Wednesday, May 01, 2013
I didn't set out on this journey thinking that I would be considered as motivational or inspirational to anybody.
I've had a hard enough time over the years just motivating myself to try and see some results, let alone "leading" others by example. Nope. Not me. Not my example. Well, many of you who have been with me along the way over the last year, have conveyed to me that I have been a source of motivation and/or inspiration. I have to admit, I still have a hard time wrapping my brain around words like that which are tossed in my direction. Don't get me wrong, it is greatly appreciated when I hear that and I have used those words through my journey to help to keep me pushing forward when I didn't necessarily feel like it. It is great motivation to not want to let myself down but it might be even greater motivation for me to think of letting others down who look at my story as a source of inspiration. So thank you all for your kind words over the months that have helped to keep me going.
So why do I bring all of this up now? As you may know if you took a look at my blog from last week, that I had hit my low point in my now nearly year long journey. I really had a difficult couple of weeks and I wanted to share that with you all and to be honest with what I was going through. What we are doing isn't always easy and we do have our ups and downs. It is always darkest right before dawn, right? Since last week, I have been refocused and recommitted to my journey and reaching my goals and it has been going great! Now, on top of that, I have had a couple of really cool things come my way that are all a little surreal and leave me feeling honored and humbled.
First, I was nominated as a Spark motivator by some of you all out there in Sparkville in the category of overall motivation! Wow! Me? To whomever nominated me and and voted me as that, thank you! That is definitely an honor! I was really surprised when I saw it. Thank you again!
Second, I got an invite from Spark to join the Spark team SP's Official Success Stories Team! It is invite only and needless to say, I was really surprised to get that invitation! Here is the team's description...
"This team represents the Best of the Best, the Spark People Success Stories. Our goals are to promote and celebrate our own successes and motivate and encourage others to create their own."
Now you know why this blog is titled "Surreal, Honored, Humbled". By the description of the team, I would have never guessed that 361 days ago when I started on this journey that I would have fit that description! Surreal! I'm honored! I'm humbled! I also filled out a questionnaire and sent in before & after pics for possible promotional type things in the future. Crazy stuff!
I really have to say thank you guys for all of the support and encouragement that you guys have given me over the last, nearly year now! I know that I wouldn't be where I am in my journey today if it wasn't for my wonderful Spark friends and all of your support!
But, this isn't over yet so I am going to keep pushing. I am going to meet my goals, if not surpass them! I hope to see all of you crossing that finish line with me and I look forward to crossing that finish line with you!
BTW, I will be sharing my before and after pictures with you all in a few days when I hit my 1 year anniversary of this crazy journey!
Embrace Your Possibilities
Good Day Sparkville
Thursday, April 25, 2013
I think over my time blogging here on Spark, I have pretty much stayed positive. I guess I have had a lot of things to be positive about. I always have felt really positive about my progress and wanted to share that with all of you. I have always wanted to be some sort of inspiration, even if it was just one person, one time. But this isn't a typical blog from me. This is me, opening up to you guys about what has been going on the last few weeks.
For the better part of 11 months, I really hadn't had that "roller coaster" on my weight-loss journey. I had really been on a pretty steady drop right from the beginning. I really hadn't faced any adversity along the way. Don't get me wrong, it wasn't easy. I had days where I didn't stick to my diet plan and there were days where I didn't get in all of the fitness minutes that I wanted to. I had some minor injuries (back, knee, and shoulder) that I worked through and even worked through a double ear infection. But the real key to my success, was limiting those things to just one day every once in awhile. I didn't allow those things to snowball. I learned from what happened and I was able to put that behind me to move on. To move forward and to keep succeeding. Well, that is until about 3 weeks ago.
I really don't know what was the cause of my back slide. I don't think I can really pinpoint one specific thing, but more like a number of things that I let get to me. Probably the first and most important thing is that I got complacent and satisfied with where I was. I had lost nearly 143 lbs. in 11 months and I was on track to reach my goal in the very near future. You would think that with my goal just 24 lbs. away that I would be hyper focused on doing everything I can to make my goal. At least, I would have thought myself that I would have been like that. Apparently not. I also started to let my feelings of being alone get to me. I tend to over think matters of the heart and let them get me down if I really dwell on them. I really let being single get me down and I did dwell on it a little too much. It played a part in me falling off my track as well.
Somewhere after the first of April, I lost my way. I lost my motivation. I lost my focus. I lost my spark. I lost...IT.
I was inconsistent with my workouts. I still did my workout program videos most days but I didn't do anything extra. I didn't do my C25K program. I didn't walk. I didn't lift weights. I didn't Spark much. As far as my eating went, it was all over the map. Some days I did just about as well as I had been doing over the last 11 months. Other days, not so much. There where some days where I fell back into old habits of mindlessly snacking when bored and/or tired. There were nights where I would binge on things that I didn't even necessarily want but ate just because I wanted something to do.
You know what the crazy thing was? I hated myself for it afterwards. When I say that I hated myself, that is absolutely what I mean. I HATER myself for it. But, I would promise myself that I would not do it the next day or the next day, but I did. I would start the next day great but by later in the day, the train would be way off the tracks and I would be sitting here wondering what the heck was I doing? What was going on? Was I going to let myself really do this again after all of the hard work and progress over the proceeding 11 months? Was I?
The answer is NO. No I will not. Maybe the last 3 weeks was a test. Maybe it was a bump in the road. Heck, it was more like a mountain in the road but I am happy to say that I feel like I have passed that mountain. I have been back on track the last 2 days and I feel like I am in complete control again! Nothing makes me happier than to actually type those words in this blog.
The last two days have not been easy. I have been tempted and I have almost slipped a couple of times. But I keep telling myself that I WILL NOT BREAK! I keep telling myself that I WILL BEAT THIS! I keep telling myself that I AM IN CONTROL!
But I can not take all of the credit for my turnaround the last two days. I have to give my dear friend Michelle (@STEELKICKIN as you may know her on Spark) a lot of credit for helping me through this hard time. I know Michelle will probably say that she really didn't do anything but that isn't true! She allowed me to vent my frustrations and gave me loving encouragement and advice that means more to me than I could ever say! She has been a true angel for me through my journey here on Spark and a true inspiration! A real pilar of strength. I want to thank her from the bottom of my heart for everything that she has helped me with and taught me along the way. I am blessed to have met her here on Spark and blessed that I can call her my friend away from Spark! She is the best! I love you Michelle!
All of you have been really helpful along the way over the last year. All of your support and kind words are all special to me. I don't think I could have ever gotten as far as I have without all of you. THANK YOU!
But with all of that said, I still have work to finish. I still have work to do. I will not quit!
I fell down. But I am standing up now and dusting myself off!
This is me, Brad, barring my demons of the last few weeks. This is me, Brad, pledging that I will not let those demons beat me! This is me, Brad, saying that...
I WILL WIN THIS FIGHT.
I WILL FINISH THIS JOURNEY.
I WILL EMBRACE THE POSSIBILITIES.
Good Day Sparkville
Thursday, April 11, 2013
I know I did a big picture blog already with pictures from my cousin's wedding a couple weeks ago, but, I had been wanting to try to make a video with music. This is my first attempt at that. Thank you for taking the time to watch! Let me know what you think!
Thursday, March 28, 2013
Cover some decisions I made about my diet and activities to challenge myself.
Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Ok Connery, You Got Me On This One, But I Shall Return!
As some of you know, the long awaited wedding in my life took place over this last weekend. No, not my wedding. That doesn't ever seem likely but that is a topic for another blog. Rather, this was my cousin's wedding in Bells, Tennessee which is about a 6 hour drive for me from the Louisville area. The wedding was really nice and everything went off without a hitch. I was an usher for the proceedings and my twin girls were the flower girls. It was a lot of fun watching them all weekend basically making the entire weekend about them, as 7 year olds do.
So with them as a flower girls, and me as an usher and down 142.9 lbs. since May of 2012, I figured that this would be a fantastic opportunity to get some pictures of all of us together. I haven't been big on getting any pictures of myself as an adult due to weight issues over the years so this was a big change for me. Since I was going to be in a tux for the second time in my life (in 2009 at my friends wedding...I'll do comparison pics in another blog on another day) and with the weight loss, I think I even talked some smack to Sean Connery in a blog last week! Bring it on Connery? Lol! Ok, so I am no Connery but here is the wedding weekend in pictures of me and my "Bond Girls"...
At The Hotel, Ready To Head For The Church
My "Bond Girls" Calli & Sydni Before The Wedding
The Girls & I Before The Wedding
After The Wedding While The Bridal Party Was Doing Pictures
Calli, Daddy, & Sydni After The Wedding
Girls Blowing Bubbles As The Bride & Groom Walked Out
Sydni & Daddy At The Reception
Calli & Daddy At The Reception
The Girls & I With My Mom At The Reception
Oh Boy, Look Who Caught The Garter...
You may be wondering about the reception and its location. It was supposed to be an outdoor reception but with the rain, it got moved into a big auto garage type place which explains the background of a few of the pictures.
Well, I guess that about does it for the "OO7" blog. Oh, who are we kidding? I paid good money for that tux and I have worked my butt off (literally), so of course I have more pictures and guess what? I'm sharing!
Had To Do It
Good Day Sparkville
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