Monday, January 28, 2013
What would I tell my 16-year-old self? See, thatís tough, because I didnít have the stereotypical high school fat kid experience. I always was fighting with my weight, but I wasnít teased much, I was fairly popular, and I was a successful athlete. Thatís not to toot my own horn, just that I donít so much need to give myself a pep talk as tough love:
So, 16-year-old me, I know you think you have this thing down. You pig out all spring and summer, sitting on your ass, and then you lose it in the fall and the winter when football and wrestling rolls around. Hell, youíre actually in pretty good shape by the time the spring comes. Then you start the cycle over again. Well, hereís the thing. In a couple years, thereís not going to be football or wrestling coming up. I know, I know, you think that youíre going to find some small college that wants you to play, but no, youíre not.
Basically, youíre going to have eleven straight years of spring. You know how you completely go to sh*t in the spring and summer? Donít try to lie; youíre going to gain fifty pounds in six months when youíre a senior, and trust me, Iím in a position to know. You think that 300 pounds is a lot? Try 400. And let me tell you, it happens without you even knowing it. How often do you weigh yourself once wrestling ends? And remember, donít try to lie, because Iíll know. Thatís right, you weigh yourself once, at the beginning of football season, so they can put your weight in the football program.
Well hereís the thing: when you never weigh yourself, it lets you deny what youíre really doing to your body. Then one day you take a deep breath, step on the scale and youíre 403 pounds. You donít even tell anyone how much you weigh now, and youíre only 205 pounds. One day youíre going to tell everyone you know, right out there on the internet, your weight. Every day. The day you start doing that? Youíll be 379.4 pounds. Not only that, thatís going to be after youíve already lost about 24 pounds. Yeah, youíre going to be that fat. No, itís not going to be pretty. Youíll buy all your clothes at one of two stores because those will literally be your only options. Youíll grow a beard because your face will be too fat to keep clean-shaven. Everything you do will make you sweat.
So hereís what you have to do: Work out, like almost every day. I know, it sucks now, going to wrestling practice every day, and all you want to do is finish the season so you can go do stupid stuff with your friends. But go do it anyway. Eventually, it will suck a lot less. In fact, youíll even enjoy it sometimes. But still, a lot of the time youíll just want to stay home and watch TV. I wonít lie to you, watching TV is a lot easier than working out. But you know what doesnít suck? Looking good in your clothes. Not sweating all the time. Not dreading walking half a mile to a restaurant with your friends. Finishing a half-marathon. Thatís my next goal. I havenít done it yet, but Iíve run seven miles. Whatís the farthest youíve run? Oh, a mile? Just as an FYI, thatís going to be the case for the next thirteen years.
So thatís what I have to tell you, 16-year-old me. Basically, eat vegetables, stop stuffing yourself, work out when you can. Itís not easy, trust me; Iím the one thatís been on both sides of it. Take care of yourself now, buddy; if you donít, youíll wish you had when youíre me.