Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The Weight Loss

I'm pretty sure no one will read this, probably because it's not that interesting, but I'm going to use this little space on the side of the Information Superhighway to vent.  If you've read this much, thank you, but don't feel obligated to read another word if you don't want to.

Starting this past January I started a weight loss contest at work.  We called it the Biggest Loser: Fatboy Edition.  Ten of us started the contest, eight of us finished.  Some lost weight, some, not so much.  There was a core of five of us who took it seriously and worked until the very end. 

One of the things I think some of the participants didn't get was that this was not a contest to see who could lose the most weight.  This was a motivator to get ALL of us to lose weight.  I got it, but that was easy since it was my idea.  A couple others got it.  It killed me when I heard people say, "I'm so far out of first place it's not worth it to keep trying."

With obesity running rampant, the US getting fatter, and everyone being less healthy, how in the world is it not worth it to keep trying.  This is a war I'm waging.  I'm fighting for my health, my longevity, and my well-being.  All of us should be.

The progenitors of this contest was a Doctor's visit I made on December 19th, 2009, to get my Protonix refilled.  This is a medication to help control my acid reflux disease.  I got on the scale and weighed in at a whopping 267 pounds, two pounds heavier than I've ever been in my life.  My blood pressure was through the roof, and the doctor wanted to put me on a whole host of medications.  Why she was afraid to confront me with what the real problem was I'll never figure out.  Everything that was wrong with my body was wrong because I was fat.  I wasn't chunky, or a little overweight, or a little out of shape, I was fucking fat.  I was a lazy load of shit who was letting it all go to crap while I stuffed my face with fast and processed food.  I was kidding myself that I was healthy as I struggled to make it up a flight of stairs without showing the world that I was out of breath.

It's awful, being trapped in your own body and knowing that the only person to blame is yourself.

The second inspiration for this contest is my brother-in-law.  He's obese.  Not as much now as he was, but he still is.  I don't know what his weight was, but he was very big, an he was trapped.  He got the wake up call, the doctor handed him the clock and said you don't have too much longer to go at your current weight.  A year ago he started watching what he ate.  There's no diet, no plan, just being sensible, watching portions, and cutting out all the processed crap we stuff into our poor bodies on a daily basis in this country.  He's lost more than 100 pounds in a year, and more than 18 inches off of his waist.  Keep going, brother.  You inspire me everyday to march on.

Not everyone sees it that way, though.  I have a number of friends who are morbidly obese.  We're talking 300 pounds plus, and the denial I see in them is the same denial I had for so long.  They don't think that kidney failure and hip problems and heart problems and diabetes and all these other diseases these young people suffer from is caused by being obese.  All my problems stemmed from my weight.  All their problems do as well.

It's bullshit, my friends.  I'm not trying to be mean or capricious here, just honest.   It's all excuses.  People see me now and see the forty-five pounds gone and always ask, "How did you do it?"

The answer is simple; watch what I eat, exercise.  Use more calories than I take in.  There's no secret, no special diet, no magic button.  There's hard work, discipline, and the willingness to admit that there's a problem, and that I'm the problem.  I had to change me to change me.

It's that simple, and that difficult.  This has been one of the most arduous and pleasurable journeys of my life, and I still have more to go.  I'm down to 223 now, and I want to be a light heavy weight at 205.  The last 18 pounds will not be easy, but the past 44 pounds haven't been a cake walk either.  I have to do it everyday.  What kills me the most is, I could have started it any day.

All it is is making a decision.  I hope more people do.

Anyway, those are my bullshit thoughts on it, for what's it's worth.