Extra Baggage... And Lots Of It

First, thanks to those of you who had some reading suggestions for me.  Between here and Facebook I think I've got some really interesting books to look into.  If you've got some others, please feel free to leave them in the comments section of yesterday's post.  I'll let you know later what I go with. Now, on to today's post...

If you follow me on Twitter or are a friend of mine on Facebook (I'm sure most of you do or are), then you know that I started feeling sickly the other day.  Since I've got an international trip quickly approaching, I wanted to knock out whatever was going on with me.  So I went to the doctor.  I don't always immediately go to the doctor.  I don't particularly enjoy doing so for a number of reasons.  Usually I see if I can't treat my sickness myself with OTC stuff, plenty of fluids and lots of vitamin C.  Anyway, however, this time I went to the doctor.

As I'm sure you all know, one of the first things they do when you visit the doctor is measure some of your vitals.  This might include, but not be limited to, your temperature, your blood pressure, your pulse, your height and... your weight.  Now, I'm a big guy.  I know.  But I haven't always been.  I've never been particularly skinny (though during a particularly dark time in high school, I kinda stopped eating a lot and dropped to about 135 lbs.), but I spent the majority of my life at least at an average weight and decently healthy.  Over the past, I'd say, eight years or so, that has ceased to be the case.  I've progressively put on more and more weight.  The problem for me, though, is since I haven't been a heavy/overweight/obese/fat guy for most of my life, I don't feel like one.  In other words, I never really think about or realize how big I'm getting or have gotten until I'm forced to stare it in the face.

This has been happening more and more lately.  First, a lot more pictures of me have been popping up.  This is mainly because of Story.  People want to take pictures of Story, and since I'm probably holding her half the time I end up being in a lot of those pictures.  Then I see those pictures and think, "what have I become?" Second, my belt has started rubbing a sore on the front of my belly where my gut hangs over it while I sit at my desk all day.  This sore hurts.  A lot.  So, either I endure the pain or stop wearing a belt.  I'm a pansy.  So, I've stopped wearing a belt.  This means that my pants are always falling down.  You wouldn't think this was the case since, you know, I've got a big gut.  However, the big gut serves to push my pants down rather than keep them up.  So, now I'm one of those big dudes who's either always pulling his pants up or revealing too much to the world around him.  Third, I had to get weighed at the doctor yesterday.  My weight typically fluctuates, not a lot, but in a range of about ten pounds.  If you had asked me yesterday how much I weighed, I would have estimated around 270 lbs., definitely not light.  When I stepped on that scale, I couldn't believe my eyes.  290!!!! That means I've not yet reached the dreaded 300, but it's still absolutely ridiculous and embarrassing.

It's time to stop the insanity!

For one thing, I'm just not healthy and that's not good.  For another, I have a daughter that I'm sure is going to be a very active little girl once she gets moving around.  I want to keep up with her and be able to play with her and run around and all that kind of stuff.  Also, I think my obesity is mostly the result of sin in my life... gluttony... laziness... etc.  Then I want to look good for Liza, and there's also the fact that there's a lot of things I want to do with my life.  I want to have a long life in order to do all of them (God willing).

I've known things have needed to change for awhile and have genuinely wanted them to do so.  I've tried a number of popular weight loss techniques with catchy names that worked, but then when I stopped adhering to the strict (and, frankly, absurd) rules I ballooned back up.  So, I've known it would take a true change in lifestyle.  I've been implementing small changes over the past few months.  Drinking a lot more water.  Cutting out most soda.  Eating smaller portions.  Introducing some exercise.  Making better decisions about what I eat.  Limiting fried food.  Etc.  However, the small things, while good introductory steps, just aren't cutting.  It's time for big things.  I don't know what those are, exactly, but I'm working on figuring it out.

I also know myself well enough to understand that left to my own devices, I won't do much.  It's too easy for me to convince myself to not excercise for whatever reason or why that large blizzard is okay "just this once" even though I know it won't be just this once.  So, a major part of this journey is going to be accountability.  That's where you can come into the picture if you want.

1. I give any and all of you full permission to call me out.  Ask about what I'm eating, how much I'm exercising, what my plans are, how things are going.  All of that.  I won't promise to always like it, but I will give my word to always answer you honestly.  I just ask that you do so with the purpose of being encouraging and not amusing yourself with my struggle (I know how much you all love schadenfreude).

2. If you are in a similar position as mine, maybe you'd like to join me on my quest.  We can work out some things to do together as part of our plans.  Just let me know.

3.  Maybe you have suggestions on the major changes I should make.  Again, I'm not looking for the latest trends, a quick fix or something like that.  I'm looking for a new way to live.  This type of change doesn't come easy and will have to happen over time whether than all at once.  So, keep that in mind.  You might also want to know that I'm not an early riser, I'm a pretty busy guy, running is not something I particularly enjoy doing and I have a wicked sweet tooth.  I'm not saying I'm not willing to change/adjust/adapt any or all of those things.  I'm just painting you a picture of where I currently am.

4. I'll be putting regular updates of how I'm doing on this blog and elsewhere for the world to see.

5.  Here's the big one.  My goal is to lose 50 lbs. in six months.  That's not a small goal, nor is it an unachievable one.  I'm going to take the month of July to continue with my small steps, develop a plan and strategy and then start my six month journey on August 1.  That would mean that if I achieve my goal I will have lost fifty pounds by January 31.  If I do not achieve that goal I am going to pay $50.00 (that's one dollar per pound) to anyone who comments on this post here on this blog (not on Facebook) in the next week (by July 8).  Come on people, my failure could be your profit.  If I achieve my goal, you owe me nothing other than a simple "congrats" and "job well done."

So there you go.

Who's with me?