Last Chance Workout

Today is Monday, which means The Biggest Loser is on tonight. I love when Biggest Loser (B.L.) starts a new season because in the past, it has always been a reminder for me to keep working out during the week. But this year I seem to feel different than I have in the past.

In years past, B.L. has kind of been like church for me when I was younger. I used to go to church once a week, cry a little sometimes, and then promise to be good the rest of the week. By Tuesday or Wednesday I’d be back to the same old antics.

So what’s changed? Well besides not going to church at all anymore, I don’t really feel like I need to watch the Biggest Loser for motivation. I finally feel like I’m living somewhat of a healthy lifestyle. (Except on my once a week “cheat-day” when I eat what I want, drink beer and smoke cigarettes. I tell myself, “it’s progress not perfection.”)

This weekend my wife and I went out with two other couples. It was Saturday and it was my, “cheat day.” I almost ordered “fish and chips” with a salad instead of fries. Realizing that the Earth may spin off course, I immediately changed my order when I realized it was my cheat day. I even threw a couple beers on top of it just to make sure all was well with the universe.

The topic of diets came up in our conversation. One of the couples has both been rail-thin since I’ve known them and I don’t think they diet, so they didn’t participate in this part of the conversation much. My wife doesn’t diet or exercise, so she didn’t say much either.

The guy from the second couple, who I’ll call Mr. White, is doing a, “doctor monitored diet.” I believe he gets to eat about 1200-1500 calories a day, mostly made up of protein. This helps his body get into ketosis, which melts the fat off the body fast. If Mr. White gets out of ketosis, his doctor will know he’s cheated. If this happens three times, he’s out of the program.

Mr. White ordered a pot full of muscles and no beer—which is saying something considering he’s totally a beer-drinking Irish guy.

I was very impressed. I don’t think I would be able to stick to a diet where I couldn’t eat or drink what I wanted some of the times.

Now for the record, Mr. White owns one of these weight loss centers. He won’t really be kicked out of the program if he fails. But he wants to look good since he’s the owner and I don’t think he believes in the word, “fail.” Having said all of that, Mr. White is probably only 20-30 lbs. over weight and looks perfectly healthy.

Mrs. White and I have known each other a long time. She has always been athletic. She plays hurling, which makes field hockey players look like pussies. She has also ran a half-marathon recently, so let’s just say she’s in shape.

Mrs. White told me she is currently working with a trainer. She wasn’t really happy with him because he is making her lift heavier weights, with fewer reps and she didn’t want to bulk up.

I told her this is how muscle grows, then he will probably get her to, “cut weight or lose fat,” and you’ll see the muscles at that time.

Where am I going with all this?

Was one of your New Year’s Resolutions to lose weight? If so, this is your, “Last chance workout!” as Dolvette—one of the trainer’s on Biggest Loser would yell. That means this will be the last time I talk about New Year’s resolutions this year. (Most people have already forgotten them, but this is your last wake-up call.)

My two friends and I decided at the beginning of the year that we were going to make weight loss a part of our lifestyle; actually we all started before that. And now that it’s at the end of January, we have all formed new healthy habits. I mean, I almost ordered a salad as a substitution for fries with fish and chips for God’s sake.

Recently, a lot of people have said to me, “Wow! You’ve looked like you’ve lost weight. What have you been doing?”

Then their eyes glaze over as soon as I start to tell them.
“Well I joined www.stickk.com. It’s where you pick a goal like losing weight, and then you pick a charity, an ‘anti-charity,’ a friend, or a foe. Studies show that if pick an anti-charity or a foe, you are 78% more likely to succeed. Plus you can assign a, “referee,” to keep you honest. Then you pick a time frame to accomplish your goal by and assign a monetary value to it. Five dollars a week is as low as you can go. If you accomplish your goal for the week, you don’t pay. If you don’t accomplish your goal for the week, they take it out of your credit card. My goal was I wanted to lose 40 lbs. in 40 weeks, so my weekly goal is to lose one pound a week. So in order to do that, I wake up at 5:10 am Monday through Friday and do 20-25 minutes of cardio. And I also lift weights at the gym at my work at least three times a week for a minimum of 30 minutes…”

By this point I know most people just hear, “Blah, blah, blah, five dollars, blah, blah, blah, 5:10 am,” which is fine. Weight loss is an extremely personal thing. That is why it’s weird to do it online with www.stickk.com and then invite your friends to follow your progress.

But the proof is in the pudding. The only people that excepted my request to follow me on this, “weight-loss journey,” was my wife (who’s my referee) and my grandma, who’s just bored and trying to be supportive.

The bottom line? No one wants to hear you complain about being fat. Also, no one wants to hear about how you’re trying to get skinny. If you decide you still want to lose weight, remember that short steps over a long period of time is how you get successful at anything. If you want to lose fat, you’re going to have to work at it one pound at a time.

And that my friends was, “Your last chance workout!”

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