have our "issues" but living healthy can happen as long as we stay disciplined because no matter how bad the injury in my back hurts I can eat healthy and do what I can with exercise. Excuses are just that, they are made up reasons as to why we won't can't eat right and or exercise for any given day, put the excuse on the floor with that bag of doritos from earlier and start livin' because no one else can do the work for you.

I'm itching to get to the gym so for today, That's all I got.

As Ever

Friday, December 10, 2010

What have you done for YOU lately..

Though I am not weighing in for the blog until December 31st "last weigh in of the year" if you will, doesn't mean that I am going to stay off of the scale for my personal motivation until then. This morning I am very happy with the weeks work, if this pace keeps up I will make some goals much earlier than I project and honestly that's fine by me. Getting back to what works for me was an easy switch from the goin' easy on my self skating along not gaining but not losing stance that I had taken for a few months.

I'm not really interested in hearing anything negative that anyone has to say currently, I mean if I have to hear it that's fine but its but a glancing blow as I have one thing on my mind right now, to lose as much weight as I can before April 1st. When I began this blog I made an image of a train on a track heading towards a man and it has been the header of my blog since then. The image represented me taking on something that seemed an impossible task like the fella who was going to stop the train. I am right now more like the train in that image because unstoppable is the flavor of the day and like in the beginning I am very focused with the task at hand, I need to get down to my goal weight and push through Mr. 97%.

At the gym I have had a bit of tunnel vision lately, walk in, find my machine, ride it until I am done and leave. Nothing matters to me when I am working out besides making it through the workout, sure I people watch while I am there but I am finding that I am collecting different movements that I see others doing and am adding them to a workout list that I am creating. I have basically made my life into one of Count every calorie, workout every day, drink enough and get 8 hours sleep per night and everything else is going to have to be back burnered for a short time because without my health what do I have?

Short and random was today's post but it is what it is because I am looking to get a good hard workout in today and will need to spend a little more time at the gym than usual so need to get my "around the house" stuff done earlier than normal.

What will you do this weekend to nurture a healthier lifestyle?

As Ever

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Food is just Fuel, and thats all I got to say about that...kind of.

Wednesday was one of those days where I felt like everything went right even when it went wrong, I woke up two minutes before my alarm and even though I have a little bit of a cold right now felt good. My morning cup of tea went down and I began my day, The gym was calling so I wrote yesterdays post and did not wait to go to the gym at my normal time and out the door I went into the freezing cold, did I mention that the lake is beginning to freeze over? At the gym I rode my stationary bike for 35 minutes at a 95RPM average followed by a trot on the treadmill 7% incline 3.5MPH for 30 minutes and home I headed for lunch. My calories came in at 1760 for the day and was very balanced, drinking is never an issue but for the record I finished the day with 2 gallons of green tea and H2O with a side of 3 cups of hot green tea. My son came home from school and decided that he would throw a temper tantrum, I told him that it was coming off of his end of the night ie: You're going to bed early tonight kid and on I went with my positive vibe.

The picture that I took a few nights ago has really impacted me in a positive way even though it literally turned my stomach when I put it next to my 305 shirtless pound photo and I seem to have found my mojo again. I think seeing a side by side of myself looking heavier was what I needed right now, Getting comfortable was getting out of hand and like I said even though I wasn't really gaining weight regularly I had gained some and was just hovering there. Nothing is getting to me right now, I believe that a Rum cake from Luigi's Bakery could be put in front of me with a fork and I wouldn't touch it, yes folks, its like that. Every bite, every ingredient, and every drink is weighed and measured before I will eat it and then it is written into my excel sheet for the record books. Right now as I type I have three meals written into my excel sheet and an amount of calories left over for snacks or smaller meals that will fit between my meals and as far as fuel goes I know where mine will come from all day long. As long as I stick to the excel sheet I cannot fail today where my fuel is concerned, this is how I look at food, it is merely fuel for my body to complete the tasks for any given day.

The concept of looking at my food as Fuel and nothing more is how I did it from the very beginning so its nothing new to me, only recently have I started looking at it as "hmmm I like the way that tastes better than this so I will have that instead" so back to food is fuel I go. Saying food is fuel doesn't mean that I eat cardboard either, looking at my excel sheet for today my breakfast was 2 cups of honey comb cereal with 1 cup of 1% milk, I will have an almond Zone perfect bar before I go to the gym, Lunch is going to be 4oz of panko breaded haddock fillets on 100 calorie deli slims with some laughing cow cheese (my version of a fillet O fish but mine are only 225 calories each), then Dinner is going to be 2 soft tacos/burritos made on 100 calorie tortillas (which are huge, two more than fills me up) and the three meals leaves me 205 calories to play with. The 205 calories will be all fruit, perhaps a pear, a banana and a few grape tomatoes? that's the beauty of it, I can adjust it however I want/need to and I am not ever once in a day feeling hungry or like I am missing out on anything.

In the beginning I was a 500 pound man with few options, many of them led me into a hole in the ground, some led to expensive surgeries, and one led me to where I am today. These days I am a much healthier version of that guy but the same guy none the less, I have a feeling that I will struggle with food for a long time but when I can get my head into this in a way where I turn all cravings and ahem..addictions into logical thinking it is I who runs Bartertown. I have a feeling that on December 31st when I step onto that scale for the blog that anyone that is following my little trek through weight loss will understand just how focused I have become again, lets just say that Wify suggested that I take the day off from the gym today because I have been going so hard, just like old times.

We do in fact control our own destiny, we are the one with the fork in our hands so unless you are tied to a chair with a large ogre of a man forcing food down your gullet YOU are the one that decides what goes in.

As Ever

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Working hard has to replace all of the things that put the weight on.

I find that sometimes re-reading my posts helps me to stay focused and makes me practice what I preach so I often times go over what was written for any given day for my own benefit. I read a lot, what I should say is that I read a lot about health, nutrition and weight loss, whether this is medical stuff or weight loss sites, sports nutrition books or some of your blogs and articles I love soaking it all in and have done so from January 2008. I at times hear people say or read in comments or blogs things that are just down right negative ie: counter productive to weight loss/health and a lot of times I want to write an email to them or wish that I could talk to that person face to face and ask them how they expect all of the negativity to result in positive results? When I am face to face with someone and the subject comes up on a mutual common ground kind of level I will ask, or ask them why they feel that way and give my view about it, sometimes its taken for what it is, just another guys opinion and sometimes I get the gas face and a "yeah whatever dude" look.

My black Chocobo and Dark Knight, oh my!

In yesterdays post I said "working hard has to replace all of the things that put the weight on" that statement made me start thinking about my life in the past and how the weight was put on. The variables are all over the place from buying mostly processed foods and keeping them in the house, playing video games for hours on end to late night stealth ninja runs to the drive through windows of greasy doom. Those things need to change but most of all the negativity is the main culprit in this fight, how can we expect to better our lives if all we do is complain about how terrible everything is all of the time? Negativity breeds more of the same and when its broken down its just a way of giving ourselves a reason to fail that is not on our own shoulders, but alas young Padowan, our destiny does in fact fall squarely onto each of our own shoulders no matter how much we pad it with negativity. Focus on what maddens us and we will never become great, but if the things that chain us down are viewed as something to push us into greatness then that is what we will have, and I whole heartedly believe that statement.

I will never and have never said it would be easy, I mean hell! do you realize how hard it was to cold turkey walk away from a level 75 Dark Knight? or the level 75 Black Mage??, but seriously none of it is easy. We are forced to change everything that we know in order to have the healthy life that we want, and you may not know it right now but you DO want it! When I was 500 plus pounds nothing that you could have said to me would have convinced me otherwise but having been there done that I can honestly say that I did want it even if I convinced myself that it didn't matter. There will be no more sitting for hours in a dented couch watching television with mayonnaise on your tee shirt, the 2 liter of coke will have to be left at the store and paying attention to what goes into the pie hole is priority one not to mention the exercise! see not easy! or I should say not as easy as not caring?

I have made a ton of changes in how I get down, I eat whole foods, I drink green tea like no other, the gym and my mountain bike are my go to for when I have free time and no matter what I don't let negativity into my life. I just don't see the point of complaining and whining about things that I have no control over when the things that I do have control over are where it counts, everyone has shitty things in their lives, not a single one of us is alone when we look at our issues, ALL of us have some! The major difference is that some of us roll with the punches and others look at the negative and beat it a bloody pulp looking for it to be the next excuse as to why they failed. Take those negatives and replace them with something that will help the fight, otherwise the negativity will make it feel like shoveling shit against the tide, again ask me how I know.

That's all I got.

As Ever

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

It's not easy but it IS simple.

Feeling like a sledge hammer in a room full of glass is the current mood in my gray matter, the suggestion would be to step to the side and let whatever is happening happen as you are powerless to stop it. There are times when something else takes over and this is how it was back in January 2008, something had to be done else there could have been a couple of holes in my future, the one in the side of the house who was close friends with the one in the ground. Unexplainable drive thrown into what I am staring at in front of me the feeling of nothing can stop me is thick in the air and it shall be so, I need to get to that line in the sand drawn so long ago. Perhaps the image of me heavier than I was a few months ago pasted next to each other on my screen showed me something that I never want to see again, a heavier version of myself which means that I am not getting down the way I know how to.

The image of me at 305 pounds and the new heavier image is only a 25 pounds difference "Did he just only 25 pounds??" what the shit man! twenty five pounds represents six months of lackadaisical discipline on my part and I say "only"? because of the enormous amount of weight that has come off already perhaps but I know that 25 pounds is not a small number. That number represents more than just six months of meh behavior, it now represents at least a month of hard work likely more, just to get back what I had already clenched in my fist. I opened this post by saying that I feel like a sledge hammer in a room full of glass and I do, it will not be long before I am pushing my way through that 300 pound mark and I say this because my head feels like it did in the beginning and I don't mean pudgy, I mean focused.

I was once a guy that thought he would die not so beautiful at a young age leaving a family behind with memories of me weighing the same as farm animals and motorcycles, The idea of of that saddens me but more so I get pissed off because I allowed it to get that far. Ain't no fuckin' way it will ever be me again, I busted my ass for far too long to be content with "almost" this time around and if you feel like you want to be an almost kind of person that's fine by me but my fate will be decided by me and me alone. I will never say that losing weight and getting healthy is easy, especially when the starting point is north of 500 pounds, it is a daily struggle and working hard has to replace all of the things that put the weight on. Letting up cannot be an option which is a lesson learned for me at this point, I have proven that I can eat almost how I want to, have a beer or three on a Friday night while maintaining a fluctuation weight that goes up and down within a 10-15 pound window but ultimately its not what I want.

December 31st will measure my willpower, it will be the needle on the scale that shows me that the hammer has in fact swung and that pile of glass on the floor will be glad to be out of my way. I started something and its time to finish it, my terms, my way, naysayers and disbelievers be dammed and if there is negativity within you, keep it there because like the witness on my front stoop the door will be closed in your face, you cannot and will not make me conform to your ways.

See? simple.

As Ever

Monday, December 6, 2010

May vs December and a frown turned into motivation.

Who knew? I mean who wouldda thunk that the 534 pound guy could with a little bit of hard work get into a healthy way of living? I know that I didn't when I began. It takes some time to slip into the fact that I am not that 500 pound fella any more, but at the same time I can remember the struggle as clear as I can remember the bowl of home made turkey soup that I had for dinner last night. Recently I talked about how comfortable I had become because I am not really limited in what I do these days and that's all fine and dandy but I did something last night and it upset me to the point where I believe that big numbers will be coming off of the scale for a while.

This should last a couple days!

When I started losing weight I was taking pictures of myself twice per month, no shirt, just skivvies three angles and I photo shop them next to one another each month so that I could see my progress, I will save you from the images by not posting them but I have images starting from Jan 2008. I have not taken a picture since May of this year and for whatever reason last night I thought about it and asked wify to snap a few so that I could see just how far I have back slid since May. I weighed 305 pounds on May 21st and there is a definite difference in that image from May and the one that I took last night and it pissed me off that I was smaller than I am now and with no good reason for the change. I mentioned more than a few times how comfortable I am in my body right now and that photo changed that for me, I think its amazing how we can feel one way and look another because if I didn't have the side by side to compare its easy to convince myself that I am ok where I am at because of how comfortable I am.

I have worked way too hard to get where I am, I have come from a guy that couldn't walk up a flight of stairs comfortably to a guy that looks for something to do because sitting still doesn't feel right. I looked at the photo last night next to the one from May and instantly realized that I have become complacent with my weight loss and half way isn't going to be good enough for me this time around. I have talked about being mister 97% and its kind of a joke between Wify and me but I can't let it happen with my health goals, there is too much that I want to do and reaching my goals with my weight and health are at the top of the list of things that I must do.

All of that being said I had a flawless weekend where my health goes, I ate perfectly and got some movement into my days, drinking has never been an issue for me and that continues to be the matter. Today I will bust arse at the gym, I will eat my allotted calories and I will weigh less tomorrow for my efforts, this is how I will live, it is how I will achieve my goals and my focus must remain on one thing. I set a goal to be as close to 275 pounds as possible by April 1st and there is a very personal reason that date was chosen, I have to stay on task in order to make that goal even though I think that getting at or below 275 by then will be near impossible I still have to try. I would need to drop an average of 3.4Lbs per week until April first to hit 275 and like I said I don't think its impossible though it may be improbable, My life will be all about weight loss once again for a while and I will be using the "if it ain't broke don't fix it" philosophy and go back to basics and what works for me.

Whole foods, lots of fruits and veggies, stay hydrated and get my cardio into every day, this is how I roll, won't you join me?

As Ever

Friday, December 3, 2010

Time to weigh in and my view at the gym.

Taking this new old way back in and this week has gone pretty much without a hitch, I am back in a groove with pre-planning my day worth of calories out on my excel sheet and my calories have been pretty much all whole foods and under budget. In the beginning I looked at this as my job, if I preformed well I got raises, or in my case the opposite of raises and my weight went down, I did it by the book and by that I mean the plan that I created for myself was followed to the letter and I was very successful with the losses each week. Write down every measured bite that went into my mouth and do not veer from that path was how I rolled, exercise every day no matter how I felt was the way of the warrior as it was which has never been an issue for me because I love the feeling after I workout and keeping my tank topped off with green tea and H2O was of the utmost importance, this is how things will be for me from now on again.

The view from my treadmill, no one on the arc-trainers!

Today happens to be Friday and it also happens the beginning of the month so I am going to record my weight at the beginning of each month for a bit because this whole weighing in each Friday thing is meh for me right now. So the first notch in the "what I weigh" belt will come in at 333.8Lbs this morning which is a good amount lower than I was on Monday but it was a not so great eating weekend last week. I have been making myself dinner with the family but adjusting some items so that I can get high calorie bang for the buck like last night everyone else had corn as a side but I chose to have green beans because of the caloric cost being so much lower on the beans which allowed me to have a little more. None of this is new to me but I had slid into just having what everyone else was having no matter what it was for ease of preparation, I am back to being mister measure again with everything and now I will need to focus on staying on this track again like I was in the beginning.

Thinking about the importance of this trek to the other side of 300 pounds I am realizing that no matter how comfortable I am right now and no matter how good I feel that there is more to this trip. I took my life back in the past couple years and now its tome to push myself into uncharted territory by making it below that 300 pound barrier that is seemingly out of reach so says the years of being on this side of it. When it comes down to it I am the only one holding me back at this point, Me and my comfort of not being unable to walk a quarter mile without being in excruciating pain and so out of breath that fear enters the gray matter. I will step aside and allow myself to advance over the bridge without paying a gold piece because there has been enough aggravated assault on my body by its owner over the years for one guy to take.

Friday December 31st I will weigh myself for the blog again, hopefully I am a good amount lighter by then, I am putting in the disciplined time once again and have a feeling that I will push through this go around. There you have it, another episode of as the fat guy turns has come to an end, keep on keepin on and all that fun stuff, that's all I got for ya today.

As Ever

Thursday, December 2, 2010

The 300 pound me talking now.

So here I sit, feeling good about some changes that I recently made to the program and I have a 60 pound monkey hanging off of my back whom I intend on shaking off optimally in the next four months. I have written this blog from the point of view that a 500 plus pound guy would have and that was fitting because it is where I came from but since I have maintained my current weight for more than a year its time to start looking at things from the vantage point of a relatively healthy 300 pound guy that works out regularly. I struggle with the same things on different levels now than when I weighed so much more and with that comes the capability to do more physically and not worry as much about getting hurt because of the weight making me unstable, my exercise is not where I have issues.

Yesterday at the gym looking big just before getting on the treadmill.

These days I struggle with the comfort of being able to do what I want to when I want to and making not so great choices with my intake has come into play because of that. I am not gaining weight so keep all of the "see you're going to gain it all back fat man" in your pocket, I have maintained a weight that fluctuates up and down within about a 10 pound range for quite some time now and it needs to stop. Being comfortable has stopped my progress where losing weight is concerned and I say that part about the weight because I am stronger than I was 6 months ago I am just not lighter, Its a mental thing but then that's what losing weight is all about so its no big surprise.

Because I don't feel like I am in immediate danger of having a grenade go off in my chest at any given moment I have relaxed with my discipline when food is the thing that we're talking about, Partially because of the comfort but that's not the only thing. At the very core of this and as much as I hate to admit it food is an addiction for me if not in the same way a crack addict craves the high it is an issue because as soon as things get stressful I find myself chewing on something. I noticed a pattern within myself where when a situation that is in my life flares, yeah lets say flares because that's a nice way of saying it that still keeps it vague I will have two or three days of not giving a damn about my eating, I still go to the gym, I don't drink less but the calorie counting is out the window. I have at times convinced myself that its ok though because I have after all lost 200 pounds and am not really hindered by my weight any more but I need to get past this 300 pound mark, it is the hardest goal that I have ever faced in my life.

Hardest goal? what the hell are you talking about man? You weighed 534 pounds! this should be cake! Ok saying cake was mean but let me splain something that I have discovered about me and this whole trip to the half thing. I weighed more than 500 pounds for perhaps 8 years of my life, it was foreign to me, struggling to walk, panting just from going up a flight of stairs and thinking about how close I was to being in a hole with a piece of granite scribed with some kind words about the fat man on it was a daily worry. Now if we're going to count how many years I have been right around that 300 pound mark it would be the rest of my adult life right on down to about age 13 or so and honestly this weight feels like where I am suppose to be so its hard for me to see myself weighing less than that. Stupid! I know but hey it is what it is but as long as I see it and understand that its there I think that I can get past it so that's the plan, no matter how comfortable I am right now with the way that I feel I am not happy with what I see in the mirror not to mention the not doing what I set out to do yet.

The time for being comfortable is over because at the very core of all of this I am not comfortable, I need to get down to my goal and I need to do it sooner than later, I know this and anything less than my 100% is just excuses and slacking. When I began this whole weight loss thang I told Wify that as a reward for getting to my goal weight of 275 pounds that I wanted to buy myself a new bike to which she agreed and if I can get my shit together and drop this last 60 pounds I will be below that goal and a new old motorcycle shall be parked in my driveway this summer. I will not do this so that I can buy a bike though, I will do it because I honestly feel that getting down below 300 pounds for good will be something very significant in my life and as much weight as I have lost thus far getting below 300 pounds will be bigger than anything I have done to date for my health.

Lose 100 pounds? done! Lose 200 pounds? done! Live comfortably? done! Tattoo for losing 200 pounds? done! Motorcycle for hitting goal weight? Coming to a theater near you Summer 2011, Weigh less than I did at age 13? Same theater same summer.

That's all I got.

As Ever

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The mental game that is weight loss, a guest post from a good friend.

Today I am going to introduce somebody to you, he will write a sort of guest post and give his point of views, I have only let one other person "guest post" on my blog since I started it back in 2008 and that was my wife. When I started writing in this blog I didn't know how or what it would turn into if anything at all and honestly I believed that I would make it about a week before I stopped logging in to write down my thoughts on weight loss and how things were going but as you know that wasn't the case. I was a 500 plus pound man who had no clue of how many days he had left on the planet because of a whole lot of extra weight and fear was in fact a driving force in how I was able to strictly stick to the plan that I had set in front of myself and I am down more than 200 pounds since Day 1. I wanted to let this person post because of the things that he is finding difficult with his weight loss, there is no fear to drive him its plainly just a lighter weight, he is significantly lighter than I was when I began but a weight loss struggle is at the core the same fight no matter who it is or what they weigh. Here goes nothing, a guest post from someone that I have been friends with for some time now, he struggles as I struggled in the beginning, its usually the case when we press into uncharted waters.

Let me start off by saying thanks to Zeusmeatball for the opportunity to post on his blog, I weigh more than 300 pounds and have for most of my life, there have been times when I was worse off than I am now physically but right now I do believe that I am in the best shape of my life even though the general physical shape of me is round. I do go to the gym almost daily, I lift weights and ride a mountain bike as often as I can but even with that all said I have been over 300 pounds for most of my life and am finding it very difficult to beat the weight down past that mark. I eat mostly whole foods these days but there are times that I feel like having a beer or stopping at a restaurant that I've never been to and sometimes that starts the spiral. I am completely comfortable with my weight even though I know that its too much and that fact gets in my way more often than not.

I have lived healthy for a while now and life gets in the way of my drive quite often and turning to food for comfort is too easy, though I am pretty healthy I don't feel the guy that I see in the mirror matches the fella in the gym. I have about 60 to 70 pounds that I would like to drop, probably more in the long run and am finding it hard to keep built momentum. I drink enough during any given day and I count calories (I learned that from Zeusmeatball) but because there is no death knocking on the door like Zeus had its all too easy for me to justify the extra comfort calories lately. I have goals sure, some of which are pretty important but still I struggle with staying perfectly on track with weighing and measuring every bite that goes into my mouth, I wonder how Zeus did it at times, then I read some of the older posts and the plan is simple.

I am beginning on a journey to get these 60 to 70 pounds off and its very much like the battle Zeusmeatball has fought over the past couple of years but some of the driving forces are a little different. I am not a 500 pound man that struggles to walk more than 50 feet but someone who can go to the gym and work for an hour on cardio machines without too much of a problem, I am not a man that would buckle the rims on a bicycle but someone that can and does ride 20 miles on a mountain bike as often as possible but the food I struggle with. Shifting my concentration to meticulously counting calories, eating only whole foods and making sure that I am getting enough vegetation throughout every day is what I need to do because I have the other stuff down pretty solid. I will take from all of the posts in this blog any information that I can get and use it to my advantage because looking back, if a 500 plus pound man can count every bite that goes in, walk slowly and in pain every day of every week without pause then me at just over 330 pounds can surely follow suit.

Zeusmeatball has written a lot of blog posts over the years, He has saved his life with the changes that he has made in his life and I know that he will be around a lot longer than if those changes weren't made. I look up to him and know first hand how hard the struggle was and is for him, he is the strongest man that I know and I owe a lot to him and because of that I have to show him that I can in fact follow his lead and drop the weight that I need to. Looking down the barrel of having to lose almost 300 pounds and the view of having to lose 70 or maybe even 100 pounds is somewhat different while the cards that must be played are very much alike. Today starts something new for me because I am going to start blogging not as a 500 pound man facing death but as a 300 plus pound guy facing the same kind of struggle from the vantage point of a much healthier version of my former self.

As Ever

The guest post is written and a new struggle has begun, You can read Anthony's blog Here, I hope that you can follow along because I have a feeling that it will be a lot like my blog. Pushing through stresses that I have no control over will have to be extremely important in my life because no matter what else is in that life I have to be priority one else I could find myself back in a world of hurt with my health. I can promise myself and the ones that I love this will never happen and to prove it I will become a machine once again with my health regimen because if I can do it at 500 pounds and in constant pain then I can do it when I am physically capable of stopping the world from turning.

The struggles are cut of the same cloth but the mental is much different once you have pushed your way out of the corner.

As Ever

Monday, November 22, 2010

A chip off the old block

So over the weekend I was cleaning the yard and when I brought a barrel of leaves for the compost pile I noticed something in my mother in laws back yard, who lives next door to us. A HUGE tree had fallen in a summer storm and their chainsaw wasn't big enough to go through the mass of an about 6 foot long section of trunk and its been sitting back there just waiting for me. I thought about how I like to toss "alternative exercises" into my program as much as possible and had the great idea that I would go out and buy an axe and chip this massive section of tree into some primo firewood for the coming colder months. This morning I got to the gym nice and early where I did 25 minutes on the stationary bike followed by some weight lifting, spending time on my shoulders felt good but that chunk of tree was in my head the whole time. Sunday I had run out and bought a shiny new 4.5 pound axe which is an inch under 3 feet long and I decided on the ride home that I would eat something quick and onto the tree I would go.

Da new axe.

Spending about 2 hours with that axe in my hands left me with a pair of blisters and a cracked axe handle but I did make a dent in the chunk O wood and there is a small pile of firewood for my efforts. I unfortunately did not take an after picture of the log and the wood but I will take and post one either later or tomorrow, I know, how exciting wood! but hey! it is alternate exercise for me and I am trying to focus on that to change things up a bit so it is what it is, besides all of the people that say that they can't afford a gym membership can see that there ARE other ways to break a sweat. This chunk of wood has sat where it is for months now and isn't really bothering anyone since its at the back of the property but I know that they would like it to be gone and I know a guy stupid enough to chop up a piece of hardwood that's about 6 feet long and has a diameter of more than 3 feet by hand so its on.

Front view with the failed shallow chainsaw marks from over the summer.

Back side, look at all of those knots! its going to be a challenge to actually cut this entire thing up.

I did make some changes in my calories because I had hit sort of a wall with the 2000 calorie up that I did a few weeks back so I am back to 1700 and on weight lifting days I will add a whey protein shake to see how that goes. Over all the weight is in a downward swing right now and has been coming down faster since I changed it back to 1700 so until I hit a wall with it I am going with the if it ain't broke way of thinking. I lost all of my weight on a 1700 calorie intake and along the way I change things in the way of exercise and calories from time to time and I always seem to come back to the 1700 calorie allotment so that's where I am at right now.

This week is Thanksgiving and I will have some good eats come Thursday but I am not going to over indulge in anything and am bringing a low calorie side dish so that I know I can make good choices come dinner time. Making my way towards 275 pounds one meal at a time and one workout at a time I know that I will be there and that April goal is still on the table, perhaps I will make it to that line in the sand and perhaps I will fall short, all to be found out on a later episode of as the fat guy turns.

Until next time, keep on keepin on, its all that we can do after all.

As Ever

Friday, November 19, 2010

Set the pace.

This morning I awoke from my slumber and decided before my feet even hit the hard wood floor that I was not going to the gym, I was up late, was out of bed 30 minutes early and feeling it. I read somewhere that we should make our beds every morning because it sets the pace for the day so after I hit the head I walked into the living room and asked the boss lady if she needed any help to get her morning going. She could see that I wasn't my regular old not a morning person self and said "Nah I got it" so there I sat thinking about what I would make for breakfast, a bowl of cereal later I sat down to write a blog post. Nothing was coming to mind and nothing exciting happened that would lead me to write a post, nothing health/weight loss related anyhow because there was the incident with the raccoon a jack O lantern and flip flops. Al Roker was running about on the Today show and I began thinking about how my day would play out, should I finish raking the leaves in the yard? perhaps it was time to paint the bathroom or maybe I would just sit on the couch all day and be as useless as I felt.

Not long after I shot down all of my ideas including the one where I had a go at world domination with my new friend the raccoon I thought some green tea needed to be made. Somewhere between the ice cube tray and stubbing my pinky toe I decided that bad attitude and bloody toe be damned, I needed to at least go to the gym for a short bike ride. The gym clothes were placed upon my slowly moving body and I had a time getting the pants pulled up over my dragging ass but I was off. By the time I made it to the gym My attitude improved marginally and I honestly thought "Well, I did technically go to the gym today so now I can go home" Suck it up Butter cup! get your ass in there.

That trip to the gym was very much productive, I started off with a 20 minute bike ride to warm things up and I ended with a 99RPM pace which is great! Off to the weights I went and did my back and biceps, I threw in one shoulder movement for good measure and the weight lifting session took me the better part of an hour, realizing that the mopey uninspired fella that drove me to the gym had gone home it was back onto the bike for 30 more minutes. Covered in sweat now, I return to my car and drive home to make myself a nice lunch, The leaves are raked and I pulled up all of my Canna bulbs to store for the winter.

I just came from my bedroom and ya know what? that bed still isn't made.

As Ever

Thursday, November 18, 2010

That guy

To think that I was "That guy" you know, the one that would eat a whole pizza just because it tasted good and not think twice about the repercussions of the act, in fact I have a friend that would do the same thing and it was normal to us to go grab a couple pies for dinner and scoff them down with a 2 liter of coke. I was the guy that would take the challenge of "So, how many $.99 Whoppers do you think that you can eat at one time?" and run with it, the answer is 8 and because the tab was on someone else I was ok with it and I look back at that and my guess is that it was one of the most calorie laden $8 ever spent. This morning I noticed that it was 8:40am and I had dropped a half gallon of green tea down the hatch already, I thought about how that green tea use to be soda or whole milk and seriously what the hell was I thinking? how could any of that be alright? but that was me guilty as charged.

I worked in a manual labor job at the time and believe me when I say that I got PLENTY of exercise at that job and I think its the reason that I was able to eat the way that I did and not get over 350ish pounds. Seven in the morning until five or six at night digging holes, mixing concrete and installing most of the time steel frame work for five to six days per week gets the blood pumping and in hindsight I can say without a doubt that is why I never gained weight back then. An injury back in about 2000 forced me to take a job that was not physical at all, in fact I spent the next 8 years either not working because of the injury or behind a desk and since there was no movement other than walking to the car to drive to the office I was unable to drop any of the weight that I had gained in the first few years after my injury. I became "That guy" again, You know, the huge fellow pouring himself into the car each morning wearing uncomfortable "business casual" clothing, looking sloppy because none of it fit correctly and of course because of those things did not come off as confident as he could, typical fat dude behind a computer in an office and not because it was a choice but because anything more labor intensive would grenade his heart.

My life is what it is, I wouldn't change any of it mostly because my experiences make me who I am and I can honestly say that I am happy over all. I have everything that I need and most of what I want in life right now, sure there are things that I wish I had done earlier and other things that I want to accomplish that could have been done by now if I had gotten started years ago but at this point in my life things could be much worse. I choose to focus on the positive things in my existence insisting on doing things the way that they need to be done in order for me to stay where I need to be and I can't say that was always the case, perhaps I am evolving? growing up? maturing? I am unsure but I know that focusing on the negative will only drag me down so its just not how I get down these days. I fuel my body with mostly clean food, drinking H2O and green tea exclusively these days and I attempt to get some sort of physical activity into every one of my 24 hour segments of time that you humans like to call a day.

I go to the gym almost every day and I only say almost because I enjoy riding my bike more than I like the gym so when weather permits I try and ride instead, I hike when at all possible and Wify comes with me when that happens, I am always looking to do something physical. My kids randomly drop to the floor and bang out some push ups or sit ups all of the time, they say that kids learn from their parents and I would like to believe that they do it because I do the same, I know its why and I have faith that none of my kids will ever suffer from being obese from inactivity. Every person in my family eats healthy these days, there is no soda in my home, no jars or bags full of cookies and I know that the home prepared meals are full of nutrients and not laced with fats and overly salted calories. Again I am finding that I am "That guy" but this time its something to look up to, no more "So, how many $.99 Whoppers do you think that you can eat at one time?" instead I am that guy that insists on living healthy and making it to the gym each day is a very important ideal to me. I don't care how "picky" or "pain in the ass" I might seem to be these days when it comes to what goes into my body, the key words are "My body" and its the only one that I have so from now on its just how its gotta be.

I like this version of "That guy" so I think that I'll keep it for a while.

As Ever

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Giving up..

What can I do? it feels hopeless and I can't figure out how to fix it, this is how it's going to be forever no matter how short forever is and nothing that I can do will be enough. I know that I need to do something about this or it will do something about me and the story will end up with a fat man in a hole with a rock at one end carved with something nice about him while the earth keeps spinning. Why can't I just stop eating the garbage that passes for food these days? What is it about eating a satchel full of greasy over processed food that is so appealing? yet here I am with a bag full of Del Taco in my lap wolfing down my second cheese burger so that when I walk through the door no one will know exactly how much I ate. I don't want to get up off of the couch any more, simply sitting here has become enough, at least that's the perception that I want people to believe because if they don't believe it then I have to admit that I can't do much more than this, fuck, I have to piss and I can't just sit here and do it on myself, I suppose I will drag myself into the bathroom even if it makes my back hurt.

I made it to the top of the stairs which is awesome but now I need to wait a few seconds so that I can catch my breath and let my heart rate go down, I don't want Wify to know how hard I struggle with every stair and I know that I am only fooling myself because the concern is all over her face day in and day out. Why can I not get a hold on this? something that in theory seems so easy is turning out to be the bane of my existence, will today be the day? the day that my heart hand grenades behind my ribs shredding everything that I know and love as the shrapnel exits my chest? Front page news, 550 pound man had to be cut from his home this afternoon as the scene of a hole in the side of my house graced the news sites and television, no fuckin' way I was going to let it be me.

Diligently counting every calorie that entered my body while walking as far as I could every day feeling a little more confident in what I was doing. I started off by eating the foods that I was use to but in smaller portions, then I began researching types of foods and what they do for me or to me and adjusted my diet to include as many whole foods as possible. Walking one third of a mile at a two and a half year old girls pace became walking at my pace while she rode in the stroller for half of the ride which became her on my shoulders and on and on. The weight was coming off and I was feeling better and better physically, I was missing less and less and it dawned on me that as long as I did my part the rest kind of just happened on its own, who wouldda thunk? When you weigh 500 plus pounds everything that you do is hard, I mean everything and without getting into details I am sure you can use your imagination and get pretty close on most of it but as plainly as I can say it life pretty much sucks when you weigh that much.

I've had people say to me "I have X Y and Z which limits what I can do so you don't know what I am going through" when I say to start small and do what you can while making the commitment to the eating less part priority. That is ALL excuses, I don't care what a person perceives as a roadblock I call them excuses at this point and before you get all "Oh you cocky son of a bitch where do you get off blah blah blah" I weighed more than 500 pounds, yeah that's a quarter ton, I have a disk injury in my lower back and I go to the gym every day currently and am limited only by my own hand, as a 500 pound man I walked while my back was on fire, my heart pounded and sweat poured from every inch of my skin but I kept doing it despite the pain and discomfort. The whole time I walked I held the hand of the most beautiful little girl in the world which was a constant reminder of why I needed to keep going no matter how much it hurt, no matter how slow I went and no matter how uncomfortable I was. I never said that it would be easy and every one of us that has lived or is living the life of a super obese person knows the feeling. Something that I've learned is that I am not and was not the only person with this problem and feeling sorry for myself helped me to get to that 500 plus pound stage of my life and if I had looked in a mirror sooner I may have figured it out earlier than I did.

Now its time to finish what I started because even though I am seemingly unlimited in what I do these days I do have health goals that I wish to reach so its on, I wouldn't recommend standing in my way.

As Ever

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Submit to me...

Lately the name of the game has been get to the gym, count the calories and drink my green tea and H2O, I have been all business at the gym and for my efforts the posts have been coming slower lately. This afternoon I did 20 minutes on the stationary bike at the gym @99RPM's covering eight virtual miles, following that I lifted weights for about an hour covering my chest, triceps and did one movement for my biceps since they were a secondary group being used in one of my chest exercises. My calories as I type this are at 2005 total and I am done for the day at this point, included in those calories is a banana, 2 peaches, 4oz of roasted turkey breast, a whey protein shake and the rest of the menu is very similar, to say that I have been eating cleanly is an understatement. Somewhere along the way in the last week or so my focus has become strongly aimed at getting below 300 pounds as fast as possible without stressing over it and I can see the numbers on the scale in my head as clear as I can see the screen in front of me as I type right now 299.

I have not been posting my weight on Fridays for a couple weeks and that is sort of purposely not on purpose, wait what? Somehow having that "I gotta post my weight on Friday" monkey sitting on my shoulder was screwing with my mojo so the first time around it was literally I lost track of days but last week I decided that I wasn't posting it because I was in a zone and didn't need the false road block to get in the way. I have had no time to write daily because of a non weight loss related situation that has kept me from the keyboard as often as I would like to be here but I am going to try and get to posting on a regular basis once again as some of the smoke is clearing and I actually feel guilty not writing a post! not to mention that I have fallen behind on all of the other blogs that I enjoy reading.

My wife has been a peach the last couple weeks, She has kept me on track with some extra support and we even got out on a hike yesterday which played a part in why I didn't get a post up. We hiked about 4.5 miles much of that was up hill and we packed a lunch that we enjoyed on a "look out point" along the trail that actually over looks one of the bike trails that I ride and that was probably the most awesome lunch that I have had in a long time. I started something back in January 2008 with this whole weight loss thing and back then it was a matter of do I want to live or do I want to die and that made things easy because if there is one thing that is certain its that I want to be around for my wife and kids, for about the last year though I found that I was/am comfortable with where I am a point.

Comfort is one of those things that can sneak up on a fella and slowly take over the drive that was once flowing in his blood, it is after all one of the main reasons that many people try and lose weight right? I LOVE the being comfortable with myself thing, I am finding it harder to find things that I am limited from doing these days and feel that I have my life back not in the respect of anything other than my stamina is there again and I do what I want to. The mere fact that I can on a whim go on a hike with the love of my life and sit in the quiet of the New England woods sharing a moment of just enjoying the company is something that I was not a possibility at 534 pounds and I have been soaking those moments up as they come for the last year.

There is something on my horizon that is very important to me and getting myself back into the groove of dropping weight like its my job is just how its going to be for as long as it takes me to get to my goal weight. The days of letting the comfort be the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow are over, I need to get to my goal so that I can prove to myself that I can in fact go the full 100% and not be mister 97% like I have been in the past, its time to get the last couple few off of my bones once and for all. My lowest weight since starting down this road to better health was 305 pounds back on May 21st, I am right now as I type this post 25 pounds higher than that low number and honestly it aggravates me more than almost anything that I can think of right now but to focus on that would be a mistake.

I am focusing on my calories, I again started weighing EVERYTHING that goes into my mouth a week ago, no more "going off of what I know" with my "eying it" technique. Missing a workout is not an option which is nothing new because as you all know I LOVE the gym and I LOVE the workouts but I am going to push myself harder in order to get to my goal weight which will start by me getting back down to that 305 pound mark that I made back six months ago. I need to get to that initial goal not because of anything other than to prove to myself that I can finish what I started back in January 2008, I've come this far and I've done it on my own, no payment plans or food in a box delivered to my door, not at the edge of a knife on an operating table and no miracle pills, I will get to the weight that I set out to get to, my way.

That's all I got for tonight, tomorrow will be just the next day in a string of many where I punish my body into submission.

As Ever

Friday, November 12, 2010

The Human Engine, When did you last change your oil?

I had an old 1984 Buick LeSabre once upon a time and that car looked like hell when I was through with it, there were dents, broken windows and it had about 200k miles on it, I inherited the car from my mother when she moved out of state when I was about 22 years old. I drove that car for more than a year with about a quart of oil in it right up until the time that I sold it to the scrap yard it never quit on me, it ran in lieu of the treatment that it was getting even if it knocked and dieseled when I tried to turn it off. There was damage to that engine and transmission but it held together just long enough for me to save up and buy myself a 1986 RX7 (yes I fit into an RX7 so zip it!) so it did its job and I didn't have to take care of it one bit in the time that I owned it but it didn't last as long as it could have. If we take care of our cars they will last a long time, sometimes when we beat the shit out of them they keep on going but at some point something will break, it has to because it was not designed to work with extreme abuse and some are better than others at taking the abuse while still performing even if at a lesser standard than it was meant to.

That RX7 was WELL taken care of when I bought it, the thing ran like a top and that rotory motor hummed perfectly, I changed the oil regularly, washed and waxed it weekly and drove it everywhere. The fella that I bought the car off of had owned it since new and it had sixty some odd thousand miles on it when I purchased it and became the second owner, this car was my baby...for the six months. In my younger days lets just say that I was known to put after market parts into cars and proceed to beat the living hell out of them, this was starting to become the fate of that once pristine RX7. The car was taken care of all of its life until it met me and ultimately died at my hands and was sold off as a parts car the very next summer, yes I said parts car, so this car had a different life than that LeSabre but did share the same fate. Sometimes when things get taken care of properly they can still end in disaster because of all kinds of different problems or stupid decisions.

Engines work as they should when taken care of properly, change the oil regularly, tune ups help to keep things working and driving the way the car was meant to be driven will most times mean a reliable car for many years. When a car is not taken care of it may last for a while but eventually all of the parts that are wearing down every time it gets driven will fail and at that point the car is shot, we may be able to limp it back and fourth to work while it sputters and chugs along like that LeSabre did but it will be a short lived ride. I recently have been reflecting on some things that were in my life not too long ago and what I may have been doing to my body in the process of those things and the car analogy came to me, at 534 pounds I was beating the shit out of my body just like I did that LeSabre. My heart, my lungs, my bones and muscles, all of my ligaments along with every part of my mental was getting the shit beat out of it on a daily basis just because I weighed more than a quarter ton and was essentially running on a quart of oil and broken windows, I was fucking myself and couldn't see it.

Something was going to fail catastrophically in short order if I hadn't changed the oil when I did, but does it mean that because there are fresh plugs and oil in the engine that it will now be a 200k mile engine? this I am unsure of. Like a car that was beat to hell and then changed owners where the new guy takes care of the car sure it will last longer now because its being taken care of but are there stressed bolts internally that will ultimately make the engine fail? or will that odometer reach 250k and beyond? perhaps I worry about things that should not be as close to the surface as they are, perhaps not. As a once 500 plus pound guy I think that there are worries that are valid and should be monitored and all at the same time I know that the oil is being changed regularly now and the engine is being run properly so it should last a good long while more with this maintenance routine.

We need to take care of our bodies as if they are the most precious thing that we own because they are, we cannot call the scrap yard up and have them tow away the shell of a Lesabre because a shiny new RX7 was bought, we get one go around and that's it and the scrap yard that we end up in has a 6 foot deep hole in it. These days I am a machine, I eat properly, I exercise daily and I live as clean as I possibly can the days of beating the shit out of my cars is in the past and the days of me beating the shit out of my body are over, that is until I get into the gym or onto my bike but that is another story.

You gonna end up in the scrap yard? or pull that oil and wax out and show a little love to yourself? I know which one I choose.

As Ever