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The Power of Disgust

Updated: Sep 3, 2021

It all started while I was on vacation with the wife. Our kids are all grown up and we are recent empty nesters. We arrive at the Oregon Coast and walk down to the beach. I go to take a selfie in front of the Iconic Haystack Rock, as seen in The Goonies. Something must be wrong on the camera, because my face is all swollen and I look like the puffy faced Ryan Reynolds from the movie Just Friends. So I delete the photo and try some more poses, but nothing seems to work. Now, I know I’m overweight, but I hadn’t seen my face this puffy before. I had gained 20 lbs with the first kid and another 5 lbs every year since. Gradually going from overweight to stage 3 obesity. Right then and there, I was so disgusted, I said “Oh no, things have got to change, like right now!”

A couple days later I came home from vacation. The next day, June 6th 2020, I hop on my scale and weight in at 273, with a BMI (Body Mass Index) of 44.4. Boy do I have my work cut out for me. I left the house and went to the local track for a walk. I was in no shape to do any running. I was getting passed by folks that were in their 70’s. After walking for 30 minutes, I made it about 1 mile that day.

Day 2 is a little better and I make it to 2 miles in 46 minutes. I shave my head so that I can brush my teeth and just start walking every morning. I go from consuming 2800 calories a day to 1800 calories per day.

Day 3 I’m in pain and realize that I am going to have to start doing stretches before walking. I have to throw all the snack food in the house away and look for alternative healthy snacks. I start the rule of never drinking calories.

Week 1 Everyday, my calves and heels would be killing me, but I would still get up and go. They would start feeling better after the first couple of laps. I watch videos on YouTube of people walking 10,000 steps a day and videos about eating healthy. I lose 4.6 pounds that week.

Week 2 I realize, that if I want to keep this up I need to invest in some good running shoes. By now, I’m averaging 2.25 miles a day in 45 minutes and another 4 lbs lost this week.

Week 3 The new shoes are making a huge difference and the discomfort from walking is improving. Another 1.6 lbs lost this week.

Week 4 I do my first 5K in just over an hour. I didn’t go for walk maybe 5 days in the first month. Struggling on the diet side this week, I only lost .7 lbs, but hey it’s still progress.

Week 8 By now, I’m feeling the effects that walking is having on my mental health. I’m breathing better, seeing progress. I started throwing audiobooks into my walks intermittently to mix things up. I started being able to fine tune my diet and averaging 1650 calories per day my average step count went from 7000 steps a day to 12,000 steps a day. At this point I have lost 24 lbs.

Next week will be my 10 month weigh in. I am currently sitting at 170 lbs with a 27.4 BMI. I bought myself some slim fit jeans and medium shirts and want to cry every time I walk by a mirror. While this hasn’t been easy, I will never go back to my old ways. Eating healthy has become quite easy. Maybe not all the time, but most of the time. I walk all the time, whenever I get a chance. I am alway looking for ways to improve myself.

My hope is, by sharing my experiences, it can empower others to take control and change their lives.It all happened, because one day, I got so disgusted with myself, it forced me to make some changes.

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