I QUIT....a summary of my life! - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 382 (permalink) Old 01-09-2013, 03:25 PM Thread Starter
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I QUIT....a summary of my life!

Call it a mid-life crisis, an epiphany, a long-time desire or whatever you want! This past spring and summer I intended to make a change or two in my life pertaining to my health and fitness. This all came to be after years of doing a lot of research and thinking and planning, but never taking much, if any, action. So here it is in a nutshell, my life story:

From the time I can remember I've always been 'bigger' than everyone else....not tall, fat. My clothes were 'husky' growing up. I was active all the time, but I can eat...a lot, and i certainly did. In my youth I was involved in baseball from Tee Ball through HS ball but no other organized sports. I lived on my bike all summer long and as long as the weather permitted I was riding somewhere. I was still fat, but I wasn't huge and wasn't a couch potato. I still ate too much and not the best things.

I graduated HS and went to college. Those few years saw my activity level drop dramatically and the pounds piled on. I started college weighing around 225lbs....ended closer to 270lbs. I had a job lined up before I even graduated and started a week after the close of school. My job, that I still hold today, plants me in front of a computer 8+ hours 5 days a week....just as it has for the last 13+ years! Well, I continued to eat poorly, not exercise and consequently sell to a high of 335lbs.

Over the course of many years I've abused alcohol, smoked, eaten poorly, not exercised, and generally ignored my health/body. I've dieted sporadically over the years and lost as much as 80lbs, but I can't sustain a diet that doesn't involve foods that I love and thusly gain it all back....and then some. This past spring I decided with a family history of high blood pressure, diabetes, heart attacks, stroke, high cholesterol, heart disease, cancer, et al. that I need to get in better shape and take care of myself for my family's sake....and of course for my own.

Our 10 year anniversary was 7/13/12 and my wife and I had decided to go on a little vacation, leave the kids with her parents for a long weekend, spend some time having a good time and then afterwards we would, as a family, get healthy. We didn't do much in the way of 'healthy' prior and were excited to go on our vacation. Then it happened:

On 7/9/12 my mother came home from work to find my dad dead on the floor....a massive heart attack killed my diabetic, obese, inactive father at the ripe old age of 60! Three ours later my obese, inactive mother had a stroke at age 59!

We never got that vacation. The past six months have been spent running back and forth from Warren to Erie every other day to hospitals, rehabing my mom, fixing their financial messes, doing mountains of paperwork....in general NOT doing anything I had planned for the latter half of 2012. My mom is recovering. Still has a ways to go and probably will never be 100%, but she'll be able to live on her own. She's probably going to have to go onto disability and she'll need some help keeping up her house.

Around Christmas time we finally got around to joining a gym that we had two free 6 month memberships for. I've quit smoking, drastically reduced(maybe even eliminated) my alcohol consumption, started eating better foods and less food overall. We go to the gym 3-5 days a week and we're both feeling better in just a week so far. I know that it's early in the process, but I think that's part of the problem I've always had....it IS a process, it's not fast, there's no quick fix and it requires effort. Quit frankly, I don't want to die when I'm 60 or have a stroke or cancer. While I can't guarantee those things won't happen I sure can try to minimize those risks! I've got two young boys that need a father. A wife who deserves not to have to deal with the consequences of my indiscretions. A family to maintain in this crazy world.

I don't want to be diabetic. I don't want to have high cholesterol. I don't want high blood pressure(though I have it now!). I don't want to get cancer. I don't want to have a heart attack. I don't want to have a stroke. Being MORBIDLY OBESE puts me at high risk for all of those things on its own....throw in the family history and it's pretty much a guarantee. I can control at least one side of that equation so I will!

I QUIT! I quit abusing my body. I quit overeating. I quit filling my lungs with smoke. I quit sitting around doing nothing. I quit making excuses for the shape I'm in.

You really under estimated the ramifications of the boondoggle you have just perpetrated!
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post #2 of 382 (permalink) Old 01-09-2013, 03:51 PM
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Re: I QUIT....a summary of my life!

Congrats on taking the first steps towards making a change in your life.

Here is some motivation:

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post #3 of 382 (permalink) Old 01-09-2013, 03:53 PM
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Re: I QUIT....a summary of my life!

Jason, first of all I am sorry for your loss, and hope your mom's health continues to improve. I am much in the same boat right now with health. I was also a very heavy smoker until a year ago my wife and I both quit cold turkey. Unlike you I was always thin until I got tied to the wheelchair over 20 years ago and really let myself go. The pounds continued to add to the point where I just don't feel good. I started a diet the beginning of the year (first ever) and am already having a hard time. Your words have given me inspiration. Good luck with your continued quest for health.
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post #4 of 382 (permalink) Old 01-09-2013, 04:01 PM Thread Starter
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Re: I QUIT....a summary of my life!

Excuses are far easier to make than results! I've personified that approach....and I QUIT that too!

The treadmill tears up my knees. I simply cannot use one AT MY CURRENT WEIGHT. However, the elliptical doesn't hurt a single joint in my body, is more 'fun'(sorry, cardio just isn't fun for me(anyone?)!) and I feel like I get a better workout using it anyway!

You really under estimated the ramifications of the boondoggle you have just perpetrated!
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post #5 of 382 (permalink) Old 01-09-2013, 04:15 PM
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Re: I QUIT....a summary of my life!

Don't give up! One of the best things for you right now is to have your wife to workout with. When one doesn't feel like it the other one will push to make you do it and vice versa. Exercising is mental not just physical! Go to the walking trail along the conewango!! Too bad i don't live in Sugar Grove anymore or i'd workout with you

Oh and don't get discouraged b/c the LBS aren't coming off fast enough. Pace yourself, don't overdue it and get hurt either

Not only is my short-term memory horrible, but so is my short-term memory.
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post #6 of 382 (permalink) Old 01-09-2013, 04:22 PM Thread Starter
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Re: I QUIT....a summary of my life!

IVN, God bless you, man! Congrats on the quitting smoking and dieting to shed some pounds! It's a commitment that's worth it!

I've always been able to quit smoking pretty easily....it's the staying quit that gets me. It's almost always alcohol that does me in. Soooo....fix that problem too, right? Working on it!

I supposed everyone is different when it comes to dieting so this advice might not be much help. What has been the only thing that has ever worked for me is to reduce what I'm eating to realistic numbers. A month ago I was consuming between 3500-4000 calories per day....and not moving hardly at all, let alone real exercise. I can't, for instance, expect to maintain a diet low in carbs forever....it works for a while, but it's not sustainable for me. So, I've found for me it's simply stick with what I normally eat, control the portions and add in more fruits and veggies. Add exercise to the equation and it goes faster. I've cut my calories down to 2200-2700 per day and I'm trying to burn between 350-600 calories every day with exercise....strength + 20 minutes of cardio 3 days a week and 30-40 minutes of cardio 2 days a week. I'll adjust as needed as I move forward. I'm quite strong and carry a lot of muscle, but there's a lot of fat too. I've got a large bone and frame structure, but shorter than average legs(I'm 5'9", my torso length is that of someone 6')....none of the charts or guidelines work out for me. If I weighed what the charts say I should be 160lbs tops....when I get to 200lbs I won't have 40lbs left on me to lose!

I understand you're restricted in what you can do with exercise, but I do know that lean muscle mass burns more calories. I don't know how or if you can add much there, but if possible you might want to try. Arm, chest and back exercises maybe? Punching bag for cardio?

You really under estimated the ramifications of the boondoggle you have just perpetrated!
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post #7 of 382 (permalink) Old 01-09-2013, 05:09 PM Thread Starter
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Re: I QUIT....a summary of my life!

The last two summers I've been riding my bike a lot. I know every inch of that bike trail! I do a loop from my house up the trail, around the state hospital and back the trail and through town to the house. It's 7.5 miles round trip. I'd do that daily and then Wednesdays I ride at Hearts Content on the ski trials and Tanbark Trail with the local bike shop. I lost 50lbs two years ago doing that and eating right. Last summer I was up about 20lbs from the holidays and poor habits and had just started losing again when the crap hit the fan with my folks. With all the trips to Erie and back my diet consisted of McDonald's....and more McDonald's since I was on the road constantly. Being mentally and physically drained I don't think I was on my bike 3 times after July. Another favorite trip on the bike was up to the dam and back on Hemlock Rd. That one is 17 miles round trip from my front door. I was doing that once or twice a week as well.

I'm committed! I'm sore from Monday's workout still, but I want nothing more than to be in the gym right now. It's a good kind of sore! It's a resistance day so I might give my sore upper body a bit of a break and work the lower half and core more today....followed with 20 minutes on the elliptical.

You really under estimated the ramifications of the boondoggle you have just perpetrated!
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post #8 of 382 (permalink) Old 01-09-2013, 05:21 PM
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Re: I QUIT....a summary of my life!

My oldest son is a health nut. He's been on me to exercise (upper body). I had always been in a manual chair until I moved into the woods when I made the huge mistake of getting a power chair. My goal now is to get back into the manual chair.

BTW: A lot of the blame falls on you and RB for leading me to Nic-L-Inn.
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post #9 of 382 (permalink) Old 01-09-2013, 06:12 PM Thread Starter
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Re: I QUIT....a summary of my life!

I can't help it they have great food...especially the oh-so-healthy prime!

I'm on a hunting lease in NY...it's about 3 miles up Bone Run from the Nic-L-Inn!

I might have to do an extra 5-10 minutes on the elliptical tonight just for thinking about now!

I can see how that power vs. manual chair could change things. Hey, ease yourself into the manual chair for a period each day until you can do it all day! That's your cardio workout right there!

You really under estimated the ramifications of the boondoggle you have just perpetrated!
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post #10 of 382 (permalink) Old 01-09-2013, 06:16 PM
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Re: I QUIT....a summary of my life!

Bean sprouts for bear camp it is!

Good for you, Slappy. I too took a good, long look in the mirror a few weeks ago and realized I didn't like what I was seeing and how I felt about myself. I started my diet and exercise two weeks ago. I licked the smoking thing almost 6 years ago. Like you, working on the hooch consumption now.

I don't have ducks. I don't have rows. I have squirrels. And they're drunk.
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