Catching Yourself Succeeding -or- I lost 25lbs And Can’t Find It Anywhere!
When Thing 1… er… our first child was born in 2009 I took parental leave from work for six months. Yeah, we can do that here. One of the many benefits of living in Canada. It was one of the best decisions I’d ever made (next to buying a life-size stormtrooper). Now, being that it was our first child and my wife was doing a whole lotta breastfeeding, there wasn’t a helluva lot for me to do at times. So I did what any self-respecting father would do. I took up running.
There was a time when I would get winded running to the end of the driveway (single car parking). But after a few weeks I was running 12k or more just for fun. I shed the pounds about as fast as my dog’s winter coat. In no time I was slim and trim and ready to go back to work as the new me. Two years later, our second child was born. Completely different story!
I took another six months parental leave for our second child and was not only excited for her arrival but also thrilled for the chance to continue my quest for an even fitter body. Sadly, it wasn’t meant to be. I failed to add into the equation that if my wife was nursing our new baby I’d have to occupy the time with child #1. My math skills were never something I’d brag about.
As the six months went by I got to know our first child better than before thanks to a lotta one-on-one/Daddy-Daughter time. And not only did I get to know her. I also got to know McDonalds, daytime TV and a variety of heavily salted snack treats. Not to mention I bought stock in the Mars Bar company. There was zero opportunity to workout as our little two year old’s needs filled those workout time slots effortlessly. Needless to say, by the time I was ready to go back to work I was about 20 pounds heavier.
As the years went on I found the stress of my job couple with the stress of raising Thing 1 and Thing 2 a lot to bear. My drive for physical activity was as low as the lowest thing ever to be measured and labelled as “low” in the history of the known Universe. If I worked out in the gym it was celebrated like I had just earned my PhD (but accompanied by the “day after” ached and pains).
Five years rolled by and in May of this year (2016) I was naked in front of a mirror and had to take a step back so I could fit!! I felt like crap, looked like crap, slept like crap and ate like crap. Plus, I was suffering from a painful bout of gout!!! God hated me!! And on a more serious note I was battling a bit of depression. Let’s face it. I was down. But after looking at a body that once resembled a young Han Solo and was now more like Jabba the Hut’s slightly thinner brother, I decided I gotta to do something about it. This wasn’t me!! I blamed my poor health on my kids and what kind of a man does that? If I were a superhero I’d be Captain Scapegoat!!
A few days after arriving at the limits of my disgust I went running. It was only a few kilometres but dammit I did it!! And much like after our first child was born I went from sloth to cheetah. I noticed after even a few weeks the weight was coming off. I was sleeping better, eating better and generally feeling better! The following months I ran and ran and ran some more. If we went on vacation, I’d run while on vacation. If we were making a day trip, I’d go running early to get it out of the way. I’d run at work. I’d run on my days off. And now, I’m reaping the benefits. I’ve shed 25lbs and am down to the weight I was when our first was born in 2009. I’m eating healthy even though I allow a cheat day here and there. I sold my shares of the Mars Bar company and can even fit in the mirror when I stand up close to it! I feel and look (from the neck down) like a man half my age!! It’s a feeling I wish I could bottle and give away as Christmas presents (yes, I’m that cheap).
Anyhoo, I’m glad to be back to the REAL KD Mack. The unhealthy one just wasn’t me. I’m fortunate that I have a body built for running. Rarely do I get aches and pains and when I do they’re minor and gone within a few days. I have five more pounds to lose before I start putting the weight back on in the form of lean muscle. Overall my goal is to see how far this journey goes. With a little luck that’ll be well into my nineties.