The World According to Cb...

The World According to Cb...

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

A Different Kind of 40th Celebration


Flash back to August 2010.  After eight months on the road, myriad excuses for not exercising regularly or eating right, day after day and night after night of restaurant food and I am now looking at myself shirtless in the bathroom mirror.  “Well, there you have it.  I’m 47 years old, 252 lbs, and a former athlete,” I said to myself, patting my protruding belly, knowing that my usable closet was down to one pair of large jeans, several dress pants with “expandable waists,” and my always faithful warm up pants.  I’d had a good run and I was done.

My life came further crashing down a month later as my marriage ended suddenly and I had another hernia operation thanks to an old cancer operation some 14 years ago.  “Great, now I’m all alone, situationally depressed, and fat,” I thought.  But the reality was I wasn’t alone, and I was far from done.  Several key friends came to my literal rescue, and one of the chief ones was David.  In addition to great counsel he insisted that during this time I must get back into a regular form of fitness regimen.  Eating right, cutting back on the booze, working out 5-6 times a week (weights / walking / running) and getting at least 7 hours of sleep were not an option, they were mandatory.  David would check in on me sometimes 2-3 times a day to make sure I was doing what I needed to do.  And things started to change, and people noticed.

As I climbed out of the mental pit that is divorce, the physical side came along for the ride, too.  10 lbs gone in 6 weeks lead to 20 lbs total 6 weeks later, and while the holidays now loomed ahead I was determined not to falter, at least too much.  By Jan 1 I hadn’t really made any more real progress, but I hadn’t ballooned back up, either.  I continued the march and my mid February had dropped another 10 lbs and was staying steady at 222 lbs, but then came the dreaded plateau.

From 252 to 212...

I wasn’t uncomfortable here, but I had set a personal goal of dropping 50 total lbs, and 30 was simply not enough.  At the beginning of March I got another big physical surprise as the hernia operation I’d had back in September had complications resulting in three separate procedures, the last one a few weeks ago the biggest of all, and walking was the only form of exercise allowed.  But a funny thing happened on the way in / out of the OR: my girlfriend Kristi got me eating frequently as a “pescetarian” – essentially a veggie who also east fish / eggs – and despite very little exercise, the weight started coming off again…

Flash back to a week ago and I stepped on the scale, and 211.6 lbs came up on the dial.  Another 10 lbs was gone, a 40th celebration I never really thought possible.  I have a “new” wardrobe, too.  Actually it’s the old clothes I thought I’d never fit in again, but trust me they’re pretty new to me… and I’m still not done.  I made it back into the gym today for the first time and have been hitting the trail here in Austin once again.  At 48, my days as a competitive athlete may well indeed be behind me, but the athlete within just needed to shed some of his shell to come back out.  The secret?  Consistency and support.  So thanks, David, I literally couldn’t have done it without you and the road ahead is now very different than what I’d expected.  Make it happen – ciao for now – Cb…

4 comments:

Brandon said...

Good for you man, lookin great. I have a plethora of excuses...most of them bullshit. Have never been able to return to how healthy I was or felt when we were training for the half marathon.

Henrik said...

That's awesome. Having lost 10kg (22lbs) over the last year (actually June 2010 - November 2010, now keeping my weight) I know what you are talking about. Support from any community is pivotal - for me it was actually livestrong.com and the "dare to lose weight" community.

To Brandon: forget about the excuses. Start today - it's sooo worth it.

woody said...

can you ride your bike yet? I remember back in the Lance days you trained and did a century in 5 hours. Do that again. Having a competitive goal keeps you going. I have raced paddleboards for 35 years and although I won't win an overall race I might get my age group(over 50) and I still get to participate.

Mary Danielsen said...

Chris,

I think there are so many of us who go through a period in our life where we just fall into the mental pit. It's just where we are, not where we have to stay.

I've been in the same place. This is a really nice post about kicking yourself back into gear, mentally and physically.

Good luck. Keeping posting.

Mary

About Me

My photo
Austin, TX, United States
A proud single dad, strong cancer survivor, and a guy who loves his bike, red wine, family and friends - the order is dependent on my mood...