Life has a way of sweeping you off your feet and it’s easy to push off to tomorrow what you can do today. A quote I remember seeing when I first started my weight loss comes to mind, “A year from now you’ll wish you had started today.” I think the single most important step for me was simply starting. I had never really tried to lose weight or diet. There was one time I went after school to “open gym” to lift weights but after dropping the bar on myself while bench pressing… I didn’t go back. It’s strange now that I think back because there are many, many, MANY embarrassing moments or times that I was picked on that you’d think would have helped me make a change sooner.
My personal opinion is that you have to find what works for you and a reason that’s more important than anything else. Doctor’s telling me to lose weight didn’t bother me, I’d simply avoid going to see them. A chair breaking in public or having to get off a ride at the amusement park because the safety guard wouldn’t close over me didn’t push me to change my life. Again, I just avoided putting myself in that situation. What it took was an act of kindness and my strong desire to not let somebody down. I was provided an opportunity to enroll at the Metabolic Research Center at no cost as long as I continued to hit my weight loss goals. MRC is similar to weight watchers in which they tell you what foods you can eat and provide a place to weigh in twice a week and get advice. That’s where the George Foreman Grill came in. I was in my mid-twenties and still lived at home. It was rare that I couldn’t warm up leftovers or rely on fast food for my meals so the grill gave me an easy way to prepare healthy meals for the first time.
After the first 6 months I had lost around 100lbs and decided to walk into a gym for the first time in years. I signed up and started walking on the treadmill every other day. It wasn’t until about another 6 months later that I bought training sessions and started lifting weights. Around this time my friends realized I wasn’t going to give up and several of them bought memberships at the same gym and started working out with me.
It took me 2 years to go from 463lbs to 220lbs. After that I decided to have plastic surgery for my loose skin. That recovery was probably harder than I realized and it took several months for me to feel normal. I had gotten down to 199lbs, thought I looked way too skinny, and so I went out for pizza… never to see under 200lbs again. Today I still bounce between 220-230lbs but have put on significant muscle, have run a couple half marathons, and can enjoy a meal with dessert and drinks on occasion without worrying about putting the weight back on. Once the weight comes off the healthy lifestyle doesn’t end. It never really ends. You just learn how to balance what you’re eating.
I’ve been working out with a good friend this past year and, while the weight hasn’t come off of him super fast, he has dropped it consistently month over month and is learning how to live a healthy life and is in it for the long-haul. I’d like nothing more than to be able to talk to people all day and help them reach their goals but it’s unrealistic for me to do so. Thank you for letting me share my story and I hope it will inspire others.
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*Remember: Every person is different. What helped one person lose weight may not work for you. These stories are here to inspire and show you that there is not just one right answer. Look at yourself as an individual and find what is right for you.