I Sort Of Thought I’d Never See The Day…

So. Eighty pounds lost. Wow.

I started this journey back on July 15, 2015, at 419 pounds. Here I am, 145 days later, at 339 pounds. That’s an average of 3.9 pounds a week, for nearly 21 weeks. Not bad for a guy who’s been struggling to meet *all* of his daily nutrition and exercise goals each day, right? Being honest, I don’t know that I ever really expected to see this benchmark. After all, I’ve been fat for years. Over a decade, really. There was some minor fluctuation in weight before, but nothing serious and nothing lasting.

So, why am I succeeding this time? A couple of reasons. First, I’ve got a powerful collection of “whys”. I’ve talked in the past about how a fear of going blind gave me the kick in the rump I needed to get started, but that’s not my “why”. My “whys” are my wife, and my son, and my own self-respect. I didn’t like the 419 pound me. I’m really starting to like the 339 pound me, though. Not because I’m lighter (although I do like that), but because the weight loss is a sign that I’m taking some responsibility for myself and my behavior. It’s proof that I can make a decision, and set a goal, and stick with it – something I’ve not always been successful at in the past.

It also helps immensely that I’m not on a diet. I’m changing my diet. Going on a diet is a temporary thing. You starve yourself for a while, you make yourself miserable, and then you regain everything you lost within a few weeks of stopping. I’m not doing that. I’m changing the way I eat, but I’m not denying myself a thing. I can have a cookie, if I want. I can eat cake, if I want. I can eat whatever I want, as long as I’m willing to make trade-offs. And equally important, if I blow my calorie budget one day, I know that it’s not the end of the world. One day isn’t a death blow to my health; it’s a speed bump. All I need to do is make sure that one day doesn’t turn into one week, and then one month, and then one decade.

Oh, something else cool that happened: I managed to button a pair of pants with a 50-inch waist. See, my wife talked me into digging out the box of clothes we’d packed away because they didn’t fit any more. Eight shirts that didn’t fit the last time we did this fit now. And one pair of slacks – the 50-inch waist – almost fit. They were a little too uncomfortably snug, but they buttoned. Believe me when I say that there was much rejoicing.

Of course, progress comes with a price. And that price is that, since I’ve hit my 40% benchmark, it’s time to step things up a notch. That means my calorie budget is now 2,300 calories per day. It also means that my strength training is now seven Lightning Fitness cards, four times per week. But hey, I can live with that. And you know why? Because, if I keep up my average weekly weight loss, I could – could – be at a hundred pounds lost by the new year. And how cool would that be?

Answer: extremely cool.

Wish me luck!

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