Fitness and weight loss are tough. They’re especially tough if you attempt to do it all alone. Find a person, a group, a team to help you struggle through the challenges and succeed. Steve found a team to help him lose weight. A group to stay fit with. And his wife wholeheartedly supported him at home.
It started back in November of 2015. None of my pants were fitting. I had to buy two new pairs of jeans and I started pushing shirts that didn’t fit to the back of the closet. I wasn’t feeling good about myself.
Since July I had put on 30 pounds. Not only was I physically disgusted with myself but mentally I was full of negative thoughts. I started to be slightly depressed. I was stopping at McDonald’s and other fast food restaurants while on the road for work. I could eat all day and in large quantities but never be full. I was in a bad place. I had not discussed my thoughts about it or shared the feelings I was having.
I decided to sign up for a 12 week weight loss challenge. I had no idea what I was in for. On January 7th I showed up for the first day of the challenge. We took before pictures. My workout clothes were stretched tight. I had not done consistent physical activity in probably eight months. The staff helped me calculate my own daily calorie intake, weekly and long term weight loss goals and physical activity suggestions.
Each week the weight started flying off: first 4 pounds dropped, then 6, then 3 more, then 5 after that. I was losing inches as well. The social aspect was key. The ability to talk and share stories with the others going through the challenge was so helpful. I gained an understanding that I was not the only one going through the struggles of weight loss.
I am currently down 58 pounds and 40.5 inches. To keep this positive momentum up, I recently joined a spring run clinic. The group met for 5 weeks with a goal to get stronger and run faster. The final test was the Firecracker Fast 5k. As a team we all were going to conquer this run. I ran this event the previous year with a time of 32:13, with very little training and being overweight. This year, I had my goal set on beating 25:00 this year. I was able to come in at 24:50, a personal record!
One thing I can’t leave out is how encouraging my wife was through the 12 week challenge. She was pregnant, yet knew I needed to do this for me and our family. Even with a new baby at home, I tried taking the 3 am shift and still made the 5 a.m. workout classes. Some days my shift was skipped as she took it so I could still make it to workout. She has truly stood by my side through this.
Lastly, I encourage you to get your spouse or significant other to be a teammate through your fitness journey. I know others that have shared stories about how their spouse is not behind them and it starts to take a toll on them. It is tough enough to build yourself up, but when the person that is always by you isn’t helping you pursue this healthy change it can be very difficult.
Steve’s success story goes to show the value in a group fitness environment. The mental aspect can make or break your goals, so find that support system to keep you motivated. Let’s do this!
12 Week Achievement:
36.5 lbs., 33.25 in.
232.2 lbs. (down 57.8 lbs.)
38.75 in. lost (+2 in. muscle gain)
25.5% Fat (-10.3%)
39.7% Muscle (+9.8%)