Its impossible for me to condense all of my thoughts and feelings into a story that wouldn’t require a professional editor, so I apologize if the following seems a bit disjointed.
That being said, I do want to put forth a few facts.
18 months ago I became a father, 13 months ago I started at Breakthrough, 6 months ago I lost my father.
My beginning weight was 305 pounds, body fat was about 22%.
I cannot overstate the effect of those first 3 points on my life.
My son’s birth was the impetus for me really getting serious about losing weight.
There is nothing on this earth I treasure more than him, and I dont want to just observe his life; I want to be a part of it.
At 305 pounds I wouldn’t have been able to participate for long. That is NFL lineman size, on a body that doesn’t reach 6 feet tall on a great day.
There is no way, at that weight, that I could ever hope to keep up with Will.
I knew from the beginning that some big changes had to happen.
It was my wife who pointed me towards Breakthrough, via a promotion she had seen on Facebook.
I had no idea how important that fateful gesture would wind up being.
Walking into that gym was intimidating. Between the ropes, the rocks, and the tires you know you aren’t in for a typical gym experience.
You feel like you’ve walked into a scene from a Rocky movie.
Those early days were work. I dont know if people think I wear those stupid headbands for fashion reasons, but the truth is I’m just trying to keep the sweat off the floor (with sadly little success).
At any rate, with the help and encouragement from all of the Breakthrough staff, I was moving in the right direction.
By early May I was down almost 40 lbs., and feeling as good as I had in ages.
He had been in and out of the hospital several times in the months before hand, but no one could predict how quickly he would pass after coming home the last time.
I was simply not prepared.
The sadness of losing him coupled with the pressure of filling the enormous void he left made it hard to concentrate on anything beyond my family.
Months of stalling and failure followed. I was going through the motions, but my heart really wasn’t in it.
Old habits were creeping back into my life, as was the weight.
At the time, it really didn’t feel that way though.
In my mind I was still eating mostly right, and making most of my workouts, and doing some of the cardio.
I was lying to myself.
I knew how half-hearted my efforts were, but I refused to believe that it was really hurting me.
In the end, only doing some of the work was undoing all of my progress.
Before I knew it, May was August and the summer was lost. Realizing how far Id slipped made me bitter; I never thought it was fair that I should have to work so hard to get in shape.
So many people seem to get by so easily while I have to walk 3 miles to not gain a pound from eating a raisin.
I remember a particular September meeting with Chris where he was setting up plans for what I needed to do to get back on track.
The things he was suggesting were ludicrous.
He wanted me to cut out all sugar, grain, and dairy from my diet.
I thought, “What’s left?!”
Then he started to mention more cardio and I was just dumbfounded.
That was as close as I’ve ever come to quitting. If I hadn’t still been under contract, I just might have.
I figured, if that’s what it takes to get fit, I’d rather be fat.
It wasn’t until a few days later that I really came to terms with it all.
I was really thinking about why I committed to this in the beginning, and I came to two conclusions.
1. No amount of wishing or whining was ever going to change my physiology.
The hand I was dealt requires me to put in more work to maintain my life. I can’t blame anyone for that fact, it just is.
2. If I really knew what I was doing, and could do it myself, I wouldn’t have needed Breakthrough in the first place.
With that realization, I submitted myself to Chris’ absurd demands for diet and exercise.
As a result, I’ve recovered from the lost summer and gotten down to the lightest I’ve been in 15 years. I’m down 60 pounds, and cut my body fat to 12%.
I’m not done, I may never be. But I’m better. I’ll take that for now.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t thank Chris, Karen and all of the Breakthrough staff that have helped me along the way.
Also thanks to everyone that shows up at 5 A.M. with me. It makes an otherwise unbearable time slot actually fun.