“You’ve lost a lot of weight,” he told me as we settled into our lawn chairs. “You’re looking great, man.”
When he asked what I do for a living, it made me very happy. I’ve seen him at our sons’ lacrosse games, but I didn’t know if he’d been following my weight-loss journey on Twitter or had seen my TV interview about my health overhaul.
Why does that matter?
It’s exciting for me that someone noticed my weight loss even though we don’t know each other well and he hadn’t been reading about my cauliflower and spinach crusts or seeing photos of me holding bags of sugar to represent pounds lost.
In the health community, that’s known as an NSV, short for Non-Scale Victory.
Don’t get me wrong. I love getting compliments from people I know or who know that I’m trying hard to shed fat and gain health. It’s just fun that it’s noticeable to people who don’t know they should be checking me out to see how my body is shrinking.
I used to be lousy at receiving compliments even though I enjoyed getting them.
“Hey, have you lost weight?”
“Yeah, but I still have the equivalent of a baby elephant to lose.”
It was a bad habit to be self-deprecating, especially when somebody else was being kind. I find that friendly compliments often lead to enjoyable conversations about health now, too. I’m loving it (in a non-McDonald’s kind of way, of course).
Maybe my self-confidence (not arrogance) has increased so much that I no longer feel that insecure about where I’m at, so it’s easier to simply say something like, “Thank you! It’s a great start!”
That reminds me of the famous saying that used to hang on the wall of my grandparents’ house, “JODY, STAY OUT OF THE FRIDGE!” Oh yeah, and the other one: “Today is the first day of the rest of my life.”
I’m 45 years old, and thanks to this resurgence of resolve and hope, I truly feel like I’m getting a new start at life. I gloat about it so much that it’s become cliche, but I truly love the optimal health program I’m on. I love my increased energy, drive and passion for improving. I love knowing that I’ll continue to succeed as long as I stick to the plan, which includes eating six nutritionally balanced meals a day and keeping myself hydrated. I love that I can tie my shoes without feeling like I’m running a 5K. I love that other simple daily tasks — from walking upstairs, to using the restroom and just moving around — don’t make me miserable anymore.
Last week, I wrote about how excited I am about going on amusement park rides with my kids, but there’s something else that I’m looking forward to as well.
Next month, I’ll go on my first flight (to Austin, Texas, with my wife) since the Utah Jazz season ended in mid-April. Instead of getting the flight attendant’s attention at the front of the plane and jokingly asking for a “More of Me to Love Belt,” I plan on simply walking to my seat, sitting down and buckling up with the seatbelt that’s provided.
I’m envisioning that moment, and it feels as good as a thoughtful compliment. I’m not sure if I’ll be comfortable in the airplane seat, but at least I won’t be as miserable. That’s my kind of fresh start.
- Starting weight (March 6): 373.7 pounds
- Last week’s weight (June 17): 311.0 pounds
- This week’s weight (June 24): 308.1 pounds
- This week’s loss: 2.9 pounds
- Total loss: 65.6 pounds