I’m into fitness, take five: The rewards

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Why do you want to lose weight? Duh, I want to look good. Probably the most common answer to that question. It’s not a wrong answer, but it’s not the best answer. The No. 1 reason for losing weight should be being more healthy.

But that’s not how we roll these days. Women want to look like Beyonce, who’s 5-foot-9 and 135 pounds, or Lady Gaga (5-1, 95 pounds, yes, 95 freaking pounds). Men want to look like a professional athlete.

As Andre Agassi said over and over and over, image is everything. We live in a society obsessed with models who weigh 73 pounds and eat three pieces of lettuce and a crouton for every meal. Such is life. I prefer a few curves and a girl who can scarf down a huge plate of barbecue (nod to the girlfriend), but that’s another blog for another day.

There’s nothing wrong with wanting to look better. It’s a great goal. But the best way to reach that goal is to focus on being healthier. That’s how you change your lifestyle. Otherwise, you’ll work your ass off for a few months to reach your goals, then it’s back to that double cheeseburger at McDonald’s, with a side of coronary artery disease.

As I’ve mentioned in previous blogs, make no mistake about fitness, it is hard work. There are no shortcuts, magic pills or programs that are going to transform your body overnight.

The beauty of getting fit is the rewards that come with it …

YES, YOU’LL LOOK BETTER …

Before: At a little more than 300 pounds at the beginning of 2010.

After: At 220 pounds on Aug. 27, 2011.

Getting noticed more, better clothes, bigger muscles, hell, bigger smile … it’s all going to be there. Be prepared to spend a ton of money on clothes. I’m on my third or fourth wardrobe in the last 18 months. But that’s a great problem to have.

YOU’LL FEEL BETTER …

Before I started all of this, my time away from work was spent watching TV, surfing facebook for hours – in general, doing nothing. When you start working out, eating better and getting into better shape, you’ll notice your body changing.

For example, on Saturday, I spent five hours cutting a ton of wood with my father. I might have been able to cut down a small tree a few years ago. Saturday, we cut several ricks of wood …

The tree dad and I finished off over the weekend. The equivalent of eight to 10 medium-sized trees.

An hour after cutting that massive tree down, I was hauling a rick up two flights of stairs to our apartment, sweeping said stairs and finishing a few loads of laundry. It really is amazing how much energy you’ll have once you settle into a routine.

CONFIDENCE …

Obviously, this comes with looking better. You’ll just feel better about yourself. Your smile will be bigger, you’ll walk with more of a strut (hopefully not like John Travolta at the end of Stayin’ Alive) and you won’t lower your shoulders.

A big part of the confidence will come from your support system, whether it’s a significant other, friends, co-workers and/or family. Social networking sites, like facebook, can also be inspirational. You’ll find that there are A LOT of people in the same boat as you. And nothing will fuel your desire to keep busting your ass like compliments and words of support from people around you.

In the past week alone, my awesome girlfriend, her mom, my father and my nephew, who’s only 12, have said something about my weight loss. It’s a wonderful feeling.

MILESTONES …

I hit one Saturday. For the first time since 2002, I hit the scale at 220 pounds. That’s 40 pounds shy of my goal weight. A little more than 80 pounds lost. This is what keeps me going, seeing those numbers drop from week to week.

It’s important to understand that those numbers are not going to drop dramatically from week to week. A couple of pounds a week is pretty damn good progress. That adds up to nearly 10 pounds a month. That is awesome work, so don’t be obsessed with the scale. Understand that it’s going to take time.

When you’ve reacher your goal, you’ll be much healthier … and you might look like Beyonce.

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2 thoughts on “I’m into fitness, take five: The rewards

  1. Ernie Webb III

    Thanks Marc. I will say that I’ve lost more than 20 pounds in 45 days now, but that’s when I dropped dairy and soda, to go along with the heavy dose of exercise.

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