It’s not all about the weight

2011 vs 2018.

My site talks about losing weight quite often, but that’s mostly because right now, I’m working hard to drop some weight due to the height and weight standards of the military, to which I am required to adhere to. My weight is currently below the maximum allowable weight for my height, but it’s too close for comfort. I prefer to have a buffer, so I’m working on losing an additional 10 lbs which gives me the ability to yo-yo without stress. However, I don’t want people to get the idea that weight is my primary concern or goal with eating right and exercising. It’s not. Not even a little bit.

Eating right is all about being healthy and feeling healthy. I realized that I needed to change my life one morning when I bent down to tie my shoes and I could not only barely reach my shoes, but I had to hold my breath. My stomach had grown so large that it physically impeded me from bending over to tie my own shoes, and to push myself forward enough, I had to hold my breath. This was too much.

I knew I weighed too much. I also had begun to realize (after years of being told by nearly everyone around me who cared) that not only was I overweight, but extremely unhealthy, and continuing with doing nothing to improve my situation and health would only lead to weight-related disease and likely an early death. Of course, I was already dealing with things like Diabetes, nerve tingling in my legs, circulation issues in my toes, gum disease (related to Diabetes), and worsening vision (also related to Diabetes).

Three plus years later, I weigh 175 lbs and I can run sub-8 minute miles. I lost the weight and got into fitness not because I wanted to look better or fit into some norm that society expects or accepts. I didn’t do it because I wanted to see a lower number on the scale, or because I wanted to have a beach body. I did it because I wanted to feel healthy, to be able to go hiking or to take long walks on vacations, and because I didn’t want to die young.

People who never knew me at my heaviest often don’t believe I was ever 312+ lbs. Some have gone so far as to think I’m being disingenuous or pulling a hoax by using someone else’s “Before” photos. I wish. I felt horrible almost all the time. I was always tired, my knees were always sore, and short walks and a single flight of stairs would leave me winded. I never want to feel that way again.

Eating right, for me, is not about losing weight. It’s about living.

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