My friend Terry and his story.
A couple of months ago I was swimming laps and there was a man in the deep end doing water exercises on his own. He was there before I arrived, not sure exactly how long, but I could tell he was working hard. I finished my laps and we struck up a conversation about his journey to wellness. Terry told me he had lost 160 pounds! He was at a plateau and was just trying to work through it. He does his exercise in the pool every day and I suggested he start some weight work, so we met one day in the weight room to give him a simple starter workout to implement. He began the weight workouts and as I saw him at the gym he would tell me how much he enjoyed adding the weights and he knew it was helping. His story is amazing because I left out a bit of information. Terry lost 160 pounds and he is now down to 440. I asked him if it was okay to get some information from him as to how he did what he did because his journey is one that started from his heart. He really wanted to make a change in his life. This is what he told me…
He started January,2012 getting in the pool 3 days a week. Now almost a year and a half later he is in the pool 5 days and has recently added those weight workouts every other day. The weights take him about 45 minutes and he is in the pool for 1-1.5 hours! As of February of 2013 he was down 160 pounds to 440! He has a goal weight of about 275-285. An important part of his journey was his diet. He eats a lot of fruits and vegetables and works on portion control. He cut out soda, ice cream , chips and that sort of junk food. The soda, he said, was tough and he got some bad headaches since he was drinking 7-10 cans a day. His vice for that is a Coke zero every once in a while. To change from ice cream he will make a fruit smoothie made from frozen berries and that satisfies the craving for sweets.
As we talked about how he got started, I asked what advice he would give someone who is in the same boat as he was in last year. He explained it is a vicious cycle. If you exercise you hurt and if you donʼt exercise you still hurt. But he found the pool. That was the saving grace for him. He got in the water and could move around and not hurt! That movement allowed him to start seeing weight loss results, which in turn allowed him to be more active in life. As he said, “ the pool is the way for the obese”. He treads water, runs, does jumping jacks, cross country skis and swim laps doing the width of the pool. When he started he could only do 5 laps but now can do about 45! He can now do regular stairs, which are still challenging but less so, and walk further distances without breathing heavy. He said there are so many things that I take for granted that he can now do, such as bending over to tie his shoes and fitting into his truck better. His goal for October is to be down to 385! His philosophy is that every day he works out adds a day to the end of his life and he truly feels that if he hadnʼt made the decision to change his life AND put it into action he would have been dead in 5 years.
This is such an amazing story and one that proves that if you really want something you can put your mind to it and accomplish great things! Thanks, Terry, for being so honest and dedicated. Your story will surely move someone to take on the same task!