Monday, June 30, 2008

Delicious Potato Salad

With the 4th of July almost upon us I have been asked to post this great potato salad recipe. It comes courtesy of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. I've made this potato salad and people love it. Plus the serving size is a full cup and is only 4 points. Enjoy and have a great 4th of July!

New Potato Salad (Courtesy NHLBI)
16 small new potatoes (5 cups)
2 Tbsp olive oil
¼ cup green onions, chopped
¼ tsp black pepper
1 tsp dill weed, dried

Thoroughly clean potatoes with vegetable brush and water. Boil potatoes for 20 minutes or until tender. Drain and cool potatoes for 20 minutes. Cut potatoes into quarters and mix with olive oil, onions, and spices. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Yields 5 one-cup servings

Per serving:
Calories: 196 Total Fat: 6g Saturated Fat: 1g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 17mg Protein: 4g Carbohydrates: 34g Fiber: 4g

4 points per serving

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Happy Anniversary!!!

One year ago yesterday I walked into Weight Watchers and slapped my money down hoping their scale could weigh a guy my size. In fact that's the first question I asked Judy, my leader at that time, "Will this weigh a guy my size?" She assured me it would and I hopped on. The scale read 393.6lbs and my journey began.

Well, one year later my journey continues. As of this last Monday when I weighed in, I weighed 209.8lbs. I am loving this journey!!! I feel more in control of my life then I ever have before and simply just feel good.

I hit my weight goal of 225lbs on February 25th, 2008 and became a Lifetime Weight Watcher member six weeks later. I have interviewed and been hired by Weight Watchers to be a leader and am excited to help others with their weight loss journeys.

I've done nothing more than follow the plan, sticking to my points, and exercising. I just walk and lift light weights. Nothing special, but yet quite effective.

Well, one year down and an eternity to go! I'm in this for the long haul. Here goes life!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

On a trip to Costco…

I’ve been asked by several people in my class to list some of the things I buy at Costco and their points values, since I get most of my food from there. I buy the following on a pretty regular basis.

  • Kirkland Signature Roast Beef (canned)—only 4 points for the entire can
  • Kirkland Signature Chicken (canned)—six points for the entire can
  • Montana Wheat Bread—all the varieties that Costco carries are 1 point a slice and they are nice, big slices. I prefer the Oat and Honey variety.
  • Orville Redenbacher Smart Pop 94% fat-free popcorn—only 2 points for an entire popped bag
  • Laughing Cow Lite Cheese Wedges—1 point for a wedge
  • Jarlsberger Lite Swiss Cheese slices—1 point a slice
  • Foster Farms Deli Style Smoked Turkey and Roasted Turkey slices—1 point a slice and they’re nice, big slices
  • Healthy Choice Fudge Bars—1 point apiece
  • Skinny Cow Vanilla and Chocolate Ice Cream sandwiches—1 point apiece
  • Fiber One Oat and Chocolate Chewy Bars—2 points a bar
  • Zone Bars, Chocolate Peanut Butter and Fudge Graham—4 points a bar
  • Cliff Bars—5 points apiece
  • Morton’s Steakhouse Tri-Tip—according to packaging 1 point an ounce, love to grill this up
  • Rader Farms Mixed Berries (frozen)—1point per cup
  • Fruit Spectrum Frozen Fruit Blend—1 point per cup
  • Cheerios—2 points per cup
  • Fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Crystal Light Lemonade Drink Mix—1 point per half gallon
  • Boca Burgers—1 point per patty
  • Foster Farms Frozen Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts—according to the package, 2 points per breast

Sunday, May 4, 2008

UTAH and Mental Rehearsing!!!

Woo-hoo!!! I had a wonderful week in Utah. I went down to visit with my family who is scattered around the Salt Lake area and had a wonderful time catching up with them and good friends from high school. I kept up with my exercise while there, walking a 5 mile loop in between 55-57 minutes at my brothers and then a four mile loop at my mom and other brothers place. I ate healthy too and found some great spots for healthy food in the Salt Lake area.

You know in Weight Watchers the idea of "Mental Rehearsing is often discussed in meetings and in book 5, Tools for Living. Last August I went to my 15 year reunion and by that time I had already lost 66 lbs. Not to noticeable from when I was in high school so I didn't look much different at that time. While at the reunion I had the opportunity to catch up with a good friend, Brandon. I was impressed with his physique, he has long lean muscles and doesn't look bulky or goofy like those guys at health clubs that walk out of the clubs with their chests inflated and then get into their cars and exhale and the belly pops out. So when I walked every morning during the first months of starting Weight Watchers I would often think that I'd like to have Brandon's physique of long, lean muscle and not bulky, but healthy and fit. That was the mental image I would rehearse over and over again in my mind as mile after mile would pass beneath my feet. It worked. I have a great lean body now with lean muscular arms that are defined and toned. Thanks Brandon, you're great inspiration. I'll have to give that P90X some serious thought now after talking with you over dinner.

I had the chance to go to a Tuesday Weight Watcher meeting in Sandy. I gained 3.4 lbs; which is good as my leader here in CDA recommended I gain a little weight. I had fun at the meeting and it is always good getting ideas from other members and hearing their inspirational stories. Good luck to all you ladies I had the opportunity to speak with!

Good luck also to the guy I met at my brother's kid's baseball game Monday evening. The one whose wife runs marathons and who was contemplating going to Weight Watchers even before I met you. I hope you went or will go this week. Have fun with it, stick to the plan and get out and walk Mondays through Fridays and you'll be fit and feel better before you know it.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Awesome Chili

Lost another pound this last week, bringing my total weight loss to 184 lbs. I am now at 209.6 lbs. I was a little shocked. I really don't want to lose much more weight. I did fill out my application to become a Weight Watcher leader and am excited to interview for it.

Today's recipe is for Awesome Chili. It is an extremely simple recipe and takes minutes to make. As I make it the total points is 15 for 5 cups of chili, or 3 points a cup. If you like you can omit the meat and bring the total points value down to 11. You can also add whatever else you like to it, like onions, etc.

I use the following ingredients:
  • 1 can corn
  • 1 can kidney beans
  • 1 can stewed tomatoes (I like using the Italian stewed tomatoes)
  • 1 can Kirkland Signature Roast Beef
  • Taco Seasoning
  • chopped onion

I drain the corn and kidney beans and put them in a sauce pan, then add the can of stewed tomatoes, the roast beef and onion. If it looks too thick, simply add water or if you like it thicker leave it as is. I then add taco seasoning to taste, as mentioned you could also add peppers, etc. Then all you have to do is turn your burner to medium and heat and stir it occasionally. I usually cook it over medium heat for 5-10 minutes and then turn the burner to low and let it simmer for awhile. You could also prepare this in larger quantities in a crock pot.

To serve I like to add fat-free sour cream or you could sprinkle lightly with a low fat shredded cheese of your choice, and "BAM" you've got awesome chili, without the guilt! Enjoy!!!!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Pumpkin Pie Recipe

At the meeting this evening I weighed in at 210.6 lbs having lost 1.6 lbs during the week. Still eating all of my daily points and that is 43 points a day. I did do some extra moving this last week, the weather was beautiful so I got out my mountain bike and biked over to my friends house each evening instead of driving. I also ended up going on bike rides with them once I got there on a couple of those evenings. All bonus exercise in addition to my daily planned exercise.

This pumpkin pie recipe is delicious. I first used it on Thanksgiving day last year and was amazed at how delicious it was, so I make it quite often and the best thing is it is only 8 points total, for the whole pie. I got this recipe at a Weight Watcher meeting and it has proven to be a favorite treat of mine. It is a crustless pumpkin pie, but tastes just like the old standby.

Preheat oven to 400 F.
Mix the following together until well blended:
  • 12 oz can of fat free evaporated milk
  • 15 oz can of pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup egg substitute
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cup Splenda
Pour into an ungreased glass pie dish.
Bake for 15 minutes at 400 F.
Then for 45 minutes at 350 F.

Presto your done. I serve it with fat free Cool Whip and it is heavenly!!! I made one of these earlier today and had it after my meeting this evening, with the fat free Cool Whip I used the total points came to 10. Not bad, not bad at all.

Monday, April 7, 2008


Tonight I hit Lifetime with Weight Watchers. I lost another 2.4 lbs, so my weight is now at 212.2 lbs with a total weight loss of 181.4 lbs.

I'm excited to be a Lifetime member and picked up an application to become a leader with Weight Watchers. I believe the key to weight loss is a combination of eating correctly, which Weight Watchers teaches you how to do, and exercising. You will experience weight loss with either one, but combine them both and you can really lose weight. I figured it took me 8.5 months to get to goal and and a total of 10 to become Lifetime.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Week 5 Maintenance

Lost 2.2 lbs this last week and am down to 214.6 lbs overall. Only one more week and I will become a Lifetime member, yeah no more dues!!! I am really excited to be at this point and want to become a leader with Weight Watchers. I can finally apply after this next week.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Week 4 Mainenance

I gained back 2.4lbs this last week. I am now at 216.8lbs. Still below goal, so that is good. Sorry I haven't been posting more to this blog. My life is pretty chaotic for me and I'm grateful I've not turned to food for comfort, because I know the old me would have done exactly that. I actually take solace in going walking every morning. It gives me a chance to escape my worries if even for a little while.

You know in our meeting last night we were talking about "trigger foods" and had classified them as been either green, yellow or red priority. I have to be honest. I don't really have any "trigger foods" that I am tempted by. I just fill that craving with a healthy snack or by drinking a big glass of water. I guess when I started Weight Watchers I was to the point that I knew a lifestyle change was in order and that there would be no going back to certain habits and foods, so now that that decision has been made the temptation doesn't really exist for me. A wise man once said, "When the time for decision arrives, the time for preparation is past."

Monday, March 17, 2008

Week 3 Maintenance

Weighed in at the meeting tonight and was a little surprised at my weight...214.4 lbs. I lost 8.6 lbs last week. Yikes!!! My leader, Kaye, was a little worried. So I've got to eat lots of points this next week. I'm not worried though. My energy level is there and I feel great.

I don't know how many people watched the show on TLC, "I Can Make You Thin with Paul McKenna this last week. I found it pretty interesting. It's a show that will span 5 weeks. In this first show he talked about 4 Golden Rules. His rules are:

  1. When you're hungry, eat! He talked about physical and emotional hunger.
  2. Eat what you want. He suggested going to your fridge and cupboards and throwing out any foods you don't care or like to eat. Then make a list of your five favorite foods and go out and buy them. Doesn't matter what they are.
  3. Eat consciously! Eat slowly, put down your fork and knife after every bite, and enjoy every mouthful, savor your food. Chew each mouthful at least 20 times. Don't eat with distractions, turn off the television and put down the books.
  4. When you're full stop! If you have a hard time realizing your full, then close your eyes and tune into your stomach. If you even suspect your full, then stop.
While I don't agree with all of it, like eating your five favorite foods. Face it some foods just aren't good for you and those types used to be my favorite foods. I am going to implement the "No Distraction" rule while eating, that and putting down the fork and knife in between bites make a lot of sense to me. It will be interesting seeing where his program goes in the coming weeks.

One thing I love about weight watchers is that I can still MAXIMIZE points and have quite a bit of food and hey, it's worked wonders for me and a lot of other people. I believe it all comes down to making a lifestyle change for the better.

So I am back on my walking schedule, kind of out of necessity. The right pedal on my recumbent bicycle sheared off Friday morning during my workout. Luckily I had purchased it at Costco and was able to return it. But WOW, who'd a thunk I would ride the bike to death?

Monday, March 10, 2008

Week 2 Maintenance

Today has been the hardest day of my life. I have a lot of other things going on that I prefer not to talk about. I feel lonely and need someone to talk to, so I must blog because there is no one to talk to.

Week 2 Maintenance went well as I was determined it would be. I weighed in at 223 lbs, up .4 lbs from last week but still under goal.

I try to think back on why I ever let myself go and get fat in the first place. I admit I was lazy and that contributed greatly to it. I've tried so hard in the last 9 months to curb myself of laziness. If something needs to be done I try my hardest to do it. I'm not perfect but I feel as if I have come a long way from where I began.

I hope if you're trying to lose weight and you're reading this, that you can find something to help you. Don't wait until it's too late to do something about your life. I had a teacher in college that would say, "Today is the beginning of the rest of your life." I think he meant all along that it's never too late to take action. What's in the past is done. Maybe you can do something about it, but most likely you won't ever be able to do anything at all except to apologize to yourself. So begin now, go out and walk. Visit Weight Watchers for the first time. Begin eating healthy. Today is the first day of the rest of your life. Do better, be more.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

I’m An Addict

I am an addict. I have an addictive personality, I know it. I’ve never touched drugs or alcohol but for a very long time in my life food was my addiction. There’s no way one gets to over 400lbs without being an addict or have that type of personality. The key for me was turning this weakness into a strength. I believe 95% of weight loss is all mental. Ya gotta wanna be healthy and ya gotta wanna be committed to whatever it is that will get you where you want to be, no matter what.

So I turned my addiction with food to the Weight Watchers program. You might say I’m too strict, but that is just my addictive side kicking in. I don’t cheat on the program. I don’t use my 35 flex points, or at least I haven’t used them yet, and I don’t use my activity points. I haven’t felt a need to. I log everything I eat in my handy Quick Track System booklet and refer back to them if I’m hitting a plateau or just to see what I ate certain weeks.

I’ve also become addicted to exercise. I used to loathe that word but find myself doing at least an hour of cardio daily, Monday-Friday. I’ll either walk; carrying 10lb weights, or ride my recumbent bicycle. I believe firmly in muscle confusion as a way to break through plateaus. I find that the body gets used to certain forms of exercise and while it remains healthy to do it, you may not get the weight loss gains you were looking for. I find I can go around 2 months with walking before I start to plateau out, then I have to mix it up and bike for a couple of months. I also want long, lean muscle; not bulky muscles so on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays I do lots of upper body strengthening with dumbbells. I do light weight and lots of reps. On M, T, TH and F I do an abs workout. I’ve been doing Legendary Abs and love the results. They are short ab workouts that really concentrate on the lower and upper abs. I also take opportunities for any activity I can get on the weekends, like walking the mile and a half to church or going for a bike ride.

All this didn’t happen overnight, but I felt if I was going to attempt to lose weight I was going to have to give it 110% and put everything I have into it. Hey, ya just gottawanna.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

A New Take On Good Ole PB&J

Oh man I love PB&J sandwiches. Only problem is your typical peanut butter is 5 points for just 2 tbsp, OUCH! Well let me introduce you to the solution. It’s called PB2 Powdered Peanut Butter made by Bell Plantation and it is amazing. It is made from USA grown peanuts that have been pressed and powdered to remove 75% of the fat calories. What this means is that you can now have 2 tbsp of peanut powder for one point. Now that is MAXIMIZING your points!

I just mix 2 tbsp of PB2 with some sugar-free jam, to reconstitute it, and spread it on some bread. I also like taking a banana and mashing it then mixing it with a tablespoon or two of PB2, delicious. You can use it to create a great peanut sauce for noodles or use it in baked goods. Just click on the link above to order it online.

Serving size = 2 tablespoons (12 grams)

Servings Per Container: 16



Fat Calories


Total Fat


Saturated Fat








Dietary Fiber






Monday, March 3, 2008

Week 1 Maintenance

I’ve got to say I haven’t enjoyed maintenance that much. It’s weird not having weight loss as my goal any longer. I felt a little lost the day after I hit my goal and a little confused. My mind is really playing tricks on me. I also hate weighing myself periodically throughout the week. During my weight loss phase I only weighed at weigh-ins once a week. Pretty amazing what the body does and how it fluctuates so much in a given week. Getting four more points a day has been a bit weird too. I refuse to let up on any exercise; I’m kind of addicted to it now.

Thanks everybody for the words of encouragement and feel free to share this blog with anyone and everyone. If my experience can help anyone get going on bettering their own life I’d be very happy.

Just got back from weigh in and I ended up losing another 2lbs last week on maintenance. It is going to be a little tricky fine tuning it. I guess that’s why they give you 6 weeks to do it.

Behold the Vita Mix!

My wife and I invested in a Vita Mix about two years ago. They’re great! They have a two horsepower motor that is nearly impossible to burn out. In fact all of the smoothie joints like Jamba Juice and others use them to blend their smoothies. We used ours occasionally until I started WW.

I now use my Vita Mix every morning. I have the same breakfast most mornings. It consists of a four point smoothie and 2 1/4 cups of Total multigrain flakes with a WW yogurt mixed in, for a total of eight points.

The smoothie is simple and huge and could easily be modified for anyone.

It consists of:

1 Weight Watcher yogurt—one point

3 Cups frozen fruit—three points

12 oz. water—zero points

I simply add the yogurt to the Vita Mix, then the fruit and finally I fill the empty yogurt cup with water twice and add that. Then mix!

The end product!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

MAXIMIZE what you eat!!!

I often get asked by others who are amazed at my weight loss and how I’ve done it if I miss any of the foods I used to eat. Well yeah, of course I do. We were at Chili’s having some dinner and the waiter, out of the goodness of his heart, brought us a platter of chips and salsa, free of charge. Now back in the day I would have been all over that platter, but now I equate that platter with the 12 points that it is. So I told my wife she could have what she wanted but I wasn’t touching them. Well the chips and salsa are about a foot away from my face the entire time, but I stood strong and resisted them. Wasn’t easy, but it was possible. So yeah, I miss foods and crave some foods when I smell them. That’ll probably always be there.

I’m then always asked, “What do you eat? Does it taste good?” So I’ve decided to post some of my own recipes that I use. I find them very flavorful and consider myself a food connoisseur. You know I didn’t get to be 400lbs eating crummy tasting food. I still like good tasting food and love to make it; it’s just now that food is good for me also.

My theme when it comes to food and points is “MAXIMIZE, MAXIMIZE, MAXIMIZE!” If you want to have a seven point Snickers bar go ahead. I’ll MAXIMIZE and have a two point Fiber 1 Oats and Chocolate bar to feed that chocolate craving and I’ll save five points and get 1/3 of my daily recommended fiber allowance doing so. Another example is the Weight Watcher 6oz. yogurt compared with the Yoplait Light 6oz. yogurts. They both have the same amount of calories—100, the same amount of fat—0 grams, but the Yoplait brand is two points and the WW yogurts are one point. Why? Because the WW yogurts have 3 grams of fiber and the Yoplait yogurts don’t have any at all. That 3 grams of fiber brings it down a point. Same great taste, same price at Walmart, but you MAXIMIZE with the WW brand.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

After pics

Well here are the after pics. I still have some skin around the middle but the doctor seems to think this will eventually shrink back. The excess skin on my arms and neck has done a nice job of returning to normal.

Monday, February 25, 2008

February 25th, 2007—the day I reach goal

I went to my weigh in tonight and this is what the scale said:

After almost nine months I am there. WOOHOOOOOOO!!!! It feels great and I know that I’ve added years to my life and have made a lifestyle change. I’ll post some after pics tomorrow. I’m excited about the maintaining stage now and have given it a lot of thought. I’ve got a plan for it, that’s for sure.

Thanks to my leaders Judy and Kay. They are awesome. Thanks to my group, they too are excellent to be around.

My weight loss chronicled

On September 17th, 2007 I visited my doctor and told him what I was doing to lose weight. I, and my leader at WW, wanted to make sure I was healthy and losing the weight in a healthy manner. He was amazed at my progress, the blood work and EKG were excellent, and he wrote me up a clean bill of health to take back to my WW leader. By this time I’d lost almost 100lbs in almost 4 months on WW.

On January 21st, 2008 I visited my doctor again to solidify a goal weight. Let me just mention here I read an email from WW today concerning BMI and how while it isn’t the perfect system for developing a goal weight for everybody it is pretty darn good. Well, my doctor thought WW’s goal of 211lbs for a guy of my stature and build was a little low. We came up with the goal of 225lbs. I would then have the opportunity to continue to develop lean muscle and he said it would better suit someone of my size and stature. Yay, I now had a goal to work towards! My blood pressure at this visit was 110 over 61, my doctor was very impressed with it and said if there was ever a correct model for proper weight loss I was it. That made me feel good. He sent me up for a blood test to make sure everything was still in order, like my vitamin D levels. The phlebotomist had no idea I was losing weight or what I was doing, but when she went to draw my blood she commented, " Your veins are easy to find, all there is here is lean muscle." That was about the best compliment I've ever received. Well, all was in order with my blood work. I'm healthy!

My weekly progress follows:

Starting weight: 393.6lbs
Week 1: Lost 14.8lbs
Week 2: Lost 8.8lbs
Week 3: Lost 7.6lbs
Week 4: Lost 8.8lbs
Week 5: Lost 2.8lbs
Week 6: Lost 6.2lbs
Week 7: Lost 6.4lbs
Week 8: Lost 6.8lbs
Week 9: Lost 4lbs
Week 10: Lost 1.2lbs
Week 11: Lost 6.6lbs
Week 12: Lost 4.6lbs
Week 13: Lost 9.8lbs
Week 14: Lost 2.4lbs
Week 15: Lost 4.4lbs
Week 16: Lost 4.4lbs
Week 17: Lost 3lbs
Week 18: Lost 5.2lbs
Week 19: Lost 5.8lbs
Week 20: Lost 1.6lbs
Week 21: Lost 8.2lbs
Week 22: Lost 1lb
Week 23: Lost 1.8lbs
Week 24: Lost 4.8lbs
Week 25: Lost 6.2lbs
Week 26: Gained 2.2lbs
Week 27: Lost 11.2lbs
Week 28: Gained 1.2lbs
Week 29: Lost 3.4lbs
Week 30: Lost 2.2lbs
Week 31: Gained 1.2lbs
Week 32: Lost 4.2lbs
Week 33: Lost 2.8lbs
Week 34: Lost 2.8lbs
Week 35: Lost 4lbs
Week 36: Gained .8lbs
Week 37: Lost 3.4lbs
Week 38: Lost 3.2lbs

I was really miffed at the end Week 26 when I gained weight, because I don’t cheat on the plan. I eat my assigned points only. I don’t eat my exercise points nor my 35 flex points. I realize now that your body has its own schedule and plan and adjusts itself accordingly as long as you’re treating it right. I was ticked though that night at weigh in.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Thoughts while shopping…

Today was payday so my wife and I went shopping. It was funny pointing out all the stuff I’d used to buy and saying, “If I were fat John I’d be buying this or that tonight.” or “Remember when I would have bought this.” It’s amazing to me how after following the WW program for a mere 9 months that most of my old favorite things don’t even look appetizing. I look at food now as more of a fuel than food. Don’t get me wrong, I still like good tasting food and haven’t become a “Food Nazi” altogether. But I know and accept the fact that there are just some foods I will never eat again, more on that at a later date. Suffice it to say that it was an interesting evening shopping through Costco and another grocery store in my area and reflecting on the changes that have occurred in my mind concerning food.

The Fat Man Walks Alone

A friend gave me her copies of WW’s magazine before I ever joined and I’d look through them. I remember reading about an older guy, probably in his late 60’s or early 70’s, who walks three miles a day. I thought to myself, “If he can do it, then what’s my excuse?” So the night I joined WW, I drove around and mapped out a three mile course that I could walk. The next morning I woke up early and went walking.

Let me tell you I wasn’t shooting to do it in record time, but I wanted to work up a sweat. I made the three miles in under an hour. I also made the stupid mistake of not stretching and was amazed at how sore my shins were the next day. Of course my arthritis didn’t care for it at all and my ankle hurt the whole way. It would go on to hurt for the next month or two.

That’s something that I came to realize. When you let yourself go and then start working out, you’re gonna hurt. I knew that if I stopped then I wouldn’t want to start back up again. So I walked through the pain and I’m glad I did. Important lesson learned, “No pain, no gain (or should I say 'loss')!”

Monday through Friday I’d wake up and go walk my three mile loop. I’d take the weekends off from having a scheduled workout and still do. I’d walk my loop whether it was raining or blistering hot. I was determined.

I think walking is about one of the best things you can do. It’s free and easy to do. It’s easy on the joints and you can do it alone. I’ve never been a fan of gyms or clubs and when you’re huge who wants to work out in front of others anyways. Walking gives you the freedom to do it alone and work against yourself only. Plus it’s a good time to map out your day in your head as you go along, like what you’re going to eat and when you’re going to eat it.

I’m also a firm believer in getting outside. There’s just something about fresh air and not the stale, sweaty gym smell.

I began to repeat a mantra as I'd walk. I'd repeat, "Leaner, Faster Stronger!" over and over again. I'd walk in rhythm to that as I'd say it time and again in my mind. It help keep me motivated and focused on my goal and the task at hand. When I played high school football our offensive line's motto was "Bigger, Faster, Stronger" so that's where the idea came from, slightly modified of course.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

In the Beginning…

It seems like I have been fat or chubby for the majority of my life. Last year at my wife’s encouragement and my frustration with being fat, I decided to do something about it. On June 4, 2007 I joined Weight Watchers. I joined for a multitude of reasons, the main one being I didn’t want to die. I knew if I didn’t do something I’d end up having a massive coronary sometime before I turned 40 and let’s face it; I like life and love my wife. I want to spend as much time on earth with her as humanly possible. The way I was going that wasn’t going to be very long.

I work on my feet everyday on a concrete floor. In November of 2006 I found out I have osteo-arthritis in my left ankle. Needless to say my weight didn’t help with the pain. My ankle would throb at night and be sore in the morning. It hurt getting out of bed. I felt like an old man. I knew just taking a little bit of weight off would help my ankle immensely. So yet another reason for joining WW.

I don’t really know how heavy I ever got, only that I am 100% positive I was over 400lbs at times. I know that I’d just tell people I was 350lbs, even though I was much heavier. Yeah, guys fudge about their weight too—the truth hurts. In fact that’s what my driver’s license says, weight—350lbs. When I started WW these were my stats:

Height: 6’5”

Weight: 393.6lbs

Belly: 60”

Chest: 52.5”

Arm: 17.5”

Thigh: 30”

I’m not proud of the “before” pictures but here some are. I had really let myself go. I look like if you stuck a pin in me I'd pop like a balloon. I don’t know why somebody didn’t show some tough love with me and tell me I was so large. I guess that’s just part of our politically correct culture nowadays.