Less of Me
I fear actually saying this out loud. I certainly don't want to jinx the progress I've made but, at the same time, I'm excited by the change.
I'm trying to lose weight.
I used to be slim. In my early twenties, I worked on my feet all day. I also didn't have a car. Therefore, I walked to and from work. And to the store. And to anywhere I needed to go. If I wasn't walking, I was on my inline skates, or on my bike. My diet was atrocious but it didn't matter. I burned off the calories without concern.
Then I got into the web as a career—a career that put me behind a desk for eight hours a day. The weight continued to be packed on. However—and this might sound odd—but when I look at myself in the mirror, I see slim. Even at my heaviest, I never really felt fat. Oh, but I knew it. I knew it whenever somebody called me "big guy" or, and I'll never forget this, asking when my baby was due. Okay, I'm fat. I could see it in the photos taken of me and I wasn't proud of it.
I've tried at various times throughout the last 10 years to try and lose the weight. There were the short stints of going to the gym. I even tried Weight Watchers for awhile. I couldn't build up enough interest to stick with either of them. As my weight continued to climb, I kept saying to myself that I'd go back to the gym but I never did. Maybe I'd buy a bike or get back on my skates, but I never did.
Then, back in June of this year, on a trip to New York City, it changed. I found myself walking everywhere. I had to climb the stairs to get to the office. We had Mario Kart lunch time competitions that resulted in push-ups. And upon my return from that trip, I felt like that was something I wanted to maintain.
I started tracking my weight from day to day. I also started to be more careful about what I eat. But here's the kicker: I knew that I still wanted to enjoy the foods that I love. I love pasta, cake, pie, Coke, chips, and all sorts of delicious, buttery, greasy food. Can I lose weight while still enjoying the foods that I love? Absolutely. I don't need to eat a large bag of chips in one sitting. Having a bowl when I have a craving will do. I also don't need the bowl to be overflowing. When I go to a restaurant, I don't need to clear my plate. I can eat half and take the rest home. I still get to enjoy all the foods I did before. I just do it in moderation. Go figure.
The other key step has been exercise. Over the course of the summer, I've made it a point to get outside, especially with my two boys whenever I could. Lots of trips to the park. And I don't just sit there. I'll chase my boys around and play tag and interact. Wow, I get to have fun with my kids and lose weight. I like this.
And so I was. I was losing weight.
This past weekend, I actually got my inline skates out. After a couple years hiatus, I finally got to skate. I have a crazy blister to show for it but I'm proud of that blister. I'm proud of what it represents. It represents an excitement in seeing the change in me.
Having been overweight for over 10 years, I also don't expect the weight to disappear overnight. I don't want to rush this. I don't want to be over-zealous. And so I haven't. And after 3 months of working at it, I'm thrilled at the progress I've made. I'm thrilled when people notice that I've lost weight. It pushes me to continue with the changes I've made and to be consistent.
Of course, I'm a geek. Along the way, I've been usng Weightbot (links to iTunes), an iPhone app, to help me track my progress and help predict where I might be a few months down the line. I look forward to using it every day. Weighbot has kept me on track when I felt like I was slipping but also has shown me that I'm still on track, even when it feels like the weight isn't falling off fast enough.
I'm definitely not rushing this. I started at 285 pounds at the beginning of the year. I hovered around 280 until June. Since then, I've consistently been able to lose weight week after week and month after month. I'm currently just shy of 250lbs. My target is 200lbs. I don't need to be skinny. I just want to be slim. And that's where I hope to be when next March rolls around.