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

Posts tagged ‘depression’

The Countdown 3/17/2014

Last Week: 323

This Week: 324

Next week’s goal: 318

Magic Number to 220: 104 lbs.

Lost since Nov 2012 (561.8 lbs): 221 lbs

Lost Since Nov 2011 (561.8 lbs): 239 lbs

Highest ever weight recorded/known: 589 (difference of 265 lbs)

 

I was posting these regularly on Monday and the last two…late. I suppose I should be happy I was out 7 nights in a row and ended up only gaining a pound. I went places where I had no business being, ordered wisely, and walked away without my weight skyrocketing.

But it’s now going on week 4 of trying to reach 318. My trainers and team are getting nervous. Some are beginning to question my commitment level.

I can understand that. 

I could have not gone out a few nights. I could have brought my own food. Maybe exercised even more. 

But I didn’t do any of them. 

Last Friday was the 22nd anniversary of the worst day of my life. Someone I considered a friend I can no longer trust. I wasn’t wise with funds, work isn’t going well–and my bosses know it. I got into with one of them last week. Someone on my side no less. Mostly because I wouldn’t let him in with what’s going on with me. Others have noticed as well. 

People want me to strive to better or do my best and right now I just keep wondering how much more I need give. It’s almost like I’ve become a totally different person now. I keep wondering what was wrong with who I was or who I am now. Sometimes I look in the mirror and still see the same fat guy who’s always been there.

I know it’s not true but and I’ve made huge strides but I still look and see a big fat guy. I see the loose skin that sags on my body now that I’ve lost. Yesterday I thought I saw definition in my abs but really it’s covered by a layer of fat. So I get depressed looking at what I did to myself. And yet when people ask me “if I feel better now…”, I get annoyed.

Annoyed as if I was just some loser who sat on the couch all day and ate chips or something. Like I was some sort of total loser before all this. Then there’s the people who think I’m going back to being some 500+ pound guy if I don’t have structure or if I take a break. I’m a different guy now and yet they look at me like it was 16 months ago. 

I feel tired, lost, and like I’ve lost my identity. I almost want to say depressed because the last few days all I wanted to do sometimes was crawl up in a ball and not leave my bed for a while. 

And I think I can motivate people. Hell, I can’t even motivate myself right now. Inspirational my ass!

This all said, I’m not giving up. I may not have this all figured out right now but I’ve come to far. Win or lose, I’m going to keep going. Sooner or later I’m going to put the pieces together again. I’m going to figure out these answers. And call it a gut feeling but I’m pretty sure when I do, it’s all going to fall into place, and better than it ever was.

Just got to believe. 

Next week 318 and I don’t even want to know what happens if I don’t get there.

 

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And I opened this door because…

I came back from Las Vegas and wanted to make changes. In one of the seminars, they talked about asking others as to how they perceived the same time or place. It got me to thinking about how I am perceived. So yesterday, I asked my boss.

And he told me the truth.

It’s a funny thing about the truth. Sometimes you think you want it when really you don’t. That came in the form of this revelation:

I do just enough to get by.

Now my “just enough” is pretty good but I could do better and don’t. My radio career failed because I didn’t go the extra mile. In my job, I could do more but I don’t. I claim I want to win the World Championship of Public Speaking but I don’t put in nearly the effort to do so. Even with the weight loss, if I get to 5 pounds and I could get higher, instead I take as a time to go eat pizza or something.

The good news–it’s fixable.

The bad news–I’m not sure I want to.

Yes, I want more and better but am I willing to do it? Will I put in supreme effort? Worse, what if I do and fail?

So where does that leave me?

A mess.

Nobody wants to admit they’re not willing to do something. It’s a horrible feeling. It’ll make you sick to your stomach. The obvious step is to make a change. But what happens when you’re not willing to? What do you do then? Can you live with yourself knowing you’ll never be what you could be?

What do you do when you open a door and find the answer wishing you’d never seen it?

I have a lot to think about and soul search now.

Countdown 2/26/14

Last Week: 323

This Week: 330

Next week’s goal: 323

Magic Number to 220: 110 lbs.

Lost since Nov 2012: 213 lbs

Lost Since Nov 2011: 231 lbs

Highest ever weight recorded/known: 589 (difference of 259 lbs)

Steps for the week: 89,598

Average Steps per Day: 12,800

I know what y’all are thinking.  He went to Vegas and this is the result.

I wish I could say that was true…but it’s not.

I came home from Las Vegas at 325. During that trip I had a 30,000 step day and two 10,000 step days. My only sweet all weekend? One small serving of mint chip ice cream. Yes I drank and had some carbs but I stayed strong.

So how am I up 5 pounds since Monday?

On Monday night, I went with friends to TGI Fridays. I ordered a grilled chicken salad.

And then I decided to split boneless buffalo wings with someone.

I thought I’d have 1 or 2.

Well they brought us the wings and they had a bone. The waitress told us to keep them and she’d get new ones. My partner didn’t want any. And there it was. I had a plate of wings in front of me. Worse, the 2nd plate came and half my partner didn’t want either.

So 1 and half plates later, I ate my salad as well.

In one sitting, I wrecked weeks of work. When I try to identify why I keep thinking I was happy. Somehow in my happiness I felt it was okay to have buffalo wings. And then there was the additional food. Why did I eat it? Because when I was a kid, I was told to eat everything on your plate and not waste food.

So because I was happy, my reaction was the celebrate with food. The continuation occurred when I felt obligated not to waste food and eat everything–like a good little boy. Just when I think I’ve figured this out, I realize I’m always going to have issues like this. That I’ll always need to be on top of this stuff and hyper aware.

It’s easy to say why buffalo wings suck and I shouldn’t eat them. But for someone like me, it’s the taste and what reactions and emotions it brings that make them attractive. The memories of hanging out with good friends in college, drinking beer, and eating wings. Or those Sundays watching football with the guys.

Then there’s the other part of this. In Vegas I wasn’t perfect but it wasn’t a fiasco. So why did I create one the night after I came home? Why at a moment of triumph did I torpedo myself like this? Why did I hurt myself? Did I not deserve to be happy? To feel like I accomplished something? I walked 13 miles on Friday and yet it now means nothing.

But then it sort of all makes sense. Ever since I hit 200 pounds lost, I’ve sort hit a standstill. It’s not a physical one just mental. I hit 200 pounds lost and felt like I’d accomplished something. And that would be the case if the job was done–but it’s not. There’s 110 to go. I’ve been justifying and saying I’ll figure it out.

But that’s not happening. I’ve hit goal just once in 2 months. I’ve been content with the 1-3 pound losses. The goal on Monday is 323–7 pounds. I need to get my head out of my ass and make it.

20 years later…

Next week I head to Vegas for a 4 day weekend–place I’ve not been in 20 years.

It reminded me about the time I could have gone to Vegas and didn’t. About 4-6 years ago, I was President of non-profit game group. We helped run and promote games like Monopoly, Dungeons and Dragons, and Magic the Gathering. An industry magazine had decided to create a trade show and approached us about having members demo games for companies in…Las Vegas. It was all expenses paid. Further, they were giving me an opportunity to create a seminar talking to the biggest and best in the industry. Given my penchant for public speaking and hunting for a career opportunity this was an amazing break.

But it never happened. I never went to Las Vegas.

I told friends it was fiances and I couldn’t get of work.

A total lie.

I didn’t go because I knew I wouldn’t fit in a plane seat. Because I was scared what would happen if I had to go to the bathroom and I couldn’t fit in it. Because I didn’t want to ask them to pay for a 2nd plane seat.

And so my friends boarded a plane and I stayed at home.

And that was the first time I realized what I’d done to myself. That my weight was indeed an issue. That it had hindered me and I missed out on an amazing opportunity. And in typical fashion, it made me unhappy, depressed, and caused me to eat even more. Because at that time, I could grasp how I’d ever could be anything more than the overweight man that I was.

I told myself there’d be another chance and I’d go next year. There was no next year. The show folded after one year. I missed out because of my issues with weight. Now I’d like to believe it was all for the best. That maybe it all needed to happen. That it was the beginning of my awakening. That it made me think about doing something. That I started to look at places like Structure House.

But the truth is we’ll never know. But I do know this: on Thursday night I’ll board a plane for Las Vegas.

The last time I was on a plane?

Before 9/11–when it didn’t cost you to check a bag.

Yeah, that long ago.

The true test? Will I need a seat belt extension? I’m hoping the answer is no.

The last time I was in Vegas, I was 21. I’d always though I’d be back sooner. A lot has changed in 20 years and I plan to see all of it. And a lot more. Thursday night marks the biggest milestone so far–I can travel on a plane again. Even when I went to North Carolina to Structure House it was a 2 day drive there and back.

But now things will be different now. I am never putting myself in a position like that again. I’ve got places to go and people to see. Well as long as the airfare isn’t too high. But 20 years later things will now be very different from now on.

THE COUNTDOWN 1/27/14

Last Week: 332

This Week: 330 (Goal was 327)

Next week’s goal: 325

Magic Number to 220: 110 lbs.

Lost since Nov 2012: 213 lbs

Lost Since Nov 2011: 231 lbs

Highest ever weight recorded/known: 589 (difference of 259 lbs)

Let the speculation and frustration begin. I stepped it up a notch this week in terms of activity. I did 73,695 steps from Monday through Sunday. That’s an average of 10,527.86 steps a day. That comes out to 33.86 miles plus 72 flights of stairs. That doesn’t take into account 3 pool workouts ranging from 20 to 50 minutes, an hour of pilates, and a 1/2 of yoga.

But Monday night I had a meltdown of sorts. After trying not to eat chicken tenders at Lifetime, I found myself at a McDonalds drive thru not once but twice in one evening. The numbers on the calories weren’t horrible but I should never been there. I also did breakfast there that day. So 3 trips to the golden arches in one day–ugh.

Still, when I weight Tuesday, I was still at the same weight. I kept things pretty clean most of the week but didn’t seem to lose. There has been an uptick of cheese and carbs of late. Nothing people would call huge but enough that it could be the difference. Yesterday, I made the error of not eating something with substance after my workout. Partially because I knew there’d be samples at the grocery store.

Mistake.

Ended up grabbing to Taco Bell fresco style tacos. In fairness, it was going to be 2 pieces of grilled KFC chicken but they were out and it was going to take 10 minutes. I wasn’t willing to wait 10 minutes. But I should have. The result was Taco Bell.

That might not been so bad but I was gaming with friends that evening and ran out of fruit. This meant the only thing left to munch on was…potato chips. I thought I could keep it under control. I though wrong. Rather than one or two, it turned into…well, I can’t count the handfuls.

Had a feeling yesterday of not being satisfied with the food I had at times. I’ve also noticed when I’m not in the mood to drink water and try to force myself stuff like this can happen sometimes. Hence my taco bell trip as well. Running out of fruit didn’t help either. Usually I overbuy. This time I didn’t and I paid for it.

So I lost but that’s two weeks in a row I missed goal. In fairness, since 1/1/14, I’ve dropped 19 pounds. But since in November I was at 342, it seems like I’ve been struggling. The exercise went up but the nutrition needs to be cleaner. It’s also become clear that things I used to get away with at a higher weight may not work now.

And that’s where the frustration sets in. I’m going to have either step up the exercise even more or get even cleaner. I think its the latter and that will not be easy. The level of carbs and cheese right now isn’t high but it’s going to need to be less. And while I’ve done it before, it will not be easy. 14 months into this I’m beginning to want a few things back and get tired of the same stuff every morning. Still, I’m 110 pounds from my end goal. If I could keep it clean the next two weigh-ins then I could be in double digits to goal and that would be something.

Next week is 325 and I get an extra day as Matt’s going to China. That means an 8 day week followed by a 6 day week. So 10 pounds in 14 days. Not so easy.

The Countdown 1/20/2014

Last Week: 334

This Week: 332 (Goal was 329)

Next week’s goal: 327

Magic Number to 220: 112 lbs.

Lost since Nov 2012: 211 lbs

Lost Since Nov 2011: 229 lbs

Highest ever weight recorded/known: 589 (difference of 257 lbs)

I think the past week was some elation and celebration for finally breaking the 340 mark. And of course I celebrated with food. Perhaps the Panda Express for lunch that Monday wouldn’t have been a problem if later AFTER eating dinner I had chicken wings AND mac and cheese. Perhaps I didn’t need Wendy’s hash browns on Tuesday morning. Or maybe I didn’t need to add sugar to my protein shake to give it more flavor that evening.

Or the two days in a row with an ice cream cone from McDonalds. Or TGI Friday’s on Friday night. Certainly not the Dunkin Donuts breakfast with hash browns on Saturday morning. Is it any wonder I even lost two pounds with all that? Even when I pulled two a days of exercise on Monday and Wednesday.

While 2 pounds is nothing to sneeze it, it’s clear I need to be far cleaner if I’m going to lose 5 a week and get to 300 any time soon. I’d hoped with pounds just melting off last week I could be more lax.

I was wrong.

It takes a ton of mental energy to always make the right choice. Especially when it’s clear one wrong food choice a day can cost you. I will either need to be cleaner or exercise more and/or harder. I’d almost rather the latter but that means making even more time. It’d probably mean morning and night sessions.

Stress has also been a factor. It’s easy to stop binge/stress eating when you have money to spend on other things to keep you occupied. Well the result is I’m taking some financial hits which means I need to tone down the insane spending. Not easy and even more stressful. Combine that with sluggish sales at work and you can imagine stress has been raised.

And when stress is raised and I can’t find means to compensate then my mind starts to wander. It looks towards food for comfort. Things like carbs, peanut butter, and ice cream. That last one explains the two ice cream cones this week.

Next week the goal is 327. It’s clear if I’m going to make it, I’m going to need to figure this out.

Aside

Georgette

Back in the spring, I came back from vacation and I’d gained 7 pounds.

(Note: if you’ve noticed a trend, you’re not alone. Vacation equals things don’t get well from Jeff. This usually includes a weight gain–sometimes deserved and other times mind boggling.)

At first I wasn’t worried. I’d had gains like this before. They were usually followed with close to double digit losses. So as usual, I put my head down and worked harder. But by Thursday morning, the scale hadn’t budged one inch. I was still 7 pounds away from where I needed to be. And I’d been doubling my usual efforts.

To say I was frustrated was a major understatement. I was past frustrated. I was at find me a pizza–this week is over.

That is when I met Georgette.

There I was at a true low point when she came over and said the following:

“Hi, you don’t know me. My name is Georgette. I see you in here everyday and how hard you work. And when I think about not coming in, I think about you and it makes me want to come in. You’re doing a great job–keep it up.”

It’s moments like this when I truly believe in the powers of the universe. Here I was at a true low point and out of nowhere this woman decided NOW was the time to approach me and tell me this.

After pondering the recent events of the moment, I walked over to Georgette and told her the truth, How I’d gained 7 pounds, how they weren’t coming off, and how seconds before she walked over I was ready to throw up my hands and give up. And that her words couldn’t have come at a better time.

She gave me a hug.

Four days later the 7 pounds I fretted over were gone.

I still see Georgette. We say hi to one another usually in passing.

It’s easy to say people are mean and don’t care any more. It’s not true. Yes people are more cynical and weary but if you work hard show you’re genuine, they will stand with and behind you.

Because you never know when your moment of kindness can help someone else at a moment when they could use it. Like that moment I met Georgette.

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