From 589 pounds to 220 pounds. This is my journey. Welcome to the countdown.

Four Guys on A Bench

I noticed my last few posts had a specific slant and tilt. Glad I got it out of my system but well I little too much, how can I say…

Whining, annoying, bitch?

Yeah, without question.

This experience has been more rewarding than I ever imagined. We often talk about how the world is a cold and bitter place.

When I really got back into everything it was the week of Thanksgiving 2012. I weighed 543 pounds. I workout at Lifetime Fitness in Skokie, IL. 

At first, I was the round peg trying to fit into a square hole. At a club often seems to be about families and beautiful people, here was this 500+ pound guy. Talk about feeling out of place!

So you can imagine I wasn’t exactly comfortable sometimes. But my trainers and Matt and Miranda kept me focused. Matt jokes he took one look at me and didn’t think I was going to make it and I’d quit in a week.

Matt never knew this but it almost happened. The 1st week, I was walking around the gym lifting 10-15 pound weights and sweating like crazy. With about 10 minutes, I was pretty spent. I had one more round to go including battle ropes.

If you’ve never seen a battle rope–be glad. Damn things are evil. Giant tug of war ropes you need to slam as fast as possible–timed. In my case–30 seconds.

30 seconds…lol, I wasn’t going to last 3 seconds!

Then an amazing thing happened. I walked up to ropes, took them in hand, and closed my eyes.

I heard myself say in my mind “that’s it, we’re done”.

I heard another voice say “keep going, you can do it!”

That voice wasn’t in my head. It wasn’t Matt’s either!

I opened my eyes to see four guys sitting on a bench with racquetball gear. I thought maybe I was hearing things. But he said it again…”you can do it!”

Here was a guy I didn’t know from anything or anyone cheering me on when I needed it more than he or my trainer would ever know.

Sometimes the difference between success and failure is 4 guys on a bench in a gym taking a break from their racquetball game. That when I didn’t believe in myself, someone else did.

Looking back now that’s the moment I should have seen this time would be different. That I’d finally begin to figure this all out.

200 pounds later, I see those guys 3 days a week. The ones who were on board before they even knew what was to come.

On one of those mornings, Friday, I could use the treadmill. Instead, I throw on my headphones and walk in the gym. So I can say hi to 4 guys sitting on a bench. 4 guys who probably don’t know how one 2 minute exchange helped more than they know.

Thanks guys!

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Comments on: "Four Guys on A Bench" (4)

  1. That’s awesome. I had a similar experience myself. Thanks for sharing. The support we give and get may go so much further than we ever know!

  2. Jeff, I just found your blog and it’s great! So happy for you and totally inspired by your journey. Thanks for sharing it with the world! Keep doing it!

  3. Great post Jeff (all of them actually)! I think the universe is constantly sending us signals and assistance; it’s great when we are actually open to receiving! Good for you and good for the guys on the bench 🙂

  4. Isabelle said:

    I am the wife of one of the men on the bench. You have given me incentive to go on with my weight loss, and I have to thank you for that. Bless you for encouraging me to go on with my quest.

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