My name is Brian Hunter, and over the last 9 months I have made some health changes for the better and lost a pretty good chunk of weight.
Last August 8th I finally decided to make a change, I was sick of being the person who I really didn’t believe I was. At this point I was hovering around 290lbs. Today I am down to 185lbs, just reaching the 100lb mark a few weeks ago.
The Quick Version:
After college, the weight started to slowly creep up around 10 pounds a year. It didn’t seem like much but it sure added up quickly. I went from being pretty active in my early 20’s to a couch sloth who watched too much TV with terrible eating habits. One of my biggest vices was soda, namely the green nectar of the gods Mountain Dew, to which I was consuming 600-800 calories of a day. I would always joke with my wife that I was healthy until I met her, but I really couldn’t blame her. She was always in great shape by working out regularly, great eating habits, and runs multiple races a year.
Through the years I would always do the “let’s start the diet on Monday” routine. I must have done this about 200 times over the last 5-7 years, each time failing to follow through on my promise. If I did start, It would generally only last a few weeks because I was either not true to the diet or was disappointed without instant early results.
In November of 2014 I became a father. I always told myself "I never wanted to be an overweight father. My own father was and is still overweight." I told myself if I ever had children I want to be able to do all of the activities with my children that my father was unable to do with us due to his weight. In the middle of 2015 I began to really see myself for who I was in pictures. I was the “fat” dad, which made all of the little things more difficult and annoying. I had become what I told myself I was never going to be. So I finally decided to make the change, and make it last.
How I reached my goals
My Plate App – Tracking Calories
I never really thought this was beneficial, until I started to see the true amount of calories I was putting into my body on a regular basis without having any calories be deducted with physical activity. This is a great gut check, and a great way to track what you are putting into your body. Also great to track your workouts and water consumption! The big cuts were soda and fast food. I also reduced my sweets, but I do have sweet tooth that has to be dealt with from time to time with a treat. (No longer an every night treat though!)
Rejoined the local gym (for the 100th time). I started slowly with elliptical and shooting hoops. I now have a daily routine of running (anywhere from 3-9 miles) and a weights program. I went from barely being able to run for 20 seconds at a time to being able to run 9 miles at 8 minutes a mile. I am running my first ever half marathon this year in September (Community First Fox Cities Marathon - Half marathon). I soon realized after I started running that I had to get over the mental block of I can’t do this, because it was more in my head than it was with physical limitations.
Setting Goals – I started to set small goals to attain. Started with running a quarter mile without stopping . Then it went to beating my wife in a race (Turkey Trot 5 Mile last November, beat her by 1 second), then decided to run a half marathon.
Realistic Expectations. I needed to be happy with whatever the loss results were. I had to be honest with myself that it took 10 years to put this weight on, it’s going to take some work to get rid of it . I had to finally be happy with small results, because they will add up. I also had to realize this was going to be a “forever” change, and not a “I can eat whatever I want” when I reach my weight goal. I have made a positive change that I believe I can maintain.
Added benefit, my asthma no longer requires a daily inhaler!
Friends with Similar Goals:
Started a weight loss competition with friends from my work. We go on 4 week challenges where the winner receives prizes from the others at the end of the month for total weight loss percentage. I have won 7 out of the 9 months!
She has always been there, and been a great support. She has always been supportive even after watching me start/stop the diet multiple times over the last few years. My life change has also been great for her as well, by changing my terrible diet habits, she has also lost an extra 8-10 pounds just from not having to eat the amount of fast food/processed that I kept bringing home.