This year was different than other years, I injuried my shoulder over the summer and both my feet were in pain from plantar fascitis like symptoms. I couldn't lift. I couldn't run. I gained weight over the months, mostly around my midsection.
I never had to deal with weight issues. I was a guy, at 32 years old who was doing the "Skinny Guy Diet" when I first started to weight lift because I could NOT gain weight. Even in my 20's, my go-to breakfast was English Breakfast tea with a large chocolate cupcake. I remember older coworkers at work watching me in shock wolf down my breakfast. I used to laugh about it. Now I realize how they felt, because I couldn't do that anymore.
My belt notches increased. I felt, in a word, "jiggily". My pants stretched and I would even get painful red marks around my belly from my pants pressing against my gut. I bought size 40 pants to get some relief. I avoided the scale, but one day I decided to look.
I was 248 pounds.
Two Hundred Fourty Eight. For reference I was 180 pounds in high school. Maybe 190 in college and I doubt more than 200 pounds when I was 25. I was worried, to say the least.
Last Thanksgiving I was at my brothers house in Bethesda, as my family has been every year since 2005 or so. It has become my favorite holiday of the year, mostly because my brother and sister-in-law go crazy trying to out do themselves each year, with new side dishes and drinks. It was so warm last year, that we went golfing. My sister snapped a picture of me.
I hate pictures of myself. I never look good in them. I'm not photogenic. But I looked at the photo and didn't like what I saw. Nor, did I like how I felt. I was tired all the time. Every afternoon, after lunch, I had to take a nap. On weekends my routine would be wake up, get a Fiore's roast beef, chips and a soda (plus maybe a cupcake), I would eat that and get so sleepy from my bloodsugar spike that I would need to nap for another 2 hours - often just falling asleep in front of my TV.
With my injuries I kept making excuses why I couldn't lose weight. Every month I would push off exercising. It was an excuse each week from my shoulder hurting to my feet hurting. The picture became my motivation.
January 4th I started paleo again. Strict. No cheats (no alcohol, either). Goal was 60 days, which would be the longest I ever went. It worked. I started to lose weight. I felt better. I met an amazing massage therapist at Body Balance who told me in December, "Your whole body is inflammed that is why you are in pain." She was right. About 20 days after starting paleo, I went back to her and she said, "I can tell you aren't as inflammed anymore, whatever you were eating before was doing this."
I worked on my feet. I brought to work a mandala ball. I would roll out my feet every morning. It hurt at first, and eventually got better after a month. I was able to start Crossfit again in Feburary.
My birthday arrived in Feburary. I allowed a cheat meal and drinking for 1 night. Then went right back to strict paleo. I had a trip to Barbados in March. I ate and drank whatever I wanted, trying to be "good", but not strict. When I returned from Barbados, I went back to paleo.
I didn't let the vacations or birthdays derail me. I would plan out my meals. I used Kettlebell Kitchen for lunch. I stopped drinking coffee with sugar and milk, and would drink coffee black with 1 tsp of coconut oil. Otherwise, I only drank water or seltzer. I found that Canada Dry Triple Berry is fantastic.
It is the end of April and i'm at 228 pounds as of this morning. 20 pounds lighter, with 80 days of paleo plus exercise, roughly equates to 6-7 pounds lost per month. I don't consider myself done, I would still like to see me get to 220. I eat about one or two cheat meals a week now, and allow for moderate drinking again (usually is two times a week, 90% of the time it is red wine or scotch, I really don't drink much beer anymore).
My belt was at its last notch on January 1. I'm about 1 notch away from needing a smaller belt. I recently bought size 36 jeans. I sleep better. I feel better. Naps aren't as frequent, and my blood sugar rushes only make me tired for 10 minutes. I can get by with a 20 minute power nap now.
Everyone has something that motivates them. For me, it was a picture. What's your motivation?
Before and after picture: