Being a fat slob was the worst time of my life, and I am never going back
Hopefully fat photos of me and the little I know helps someone
Being fat sucks.
Let me be a little more specific, because some of you complain about being “10 pounds heavier since high school”, which was 10 years ago, and you can just shut the hell up right now because you know not of real suffering.
I’m talking, “Oh God, I better hide this first bag of fast food so the drive-thru worker doesn’t see it when he gives me my second bag of fast food at a different restaurant” fat.
It’s dark times when you actually care what the dead-eyed drive-thru cashier at Arby’s thinks about you.
“Ok, here’s your food, man.”
“Oh sorry, hold on. I have to move all the trash left behind by my friends! Look at all this trash! My friends begged me to go to McDonald’s for them, and this is how they repay me? Ha ha! I guess this Arby’s is my reward for being a good friend and cleaning up trash that DEFINITELY isn’t mine!”
“Ok, here’s your food.”
I’ve been there, friends, more than a time or two, and I’m here to write about it. Why? Because they say, “write what you know”, and when it comes to being fat, I’m Stephen Hawking.
I have lost 40 pounds in the last ten months, and I learned so much, that I want to pass along my knowledge so you don’t have to go through what I went through.
And, as an added bonus, I satisfy the appetite of my own ego, as posting before-and-after photos on Instagram doesn’t cut it for me anymore, so I have developed this ruse to get more attention.
By the way, follow me @tgrises. Do it, especially if you love seeing double chins, because my Instagram is overflowing with that.
Now let’s be clear: I’ve lost weight several times before, and have always gained it back.
Every time I thought about starting another diet in an effort to lose weight, I would always think, ‘This time is different because (insert stupid reason here.’ It was usually something stupid like, I bought new pants so now I have to lose weight, which did nothing but create a pile of non-fitting pants in my room.
When I was in grade school, I was a chunky, buck-toothed butterball who got easily winded when a flight of stairs was near me. Then, I went through high school, lost the weight, and became Greek god (if we’re grading it on the Tim Godfrey-is-a-fat-eighth-grader scale).
I could fit into a size 36-pant at one point, which unfathomable as the muffin top I currently am.
From college up until February 2016, my weight took a roller coaster track. At my heaviest, in 2013, I was 325 pounds, thanks to a lot of late-night McDonalds runs. A typical trip would be around 11:30 at night and feature an Angus Burger, large fries, sweet tea, a McDouble, McChicken, and a candy bar on the way home.
The fact that my heart still works, even to this day, is a miracle.
I spent the better part of 2012–2013 in sweat pants, and didn’t even have the decency to find a shirt that wasn’t the same color as the sweatpants. I existed a single-colored animal with a giant ass.
Basically, a telatubby.
In college, I ate my feelings, everyone’s leftovers, and the caloric intake of an olympic swimmer, and did the same amount of exercise as a bear at the local zoo.
Then I lost weight, got down to 283, and stayed that way for a year, only to balloon back up to about 306 in January 2016. I was right back where I started, again, and I’ve never felt lower.
Losing weight only to gain it all back again is like shooting a basketball, watching it toil-bowl spin around the rim, and ricochet back to hit you right in the mouth.
Seriously, I wish I could tell you that my motivation to lose weight came through some great moment of self-awareness or a heart-felt conversation with someone who struggled with the same problems I had.
But that’s not how I came to the breaking point.
A few weeks after making, and then ignoring, my New Year’s Resolutions for 2016, I was getting ready to shower when I took my shirt off and did my usual “my body doesn’t look that bad” inspection. But that night, the inspection was summed up in one word.
“F**k,” I said aloud to myself. That is literally all it took.
I was a 24 year-old man in the prime of my life, and I was living it like a giant pear with stretch marks.
I ate like crap, I looked like crap, and worst of all, I felt like crap. The jokes were over and I was finished laughing it off. It was time for a serious change.
Here’s how I lost the weight
I kept track of everything I ate every single day
Nothing is more emasculating than pausing a conversation or an activity to log that you ate 12 almonds. But keeping track of what you eat keeps you on track, keeps you accountable, and opens your eyes about what you put into your body.
Nutrition is about 80 percent of the work. You can workout all day, but if you eat Quik Trip Buffalo Bites as a post-workout snack, you’re not going to lose anything except self-respect.
I counted my steps and set daily step goals
Again, super emasculating.
But for the first few months, me and the other walking moms made laps around the local park, got in some physical activity, and chatted about how Marianne turned into such a bi-atch since dating the guy from work.
When you start your weight loss journey, you have to start small, otherwise you could burn out on fitness altogether. So, an hour of walking is a good place to start, and when you’re ready, start doing more.
I took it easy on the alcohol
I won’t say “you don’t need alcohol to have fun anyway” because that’s a flat out lie. But alcohol can add up, and when you’re drunk, you make bad choices.
Drunk you decides that “standards” aren’t for you anymore, and ends up making out with a kid from grade school between bites of a Wendy’s Baconator.
I forgave myself after failing
I sound like a stupid motivational poster, but this is extremely important. You’re going to mess up, sad-eat your way through a Reese’s ice cream cake, and feel like your journey is done.
Yeah, fitness and medical-wise, eating that cake was pretty stupid. But it’s okay; learn from your mistakes, and start anew. Instead of a cake, have some grilled chicken and an apple, and for dessert have some greek yogurt. Everything will be okay.
This is probably the hardest thing you will ever do. Every day, you’re going to be tempted to quit, and some days will be harder than others.
Every day is a decision.
Do you want the Ready-to-Eat chicken tenders or do you want to fit into your pants?
Do you want to O’Charley’s free pie on Wednesdays, or do want to walk upstairs without people asking you if you need an ambulance because you’re face is really red and you’re sweating way too much?
I have chosen those chicken tenders a lot, and the pie, and huffed-and-puffed with regret too many times.
As time goes on, making the right choices gets easier. The right choices will become a habit, and you will no longer eat pizza off your stomach like a rat. You will become more active, have more motivation, and eventually, you will have see the fat melt away over time.