|Me & Dude, 6th June 2015|
I looked at myself in the pictures, one in particular and was disgusted at what I saw. There was Dude, looking cool in his Superman t-shirt, cuddling up to Jabba The Hutt. I knew I was overweight - looking back at pictures, I’ve been that way for a LONG time - but seeing this one image made me realise just how bad I’d got, how far I’d let things slide. As I stared at that picture, fascinated, I decided I was going to change things. I started dieting the next day but, since I loved my pizza and burgers and crisps, sweets and biscuits (and was afraid of falling at the first hurdle), I didn’t tell anybody I was doing it. I started doing simple exercises in the morning - press-ups, stomach crunches - but kept them quiet too.
The first person I told was Dude, who caught me exercising one morning and asked what I was doing. I told Alison next, though she’d already guessed something was going on. My Mum mentioned it to me a couple of weeks later.
In the picture that disgusted me, I weighed 18st 6.75lbs (258.75lbs or just over 117kgs). I’m 5ft 11 and even though I don’t think the BMI is a great measure, it showed mine as 35.9 and well into the “obese” end of things. I didn’t do much exercise (I cycled with Dude but didn’t walk far), I sometimes got out of breath walking up the stairs and I was now buying, as a matter of course and without thinking of exactly what it meant, XXL t-shirts. Staring at the picture, I knew something had to change because if it didn’t, I wouldn’t see my boy grow up (and my heart attack, less than two months away, would be a stark reminder of my mortality).
I’d got into the habit, somehow, of eating far too much crap. Alison is a great cook, she makes lovely meals but her well balanced menu wasn’t the problem - it was the pizza (if not two) I had EVERY week, it was the burger & chips I had most weeks, it was all the chocolate bars and crisps I ate (some quite late at night), it was all the sweets I picked up over the weekend.
|Feeling the cold... |
Walking in December 2014, in plenty of layers
(scarf and sweatshirt not pictured!)
The diet (it isn’t really a diet, it is simply a case of not eating crap) bedded itself in slowly and after a while, I didn’t really miss the chocolate or crisps (I now have one packet a day, with my lunch). Alison taught me a trick she’d picked up at Slimming World, of a treat on weighing day so I took advantage of that and enjoyed it. We still had chips on occasion but it was a treat, once every couple of months. I really did miss my lovely Pinocchio’s pizza though and still have one a month, usually on the night of my writing group, then I walk for an hour or so before heading off to our meeting.
|I work in Finance, I like lists, what can I say...?|
There are a lot of lessons I learned from this process but the main one seems to be that if you have the resolve (and trust me, a picture is a real slap-in-the-face of a resolve), you can do it.
And just to put it all into context, this is how I looked a year ago (and no, this isn't the trigger picture...)
(it's also worth mentioning that I didn't do this completely on my own - Alison & Dude have been a fantastic support, as have my Mum & Dad (who found new routes to vary my walks) and friends, plus Iona and her BHF team who showed me just how far I could push myself. Thank you, one and all.)