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Thursday, 20 June 2013

My Inspiration

When I genuinely DON'T feel like working out or exercising...I watch TBL. The contestants on this franchise of shows ALL have some serious health problems...and if they don't change, they will only get worse.

Remember I'm an ex-fatty myself. I keep clothes from when I weighed 140 kg. I can't wear the trousers, but they're kept to remind me of when I wasn't healthy. At 140 kg, I looked like the photo below.

I HATED looking like that. My ex certainly hated me being unable to see my own feet. So I would have been eligable to be a contestant on TBL. I see myself in the men in their 30's and know that what isn't being revealed is the high blood pressure, the low libido...and being quick on the trigger when I was doing it and the generally feeling like shit.

In the latest Australian series of the TBL franchise there was a contestant Big Kev who hit the scales at 256 kg. He was asked if a particular work out  was hurting? His reply: I'm already in pain. My ankles and knees hurt.

And this is the thing. When I was obese I felt like shit. I remember how it felt to be dragging around all that extra weight. My current weight is 96 kg. I've lost almost a HALF of what I weigh NOW....44 kg. or to be utterly pedantic. I've lost  ~40 % of my current weight. That's a lot of weight to remove from my heart and joints.

The actor James Gandolfini died today of a heart attack. And when you look at him it isn't hard to see why.
Essentially his body staged a revolt. There is nothing to like in the photo of him. He is only 3 years older than I am. You can see decades of self abuse in that photo. He was a seriously sick man and the heart attack was simply the last act of a body that he had mistreated into illness and ultimately death.

There is another inspiration for my continuing efforts at weight loss and fitness...he is playing in his room. I want to see him grow up and not do what James Gandolfini did and leave a 9 month old behind who will never know their father. My last inspiration is my gorgeous wife who has made this lifetime. My weight loss is a gift to my wife and son.

Monday, 10 June 2013

Weight Loss

The very first step in losing weight is to get your head in the right space. Unless you are absolutely committed to changing how you look, nothing will happen.

I remember it was 1997 when I decided that being 140 kg (308 lbs/22 Stone) was bad. Prior to this I had had no issues with my obesity. If anything I was happy with my increasing weight, and remarked once with great pride that I was the same weight as a friend, his wife and young child...COMBINED. Never mind that I couldn't see my feet, struggled to tie my shoelaces, had a low libido and  high blood pressure. I was morbidly obese and I was happy.

It was on a bus in the middle of the Nullarbor Plain, on my way home from a Theravadin Monastery near Perth, WA, that I realized that at this weight I was begging for a heart attack. The very first thing I changed was how I viewed myself. I was no longer a "fat" person, because fat people laid on the lounge all day and ate shit. I was now a "thin" person and thin people exercise and don't eat entire family sized Meat Lovers pizza in one sitting by themselves nor do they wash the pizza down with a 6 pack of beer. Thin people exercise and eat properly.

Self identifying as "thin" was important. Never mind that I manifestly wasn't. I didn't suddenly step out of a fat suit and reveal my gorgeous self. Because I was now "thin" I went and did all the thin things. The junk food bit the dust first and over the next three years I dropped about 20 kg (44lbs).
I exercised. Mostly in the form of long walks.

I plateaued at 120 kg (264.5 lbs) for the next 10 years. I had reduced fish and chips to an uncommon event, yet still wasn't exercising as much as I should have. I was also unhappily married and saw no point in looking good for someone who simply wasn't appreciating what she had. My head space had improved a little and I had moved from an intensely dangerous place to a dangerous place. My cholesterol had fallen from a high of ~ 9.7 to the low 6's.

It was when I met my wife, Selina, that my head space changed again. I lost 5 kg in a week from not eating, sleeping and stressing incredibly over the fact I had managed to fall in love with a woman who is 24 years my junior. She was 19 and I wasn't far off turning 43. So in early 2008 I was 115 kg (253.5 lb). In retrospect, that I had the 5 kg to lose so fast is frightening.

Another change of head space came when Selina and I decided to start a family. I ate more carefully and certainly exercised more often...and lost 5 kg (11 lbs). There was a lot of information available on the connection between fitness and fertility. So by 2009 I had lost a total of 30 kg and a marriage in 12 years. So I was now just obese.

Insults are wonderful things. In October 2011 I was insulted by someone I seriously wanted to fuck. I was told, in no uncertain terms "Why should I fuck you, a fat Middle Aged man, when I can fuck toned men in their 30's?" No, it wasn't Selina who handed out this little gem. I put my nose back into joint and set about changing the head space...again...whilst vowing that "This bitch will fuck me when Hell freezes". I developed a desperate need for muscle definition. My new head space. It was at about this time we began to investigate Tantra.

Between October 2011 and April 30 2012 I dropped 10 kg. Yep, you read it right, in SEVEN  months, I lost TEN KILOGRAMS OR  22.0462 LBS. I was now at 100 kg. I ate an awful lot of leafy green salads and chickpeas. I exercised like, weights and lots of walking.

On April 30 2012, Salmonella struck. The medications I was on blew me back to 108 kg (238 lb). I bitched like crazy to my GP. I hated Prednisolone ( and the weight gain it was inflicting on me. I was being blown backwards by a chemical...after I had broken my arse losing the weight.

The insult still smarted. I lost the 10 kg plus another 2 for good measure and then plateaued again at 98 kg (216 lbs). Part of this Tantra is looking your absolute best. My third head space. I still have a belly. I can't fit into the swimming shorts I bought at the beginning of the weight loss, which were tight on me at the time...because they fall down before I can tie them. I have lost a total of 22 kg ( lbs) in 20 months. My goal is 90 kg (198 lbs).

I am now in the head space of wanting to make as much of my current wardrobe look like I'm wearing a tent as quickly as I can. I told my GP "I intend to throw my weight out the window". Portion control is the method. I have a set of measures at home and measure almost everything. Psyllium husks ( are very much in my diet. Psyllium is entirely dietary fibre. It has no nutrients of its' own and serves to bulk out whatever it is that I'm eating.  My diet is lean, almost entirely sugar free and Flexitarian (

The current head space is one of great patience. Leaning out and not seeing the numbers change is tough. In the last week I have been cooking up a mixture of equal parts brown rice, quinoa, red lentils,  and burghul with about a tablespoon of Psyllium added. A cup of this with about a litre of water keeps me full for the day. I'm getting a shitload of protein and my carbohydrates are hard to get at. My breakfast is the shake...or rather with the addition of Psyllium...paste, I blogged about 18 months ago. It's a mix of:

600 mls (1 pint) of Lite Milk,
~ 250grams   (1/2 pound)  tofu,
3/4 cup of rolled oats,
1.5 tablespoons of Sustagen powder,
1 banana
 and  depending on size half a large or an entire small avocado. Lasts me between 3 - 4 days.

and 1 tablespoon of Psyllium powder.

Controlling the cravings is the hard part. Simply getting used to not eating in the evening is tough. There is a deep seated behaviour attached to eating in the evening, especially if you have a young child. Mind you, I followed my cravings last night and ate an entire 450 gram tin of tuna in one sitting, but tuna is full of lean protein and considering I'd done two weights workouts I could see why my body was demanding it.

My current head space is: I am doing my best to lose weight, and look fantastic.  The changes in my diet are a mixture of permanent and transitory. The Psyllium is a passing thing. It is here until I achieve my desired look and stabilise it. The Flexitarianism is permanent. I'm not that keen on eating a lot of meat. The need for exercise is permanent.

With this I bid you adieu.