Hello everyone, or at least whoever is reading this blog post. You will have to forgive me if this post rambles a bit as I have never really done a blog before and it may take me a few posts before I get the hang of it.
First off, a little about me. I am a happily married 49-year-old father of five amazing kids and ‘Pop’ to one handsome grandson. I call Thomasville my home and have for the past 40 years. I am also lucky enough to still be working for the same company after 31 years.
Growing up I was a chunky kid, even through high school I was on the thick side. I wouldn’t say I was overly obese, just very stocky. I have always been a bigger guy; however, I was always active. Once I got married and we started having kids it was a lot easier putting the weight on than it was keeping it off. I had also transitioned from a shop floor job to a desk job at work, which meant a lot more sitting than standing. Meals became more of the fast food, or processed type, as there just didn’t seem to be enough time in the day and I was always one of those that hated wasting food, so I would wind up eating what the kids left on their plates rather than throwing it away. The weight slowly kept piling on and before I knew it, I had gone from 280 pounds to just below 400 pounds.
I feel that everyone, no matter who you are, must reach that one point where you know you must change. Until you reach that point, it doesn’t matter what people say, you will not lose the weight. You will find excuses; you will postpone, you will put it off until that point is reached, and I finally reached that point at the end of 2016. I was 391.5 pounds. I was miserable with my life. I was not happy with the way I looked, with the way my clothes fit, with the fact that I couldn’t enjoy doing things because I was too tired or my back hurt from the extra weight.
I joined Team Lean through the YMCA during the 2017 competition and I went from 391.5 pounds down to 342.5 pounds. Once Team Lean was over, I continued with Team Live Better and dropped to 328 pounds. I kept losing through the end of 2017 and I joined Team Lean again in 2018 with a starting weight of 317, and by the end of the 8-week program I was at 304 pounds. I had so much more energy. I was enjoying the outdoors. I was jogging and did my first 5K obstacle trail run. Life was much better, and I was ready to break that 300 mark. The remainder of 2018 however had some other plans for me. I accepted a new position at work and started dedicating more and more time on the new position than I did my weight loss journey. Longer hours at work made it difficult for me to find time to exercise. The stress of the new job increased the urge to eat more, and of course, also the longing for those comfort foods that I had been avoiding for so long.
Jump forward to May 2019 and I am back at 351 pounds starting to feel miserable in my clothes again, and knowing that I need a change. Lucky for me I was asked to participate in the inaugural LBFIT program that Live Better was launching. When Kim Cone Smith called me from the YMCA and asked if I would be interested in the program, I felt it was a sign. I knew what I could do on my own, but I could only imagine the possibilities that were instore with help from the YMCA Fitness Group, Archbold’s Live Better Program and hopefully you as you cheer the other contestants and me on. I am ready for a new me, a leaner me, a healthier me. I am ready for my new beginning. I hope you come along with me and that through my journey I can help you with yours.