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Looking back, looking forward

Friday, March 15, 2013

You know it's a week when I'm being good to my plan when I weigh myself multiple days in a row. I've gotten into the habit of only weighing myself the morning after a day where I've behaved, and fortunately I have those days often enough so that I have a good idea overall of where I'm going. This morning was a shining example of where I'm going because the scale hit a special number for me.

I'm not one of those people who joins Sparkpeople and immediately loses and never gains it back. I've been on SparkPeople for seven years now! A SparkFriend of mine wrote a few days ago in her blog about how she will never be one of those "success stories" on the front page of the site because her journey hasn't been a big dramatic 100-pound weight loss in a short amount of time, but rather she's one of the masses of people whose life has been full of ups and downs. I could totally identify with that. And while my life (and the scale!) has been full of highs and lows for me over the past seven years, I'm excited about where I'm at right now and where I think I'm headed soon.

I found the motivation to "relaunch" late last year for a few reasons, and I detailed many of these in a blog post from back in December when I changed my account name to ERIC_ANDREW. One big reason was that I had grown sick and tired of making excuses for myself. Most of these excuses were along the lines of, "Hey, I've done this before successfully, why didn't the weight just stay off?" Another favorite was, "Most of my friends don't work nearly as hard as I do at this and they're all a lot smaller than me, and that's not fair!" Another big reason was that after recovering from a broken foot, I finally found the courage to dedicate myself to my favorite form of cardio, long-distance racing, and I wanted to not only get back what I had when I completed my marathon in 2010, but I wanted to do better. Probably most importantly, I wanted to do away with all of the health problems that had nagged me since gaining weight, once and for all.

So on October 8, 2012, I weighed myself in at 227. That was within a span I found myself in quite a lot, between 225 and 230. That was still better than I was many years ago when I was 265, but it certainly wasn't where I wanted to be.

Today, I weighed myself in at 207. That number is special for me for a few reasons. 207 is exactly 20 pounds less than I was in October. 207 means that for my height, my BMI is now officially in the "overweight" zone and no longer in the "obese" zone. 207 is the weight I was after completing my marathon in 2010.

It really has felt like this whole process since October has been slow-going, but now that I'm at a milestone, I'm looking back and I'm pretty excited.

My running, for instance, has changed significantly. I was just trying to get back into it in October, and back then I felt like I was going to die when I participated in a race running four miles at an 11:36 pace. Now I'm looking forward to my third 14-mile run of the season tomorrow morning, and I train with a group that runs at 11:15. Many of my shorter runs during the week are now getting close to 10:30.

Another thing I've noticed are my clothes. Last fall, I had to break down and buy a bigger size of pants than I've needed in many years. Today, those pants are just too darn big to wear and I'm fishing older, smaller pants from the depths of my closet. I'm wearing this wonderful dress shirt today that I had bought last fall, but I have to keep tucking and tucking and tucking it in because it now looks like a dress on me. The belt I have on is well-worn on the 2nd hole, but today I am wearing it on the 5th hole.

And of course there are the health concerns. My chronic heartburn and GERD? Gone. Well, unless I were to drink a vat of Tabasco. Snoring at night? Not 100% gone, but probably 80-90% gone. My sleep apnea? Gone.

It's been a slow process, but it's been consistent and steady. Yes, there have been bad days. There have been crazy binge days where the food or the social drinking has gotten crazy. Hell, there have been crazy binge weeks! But so far I've always gotten back to it and picked up where I left off.

My goal has been to be under 200 by my big marathon on May 19, and I think I'm going to do it. I don't know what my ultimate goal weight is exactly going to be, but I wanted to get there by this autumn, and I think I'm going to do it. And, seriously, I'm pretty excited.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Eric I am so proud of you!!!... i knew the mojo would come back in full force... I am excited for you... we all have our upand downs... and when we are up we cheer each other on and when we are down we still cheer each other on:)... I can wait to see new pics soon of you !! keep on trucking we will get there one way or another !! Hugs and love !!
    1832 days ago
    You're awesome and I know you'll reach all the goals. So glad you're back!
    1833 days ago

    Eric, We've both been at the wrong end of some BS in the past couple years. You've done a great job of taking charge in the fall and the results show today. I have no doubt that on May 19th you'll crush that race! Which race is it? The number on the scale has only so much to do your marathon time; heart and desire do as well. I know that I was around 290 when I did mine in May of '11 and my time marvels many of our smaller MIT friends.

    You've got the eye of the tiger, now apply it!
    1833 days ago
    I identify so much with this. I joined and lost 50, in 5 months but the last 10 lbs (and year) have been such a rollercoaster.

    I learned my love for running. While I'm not sure if I'm into the long distances yet, I can handle the 5ks and I'm trying a half Marathon in January. Just the motivation of being able to run if I lose some of this weight, is motivation enough to keep going. I'll be better at one of my passions if I lose this weight? Heck yes, I'll say no to that cookie or chinese food in that case.

    You can do this and so can I. I'm at 209. We'll get under 200.
    1833 days ago
    I think it is better if the weight loss journey is slow going. The important part is the direction and to make the new choices habits. Wohoo... you are running a marathon? I wish you good luck, lots of fun and to reach your weight goal before May 19!
    emoticon emoticon
    1833 days ago
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