Choose change before it chooses you
Sean Anderson | 04.08.13
Sean Anderson; Ponca City, OK
Looking back at the “old me:”
I spent almost 20 years near, at or above 500 pounds. It was suffocating and still, I found a way to adapt and survive. I was a 500 pound husband and father and that meant serious limitations to not just my quality of life, but also my family's quality of life.
The moment that I decided to change:
My wife of 20 years told me "I can't stand by and witness your suicide by food any longer, I love you but I'm done." Around the same time, my employer told me I was missing too much work because of obesity related illnesses and the owner of the company told me I had to do something different. So--my world as I knew it was falling apart.
"I was about to lose my job and even more sad, my family. I made an iron-clad decision to choose change."
My goal was to get down to a healthy body weight--save my family and my job and completely change my life for the better. Notice I didn't say "save my life?" It's strange that the fear of death was never really a motivator for me. It wasn't, I believe, because dying young in my mind, "was something that happened to other people."
How I reached my goal:
I started a weight loss blog on September 15th 2008. The Daily Diary of A Winning Loser was my secret to success. Writing in the blog was something I committed to doing every night---It was as important as staying within my calorie budget and exercising. The writing was honest and raw--very real, very heartfelt...and it attracted supporters--and that's when the accountability factor went way up.
I kept it very simple too. Instead of over-complicating weight loss, I broke it down into an easy to understand, simplistic approach. I allowed 1500 calories a day and I simply walked, everyday--no matter what.
I had three things I had to do everyday:
- Stay within my calorie budget
- Write the blog post.
These three things were my rules. I put my focus squarely on the mental dynamics of staying consistent.
Where I’m at today:
I lost 275 pounds, hitting goal in November 2010 and then maintained successfully for a year and a half. In the last 10 months, I've struggled horribly once again and it's been a catalyst for a better understanding of my food addiction and emotional/compulsive eating behaviors. I've regained 60 pounds and now, I'm on my way back down to goal and beyond. My goal now is to get into the best shape of my life.
Words of advice and encouragement for others:
Understand that we can be our own worst enemy or our greatest ally. No matter where we've been or what we've done, we each have the same power within to choose change before change chooses us...Because change is coming one way or another and it might as well be on our terms!
Keep it as simple as you can. Food and exercise are not the biggest elements along this road, developing our minds and evolving our perspectives into a healthier relationship with ourselves is truly the key.
"If we work on the inside, the outside will naturally align with our efforts."
This isn't a temporary fix. Real, meaningful change isn't found in a special program, pill, surgery or anything outside of ourselves and our personal spiritual connection. We already have it inside. We're truly all the same this way. The differences between us are found in the attitudes and perspectives we choose.
I've made it my mission in life to inspire others and share my story. I want to reach as many morbidly obese people as possible and let them know, there's hope. Further information about me and my story can be found in the archives of my blog, The Daily Diary of A Winning Loser: www.losingweighteveryday.blogspot.com and in my book "Transformation Road-My Trip To Over 500 Pounds and Back." The book is available in paperback, all e-reader platforms and an unabridged audio version on iTunes and Audible.com
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