My wife participated in a Biggest Loser style weight loss program last year and enjoyed the experience so much that she wanted me to take part. She signed us up for another round as a couple. It was difficult at first finding windows of time in my schedule to work out. Soon enough it became routine and I enjoyed the time spent with my wife at the gym. I also enjoyed working out with our coach/trainer. Our trainer has become a very good friend over the past several years. We first met when my wife hired her as a personal trainer three years ago. They’ve been working out together ever since. Working out with people you look forward to spending time with is very important for success. In fact, I’ve invited my wife to be a guest writer in a future post to talk about her experience working with a personal trainer for the first time. It’s an inspirational story, so look forward to that future post.
During the Cottonwood Heights Biggest Loser competition I tracked my progress week by week and saw very little improvement according to my bathroom scale. On the other hand, according to the $1000.00 health-o-meter whatsamagaget courtesy of the gym, I WAS improving. Although my weight didn’t change much according to the bathroom scale, my fat composition changed drastically. In twelve weeks I change over 12% of my fat into lean muscle. I’ve been told many times that muscle weighs more than fat, blah, blah, blah. I’ve known this fact for some time, but now I could see it with my own eyes.
I currently weigh 160 lbs which is only 10 lbs less than where I started, but my percent body fat dropped from almost 30% to 18%. I feel better and my shirts fit loosely around my mid-section. I don’t have to think about sucking in my gut when my pretty wife enters the room – it’s already in! It feels great to be able to walk up a flight of stairs and still have breath enough to speak.
It’s funny to me to think about how I used to perceive the concept of good health and “ideal” weight. According to the concept of BMI my ideal weight as an adult is 150 lbs. which means I’m overweight. As a kid I was underweight. In high school trying to compete on a wrestling team I wished I’d weighed more so I could have wrestled more often. Being a buck twelve, wet, meant that I often watched from the side lines, unless I wanted to get clobbered by someone in a heavier weight division. I once got to wrestle a cheerleader-which should have been the best day of my life – but instead it was a huge shot to my ego.
I reached adulthood and finally gained some weight, but it wasn’t healthy. I became “fluffy” and all my lean muscle became hidden under layers of adipose tissue. My chiseled pecks turned into “man boobs” and my abs jiggled as I walked. I could definitely pinch and inch or more-if you know what I mean. As a side note, when I perform an autopsy I measure subcutaneous fat to get an idea of the overall health of a patient. Subcutaneous fat is the adipose tissue found between the skin and the first layer of muscle. Most people have anywhere from 2 to 5 cm of subcutaneous fat. (1 inch = 2.54 centimeters) I imagined that I had about 5 cm of subcutaneous fat-which I hoped was over-exaggerated. Nevertheless, I was not the man my wife married. I wanted to do something about it.
Before starting the Cottonwood Heights Biggest Loser competition we had to write down our ultimate goal. I tried to be funny while at the same time being completely honest. My goal read, “I want to be able to run naked on the beach without my fat jiggling.” By the way, does anybody know of any nude beaches in Utah?
I still have a few pounds to lose or should I say inches, but I feel great. Unfortunately, since the competition ended I’ve neglected some workouts and have added sugar back into my diet. Although I haven’t gained much weight back I have noticed some fluffiness returning. Thankfully I have my wife in my corner encouraging me to get back in the saddle. Something else I’ve noticed works very well for support; try going to dinner with your trainer. If you’re as lucky as my wife and I to have made such good friends with your personal trainer, you’ll feel guilty for everything you put in your mouth. Trust me. She doesn’t have to say a word, but she’s such a great friend I don’t want to let her down. Plus, I kind of see her as my calories anonymous sponsor and that gives me strength to put down the dessert. Thanks, Jen!
When it comes to being healthy remember these four rules:
1. You need it.
2. You have to want it.
3. You shouldn’t do it alone.
4. You CAN do it!
Good luck, friends. You can be a loser just like me.