At the beginning of January my wife and I set off on a weight loss journey. We both have some unwanted weight we’d like to shed so we committed to weekly weigh-ins while doing the old Weight Watchers program at home and keeping each other accountable. On January 1st, 2012 I weighed in at 236lbs. Two years previously I tipped the scales at 265, but had dropped down shortly before Bean was born in October of 2010. I’d managed to keep the weight off but was struggling to lose more. With little will power to do it on my own and a breastfeeding (and then again pregnant) wife, there was little incentive to do much. So there I sat, overweight but happy I had lost that first 30.
This time I was committing to losing 36lbs by the end of September. I am going to be racing cyclocross this year and want to be in much better shape than I was last year when I did a single race and fell in love with the sport. I hadn’t been 200lbs since high school and figured it was time to shed some weight and get back to it.
Shortly after starting this journey with my wife, I was talking to a bunch of other dads and Twitter, all who were making resolutions to lose weight and get fit in the new year. We started the #DadFit hashtag, started a blog and Facebook group, and committed to encouraging one another on the journey. We did really well for the first month or two, but then things started to wane. Life got busy, noble goals were laid aside. The blog got quiet, the Facebook group never really took off, but there was still a trickle of #DadFit showing up on my timeline.
Now this is normal. Every year we make resolutions to get fit and lose weight and every year they fall by the wayside within weeks and sometimes months. But I was committed to this and I’ve stuck with it. Every time I posted something on the #DadFit blog or on Twitter with the hashtag I would receive encouragement and some days that was exactly what I needed not to hit up McDonald’s for lunch or to go workout. It is amazing what a little support and encouragement can do.
So slowly but surely the weight fell off. Every Monday morning I’d wake up, go pee (an empty bladder weighs less), and hop on the scale (and by hop I mean gingerly step on to try to stay as light as possible). For the most part it was always a joyous occasion, which is perfect for starting off the week. I did have a month or so where I stalled at 212-215, but with a little effort I broke through that plateau and continued to drop. For the last couple of weeks I’ve been hovering between 199 and 203 (I often weigh myself every other day), but my weigh-in Monday weights were not 200 until this past Monday.
Here I am! I did it! 200lbs and feeling great. Looking at the pictures I waver between seeing a difference and thinking it is just an illusion and that I don’t actually look much different. Maybe others can see the difference that I can’t. I’m the one who sees myself in the mirror every day, so the change has been gradual. But it definitely shows in my clothes. I’ve had to buy smaller pants (dropped from a 40″ waist to 36″) and all of my shirts are getting baggier to the point that I need to get them tailored.
I call these my Before and During shots. Not Before-After, because I am not done yet. Now that I’ve reached my goal I’m making new ones. I’m thinking I want to focus on fitness level now instead of weight. I want to increase my cardio fitness, I want to get stronger, faster on my bike. I want to drop my body-fat percentage and increase my lean muscle mass. A lot of those goals are fluid and intangible, so as a solid goal I am aiming for a body-fat of 10%. I’m not really sure what that’ll look like (but hopefully include a sweet 6-pack), nor how long it’ll take, because I don’t know what I’m currently sitting at. I just ordered a device to measure so as soon as I receive it I’ll have a better idea.
So for now my goal is 10% BF by Christmas. If this is entirely unreasonable I may have to adjust to maybe 15%, but I think I can do it. It’s going to be hard, it’s going to be a pain in the ass, but with some support, encouragement, ass kicking, and love, I know I can do it.
People around me have been so encouraging these last few months and I hope I’ve been the same for them.