My Weight Loss Journey

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Congratulations! That is just amazing! I know I should loose a few lbs. But Damn so little willpower. At least I changed my (our) eating habits. Much more vegetables fruits fish. It's just awesome what you have accomplished!
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About 20+ years ago I lost the use of my right lung from a car accident. I was a normal weight until then. That accident began a weight gain journey that put me over 300lbs. At one official doctor’s scale I was at 305 but I was over that number for sure in the months before that weigh-in. In spite of “encouraging words” from my family I had pretty much given up on weight loss. I was never a fan of exercise or healthy eating. I like to eat pigs and cows and not the stuff they eat.

It’s too long to get into but I tried several different diets with limited success and lots of rebounds. I tried motivational books and videos always convinced my success was eventually going to be achieved. But I never found that inspiration.

A sober meeting with my pulmonologist explaining what “morbidly obese” meant was one of the things that got me started. Again, too much to get into but a little over a year ago I started eating one meal a day and counting calories. I’ve talked about it a little on this forum in the past. With my pulmonologist I set a goal of losing enough weight in a year to move me from “morbidly obese” to “normal.” This was going to be a big 60th birthday gift to myself.

Trying to keep this short I’ll jump to the end. I lost 130 lbs. I did it by eating 1500 calories or less every day. I hiked an average of 6.5 miles a day but I had to build up to that. And, when I was in a big plateau, I added swimming about 2100-2500 yards 4-6 times a week to my fitness routine.

I’ve talked about it in the past on this forum but I’ve never shown you pictures of the results. I know we don’t often show ourselves as I’d rather see brisket or anything Robert is cooking than some old guy sitting in a lawn chair sipping Marker’s Mark next to a smoker.

I’m doing this not for kudos but to encourage you. Maybe you made a resolution this year to finally drop some pounds and you’re loosing your mojo. I know it’s a cliche but seriously, if I can do this you can, too. There’s nothing special about me. I was freaking huge and always tired and I loved sitting. I had a million reasons to not start. Exercise and one functional lung don’t mix.

So here it goes. Sorry this isn’t brisket or bacon. Haha. Just some old guy.

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Here I am enjoying an extra dirty martini. I’m over 300 lbs at this point.

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I think I’m the one on the left but it’s hard to tell. We have the same number of chins.

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And here I am in my wetsuit, something I never thought in a million years I would ever fit into. I swim outdoors in the winter and I hate the cold now, thus the wetsuit.

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And here’s a comparison shot one of my daughters made using the martini man picture.

I still smoke and eat meat but a lot less. I’m an expert at chicken breasts and shrimp now. I give away a lot of stuff I make so I won’t eat it all. I have a newfound love of grilled veggies and salads. I also don’t drink my calories.

Questions? Ask away. I’m an open book. And now you’ve seen me in a wetsuit so there’s not much left to hide. I thought that was better than one of those shirtless shots in front of a gas station bathroom mirror.

LOOK AT YOU, MR THIN-N-FIT!!! :emoji_clap:
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WOW, that is amazing. I lost 74 lbs last yr, and it's NEVER coming back... And I feel so much better about myself.
Good job skinny!!!:emoji_thumbsup:
I know the resolve of it never coming back. It’s so much hard work that now it’s worth the effort maintaining that to have to do that weight loss thing all over again. Congrats on the 74 lbs. that’s amazing.
I fully appreciate how hard that battle is. And it never ends. Quitting smoking cigarettes 25 years ago was a tough go, but it got easier every day until the cravings completely left. The battle with weight never goes away. It takes a complete change in life style.

Congrats on winning that war.
Some days it feels like a war of wills. But you’re right, you get used to it and then even sort of embrace it. Our entire pantry changed along with many other things. And you’re right, it is a lifestyle change, more so than I thought.
Strong work and congrats. The most effective thing(s) for my weight loss was cutting out most all sugar, greatly reducing carbs, and trying to cut out one meal per day. I always exercised and that alone did little for weight loss, just kept me from from gaining too fast. 1500 cals/day seems about right for a maintenance plan.
As I talk with others who’ve done this a common pattern is folks finding their own way, learning to listen to their bodies, and doing what feels right for them. And, it really doesn’t matter what you eat it’s just eating less and being more active, consistently.
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Congrats! Great work and it's paid off. As a fellow sufferer with a lifetime of weight issues. 2 years ago the Mrs. and I started Weight Watchers for the 3rd time in 25 years. Within 10 months I was down 55 lbs and she was down 40, I even got rid of my "Fat" clothes, I was so sure this time would be a keeper. Flash forward to now, I've gained back 45 and she gained back 35. Typical of both of both of us. We're both over 60 now, me 61, she 60. It's so difficult to get back on it as we are each others' worst enemies regarding food. The weight goes back on very fast. So we're rebooting and starting from scratch once again. I cannot walk as much as I should because of Arthritis in my hip and lower back. Oh we both still smoke Cigs as well. We both know how pathetic we are but hoping this reboot will work. You're an inspiration. I'll update as we go. Thank you for sharing this and hopefully motivating me to get back on it, and stay on it.
Thanks for sharing that. It is very hard. There’s no easy way to do it. Even though the ups and downs happen I’m glad to hear you keep attacking it. For me, the battle is fought in the grocery store. You can’t eat it if it’s not in the house. That’s not easy because I really miss Doritos! Go slow and think long term. It’s small changes that make big differences in the long run. I’m not out of the woods either. It’s a daily, sometimes hourly struggle.
Fantastic Sven, I remember reading your other posts a while back about your routine.

Good for you to stick to it and just do it. And you are a better man for doing it , as I bet your family is much happier knowing you will be around for a long time because of you amazing weight loose. And probably a better mind set also.

Now on something you also said, you give a lot of the foods away

Will add my address below, lol

Good on you and your family Sven

My family is elated. I feel bad because I missed out on a lot of fun stuff as I was too big to walk/hike far and my knees and back took a beating. I keep apologizing to them and I think they’re tired of hearing it. But it’s fun hiking with them and I got to swim at the Olympic Center in Montreal recently with my son-in-law which is something that was never on the radar for me. They also don’t recognize me in a crowd anymore as they’ve been trained to look for the big guy.
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That's where I'm at. I'm not full blown keto, just low carb.

I do the intermittent fasting thing every other day by skipping breakfast. I tried it every day but had some trouble with dizziness when bending down and standing back up. I'm sure it was from low blood sugar and/or not enough food. It goes away when I eat three meals a day.

And weather permitting, I ride a bicycle. Best exercise I've found for my age. I started 8 years ago at age 62. Its easy on the joints and gives the heart a good work out.
I envy you with the bike riding. I live in Sonoma County which is a premier area for riding. I destroyed my back carrying all that weight for years and I can’t take the bending over. I’ve thought about a recumbent bike though. We’ll see. Maybe someday.
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Congrats! That's a lot of hard work! Ive always had to keep my weight down for the Marines and stay in good shape, but after my last weigh in and fitness test Ive gained a ton of weight. Ill have to be digging in deep soon myself to get back to "fighting weight"

Good inspiration, thank you for sharing! Well, I could have done without the wetsuit picture, LoL! But, it could have been worse!!
My daughters kept telling me I needed to take those full on bare belly shots for a comparison. I figured enough of those exist for folks to understand what happens. The wetsuit is as far as I’ll go.
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That's awesome and congratulations.
I just recently started one meal a day to lose some weight. At least 50 pounds.
Had a small stroke 2 years ago and had to quit 🚬. I replaced it by smoking on my grills which worked but I've packed on the pounds.
Can you tell me more about your chicken breast and shrimp? I've been using thighs cause my breast are not that good.
My trick with the breasts is starting with a dry rub/brine. I get the giant boneless-skinless frozen bags at Costco. I let them that in the fridge a couple days. Then I grab a medium cambro (container) and I coat them with Tajin and chicken salt. Too much Tajin and they get too tangy. It’s a medium to light coating of both. I layer them on top of each other really packing them in. That goes into the fridge for 24-36 hours. That seems to be the sweet spot for me.

I smoke them in my Yoder at 225 but I check on them frequently. I’m shooting for an IT of 140-145. Above that and they dry out really fast. I drop the temp on the smoker to as low as it goes and I hold that temp for an hour or so. If I don’t have the time I will vacuum seal them and put them in the Sous Vide for 2 hours at 140.

I’ve gotten good enough I don’t need my thermapen anymore and can get them right by feel. When one is done I pull it and keep cooking the rest. They turn out unbelievably moist and tender. I slice them up into small bite-sized chunks to put on the salads or in a can of black beans. That’s my meal most nights but I do a variety of stuff to keep my diet balanced.

On the advice of my nutritionist I also take 500 mg of calcium +Vit D twice a day. Your body can’t absorb more than 500 mg at a time and that takes 12 hours do anything more isn’t used. Cheese is something that made me fat so getting calcium was super important for me.
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What a transition! At the risk of repeating, but it's so true; you have achieved a major feat and are a true inspiration for others! Thank you so much for sharing.

I, too would like to hear more about your recipes and methods for cooking chicken and vegetables. When that is a major staple, I'm sure you have found ways to truly spice it up! - Kim
I just replied to Jim about the chicken. Shrimp is easy because it cooks very fast. I grill/smoke without using any oil or spray oil. I don’t miss it. I also use a rub on the shrimp and let them marinate in it overnight. I cook them on a skewer until the pink starts to appear and then take them off the skewer and put them all into a bowl and let the residual heat cook them through.
They say nothing of note really happens in your life.....until you make a decision. Well, that Doctor's visit where he explained what morbidly obese made a decision. Congratulations on the success of your journey!
My doctor made me understand that “morbidly” wasn’t a word of embellishment but rather a descriptor, and meant “you are going to die early because of a complication from your weight.”

For whatever reason, that clicked with me and the decision was made.
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I couldn’t gain weight all my high school and college years. My other nickname was Bones. In fact, twice I was called into the principal’s office because some of my teachers thought my parents were not feeding me. I’m a farm kid. We raised beef. We had an acre veggie garden and an acre for potatoes. 5 rows of the cornfield were always sweet corn for us (and the deer and raccoons). Once I lost that lung I lost that nickname.
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That's amazing, Sven. Big CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!
You lost just a bit more than the equivalent of me. :emoji_confounded: :emoji_laughing:
My problem has always been the opposite--for 74 years, no matter what I try, I can't gain a pound. Guess I'll just always be a Scawny Old Man.
Hopefully, from now on, I’ll also be a scrawny old man. Haha!
I just replied to Jim about the chicken. Shrimp is easy because it cooks very fast. I grill/smoke without using any oil or spray oil. I don’t miss it. I also use a rub on the shrimp and let them marinate in it overnight. I cook them on a skewer until the pink starts to appear and then take them off the skewer and put them all into a bowl and let the residual heat cook them through.
Thank you, Sven!
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Congratulations! That is just amazing! I know I should loose a few lbs. But Damn so little willpower. At least I changed my (our) eating habits. Much more vegetables fruits fish. It's just awesome what you have accomplished!
Go slow, make small changes, think very long term. Your body may surprise you and kick in to more loss than expected.
Anybody that can go through this minus a lung has my deepest respect. Congrats on your accomplishments.
I used that lung as an excuse for too long. It’s not easy but I keep plugging away. I guess that’s why we have 2 lungs instead of one. is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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