There were about twelve different ways that I wanted to start this post. Some were funny, some were emotional and some were like the opening of the first episode of “The Newsroom.” Sometimes when you write, you wish you could just visually reenact a moment rather than having to describe it in words. Today was just one of those days.
It feels like I am about to start my weight loss journey all over again which is an excerifying (exciting and terrifying combined) feeling. Today, I got to meet one of my favorite reality show contestants of all time (except for Colby Donaldson in Survivor Season 2. He was the Chuck Norris of reality show contestants.) The 11th season of The Biggest Loser had one of the most diverse casts that a weight loss show could ask for: an olympic gold athlete, a 5’5″ 500-pound stud, a Biggest Loser Fangirl from the Midwest and a pair of sisters who no one betted on from the start. Little did anyone know at the start that Hannah Curlee and Olivia Ward would wind up in the No. 1 and 2 spots in the finale that year. Since Megan and I love a good underdog story, we rooted for Hannah and Olivia almost from the get go. So when we heard that Hannah was going to be speaking at a women’s wellness event in Tallahassee a few weeks ago, we started to flip!
Hannah’s story is a lot like most of ours: she had done Weight Watchers off and on for years and every time she would lose on weigh in day she would go celebrate with more eating (which I am super guilty of,) she also chased every fad diet and would buy every As Seen On TV weight loss miracle available. Between a severe back injury and surgery, Hannah started to rapidly gain weight until she couldn’t fit in to booths and the other awkwardnesses that go along with been extremely obese. Then she started in on the many adventures of The Biggest Loser. How Jillian is insane but awesome, how much of a dump the Biggest Loser Ranch was (the exercise room didn’t have running water nor did it have real walls) and how she awesome it is to have that fraternity of Biggest Loser contestants. It is always interesting to hear about the reality of reality shows. The funniest thing she said about the Biggest Loser was that everything was either mic’d or had a camera hidden in it from the grass to the bathroom. It made me glad that I never ended up trying out for the show (but I thought about it a couple of times. In fact, Megan and I almost drove to a casting call in Dallas for the couples edition in 2010. Safe to say it all worked out regardless.)
So after Hannah spoke, she opened it up for questions. A lot of questions about calorie intake, how many times to weigh a week and a whole bunch of other good questions to ask a weight loss guru like her. Now as most of you know, I have been in a slump this past year. I lost 100 pounds in under a year and have been struggling ever since because I have been just running out of steam or if I take a few steps forward, I take more back. I wanted to know how to get passed this halfway block that I have created for myself. I started out with “hi! I am halfway through my weight loss journey and…” then she stopped me and asked me how much I have lost. I told her 117 pounds and then she said “that’s awesome! Let’s give him a hand!” Then she came over and shook my hand. Now, I get star struck when celebrities even just Tweet me. I was dumbfounded at this point. Anyway, I continued with my question “I know the points and the calories of stuff, I get the formula, but I need that push to get out from being stuck. What should I do?” The first thing she told me was that I wasn’t stuck and that being able to maintain that weight loss was a big deal (which I haven’t really thought about it in that context until then) and then she gave me three awesome tips that are absolutely applicable to anyone who is looking or is trying to lose weight.
Change Your Food. I have been eating the same breakfast and have been eating the same lunch almost all summer (pb and toast for breakfast and a Smart One of lunch) so this was good to hear. The only change I have been doing is going from making healthy choices to eating a lot of bad things and then immediately regretting them. After the event, Megan and I went on a crazy healthy shopping spree at Publix and bought some delicious stuff that you will see next week!
The next thing was to Mix Up Your Workout Routine. Since I haven’t really had access to a gym this summer, I have done a lot of running and swimming which has been about it. Luckily, since I’m about to start a new job at FSU, I’ll have access to Leach again and all of its awesome classes. She said to find out what workouts your friends are doing and ask to join. If you are doing some awesome workout, sport or any type of exercise, let me know and I’ll be happy to join you!
Finally, Hannah said to Tell Your Story. Yeah, I have this blog and yeah, most people who know me know my story, but I could still be more of a weight loss evangelist than I am right now. This might even just mean being a better example to those around me. It’s just hard because you don’t want to be that “oh hey! I have a blog! Have you read my blog? I was just talking last night on my blog that…” guy. With that being said, I want to help people and reach out to those who I know who are struggling so telling my story through my actions is going to be my goal from now on.
After the Q&A, Hannah had a meet and greet so we stopped by and said hi. She remembered that I had Tweeted her earlier this week which was really cool. We talked about the importance of a support system like the one Megan and I have and how important it is to have everyone in the family on board which is so true. We left the event feeling rejuvenated and even convicted about our weight loss. It truly was what I needed. Tomorrow, I might not lose any weight. In fact I’m pretty sure I have gained this week. But I feel like I’m back at that first step all over again where I got on our scale and realized that I didn’t want to be 357 pounds any more; that this wasn’t the life I was suppose to have. It’s time to get over this halfway point and finally reach the top of Mt. Fitintoskinnyjeans. See ya tomorrow.