Today I’m sharing a personal story with all of you on how I lost 100 pounds through changing my relationship with food & exercise.
This post is truly about one thing; inspiration. If it can inspire just one person to take a step in the right direction, then it will have been a mission accomplished.
So where to begin? Well, the sad truth is that I used to weigh just over 250 pounds.
Hard to believe, huh? Almost every person I’ve met in the last few years as a thin, “athletic-build”, has told me that there’s no way I could have weighed that much. They just couldn’t believe that it was possible and they’d ask me constantly how I lost the weight! But it’s true! At my highest, I weighed in at 252, and I was 17 years old at the time.
The backstory to how I lost 100 pounds… is that I had 100 pounds to lose.
I remember having sprained my ankle, gone to see the doctor and being given crutches and orders to remain home-bound for about a week. At first I was in love with the doctor’s orders. A week off and I get to stay home and relax on the couch all day!
But Day One came, and I remember sitting on the couch, watching TV and physically not being able to move.
It wasn’t because of my foot. It was because of my size. No 17 year old should ever have to weigh over 250 lbs. I don’t care how tall you are. No ADULT should ever have to weigh that much, either, despite bulking up at the gym. That’s just my opinion. But the bottom line was that my BMI was way above average and I was beyond unhealthy.
This was never more clear to me than in this moment.
It was day one of seven for me with these crutches. I was miserable, immobile, and in pain. I remember being on the couch and looking at the runners running down my street. I knew then that I wanted only one thing; to be able to run.
I told myself that I was going to turn my life around, by running.
Looking back, I guess it really did come down to wanting what I couldn’t have. I wasn’t able to move and I had a broken foot, so naturally I wanted the opposite; to be able to run freely in the streets. The problem; I had never run a day in my life, other than the usual gym class warm-ups, and even then I found ways around it.
I knew that as soon as I would regain functionality in my foot, that things would change. That I would change. I would start to run. I would TEACH myself to run.
So I did. And I’ll share with you that the first time I tried, it was not pretty. I over-exerted myself, tried to do too much at once, and after five minutes, I vomited. It sounds unpleasant, I know, but it is honest.
I remember thinking to myself “if I can’t even run for five minutes without getting sick, how was I ever going to lose weight? How was I going to run again?”
But I got out there, and I pushed myself. Each time, a little harder than the last. It was all about incremental progress. Rome wasn’t built in a day. And that was something that I remember repeating to myself, over and over. So on my next run I would push myself to last six minutes, and then seven, then eight. And eventually 10 and 15. By the time I reached 15 minutes of constant running, I knew that it would be possible. Possible for me to change my life. Does that sound crazy?
When I set out, I NEVER started with the intention of losing 100 pounds. I never said to myself that I had to lose X number of lbs. to lose. I mean, I knew I had to lose weight and I knew that by running, I would. But my only focus then (and my ultimate achievement), was being able to run for one straight hour. Once I was able to do that, I felt like an athlete.
I remember making rookie mistakes like running with “training” shoes, vs “running shoes” — I thought they were all the same. But I also remember running in the spring, summer, fall, and winter. I was determined. I had no limits and I could tolerate all pain. I would run seven days a week sometimes. And all the while this was happening, I experienced my ultimate physical transformation.
The fat just started melting off. It melted off of my thighs, my sides, my abs, even my chest.
I began to develop abs. I would do crunches, sit ups, push-ups and home workouts with ball-exercises, and the results just started showing. The more I ran, the easier it was for me to keep fat off, and focus on sculpting my body. I developed leg muscles, calves, quads – you name it. I had runners legs and I went from feeling embarrassed of my body to (slowly) loving it.
It’s crazy to think of how I lost 100 pounds, having gone from 252, down to 152, all from running without ever having run a day in my life. But that’s my story. I no longer weigh in at 150 lbs, by the way. That was my all time low. Now I weigh in at a healthy 165-170 lb range, depending on how much I eat for breakfast 😉
I shared with you that my ultimate goal back then was to work myself up to an hour of running, and I achieved that. After growing into adulthood, and running for pleasure (not for weight-loss) I set a new goal for myself: running a full marathon, 42 km / 26 miles. And I achieved that, too. I ran the 2014 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon, and I plan to run more of them… at some point. Maybe three full marathons before I turn 30 years old… Maybe!
This is my personal fitness story on how I lost 100 pounds, but I definitely want to hear yours!
Whether it’s weight loss, transformation or overall lifestyle changes, share them with me in the comments section below!
Like I said earlier, I’m sharing this only to inspire you. And I hope it does! Keep your eyes peeled for another “fitness inspiration” post next week with an EXCITING ANNOUNCEMENT that I’m truly looking forward to sharing with you.
For now, if you are where I was in life, and you’re looking to start somewhere, my advice is to start small. BUT START! No one can do it for you, and no one should do it for you, either. It’s completely on you.
PS – the feature photo is a shot of me running in the 2014 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon! Somewhat out of breath – but determined!
Nick Joly | Inspired by Nick
be good to your body