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Getting Fit: The Story So Far….


November 2022 – After a regular annual exam, my bloodwork came back funky, and I undergo several months of bloodwork and ultrasounds to determine how progressive my non-alcoholic fatty liver disease was.

January 2023 – Testing is complete and it’s a best-case scenario. No cirrhosis and I need to lose 10% of my bodyweight and start exercising.

March 2023 – I begin counting calories and exercising.

For some reason, I’ve been keeping my fitness/dieting posts exiled to a subdomain blog, and I realize that is a bit ridiculous. Not only is it making my life more difficult, but it’s also encouraging me to fall back into a bad habit of restricting certain topics to specific blogs. I feel good about Brandon Writes, and deep down I’m insecure that some super low-quality post about my attempt at finding the best tasting overnight oat recipe is going to ruin my blog. Yeah… I don’t know why I think that way. This is a personal blog, it’s supposed to be about personal things, no matter how mundane. Heck, I just wrote about what I liked about blogs a week ago, and it’s quite hypocritical of me to not create the type of blog I want to read.

In my defense, it originally was designed just for my own personal notes, but it’s grown a bit in content and it’s time to shift that over here. So, I’m importing my posts and from now on you’ll see a bit more fitness/diet content.

On with the story…

I was a skinny kid until the age of seven. That’s when my parents divorced, and a mixture of lack of money, stress, bad food habits, and instability caused me to begin to gain weight. I’ll never forget my father telling me I was fat when I was eight years old, and emotionally destroying me.

My weight was an issue until I turned nineteen. I bought a Mazda Miata and realized that it was going to be difficult to get in and out of if I didn’t lose some weight. If I remember correctly, I was around 240 lbs. When all was said and done, I was 150 lbs.

Things went well for a while, but then I started dating and my relationship with the gym was strained. It was only made worse after I experienced my first hemorrhoids from overtraining. Then I got kicked out of my home and a whole new stress cycle began. I fell out of my routine and back in survival mode, and I packed the pounds back on.

I’d dabble with weight loss here and there, but nothing more than ten or fifteen pounds, until I found myself at an all-time high of 260 lbs. back in 2018. I began counting calories that year, and in a year or so I was down to 170 lbs.

Then COVID struck, my wife was laid off, and we lost our apartment. As the stress mounted, I relied on my old comfort food, and slowly I began to pack the weight back on. I’d already put on thirty pounds prior to COVID due to my own lack of self-discipline, but COVID gave me the bump to pack on an extra forty-five pounds.

I weighed in at my November 2022 doctor’s appointment at 243 lbs. I wasn’t too concerned, despite dealing with back problems and finding myself out of breath on the stairs. But then I got my bloodwork results back and my liver enzymes were high. Several tests later, I found out I had non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. And then I spent two months seeing how bad it truly was. It’s a reversible condition, but if it goes untreated it can turn into liver cancer. There was concern that mine may have already begun cirrhosis.

Thankfully, things came back okay (besides the fatty liver diagnosis), and I got a reality check. I’d spent a month wondering if it was my final Christmas on this Earth. I realized that my neglect had real world consequences, even more so as I approached forty.

It took me a while to slowly begin implementing changes, but I did. I started off by adding a walk during one of my work breaks. Then I bought a dumbbell and began doing some minor exercises. Then came a punching bag and stretching. Finally, a bodyweight fitness routine, and plans to buy a weight bench.

I began counting calories again and trying to find affordable ways to eat clean and drop weight. I want to feel better. No, I NEED to feel better. I just can’t keep going on this way. There are too many aches and pains.

I need to rebuild myself and to help stay focused, I need to write. I need to lean into all the things I’m trying to do to be better physically and mentally.

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