Sunday, March 27, 2016

22 Minute Hard Corps

Can you get a good work out in only 22 minutes a day, 6 days a week? Can you lose a significant amount of weight and make a lasting life style change on only 8 weeks (9 weeks if you count "Hell Week")? Have I finally hit rock bottom when it comes to my weight? Am I crazy for thinking I can take on a military based working out program?

Wow that is certainly a lot of questions. None of them I am able to answer at this moment.  However 8 weeks (9 weeks) from now I should be able to at least have some of the questions answered. In case you haven't figured it out, Allie and I will be starting Tony Horton's latest incarnation of torture 22 Minute Hard Corps tomorrow, Monday March 28, 2016.

I want to say that I am going to give this a major effort, but am I just setting myself up for failure. Through out my history of weight loss attempts, it is always about trying to do my best. The problem is the word "try".  After all as Yoda says "Do or do not, there is no try." So this time I am not going to try my best. This time I am just going to do it.

I have to admit I am nervous and excited. I have no idea what I am in for, but I am ready to finally make a change. I am tired of being tired. I am tired of everything always hurting. I don't like how I look or feel. I know the changes that I desire will not happen overnight. The food prep is done, thanks to my amazing wife Allie. Sand bags are filled. Hang on tight, it's going to be a hell of a ride.

"Get Some!"

Monday, July 27, 2015

Successful, so far!!!

So, it is two weeks since I started this journey (more like restarted, but we won't get into that) and I feel like things have been going pretty well. Sure I slipped a little last weekend, but I accepted it and moved forward into a new week. Other then a beer this week (and maybe a few tonight to celebrate the end of a horrible month work wise), I have been spot on with my eating.

So the good news is that I am getting the eating part down. Sure I need to probably do a better job of having snacks during the day and spreading my calories out a little more. But generally I have been coming in under my caloric goal on a daily basis. As of yesterday morning I have lost 14 pounds, which I am really excited about. I was honestly shooting for 2 to 5 pounds a week, so 7 pounds a week is way ahead of the plan. However, there is one thing I'm a bit disappointed in.

I honestly thought after two weeks of getting a good nights rest, eating better and losing 14 pounds, that I would have more energy. I need to be able to start exercising on a more regular basis. For one I know that the weight will literally start to pour off of me once I begin to exercise on a daily basis. More importantly I feel like I will not be as sore or achy when I do get some exercise. Who knows maybe I'll actually be able to get back on the mat more often (and maybe just maybe my belly won't hang over my black belt).

Starting Weight: 295 lbs.
Week 1: 286.5 lbs.
Week 2: 281 lbs.  -14 lbs.

Week 3: I'm coming for you, you better be ready!!!!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

I Survived

I am happy to report that as of Friday I had lost 10 pounds.  Don't worry I know it is always the easiest to lose weight in the beginning.  With that said I also knew this past weekend was going to be challenging, because we were going down the shore for the weekend to celebrate my oldest son's birthday (still can't believe he is 15, time really does fly by).  Anyway, so while I am sad to report that I did gain 1.5 pounds over the weekend (see Bill I told you I would share both when I lose and when I gain), I am proud of myself for showing some restraint when it came to what I ate.  I also learned some very valuable lessons.

People ask me why I put everything out there for the whole world to see.  Part of the reason I did that is for accountability and support.  Which as I learned this weekend is crucial for success.  Because I told the world what I am trying to do, people have gone out of their way to cheer me on.  I mean the amount of people who have reached out to me is just staggering!  My parents made sure there was stuff Allie and I could eat.  Even going as far as buying bagel thins so I could enjoy having a bagel and lox for breakfast and not have all of the calories and carbs of a full size bagel.  They made sure there was plenty of fruit for us to snack on and healthy choices for lunch available (thanks Mom and Dad!).  Did I have a few slip ups? Absolutely!  Did I make more right than wrong choices?  Absolutely!  I'm human after all.

So what other lessons did I learn this weekend?  Well I learned that I do in fact have some will power.  Who knew?  I learned that walking around weighing 285 pounds sure puts a pounding on your legs.  I learned that pulling a fully loaded beach cart while weighing 285 pounds, is like walking through quick sand.  Most importantly I learned that I can in fact do this, because the circle of people I have around all want me to succeed.  Sure there are going to be times that I slip up and eat junk food or drink a few to many beers.  It's what I do the next day that matters.  It's that I get back up and push forward.  As Rocky says, "It ain't about how hard you hit; It's about how hard you can get hit, and keep moving forward. It;s how much you can take and keep moving forward. That's how winning is done."

Starting Weight: 295 lbs.
Week 1: 286.5 lbs.  - 8.5 lbs.

Bring on Week 2!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015


Holy Cow!  The out pouring of support was absolutely tremendous.  To those of who you took the time to comment or message me directly thank you very much.  Just so you know, even though I haven't responded, doesn't mean I didn't see it and take in every word.  I will respond to each of you directly.  With that said I don't want you to think I am some attention whore, who is just writing to draw attention to himself.

I started this blog many, many years ago.  Originally it was to share my journey, as I tried to lose weight.  I called it My Lifestyle Change, because everything I learned about losing weight was that in order for it to last it has to be about changing how you live.  The problem is that this blog quickly turned into a running commercial for what ever latest diet trend I was selling.  Don't get me wrong, the exercise programs and products I was using work, if you follow them completely.  My issue was apparently I wasn't mentally ready (not so sure I am now, but I really don't have a choice).

You see, I thought that if I just changed the way I ate, or exercised a ton I could lose weight easily.  That was mostly true when I was younger, oh to be young and have an extremely fast metabolism.  However, over the years I have learned that there is so much more that goes into it than just the way you eat or how much you exercise.  What is going on between your ears apparently has a lot to do with losing weight as well.  Who knew right?  Little did I know that if I wasn't doing it for the right reason (like selling a product) or not having a strong enough reason why, I wasn't going to have much success.

So with that said let me put this out there.  I know there are a lot of people who are going to empathize with me on this one.  I am an emotional eater!  I also love to eat when I am stressed.  My wife is the opposite of me, when she is stressed she doesn't eat.  So while yes I know the things I should and should not be eating (again thank you everyone for the suggestions on what has worked and not worked for them), when I get into one of my depressive states the brain shuts down and the stomach just says feed me.  So my question today is what are some of the things you do to prevent yourself from eating the crap that you know you shouldn't be eating?  Please don't give me the obvious don't have it in the house, or hide it.  As most of you know I have 3 kids (2 teenage boys and a pre-teen girl (did I really just say that?  Oh geez help me!!!)), so there is going to be junk in the house from time to time.  My question is more about what do you do to stop yourself from eating it or what are your tricks for developing willpower? I only ask because there are about 6 slices of left over pizza (2 slices of plain, 2 sausage and 2 pepperoni, it's really sad that I know that) in the fridge that are calling my name.  I know it would be easy to throw it away and the temptation would be gone, but I hate to waste food.  Hopefully my kids will come home from camp and eat it as a snack, so I don't have to worry about it.

Monday, July 13, 2015

The First Post

Hi, my name is Stu.  I am a fat guy.  I used to say that I am lazy.  To be honest most of the time I am.  I use my weight as an excuse for being lazy.  I am determined to change that, because the people who care about me, need me.  How do I know?  Well it was my 11 year old daughter who challenged me on Thursday night (she challenged my wife too).  How's that for a kick in the butt?  The problem is I can't tell you how many time I have tried this weight loss thing and it never it takes.  No, that is not true, it is more like I never stick to it.  I always seem to find an excuse to eat poorly, or not exercise.

The fact of the matter is I am 43 years old and as of this morning I weigh 295 pounds (this is the heaviest I have ever been!!!).  The only activity that I used to do is martial arts, but I stopped that after I achieved my Black Belt on May 30th, 2015, because everything hurts.  Right now my body cannot take the beating, because it is taking me longer and longer to recover.  So now I can't even do one of the things I love the most.  I used to call the dojo my happy place.  It didn't matter if I was taking class or helping to teach it, I just loved being on the mat. My wife used to tell me that the moment I walked into the dojo I would have a smile on my face.  It was like once I crossed the threshold I didn't have a care in the world. It has gotten so bad that even just being on the mat for more then an hour and my feet are killing me.  It is really sad that I have let my weight take that away from me.

Being fat sucks!  I have no energy. I sweat profusely.  I lose my breath from climbing several flights of stairs.  No wonder I'm not very good at my job, would you buy from someone who has sweat pouring off of them and can't catch his breath enough to even introduce himself?  It is obvious that my kids notice how miserable I am.  Even just 20-30 pounds ago I was the dad who was out playing basketball with his sons or soccer with his daughter.  Sure I was a few years younger then, but I don't feel my age, I feel much, much older.  I have 3 amazing kids, that if I continue on my current path will not have a father.

So, where do I go from here?  That's the ultimate question.  The sad part is I already know what I need to do.  I need to change the way I eat and I need to exercise on a daily basis.  I just don't know how to make myself stick to it.  I don't know how to not reach for the junk food, when I am hungry.  I don't know how to force myself to exercise, to fight through the pain that I am going to experience.  I just don't know..... Fear of the unknown!

I don't know if anyone still reads my blog, I'm going to post this in a few places, maybe some people can offer some suggestions.  Maybe some people will help to hold me accountable.  Maybe, just maybe I can stick to it this time.  The first part of our challenge is until August 12.  This is the exact day my wife and I met for the very first time back in 1999.  I'd like to take her out to a nice romantic and healthy dinner, and be at least 10 pounds lighter.  20 would be even better, but I'm just looking for baby steps.  Wish me luck!