Now that things have for the most part slowed down at work, I can return to writing in this blog.
I had written in a previous post that it was sometime in March when I visually saw for the first time that my body was changing.
Sure, by then I had already tightened my belt a notch or two, but I never paid much attention to what my body actually looked like.
I happened to catch out of the corner of my eye my profile reflecting back at me in my bedroom mirror.
It confirmed what the extra notch on my belt had suggested, I was getting thinner.
I mean “thin” in the relative sense. Sure, I am far from being what most would consider thin, but compared to where I was in March 2015 and again in January when I started this New Me Journey, I am thin.
That March day, when I saw myself in the mirror, it also validated what the scale was telling me.
I was getting thinner.
It was the first visible clue that my work at the gym and dieting was paying off.
But then other smaller clues started to reveal themselves.
My hands, for one, became more defined. This was noticeable as the veins started to show through, as well as the tendons. As someone who essentially types for a living, it wasn’t difficult for me to see the small changes in my hands.
Moving up to my wrists, I had to tighten my fitbit a few notches. On my other wrist I have a few rubber bracelets that became much looser. Sometimes I would wake up in the morning and find my bracelets pretty far up my forearm, as they shifted during my tossing and turning at night.
Moving closer to my shoulders, my biceps were losing their circumference. Not in a bad way because my muscles were getting smaller, but because the fat around them was going away. My triceps have also become more noticeable, and there are slight signs of the contour of my upper arms.
Moving to my chest, my collar bones are starting to show and I don’t recall being able to see them, at least like you can in “skinny” people.
Occasionally, someone will snap a picture of me and I’ll noticed my face looking a lot thinner than it did six months ago, a year ago or a number of years ago.
But I have noticed on my own, looking in the mirror every day, exactly how much thinner my face is. Sometimes it is hard to tell because my beard is getting so long — I haven’t trimmed it since I started this journey Jan. 1.
I’m at an impasse with my beard, too. Almost daily, I hate it and love it. I want to keep growing it, but at the same time I am curious as to what I look like with it trimmed, because since I’ve lost all this weight — as of Tuesday I had lost 45 pounds in slightly more than five months — I haven’t touched it. I bet my face is a lot thinner!
Another physical change that has been the most noticeable is my legs. I have always had thick, muscular legs. My calves, for example, have been defined despite how big I was. As I’m losing weight and shedding fat, they are becoming more and more cut, which I didn’t think could be possible.
And it’s fun to see the reaction of the high school kids when they notice my how big my calves are. They’re generally in awe.
In addition to my calves becoming more defined, my thighs have as well, more specifically my quads. They are not as thick — I’ve noticed when I’m sitting on the couch watching TV — and have more definition to them.
One year to the next
I’ve been fortunate to have been able to cover the Fort Recovery High School baseball team each of the last two years as it played in the state semifinal in Columbus, Ohio.
Last season, one of the player’s parents snapped a picture of me in the dugout at Huntington Park. I cannot tell you how much I weighed at that point but I would imagine it to be around 280. Here is that picture.
My face, for example, is thick. As are my upper arms, and I fill out that shirt in the chest and abdomen area. (That shirt is a lot looser now. I will save that topic for another post.)
Then last weekend, I was back with the Indians in Columbus for the state semifinal, and a different person associated with the baseball team took a picture of me pregame. My comment, “I look a hell of a lot better in that dugout than I did a year ago.” Here is that picture.
On a slightly related note, I use the TimeHop app, and it has been sort of depressing lately. It’s bringing up pictures I posted on that respective day from when I was in college and much, much bigger. It is upsetting to know that I let myself get that way, when all I had to do was simply eat better and be more active!
Before, and after
Amidst becoming a new me, shedding some weight and being healthier, I do have one regret.
I never took a ‘before’ picture.
I don’t have visual proof of exactly what I looked like when I started in order fully depict where I came from and where I will end up.
I think I may still have the ‘before’ pictures from when I did the Seung-Ni Body Challenge in 2012, but I am not totally certain.
It would be nice to have a ‘before’ to compare, but instead I just have a few pictures of myself fully clothed with which to gauge progress.
Maybe I’ll have to start taking more selfies.
As this process continues, I’m sure there will be more and more parts of my body that will start changing and becoming more visible (muscles, veins, tendons, [abs???}), and that will only add to how great I have been feeling lately.
I’m inching closer to my first goal, and when it is reached I’ll have to set new goals. Those will be detailed later, hopefully in due time. But first, I have to keep going.
Lots more work to go.
Thanks for stopping by.
Until next time …