Written by Colby Lair of Nevada, TX
Where do I start? Really, that’s what I wondered when I decided that I had to do something to get myself back on track to a healthier lifestyle. As a young kid, I never had to worry about what I ate or how much I exercised. I was an athlete in school and I was fit. Over the years, work, injuries, and raising children helped to change my status from ex-athlete to out-of-shape! Prior to back surgery in 1992, I weighed in at a slim 195 lbs. This January 2008, I was tipping the scales at 279! My doctor said I had to improve my health as my blood pressure was too high (meds needed) and my triglycerides were at 1200! That was the turning point for me. Well, that and a bet I had with my brother. My sister is getting married July 19 and her wedding is going to be a real big deal. My brother and I decided to challenge each other so we could get in shape for the occasion and make our sister proud. So, on January 3 this year I began my journey. I geared myself up for making 2008 the year for me to “Just Do It.” I think having deadlines and goals really helped me to get things started and my support system was really very important and I had all that lined up too.
My biggest food challenges had to be elminated and replaced with healthier foods. The food traps for me were the big traditional breakfast, eating out on weekends, snacking late at night, bologna, and hot dogs! Now, I eat fruit for breakfast and snacks and raw vegetables, too! I eat more whole grain goods, and I’ve added a lot of water to my daily diet. I take leftovers for lunch so I’m not tempted to run grab soemthing fast and fattening. I do eat out on the weekends but I limit my portions. If I have to eat fried catfish, and I do love that, I eat one or two fillets compared to the 5-8 I would have eaten before. Moderation is a good key to success.
My support system consisted of my doctor, my wife Karen, my brother, some of my co-workers/ workout partners, and the TWO/Health Aware staff. When I first began working out at the TWO, Sally Jo put me on the elliptical and said, “Go!” The staff began to encourage me to try classes and I joined the Cross Fit class with Mary on her first day and I’ve been there since then. That’s a tough class, but one that will really make a huge difference in your body. I have picked up Gail’s step toning class and Julie’s advanced step class as well and in between I do about an hour on the elliptical and do weights a few times a week. I know this seems like a lot, and it is now, but I didn’t start here, I worked up to it. The classes really helped to change up your routine, as well as the programs offered at the TWO. I competed in the Fitness Olympics this Spring and did surprisingly well. That would not have been the case a year ago. I’ve also adopted workout buddies or they’ve adopted me and that’s been great.
As of today I weigh 220 lbs. That’s 59 lbs. lost in 5 months! My triglycerides are at 180! My blood pressure is 115/73. It’s amazing what this lifestyle change has done inside and out. My short-term goal is to reach 200 lbs. by July 19 for my sister’s wedding and of course beat my brother. My long-term goal is to stay fit, keep my weight around 200 lbs., and score 250 points on the next Fitness Olympics competition!
Note: Colby was a steady member in the CrossFit class at the TWO from the very first day - January 3rd. Even when squats were on the board, he came to class and put forth a tremendous effort! It wasn't easy, but he's accomplished an amazing lifestyle change. Great job, Colby!