I was debating with myself on how to proceed. I think it's important to understand where I came from in regards to my weight and self perception.
I have always been big. Not obese or fat, at least not my entire life. In high school I was about six feet tall and estimated that I weighed ten pound for every year I was alive. At 16 I weighed 160, at 18 I was 180. When I was about 24 I weighed roughly 240 lbs, at that point I couldn't hide behind my large frame any more. I was fat. So I decided to make a change, go to the gym and go about the bodybuilder Muscle and Fitness route. I joined a gym and ate loads of protein, 1 gram per every pound of bodyweight per day every day. So much chicken breast and protein powder... I had no idea what I was doing.
What I found was that I did indeed lose weight, I came down to 215 lbs and couldn't get any lower. No matter how hard I dieted or worked out. I did get big and strong though. From that day forward I had a prevalent belief;
I can't get below 200 lbs.
No can do, I tried time and time again. Here is a pic of me on a photo shoot with my band, Intercept.
This is after two weeks of the master cleanse. You know that lemonade/cayanne pepper/maple syrup thing? I was about 208 lbs. I shot up to 215 again in no time. Here's a pic from my wedding day.
This is after two months of a fairly strict pescatarian diet. Mostly fruits and vegetables with only fish and seafood as an animal protein. No chicken, beef or pork. It was difficult to even get to these weights for even these occasions where I HAD to look good. So in a state of homeostasis where I'm comfortable I would always be well over 200. It was a nice round number for my nice round belly.
This was my core belief and my perception of what it was to be healthy.
Rick would soon challenge that core belief and change it forever. The first day we talked about his plan I asked him, "Are you a personal trainer?"
Rick laughed, "No, I'm not a personal trainer. I'm just a guy who did research and found out how the human body works."
Fair enough. What I found out about Rick was that he had an infectious belief in himself and what he believed in. When you heard him speak it got you wrapped up in his thoughts and ideas. Intelligent and charismatic are the first words that came to mind. It's a good thing he didn't lead a cult, he could make a true believer (either for the benefit or detriment) out of many people.
The first week was about self-perception. What are our health goals? Why don't we achieve our goals? What stories do we tell ourselves that limit what we are capable of? Rick asked me, "How much do you weigh?"
"I'm about 212 pounds right now." I was kinda proud of that.
"Okay, let's see..." Rick did some calculations on the dry erase board. "Let's say that you have a high amount of muscle mass. Roughly One hundred and sixty pounds of lean tissue." He wrote more data on the board. "A good goal to have is ten percent bodyfat. Any less is bad for you and any more is uneccessary extra weight. Ten percent of One sixty is sixteen pounds. So to achieve your goal weight you would have to reach roughly one hundred and seventy five pounds."
I shook my head from left to right. I was in disbelief.
Rick said "Don't shake your head 'no'. You can do it."
37 pounds. 3-7. No way.
I later came to realize that the 200 pound limit was a self-imposed limitation. There was no logical reason I couldn't weigh less. I wasn't 200 lbs of lean muscle tissue like some competitive bodybuilder. I still had significant weight to lose and I knew it all along. I had never been lean and athletic looking. Being lean was not part of my self perception. Rick began to change what I thought I could look like.
Rick asked me, "Who would you like to look like? Who has a physique you admire?"
I answer instantly, "Frank Zane". When I was reading Muscle and Fitness magazines, he always had the classic physique that I admired. I thought that he was proportionally the most asthetic looking human that I had ever seen. Rick wasn't familiar with him so I looked up this photo on my laptop.
Rick smiled, "You could look like that, or come close. Just listen to me."
I didn't believe him...