Well lookey here, a post! A new post on my blog.
It’s surprising to look back over the year, and realize I have not written a single thing since April. And even that was just a review.
I could use the typical excuse of “I just never could find the time” but then, I guess I could have tried to use a few minutes here and a few minutes there to write-up a post over the course of a week or so. The only problem I have doing that is that eventually by the time I start to get to the end, I forget what it was I was really trying to write about in the first place, which is why a majority of my posts are written in one sitting.
No, 2012 will go into the books as a good year though, regardless.
So what has “Mic” been doing? Well… Mic has actually been busy, and I haven’t really spoke about what I have been up to. Not because I wanted to keep anything a secret. No, I just am not comfortable talking about my physical self. I can go on and on and on talking about where I went, what I did, and who I spoke with, but seldom do you find me mention much about me.
So here we go. This is what my 2012 has been about.
I guess I need to start at the beginning of the year, to kind of give you an idea of how the rest of the year unraveled.
Every year, around the beginning of March, I get a physical. Just something I have done for years. And every year for the last several since I have moved here to Washington, I hear the same thing from my doctor “You’re healthy, you’re just fat”.
This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that has kept up on my past blog posts. I never considered myself the ideal candidate of fitness, but I still managed to stay active.
The problem with becoming comfortable with weight gain, is you become comfortable with weight gain.
When I first moved up here in 2006, I was around 200 lbs. Which for my body type/size is a little overweight, but not by much. It is, for all intents and purposes a “comfortable” weight that doesn’t get in the way of anything.
However… Over the years since 2006, I started to pack on a little here and a little there, and as I mentioned above, I got “comfortable” with it.
At first, I told myself “I’m not going to let myself get over 250” and before long, *poof* I was 250, and I thought to myself “ok, this isn’t a huge problem, but if I ever let myself get to 275, you gotta do something about it. And more time goes by, and *poof* I was 275.
It did not take me long to go from 200 to 250. In fact, I saw in my first year of my new job, I gained just that.
I managed for the next several years to keep my weight around 250, but in the last couple it started to creep back up. Eventually I was 260, then 270.
At the start of 2011, I was around 270 lbs. And 2011 ended up being a very hectic year, and I spent very little time outdoors doing any kind of activity. So needless to say, when my physical came around at the end of February this last year (2012), I was not shocked to see I was 296 lbs, but I was rather disappointed in myself.
I finally hit a weight I was “not” comfortable with.
I’m not sure what it was about being nearly 300 lbs that finally made it click in my head that I was not comfortable with my weight, I’m not sure why all of a sudden even 250, or 225 seemed to be comfortable weights. All I know is, I came home, I started to think about how I was going to fix it.
I’m lucky in one aspect of weight loss. I don’t mind activity. In fact, probably what drove me most, was that I love being outdoors (obviously) and my weight really was starting to affect my enjoyment outdoors.
Even in January, when I was going prospecting with Don, I was getting so easily winded just trying to carry material and do a little hiking, that I was having to stop what seemed like every 10 feet to catch my breath.
I knew that had to change if I was planning on doing any backpacking or hiking this year, and so I set out to change it.
I won’t get into the details of what I did. I will say I made only 2 changes. I increased my activity, trying to have at least 30 minutes of activity a day, whether it was push-ups/sit-ups, or a walk, and I reduced my calorie intake. I did not really change “what” I ate, just how I ate it (portions).
So at the start of March, I was at 296 lbs, and getting under 200 seemed like a long ways to go. In fact I set my expectations as such.
I wanted to be 250 by my birthday, which is at the end of July.
I wanted to be “near” 200 by the end of the year, and then I would work on getting that last 25 or so lbs off by summer of 2013.
What really happened was I hit my 250 goal 2 months early. I had lost nearly 50 lbs at this point just by slight changes in my diet, and increasing my activity. I had my daily walk, I was walking to the store, and every Saturday I’d bike about 30 miles, and on Sunday’s I’d take a hike anywhere from 5 to 10 miles in length.
By this time, I started to mix in a little jogging with my afternoon walk. Originally it started with jogging down the first hill. I found this was actually a good way to get my body used to moving a bit faster again, as gravity assisted a great deal.
Then it was jogging the first mile of my walk, then jogging the first mile and the last half quarter-mile (up hill).
Eventually I started to jog the entire length of my walk, which is nearly 5 miles (4.8) which was taking about 45 minutes. By this point, I set a new goal, I would run a 5k by the end of the year.
Then I worked on picking up the pace, and eventually I had my 4.8 mile route down to around 32 minutes.
At the same time, I was increasing my riding distance on the weekends. I was going 40 miles, then 50 miles, eventually doing over 70 miles.
With hiking, I no longer looked for the flattest hikes, but welcomed challenges. I started to hike with a buddy of mine, Zach, and doing 20+ miles of hiking with several thousand feet of elevation no longer seemed impossible for me.
By the time September rolled around, I had been back at mountain biking again, something I did often when I lived in Oregon, and through this I started mountain biking with my old WMRRA mentor, Mike.
It would be through Mike that I would find out about Cyclocross, a biking sport I never knew existed until then, and after watching a YouTube clip, went out and bought a bike. I watched the season opener for one of our local series put on by MFG, and the next weekend I raced the season opener for Seattle CX.
It was through Mike, and Cyclocross that I would end up meeting Kyle and his wife Mac, owners of Mr. Crampy’s in Redmond.
And through Mr. Crampy’s I would meet several new people who have become amazing friends.
I would finish my Cyclocross season off with racing all the remaining MFG races and racing all of the Seattle CX series.
I finally found something, that I had lost several years ago. I found the drive to keep going, to actually achieve a goal, to complete it, and to feel good about it and not feel bad about wanting something for myself.
I look forward to 2013. I look forward to getting back out there and competing, and although I’ve enjoyed the competition of motorized sport in the last decade, I’m looking forward to physical competition again, and knowing that it really is just me against me, and that makes me smile.
Here’s a few pictures from the year.