Today, as I go through these pics seeking some inspiration, I am amazed at how different I look at my various plateau weights, from 420 to 255 and everywhere in between. And honestly, I am taken aback at myself that I actually prefer the way I look at the heavier weights, between 270 and 290.
Looking back at my low weight of 255, I feel I looked good, more healthy in fact. But my face seems unfamiliar to me now, and I remember it did at the time the pics were taken, too. This means I have a preference for my heavier image, which could be why psychologically it is easy for me to put on weight. Fortunately, since I know the true root of this preference, I believe I will be able to remain conscious of it throughout my weight loss this time around. This is not about image, after all, its about health and fitness.
So, without further ado, here are a few of the plateau progress pics as well as a current pic. A brief description of the moment of time each pic was taken is included. Please leave a comment below and let me know what you think of the images as well as the concept of weight preference as it relates to self image and prescriptive weight loss.
|Reading "The Perks of Being a Wallflower", Hollywood, FL, September 2009|
|Walking the dogs, the exercise that got me started, March 2010|
|Feeling fly in my first non-big-and-tall outfit in many years, May 2010|
|Time to hit the gym! Fort Lauderdale, FL, June 2010|
|Experimenting with fashion, Hollywood, FL, July 2010|
300 lbs.: By this time the above pic was taken, I was on auto-pilot. My entire life was enveloped in fitness. I was active six days a week at this point, doing at least two fitness activities daily and three on Sundays. I forced myself to take a day off, and I was good about rotating my exercises to allow muscle groups to rest. I was starting to squeeze into XL clothing and didn't mind if my clothes fit tight. I felt unstoppable.
|On the beach one year into my weight loss journey, Hollywood, FL, 2010|
|Showing strength at Rapids Water Park in West Palm Beach, FL, May 2011|
255 lbs.: By May of 2011 I had reached the pinnacle of my weight loss. I celebrated with a trip to the water park, here I confidently shucked my shirt and wandered around the park with just my flip flops. I had so much fun doing anything that required strength - at that time I looked for an opportunity to work out wherever I went. I went on several water slides, but I became frustrated when I had to opt out of some of the more exciting rides because the weight cut off was 250 pounds. At just five pounds over the limit I probably would have been okay, but I feared some catastrophe would happen if I were to attempt it, so I abstained from some of the fun.
|Eating out at a Greek restaurant, on a date, Miami, FL, June 2011|
260 lbs.: I can't put my finger on the exact moment I made the decision, but after a year and a half of strict adherence to diet, I decided it was time to let go of the reigns a bit. I told myself that a little weight gain was okay - probably because I thought I was starting to look funny, like I had Al Roker face or something. But I remained committed to maintaining my weight loss and kept my weight gain below 275 for more than a year.
Over the course of the next two years a lot changed in my life. I moved from Miami to Boston to Albuquerque to Palm Springs all in search of amazing trails. I was hiking 20+ miles per week, but this was my only exercise during these times of transition. Eventually, the trail led me home to Pennsylvania, and to Philadelphia, where I currently live. I have struggle to find a gym that inspires me like Island City did, and while I am still hiking it's been reduced to about five miles per week. And until two days ago, I had been eating like a pig, which has led me to re-gain 70 pounds that I had worked so hard to take of just two and three years ago.
|This guy's committed to fitness in 2014! Catoctin Mountains, MD, Dec. 2013|