The Less You See of Me The Better

Friday, October 19th, 2007, 4:54 pm

I’m fat.

I’ve been teased about my weight since I was in junior high…which is strange, because in junior high I was actually skinny, at least in comparison with today. Hell, I look at pictures of myself from college, when my friends said I was fat, and I look like a stick figure. Here’s a picture of me before I went to a formal with my then-girlfriend during my sophomore year:

Sorry the picture quality sucks…or maybe that’s a good thing. Gotta love those drapes. And yes, that’s a Robin Williams album off to the right. I went to college when vinyl was still in use. Beyond outfitting our nation’s dominatrices, that is.

Anyway, over the years I did what most people do–I put on weight. A few times during the last 15 years or so I’ve been able to shed quite a few pounds–about 25 in college, about 20 a few years after I graduated. But right about the time I started dating my ex-wife I started gaining a few pounds every year, and I wasn’t able to take them off. Well, be fair, I never tried too hard to take them off. And I didn’t try too hard not to put them on in the first place.

I like to eat. I like to drink. I enjoy good food and I enjoy eating and drinking with friends. It’s true I have a gut, but that gut is the product of many delightful days and nights indulging with friends. I like nothing better than eating wings and sipping suds with my buddies. Heck, I did that last night.

Which is all fine and good. Thing is, lately I haven’t been feeling all fine and good. I mentioned the other day that I hurt my back, and while that might not have been strictly weight-related, if I was in better shape I might not have ended up crippled for three days. But even though my back feels better, I’m starting to notice odd aches and pains that weren’t there before. I play volleyball a few nights a week, and the combination of my weight and my age is starting to catch up to me. Fast. My knees hurt. My feet hurt. I did something to my left hip about 10 years ago and every time I have to lift my leg more than twelve inches my hip reminds me that something’s amiss.

I’m not a total wreck, most days I feel OK. But, I have to say, most days I don’t look OK. In fact, I look pretty goddam awful. What really shook me was seeing some pictures people took of me down in Aruba. I look soft and sloppy and a mess. True, in some of them I was hot and sweaty and a little bit drunk, but even the pictures where I’m on the job and stone-cold sober…yuck. There’s a picture of me standing on the final-table stage…I know that my wide-screen monitor distorts the image a bit, but Jesus Christ. I look TERRIBLE. I mentioned before that I have a picture with me and Serinda Swan, who is a model and the spokesperson for Absolute Poker (hey, have they been in the news lately?). The reason I didn’t post it is that I think I have bigger boobs than Serinda. And as you can see here, Serinda’s not hurting in that department:

Yes, that’s Scott Ian from Anthrax on the left. I didn’t know I took this picture until I went through some folders today. It was a good party.

So, I’m fat. And that needs to change. Beyond the fact that those extra pounds are keeping me from playing sports as well as I might, and keeping me from being an irresistable babe-magnet…I’m closing in on 40. Fast. And as there’s a history of heart disease and diabetes in my family, I’m looking at some serious health issues if I don’t get my weight down.

If I lose weight, I’ll feel better both physically and mentally, I’ll reduce my chances of developing serious and scary diseases, I’ll be that much better on the court, and I’ll look fantabulous. So…why not lose the weight?

A question I’ve been asking myself for a few years now. Why haven’t I gone and lost the tonnage? I wish I could say that I tried and failed–in fact, I failed to even try. It’s not that I’m lazy, exactly. I think the problem for me is accepting the fact that this won’t happen overnight. If I want to lose, oh, 50 pounds, it might take me a year. A year of hard work and discipline and avoiding bad habits. I want to lose weight right now–having to wait weeks, months, years for significant improvement has always discouraged me.

To combat that, and to force myself to truly commit to shedding the blubber, I will post a weekly recap of my progress toward becoming a sleeker and slimmer me. I’ll look upon this as a writing challenge as well–I’m sure you’re not exactly gung-ho to read about how I’ve gone about cutting carbs from my diet. I’ll try to make my pain and suffering as entertaining as possible. Though you’ve always enjoyed reading about my pain and suffering in the past.

My plan for today was to drive to West Virginia and play in one of their new poker rooms. I think instead I’m gonna go to the gym, do some cardio, and save that trip for next week. A journey of a thousand ounces begins with a single step, as the saying goes. Time to take that first one.

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2 Responses to “The Less You See of Me The Better”

  1. AgSweep Says:

    I suppose this means I shouldn’t bring you cookies at next year’s WSOP? Sigh…. Seriously, best of luck in your new endeavor.

  2. AmyC Says:

    One bitch I have (I actually have quite a few at this point) with passing the 30 year mark is that you have to work to keep metabolism as a friend. Writing and poker playing means more butt time than most post-30s can afford. I can’t seem to do the gym thing past that first month. Instead I walk two miles a day. It also works as good planning time for writing.

    Best of luck – and my money is on you.

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