100 Pounds Down: 'Nothing is Impossible'*

By , ON2VICTORY, SparkPeople Member
When I first started my journey at 385 pounds, life was difficult. Like the proverbial frog in hot water, my mind made slow adaptations to accept the limitations that each successively heavier weight imposed on my life. Limitations that would be accepted as the new normal.
I was growing larger every year but somehow I still saw myself through skinny glasses.  I was somehow OK with systematically retiring clothes to the dark part of my closet, OK with not being able to comfortably climb stairs, OK with the tightness I felt in my chest with every small exertion.
Somehow I found a way to cope and if I ignored it long enough, it would all go away… somehow.
But pictures, pictures don't lie.
Pictures have a way of ripping off the mask of self-deception. I never looked good in a picture so rather than deal with a "Kodak confrontation," I would simply avoid cameras or find something to cover up with when having my picture taken.
Finally, I could no longer hide from the truth, I was out of control.
Slowly, I started making changes. As the weight started coming off, each day became a gift, each package containing some ability that I had lost along the way. I was slowly getting my life back. While the scale was slow to move for the first few months, the changes were real nonetheless. Within weeks, my clothes were fitting a little better and I certainly felt better.
The first 30 pounds brought some profound changes. Day to day tasks were not so difficult.
Tying my shoes was no longer classified as an endurance event.
Stairs were becoming easier and less like mountain climbing.
I even jogged my first mile after months of wheezing my way from mailbox to mailbox.
After 50 pounds, I regained enough mobility and had built enough endurance to complete my first ever, real, live, genuine running event, a 10K. Wow, ME, a runner? Who would have thought?
Even more profound were the reports from the doctor's office. I looked forward to the smile and praise from my doctor rather than getting "the look" as she reviewed my results. In about a year, I managed to lower my cholesterol from 192 to 127 and my triglycerides dropped from 198 to 76.
It is really awesome not to feel like I am slowly committing suicide with a fork.
Beyond 50 pounds, life began to take on new meaning. I could finally walk into a restaurant and pick out the best seating available rather than settling for less because it was the only place I could fit into without causing a scene. Buying clothes was fun again rather than scavenging ugly clothes at overpriced stores simply because that was all I could find that would fit.
I found a new passion in running. With each mile gained and each pound lost, came a  sense of personal empowerment that was very real. Every run is a celebration of movement, of life regained, and of strength renewed. I was driven by an internal fire to anchor myself in this new lifestyle. I found myself getting stronger every day, each new distance goal was a limit to be breached, and then push beyond.
Suddenly a half marathon (13.1 miles) didn't seem so crazy anymore. Crossing the finish line was a pivotal experience. During my half marathon training, I also crossed the finish line of another pivotal moment.
I had finally broken the 100-pound mark in my weight loss journey.
It was then I decided to go all the way with a full marathon (26.2 miles).
On September 18, 2011, after a year filled with an intense dedication to training, I crossed the finish line of my first marathon.
At 100 pounds lost, my new life is just beginning. While it would have been better to never have had this problem to start with, fighting to regain my life and sense of self has given me an appreciation for life and physical health that I never had before.
While I have 60 pounds to go, I have learned that nothing is impossible. By adopting the principles of gradual change, moderation, and consistency over perfectionism promoted at SparkPeople, my life has a sense of balance. Because I took the weight off gradually and in a sustainable fashion, I do not fear regaining it.
I simply enjoy an active lifestyle.

About the author, in his own words: I have struggled with eating and weight issues for most of my life. When it came to losing weight, I failed far more often than I succeeded and when I did succeed, I would gain it all back again shortly after I lost it.

What I was lacking was a lifestyle change. Instead of simply trying to lose weight this time, I adopted SparkPeople's method of slow and gradual changes. Since joining SparkPeople in 2009, I have lost over 100 pounds and become an running enthusiast, finishing several half marathons and a full marathon. Through it all, I have learned that consistency, not perfection, is the key to success. To sum it up, "your success depends on what you do when the WooHoo is all through."

What milestone have you passed this year?

*Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.

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ONEKIDSMOM 1/29/2018
Saw this featured again this morning, and although the date of origin is older (2011), I know Robert even beyond Spark People and can attest that in 2018, he's still at it, having faced more challenges as life has gone on, but still committed to living his life to the fullest and healthiest! A good man, and well deserving to be featured! Report
ALABAMASUSAN17 10/25/2017
Consistency over perfection! Awesome, my first Mantra! Report
This article inspires me to keep going with small, steady and sustainable changes. Thank you! Report
Its kinda hard to get rid of it but what you are doing can surely make you achieve your goal which is an awesome thing.
Your post is kinda motivation and i am liking it a lot.Keep sharing your experiences ahead.

" http://www.nitin360.com/the-truth-a
Enjoyed your story.....I havent accomplished what you have but have managed to lose 54 pounds and counting. Thanks for sharing..... Report
Thanks for sharing your motivational spirit & struggles. I'm still at the start line struggling,but reading articles like yours give me hope when I feel defeated.Really liked the line about slowly committing suicide with a fork...very profound. Report

Congratulations on your success. Your story is very inspirational. Just shows what determination and consistency can do. You have earned the right to be very proud of your accomplishments. Report
What a wonderfully inspiring article. Thank you so much for sharing your story with us. Congrats on your success! Report
This is GREAT!!!! I am so-o-o happy for you..... This has really given me motivation to do the right thing, by sticking to the RIGHT life style change. Continue to do what you are doing.... I wish you much success.... Glenda Report
Such an inspirational read. Now I have confidence that I CAN DO IT Report
thank you for your amazing story it truly has helped me to make a decision to have a newer healthier lifestyle it's gonna be tough but your story makes it seem possible to achieve anything Report
WOW What an inspiration you are!!!! Congratulations Report
I simply LOVED this blog!!!! You were just the inspiration I needed!!! Congrats on all you have achieved and WILL achieve!! I can tell that you're enjoying getting your life back!! Report
Thanks for the inspirational message! I am beginning my lifestyle change and I am very excited about eventually becoming an inspiration to others too!!! Keep reaching for the stars! Report
You have done and are doing some really great things. This was so good to read. This has inspired me to get back out there and step up my running game. The Cherry Blossom 10 miler here in DC in now back on my "milestone list". Congrats on all of your successes!!! Report
Great story! Love hearing form someone who thinks and feels same battles like we all do! Report
The one thing that you stated which I have started this year is Lifestyle Change. It has to be a lifestyle.
Congrats! Thanks for the inspiration! Report
Congrats! I always love to read your success stories.
Jocelyn Report
I really enjoy hearing about people who have lost weight using SparkPeople as I am a month into my adventure. Report
You are very inspirational and I thank you so much for all your blogs, and ideas. Congratulations Report
You are amazing! Every day we are a step closer to goal, as long as we are consistent and conscious of our choices. Good on you!

C. Report
Congrats for a true life style change. I identify with so many of your "weight issues" - hiding from the camera, etc. I finished my first 5K a few weeks ago. I've inspired my husband to join my journey as well. Thanks again for sharing you inspiring story. Report
Thank you for sharing your story. I have tried many many times to over come my weight, stories like yours give me hope! Report
That is fantastic and hit home in a major way. I too understand how easy it is to keep justifying the weight gain. I kept putting those clothes that were getting snug in the back of the closet and buying new ones. As the weight increased I went from the biggest sizes in the department stores to maxing out at the one "big girl" store in the mall to having to shop via catalogue and internet because most retailers don't carry my size. I am making progress and it feels great. My most recent banished clothing is making its way back into rotation and I now can tie my shoes without feeling like it should count for my cardio tracker. I have a long way to go so it was very motivating to hear your count-down because I could already relate to the first stages. Great job on your success so far! Report
You are a motivator and a blessing!! Thank you for your blog! I needed to read that today!
Blessings on the rest of your journey to fitness!
Kim Report
Congratulations! Very Inspirational Report
fantastic - a real inspiration. your story sounded so familiar. am pleased you have made all those positive changes and love your positive attitude. Report
Robert!!! I love seeing you featured here--you continue to inspire me and so many and I'm so thankful you've shared your journey. Keep it up--and the rest of us we'll keep tyring to keep up with you! WOO HOO Report
I am so in awe of what you have done!

Hmm...milestones this year. Well, I rode a Century, but it wasn't my first by far. I don't know if I can say I had an actual milestone event this year, but if consistency is key, then I'm on the right track!

Thank you! So inspiring! Report
Wonderful. A half-marathon gives 90% of the Health benefits, according to a Tufts University study. When going on to train and run the full marathon, they had a 10% gain was all and had more risk of injuries. This was on a PBS-TV Special. Report
Congratulations on your weight loss and completion of a half a full marathon. Your inspirational story has given me more determination to reach my goals. Keep reaching for yours and keep blogging. Report
Congrats! An inspiration to do some running myself. Report
Loved this blog! Love the attitude! Keep it up and never look back!!! Report
I saved this to my Spark Favorites so I can read it again whenever I'm losing my motivation. I only have about 20 pounds to lose, but I've found it so difficult to stay the course. Thanks for your inspiring words! Report
Bravo for you! You are a living example of this quote: “Be strong, go with your heart, and believe in miracles because anything...anything can happen.”-Marlo Javidando Report
You rock, you inspire, you da man! Thanks for the inspiration and the support you give to me and SO many others.
C~ Report
Your blog made my morning; you are truly an inspiration. Report
Very inspiring! I am purposefully seeking out people who have lost weight and changed their life styles on Sparkpeople. I need all the inspiration I can get. thank you so much for sharing your experience! Report
WOW! Good for you! Thank you for the inspiration. And good luck with your journey! Report
Congrats! Thanks for sharing and giving me hope. Report
I look at pictures weighing in at 279. I am now down to 165!! Still working on it. You feel good, don't you? I sure do! Report
Congratulations! What an inspiration you are! thanks for sharing Report
Thank you for sharing a part of your life....very inspiring! Report
Congratulations, what a great job you've done and how much better your health is now! Report
Great blog, Robert! Report
Great inspiring article. Congratulations on your success! Report
Great article, by a great friend! Congrats on your success Robert!! Report
One day at a time, Sweet Jesus and you proved it over and over again! Enjoy your new life and keep on inspiring others. Journaling and Sparkfriends will help keep you on track. Way to go! Report
Robert, You should be very proud of yourself and keep up the good work.Your changing lifestyle is such an inspiration. I to Thanksgiving Day did my 1st race which was a 10K and when finished I thought that half marathon could be in my future. May 2012 Flying Pig here I come! Report
Hello and thank you for sharing your inspiring journey! Report
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