Ever have one of those times where you look at something, and even though it is right in front of your eyes, physically, you can’t believe it is real? As I looked down at my picture glaring back at me, it just didn’t seem that it could be ME. Wanna guess what this picture was? Not a before picture, not really an after picture. It was a picture that my wife took in front of our fireplace, that was now printed in the Weight Watchers Weekly!
My weight watchers leader was asked if she had any members that would fit a specific article, a sort of “fake it till you make it” type piece. After speaking to me, she contacted weight watchers, and was told that they had everyone they needed. Being the awesome leader that she is, they were informed that no really wasn’t the answer she was looking for. “This guy has done amazing! You have to use him somehow and in something” is more or less what she said. After hearing more about my story their interest was peaked, they contacted me and asked me to write up a piece.
That is when it happened, no one knows this, accept my wife, but I almost backed out. 750+ days of non-stop tracking, yet my weight has been out of control. I felt like a hypocrite, how could I write about doing well, when I was sliding down head first in to candy land castle? It was a tough struggle, I wrote up my bit, put my best smile on for a picture, and submitted it. I thought I felt bad before, after hitting send the real pain began. Fraud, I am a fraud, I AM A FRAUD.
I felt such an inner turmoil! On one hand, everything I wrote was true, I haven’t missed tracking a meal yet. On the other hand, can I really say I am even on plan? When I have weeks where I am -250 points, does it really matter that I tracked it? ARGH! I did eventually come to peace with it though, I was NOT a fraud. I only shared what was true, and I know that if I help even ONE person, it is worth it.
That is what it was really about after all. I was looking at it wrong the entire time, it isn’t about me, it is about others! Words can be a gift, that continue well beyond what they were intended. While on a bus ride from Seattle to Wisconsin, I once gave my opinion about something to a woman. I never though anything of it till about 4 years later, I received an e-mail from her! She told me that the advice I gave her changed her entire life, she married the man of her dreams, 3 kids, house, etc. all from the tiny bit of advice I gave her. As I read this back to myself I realize this whole paragraph seems very narcissistic, but that is not my intent. I know the power that words can have, for good and evil, they can be a gift or a curse. Which, will be left up to you.
Thank you Weight Watchers, for giving me the tools to change my life!
*I hope you enjoy this great guest blogger! When I heard about his story, I knew I had to reach out to him!
Tale of Two Family Photos
I started a journey a little over a year ago now. Back in November 2013, I found out that I am a Type 2 diabetic, my cholesterol numbers were not where they should be, my blood pressure was through the roof and my triglycerides were over 500. All of these were not new problems. I had dealt with blood pressure issues previously as well as recurrent migraines and sleep apnea.
I had another number that was plaguing me – my weight.
I weighed in at 361lbs. The family pic below shows me at my heaviest.
Things had to change. I had dieted before and actually lost close to 90lbs only to gain it all back. I decided to go off plan around the holidays and never got back on track. I felt so defeated. I felt like everyone that had congratulated me before on my weight loss was only talking about the weight gain now. I was sure of it. I would need to do things differently this time around. Besides, I had 3 of the best reasons in the world to make a change – my wife and daughters.
Because of the issue with the diabetes, I chose a low carb plan and stuck to 20 carbs or less a day in the beginning. Some people saw it as an extreme diet, something that would not be sustainable in the long term, but I knew it was something I had to do. It was going to be extreme. I was considered morbidly obese so I had to take extreme measures. I was taking a handful of pills every morning and I had two goals at this point – lose the weight and lose the pills!
I saw results quickly – in three months, I had already lost 60lbs! By this time, many people had really starting noticing, giving me compliments, and asking questions. I’d get the usual, what are you doing to lose it? Once, I explained I usually got the crazy looks of there’s no way. I started getting people telling me that I had inspired them or similar sentiments. I never saw myself as being inspiring. I just saw myself as this stupid man that had made himself fat and sick and had to do something about it now.
It’s now a year later and I’m down a total of 113lbs to a weight of 248lbs and I have a new family picture to show off.
In one year’s time, I have cut all my numbers down to normal levels (my A1C went from 9.0 to 5.0 and my triglycerides from 530 to 74 – I’m proud of those). I’ve also gone from taking 4 pills for my diabetes to only one a day. I’ve gone from size 5x shirts, 50 waist pants to 2x shirts and 38 pants! I’m also proud of those numbers too! I can shop it the normal size clothes section again.
I get asked all the time “how did you do it” or “how can you help me”. I wish I had some awesome advice or plan to give people. I found what worked for me and I made up my mind that I was going to stick to it. That was my plan. It hasn’t always been easy; it hasn’t always been fun, but I’ve stuck with it.
There was a quote that kept me pushing on:
“Don’t let the fear of the time it will take to accomplish something stand in the way of your doing it. The time will pass anyway.”
I didn’t want to wake up a year later and still be at 361lbs. I’m looking forward to where I’ll be next year!
Check out more from the The UnWorthey Dad
I was called a name today, some thing that really strikes me to the core. It honestly was a name I had heard before, but had been able to always shrug off. This time however, it really got to me. How could someone call me it? Even better, WHY would they? I never understood, and I am not sure if I ever will.
The labels we use towards people are, in my opinion, hard wired into us. We LIKE to label, we like to organize, categorize, and put things where they go. We call someone a bitch, so we can put them in the bitch box, or we call someone a fat-hole, so we can label them as such. Nice neat little boxes for everyone and every thing. After all everything must have a name and everything must a have a place. The name I was called though, puts me in a category that really bothers me, even though it shouldn’t.
The name I was called? I was called a “friend”! My first thought is, they know me right? They must be mistaken, I don’t make friends. In fact, I am 199% sure I just annoy everyone, and they simply put up with me, hoping I will leave soon. I am talkative, opinionated, fat, and rather annoying in general. Still people keep calling me that name! Trying to label me and put me in a box.
I will impersonate a child, a boy, about 10 years of age. The setting, mid 90’s in central Florida, suburban area. This child, being overly hyper often found himself in trouble during school. Due to this trouble he was placed in a separate class for other similar children. Think of it as a jail for school kids, with all the “bad” kids lumped together. In this class our character, frank, was not well liked, teased and bullied everyday. One day another boy in the class, Peter, came up to befriend frank! Despite being mocked and bullied by Peter in the past, frank accepted this friendship. Frank told himself that people change and maybe it was finally time for him to have friends.
They talked often, and soon Frank found out that Peter lived in the same sub-division! Peter invited him over one afternoon to play some video games and hang out. Frank was excited, no one ever ever ever invited him to do things! In fact one year no one even showed up for his birthday party, but that is a different story. Frank got on his bike and started off towards Peters house, but being out of shape it took him a little longer to get there. Arriving out of breath near his house, he got of his bike and started looking for the house number.
“Hey Fat Fucker!” Frank heard Peter yell. Turning towards the noise he saw a group of boys in from of a garage, laughing and pointing at him. In the center stood Peter, his hand clutched something, and soon Frank was going to find out what it was. As Peter started walking towards him, he brought up to his shoulder the item he was carrying, a lead pipe.
“Hey look, fatty showed up! Perhaps we should beat the fat out of him?”
What happened next though was not to be expected. Instead of running away, like most people would, Frank started walking towards him. “Bring it on!” he shouted. Peter was shocked and stood still. Frank had about double the weight on him, and perhaps the lead pipe didn’t seem like such a good idea. Peter started backing up, Frank kept coming a bit closer.
“You want to start something? I WILL finish it, now let me leave or else!” Frank shouted with a commanding tone.
Peter and his crew decided that today wasn’t a good day to “die” and all went back into the garage. Frank got back on his bike and started home. Yet before he got home he stopped by and empty playground. Dropping his bike to the ground he went and sat next to a near by tree, and cried. He realized, from that day forward, no body could REALLY be his friend. NOBODY EVER!
Thus ends the sad tale of Frank, whom in case you didn’t know was really me. So when people call me friend, it is always hard for me to accept it, and I struggle when it seems that so many people actually like me. Though slowly, I will learn that they mean it, and to accept it.