My journey to health and fitness started well before this blog and this final 30 week training program. Part of me is still shocked by my journey so far. I thought that this would be a good time and place to reflect upon that journey. By documenting it, I am basically showing “the blog that would have been” if I had been blogging all along. I will divide this up into weekly installments. It should wrap up the same week that I compete in Ironman Wisconsin, and will chronicle the journey to the start of this final 30 weeks.
I guess this all started in the early 90’s when I was in college. I rarely exercised (who had the time?) and ate a lot of junk. My weight went up…a lot. Once I was out in the “real world” I had more and more thoughts that I should do “something”. It took awhile, but I joined Weight Watchers in 1998. That was a sobering day. I had not stepped on the scale in years. I was 197 lbs at 5’6”. I would guessed 175 lbs. I should have been under 155 lbs. I needed to lose 42 pounds. I almost left right then and there, before the first meeting even started.
I hated that week. Ate a lot of celery. I was starving and miserable. I went back the next week and figured it would be my last. But I lost 5 pounds. Made it worthwhile. I lost 10 more the next 2 weeks (at hhh…the joys of being a young male with a good metabolism!)
The weight did come off pretty fast, but I worked hard at it. Within 6 months I was at goal..and had never been happier. But, I wasn’t fit. I wasn’t exercising. I knew I was only halfway there. So I took the next step. I went to a gym…for the very first time!
I felt like I landed on another planet! It was so intimidating! I worked with a trainer who clearly expected to never see me again. When I told her how much weight I had just lost, she reconsidered and gave me a chance. I worked hard, and got tone, but never did get much muscle. I met some old college friends. We would meet a few times a week and would work out and support each other. It was really great!
Then I moved from my native Canada to Minnesota. I was single, and moved somewhere where I was completely starting over. No friends, no WW group or workout buddies. New job, new home, new career. And the fitness got put on the back burner a little. Then completely.
My career thrived. So did my personal life. So did my waist. I met someone special and we got married. By the time I got back from my honeymoon, I could not fit into the tux I got married in. And, just like that, all my years of hard work went up in smoke.
Over the next few years, I made a few half-hearted attempts to go back to WW and to the gym. But I never truly committed to it. I would lose 10 pounds here and there when my “fat pants” got to tight, but would then slide right back downhill. Right to 197 lbs. Again.
I had failed. Completely and utterly failed.