Monday, November 3, 2014

Four Months

One of my friends asked the other day if, since I've had to buy new pants, I was going to take one of those photos where you smile at the camera and stand in your old pants and hold the waist out so that people can see how far the waist of your pants is from your actual waist. If you were hoping for such a photo, I'm sorry to disappoint you, but it's hard to take one of those pictures by yourself. I guess I could take it in the mirror, but this isn't Myspace and I don't want to show you my (nonexistent) abs. I also don't feel like inviting anyone over to take such a photo, so anyone who wanted one is going to have to live without.

You can look at this photo instead:

Inspiration (2)

The khaki pants on the bottom are the pants I was wearing in July. They were tight in July, but I was wearing them. The charcoal pants in the middle are a pair of the new pants I ordered at the end of September, a little over a month ago, which I mentioned above. The jeans on top? I wore those on Sunday. Last time I wore those, as far as I can remember, was April of 2012.

That's what progress looks like.

How much progress?

In July, I weighed 295 pounds.

In August, I weighed 273 pounds.

In September, I weighed 260 pounds.

In October, I weighed 248 pounds.

Today I weigh 240.

I have lost 55 pounds.

This month was a little rough for me, because I was out of town for a lot of it. I enjoyed my trips, and found the conferences educational, but I had trouble sticking to my calorie limits. It's really hard to maintain control of your food when you have to pick it off of a conference buffet, and options are very limited. I don't think I'm going to have the same problem when I am home visiting my family this month, because we'll go grocery shopping and I can handle eating out here and there, but trying to manage food for two straight weeks was a challenge. Walking was less of a challenge, and in both places it gave me a chance to get out of the hotel and see things that I probably would not have seen otherwise. I hit my step count every day, and most days exceeded it (one day I even doubled it, and walked ten miles), so I feel like travelling was ok, for the most part.

I also struggled a little bit with people at conferences. A lot of these people are friends that I only run into once or twice a year, usually at these conferences. It's nice to see them, and many of them told me how good I looked and how much thinner I looked, but a lot of them were also a little less supportive when I didn't want to go to happy hour before dinner because I wanted to go walk on the beach for an hour and a half instead. I didn't ask anybody to walk with me, because I think you should make your own choices, but I also don't appreciate being told, "You're no fun! All you do is walk on the beach!" by surly drunk colleagues. It's a problem that I talked about before, but that doesn't make it less annoying. Fortunately, I've always been willing to stop talking to people if they annoy me, and I found some other friends to hang out with instead. I might even like them more.

This is not to say that I am surrounded by unsupportive friends, because the opposite is actually true. I did the Race for the Cure this month, and enough friends donated to sponsor me that I made my $500 fundraising goal.

Race for the Cure 2014

Even better, I came in at 47:10. That's four minutes faster than the race that I did in September. I have another 5K this weekend, on Sunday. I'll let you know how that one goes.

My friends have also been supportive in other ways, and I don't know if I've thanked them enough. Many people have stopped to tell me how proud they are, or that they are inspired by my journey, or just that they support me. Larry (actually Mike, but I'll always think of him as Larry), Sara, Ilona, Erin, and Leonor all sent me books for my Kindle. My friend Lauren sent me an Amazon gift card, and in addition to spending some of it on books, I also spent part of it on a calendar for the Inspiration Wall across from my treadmill:

Inspiration (1)

It's a calendar of Venice.

I am 40 pounds away.


Marcheline said...

You can do it! WOOHOOOOO!

Lauren P. said...

Great post, Joel! Bravo, over 50!!!

I was so jealous of your beach walks. I need to find nicer place to walk other than downtown Phoenix.

nan said...

Well done, Joel.

Justin Bower said...

I lovce to compare your journey to every acquaintence who tells me that the ONLY way to lose weight is the (flavor of the month diet) and that the only reason they're overweight is because of (sugar is toxic, fluoride in the water, carbs are evil).

While the major components are eat less, eat better, move more, it all boils down to persistence. Gimmicks don't get someone results like yours!