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Old 05-01-2013, 11:23 AM   #451
Z
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Then and now...

9/1/2012 to 5/1/2013

Weight: From 345 lbs to 271 lbs (down 74 pounds)

BMI: From 49.5 to 38.91 (down 10.59)

Waist: From 59 inches to 47.5 inches (down 11.5)

Maximum Left-Handed Dumbbell Curl : From 15 lbs in February to 35 lbs in May (Arm strength more than doubled in 3 months)
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Old 05-01-2013, 10:22 PM   #452
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Congrats on your success! Your stats really show how hard you've been working. 11.5" less on your waistline is impressive. I would imagine your overall body shape is changing pretty rapidly with all the exercising you have been doing. KUTGW!
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Old 05-02-2013, 12:28 AM   #453
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Well, look at your stats! You'd know even better than me. The change is already dramatic at this point, and I've still got a long way to go.

It's just like the cycle that brought me to 350 in the first place, but in reverse. I lose weight, and become more active, causing me to lose weight, and become more active. The major difference is that 271 on the way down was forged by hard work and clean living. I'm a much stronger, healthier 271 than I was on the way up (a 271 forged by Carl's Jr, and La-Z-Boy). I'd go as far as to say that I'm in better shape now that I was when I was at 240 on the way up.

I'm no triathlete, but I am reclaiming my health in a big way. Heck, I just bought a set of dumbbells so I won't have to go into work on my days off.

;^)
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11/2/2013: 250.0 - 100 pounds gone!!!
Next milestone: 200

Shark Sandwich: One man's epic journey from fat to slightly less fat.

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Old 05-09-2013, 10:35 PM   #454
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75 pounds down:

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Old 05-10-2013, 12:40 PM   #455
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Old 05-12-2013, 08:30 AM   #456
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WOW fantastic transformation! Look how big and beautiful your eyes are now!
Haha how bout a smile???
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Old 05-13-2013, 12:34 PM   #457
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WOW fantastic transformation! Look how big and beautiful your eyes are now!
Haha how bout a smile???

I am smiling!

You're too kind. Thanks.
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Old 05-13-2013, 10:41 PM   #458
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I have only read your last and first page of your journal so far, I love your attitude and sense of humor, I will be digging in and reading more for sure congrats on your weight loss so far!!!! Major results shown in your picture!!! I am about at your starting weight, only I am 5'4 and female. Amazing job!!!
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Old 05-15-2013, 11:52 PM   #459
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Thanks for stopping by, Reptogirl!

I'm glad to hear you've enjoyed what you've seen so far. A healthy sense of humor has always seen me through my darkest times. It's really been wonderful to see how many people have shared this experience with me.

You've got an exciting journey ahead of you - these first three months or so can bring the most dramatic changes. Be prepared - there will be discouragements along the way. 8 months and 75 pounds in, and I'm still having to adjust my expectations. It's a battle that's won in ounces. Don't be shy about getting in the mix. I wish you all of the success in the world, and look forward to seeing you around.
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Old 05-16-2013, 03:12 AM   #460
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I love reading your journal. My husband was at one time close to 300 lbs (he's only 5'7) and it's been years since he lost the weight but I still can't believe it when I see old pictures of him. It doesn't seem like the same person. I'm sure your wife is amazed! Keep up the good work buddy!
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Old 05-16-2013, 07:34 PM   #461
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Hi Z,

I started reading your thread last night, and finished it off this morning. You are an extremely good writer. have you ever considered writing a book?

I think I am going to read over it again and copy some of the excellent points to my low carb file Im keeping. Inspiration, and advice. I was intreged by your 'allergic reaction', from an early over indulgence in carbs. I've recently come home from being away and it was absolutely like all my allergies came on at one. itchy skin, sneezing, runny nose, headache.... all from drinking bourbon in normal coke 2 days running

Hey, dont run your physical apperance down so much. I think you look quite ruggard. In NZ, ruggard guys are considered quite a catch. Look at the average All Black for comparrison
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Old 05-16-2013, 11:42 PM   #462
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thank you Z!!!! i appreciate your words of encouragement.
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:30 AM   #463
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Z, you look FANTASTIC! Congratulations on your weight loss!
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:00 PM   #464
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Originally Posted by lilbeetle View Post
Hi Z,

I started reading your thread last night, and finished it off this morning. You are an extremely good writer. have you ever considered writing a book?
I find that I write better as an interactive exercise. Getting input from others gives me the opportunity to explore avenues of thought I would never have come to on my own.

I'll admit the idea is attractive to me, but to be honest - I don't know what I'd write about.


Quote:
I think I am going to read over it again and copy some of the excellent points to my low carb file Im keeping. Inspiration, and advice. I was intreged by your 'allergic reaction', from an early over indulgence in carbs. I've recently come home from being away and it was absolutely like all my allergies came on at one. itchy skin, sneezing, runny nose, headache.... all from drinking bourbon in normal coke 2 days running
I find that wheat and grain seems to be what causes the allergic flareups - almost like it ramps up histamine production, allowing my other allergies to take off.

All carbs cause me to retain water, and cause joint inflammation - which is AWESOME for my arthritis (less awesome for me).


Quote:
Hey, dont run your physical apperance down so much. I think you look quite ruggard. In NZ, ruggard guys are considered quite a catch. Look at the average All Black for comparrison
Everywhere else I'm considered a "throw it back" - Sounds like I ought to move to New Zealand
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:01 PM   #465
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Z, you look FANTASTIC! Congratulations on your weight loss!
Thanks! Great to see you again, GailyGail!
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Old 05-24-2013, 01:16 PM   #466
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Macaroni and cheese is out - but no one said anything about mushrooms and onions and cheese.

I chop up 10 oz of mushrooms and a large white onion into a skillet - after melting a third of a stick of butter into the pan, and adding a healthy dose of Extra Virgin California Olive Oil (because most of the Italian stuff is counterfeit.).

Once the onions and mushrooms have reduced in size considerably, and are as cooked as I want them, I reduce to a simmering heat, and add a bit of heavy cream - probably a third of a cup. at the same time I add 3 centimeters from a 2 pound baby loaf of cubed sharp cheddar. Grating would probably work even better.

you end up with a thick cheese sauce, and onions and mushrooms providing an excellent vehicle for that sauce. A bit of hungarian paprika for color, and it's not a bad way to go.

But it isn't really complete without a few drops of hickory liquid smoke mixed in.

Smoked Cheddar&Mushroom stew.

Last edited by Z; 05-24-2013 at 01:22 PM..
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Old 05-28-2013, 07:15 AM   #467
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Dang Z. . .

That sounds momma slappin' good!
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Old 06-02-2013, 01:07 AM   #468
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In times of unusual stress, it is easy to develop a "stays in Vegas" mentality about one's dietary habits. Eventually you reach a point where you stop caring about much of anything. A lot of major backslides come from exactly such a scenario. "With all of this going on, what damage could pizza possibly do?"

Whether you're flying high or trudging through the depths, the temptations never subside. Case in point:

Over the last several months my company has had some kind of special event at a rate of about 1.5 per month. Every single event is some kind of carb fest. In case you suspect that I am exaggerating for comedic effect, here are a few of the recent ones...

Cinco de Mayo Nacho contest.
Cotton Candy Fair (with funnel cake)
Ice Cream Social!

That's to say nothing of monday donuts and sunday morning breakfast burritos, and a million other pitfalls waiting for the ever vigilant carb free employee. One time I came into work and there was a liter of coke, and a candy bar on my desk. To celebrate a product release.

Back to the point, it's easier to remain compliant when everything is going well - but when the boat hits the rocks - and sooner or later it will - that's when you're put to the test. So much of long term success is related to your ability to respond to these moments. That willingness and capacity to decline the carb fix even when it doesn't seem to matter at all.

Sooner or later, every crisis will pass. Even the really bad ones. The way we respond decides how much damage we have to undo once it does.

Even if it doesn't matter now, it will matter again eventually.
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Old 06-05-2013, 06:58 PM   #469
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I try not to get too caught up in "today's weight". Today's weight is a function of at least half a dozen different input/output cycles... fluid retention and expulsion, cellular growth and death, nutritional intake and outflow...

There are several competing mathematical waveforms that are combined to create today's weight. Sometimes the troughs of those waves line up to create an unusually low weight - and sometimes the peaks line up to create an unusually high weight. Most of the time they're cancelling each other out to some extent.

The real picture only emerges over time.

This is why maintaining records and graphing is so helpful, I think. At this stage in the game it gets hard to see movement at all. But the tale is in the record books.

Even if I only lose 4 pounds a month, there are 12 months in a year. Time moves inexorably forward - whether I want it to or not. A pound a week is 52 pounds a year.

52 pounds from today puts me at 214 by this time next year.
an average of 1.5 pounds per week puts me at 188 by this time next year.

Putting that further into perspective that means it'll take me less than 2 years to go from 350 pounds to under 200.

Less than two years... That's almost no time at all. And I don't have to get all the way to that mark to feel better. I'm only down 83 pounds or so, and I'm already feeling so much better. Just by making progress towards my goals, the quality of my life is greatly improved.

The journey doesn't reward you at the end - but rewards you continually all along the way. The first 20 pounds made a difference. Getting under 300 made a difference. Getting back into 3x made a difference. Taking clothes out of my "wishful thinking" box and putting them back into my wardrobe made a difference.

A thousand little differences all along the path, and suddenly I'm not the monstrosity that I once was. Don't get me wrong - I'm still fat. But I'm healthier, leaner, stronger, more active, more vibrant, and more energetic than I was before.

Those last 8 or 9 months would have passed either way whether I was on-plan or off-plan. In a sense, I didn't have to do anything at all. Time did all the work. I just had to avoid certain foods. It's almost too easy, right? Just be patient, and let time do the heavy lifting. Except for the weight training, then I have to do the heavy lifting - but even with that only time brings results.

Time, plus consistency. It's the only way to accomplish anything worth accomplishing.

It's funny... I'm going to serve as rock bottom for a lot of my friends, the day that I overtake them on the hunt towards my fitness goals.

"Alan is lighter than me!?! That's the last straw! I've really got to do something about my weight."

I'm looking forward to finding my weight floor - I want to get into some clothes that fit, for a change. I bought some pants a few months ago, and now they're hopelessly oversized. Which is good, and to be expected - but I don't want to look like a hobo all the time.

Today everything is standing still. This week, I'm good for a few pounds. this month I'm good for several pounds. Even when it seems nothing is happening today, on a long enough timeline, success is inevitable.
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Old 06-05-2013, 10:11 PM   #470
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Z View Post

Those last 8 or 9 months would have passed either way whether I was on-plan or off-plan. In a sense, I didn't have to do anything at all. Time did all the work. I just had to avoid certain foods. It's almost too easy, right? Just be patient, and let time do the heavy lifting.
Thank you Z, I needed to hear that
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Old 06-24-2013, 03:57 PM   #471
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How to fail.

Without getting into melodramatics and pathos, A series of events unfolded over the last few weeks that drained my resolve. I've been off-plan for the last 3 weeks. Or at least, not on-plan enough to make any forward progress.

Recognizing that I was falling back into old pattens, I restarted - as if from scratch - this last friday.

I think there's a sort of 'culture of pride' built up around these things... Dieting or exercising, or any sort of intrinsic change. There is no place for pride in fundamental change.

Pride tells you that you can handle it on your own. Pride tries to keep you from being accountable. Pride isolates you when you fail. Pride convinces you that is easier to come back in 2 years and start from the beginning, than it is to face your failure head on - in full view of the public eye, while it is still recent.

But it isn't easier to wait 2 years and try again. It's just as hard, and it puts you back 2 years (plus whatever you gained back over that period of time)

And it's built on a lie: Belief in a tomorrow.

RIGHT NOW is the only moment you will ever have. A habit of 'doing it tomorrow' is a habit of 'never getting to it at all'. A habit of wasting all of your 'RIGHT NOWs' in idleness - As though there was to be some watershed moment that signal you to action.

I've lost too many of my moments to the pursuit of inactivity.

The reality is, this road that I am on is fraught with pitfalls. But it's only failure if I listen to pride, and slink away silently. It's only failure if I stay down.

Nothing worth doing is so easy that you'll step up to the proverbial plate and knock it out of the park the first time - it's a fight. all the way to the finish.

If you're going to fail - fail fast. And try again fast. Don't let complacency take root. Don't lose sight of the why you started this journey in the first place.

I've lost a lot of weight. But I haven't lost half of what I need to to get to a healthy weight. I'm at 273 now - up from a low of 266 a few weeks ago. life got the better of me, and I turned to some of my old favorites to alleviate the pain.

Did it work? Not really. But it happens. It happened. That's no excuse to just give up and go into a long-term backslide.

Life sucks? Get a helmet.

So I'm back - having only stumbled for a moment, and having seized this moment to focus again on the attainment of my goals. Unshackled from the vainglorious needs of my unmerited self-concept, I can admit my failure and begin anew. I can do this now - having only caused 7 pounds worth of damage.

When I started writing this, I wanted to make sure to capture the process in its entirety. It can't be all touchdowns all the time. Sometimes you drop the ball. And I did.

People might tend, out of kindness, to tell me it's no big deal. I appreciate the sentiment, but for me to move forward - it has to have been a big deal. It has to be a big enough deal that I can go several months - and not merely weeks - without eating off plan. Even a small stumble counts. It has to count. Because a big stumble is just a lot of small ones strung together - an ever increasing failure to do something RIGHT NOW.
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Old 06-24-2013, 05:00 PM   #472
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Z, you are so back on track with a vengeance -- and what a beautiful thing! Your setback was both short and temporary. In fact, I can feel your steely resolve coming back right through my laptop. You are back on the horse and already galloping away into the sunset -- God Bless and Godspeed!
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Old 06-24-2013, 05:25 PM   #473
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Hello, first time reader here. I have only nosed around a little but I like your style of writing. I will be back to read more.
I am glad to hear that you got yourself back on track and writing about it.
Kudos!
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Old 06-24-2013, 06:56 PM   #474
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Woo hoo!!! Awesome before and afters! You look great!

I was just stopping in to gawk, but I'm gonna come back and read later.
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Old 06-24-2013, 07:11 PM   #475
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Z View Post
I've lost a lot of weight. But I haven't lost half of what I need to to get to a healthy weight. I'm at 273 now - up from a low of 266 a few weeks ago. life got the better of me, and I turned to some of my old favorites to alleviate the pain.

Did it work? Not really. But it happens. It happened. That's no excuse to just give up and go into a long-term backslide.
Hello! Dairy Queen pointed those of us over in the Atkins Induction forum to your journal a while back, when you posted your updated photo. So I'm an occasional reader, although I haven't commented prior to now. I was just pointed to your journal again today, from a thread in the Main Lobby.

With regard to your recent slip, I just want to share something that a buddy told me when I first started my Atkins program last May. He said, "The food won't beat you. But you've gotta look out and make sure that you won't beat yourself with food."

My buddy and I are the only two people in our social circle that have ever been obese. My buddy was very obese his whole life and then he got into bodybuilding and completely changed his body composition. So -- in our shared social circle, which is filled with competitive bodybuilders -- he's that ONE PERSON in my life who understood what I was facing. He understood it better than I did when I started this journey! Because I didn't *get it* when he first told me not to "beat" myself with food -- I was, like, "Yeah. Yeah, whatever..." Because I had just started the diet and I was really excited. And I was thinking NOTHING can stop me because I'm soooo determined. And I was eating meat and cheese on this diet, and thinking I was just too far above it all to get into any trouble. But then, when the holidays came, I was about six months into Atkins and I finally *got* what my buddy meant.

Holiday corn -- which is a special dish in my culture -- and homemade holiday desserts were everywhere. And everybody in my family is healthy-weight and they were all eating like the food was a blessing. And I'm *the fat one* sitting there thinking, "What am I? Why am I in this bizarre nightmare?" And I thought, right then, about what my buddy told me and it FINALLY made sense: It's not about the food. I *knew* that none of that off-plan food would do anything good for me. But I still had a perverse instinct -- maybe from habit? -- to be a part of the family, to be a part of the celebration by eating what was on the table.

But my buddy's observation saved me from myself. His observation helped me see that eating things that I *knew* would hurt my progress would be me "beating" myself. I couldn't do it. I couldn't pick up that brick and hit myself with it. I don't know if you'll *feel* this comment the way I felt it. But I wanted to share it with you because I'm so grateful that it was shared with me. I'm lucky to have a lot of support from my family and friends, but this simple comment helped me support *myself* when I've needed it.

Cheers! And congratulations for not letting anything about this situation beat you!
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Old 06-24-2013, 07:40 PM   #476
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Was wondering where you'd wandered off to. While I haven't posted here, I do read ( I like your writing style!) to see what sort of wonderful things you're up to! Thank you for being honest, thank you for putting it all out there. I have stumbled around in the dark for darn near a year now unable to get anything right, but I'm getting closer...I can feel it! Thanks to you and the wonderful people on this board. Take care, and back on the horse, my friend

Trillex, FWIW...I LOVED your post. I really needed to see that tonight, right now, at this moment....having a particularly rough day, the food was a-callin. So, thanks for sharing your moment..even if it wasn't necessarily for me!
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Old 06-25-2013, 03:59 AM   #477
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Extra Virgin California Olive Oil (because most of the Italian stuff is counterfeit.).
...
But it isn't really complete without a few drops of hickory liquid smoke mixed in.
There's a famous small, family-owned electrical store in London that will fill your bottles with olive oil from the owner's family estate in Cyprus.

Embassy Electrical Supplies or

mroliveoil

should lead to a photograph of one of the most unprepossessing shopfronts that you're ever likely to see. The oil is

Absolutely agreed on the necessity of hickory smoke as an addition.
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Old 06-25-2013, 05:52 AM   #478
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Z. . . you said it. . . so much more eloquently than I ever could. Let's all keep our "backslides" out there so we can help each other!

Danielle,
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Old 06-25-2013, 05:57 AM   #479
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WTG Z! I don't post often but I'm in your fan club!
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Old 06-25-2013, 07:39 AM   #480
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Lincoln, Nebraska
Posts: 861
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Stats: WT=410/362/245
WOE: Atkins induction, Bernstein
Start Date: Which time?
Z,
Your story sounds very much like mine, right down to the stumbles.

I find your honesty incredibly startling, and incredibly refreshing. I believe that you have distilled the very essence of the difficulty of this journey we are on. But more importantly, you have captured the key to moving forward. It is the moment NOW.

I love your line, "Life sucks? Get a helmet." I'd like to borrow it for my signature line (with proper credit, of course).
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