Disclaimer: This post somewhat contradicts my earlier post about how much I love food. But people flip-flop. Just go read about politicians in the news if you don’t believe me.
I’m not a big person. Although I currently stand at 6’3″ and 205 lbs., I have always seen myself as skinny. This self-perception has most likely come through the years growing up. There was my doctor who would routinely ask me if I was getting enough to eat, the lunch ladies in elementary school who would encourage me to take the largest brownie, and my friend’s dad who always referred to me as the lanky one.
When I left to the Philippines for two years, I weighed 185 lbs. I discovered that, unless I went to the only pizza place in the area, I never felt completely full. Rice & lard just wasn’t enough. By the end of those two years and a combination of worms (take your pills), parasites (don’t drink the water), dengue fever, and 90% humidity-induced sweating, I weighed in at barely 155 pounds.
In some ways, I should consider myself fortunate. My metabolism is much too fast, so I lose weight faster than I can gain it and can eat whatever I want. Most people just roll their eyes when I tell them of my struggle to gain weight (#thestruggleisreal). Most dieting programs are geared towards helping people lose weight, or even maintaining it. Why would anyone in their right mind want to gain weight?! My work with Intermountain Healthcare rewards its employees who live healthy. Bonuses are awarded for those who lose, or at the least, maintain their weight. But there is no reward for employees who gain weight (most likely for obvious reasons).
When I began attempting to gain weight, I wasn’t sure how to do it (correctly). A woman I worked with told me about the “milk diet” she put her sons on (her sons are Tongan and apparently it’s taboo to be a skinny Tongan). I decided to give it a shot and proceeded to drink a gallon of whole milk every day for the next 30 days. By the end, on top of hating myself, cows, and their product, I had put on 15 lbs. and did a decent job hiding the fact that it all went to the same place (not the badonkadonk).
The next method I tried came to me while perusing through a Men’s Health magazine. I was reading about the diet/exercises Hugh Jackman did to gain weight for his wolverine role. The only part I took away was “6,000 calorie diet . . . gained 20 lbs. of muscle.” I obviously don’t think these things through very well. Over the next month-and-a-half. and bags of chicken, bowls of granola, and cartons of Costco muffins (poppy seed) later, I ONLY put on ten more pounds.
Within a few more years, I’m where I’m at now – Just with a few more unhealthly habits. I eat until I’m full – whether that takes 2nds, 3rds, or 5ths. If I don’t have anything ready to eat, I’ll settle for unhealthy snacks (I go to the kitchen expecting to find food, but only find ingredients). I will commonly eat directly from the bag/container, preventing me from knowing just how much I am eating (at least until the bag is empty, then I know I ate the whole thing).
I came to the conclusion (albeit a long time ago), that proper dieting, along with exercising, need to go together. So instead of copping out and waiting until New Year’s to begin exercising (everyone knows that’s a bunch of crap), I’ve decided to begin a proper routine with both parts.
As cliche’ as it sounds, I’ve started doing P90X. As much as I hate Tony Horton’s commentary, I must say that even after three weeks of intense workouts, strict dieting, and sore muscles, I feel fantastic (I will never use the word swoll, nor should anyone else). I have made a few adjustments to the diet however. For instance, swordfish is on their fixed menu for tonight. Has anyone ever tried swordfish who wasn’t on a cruise? I also can’t bring myself to eat kale, or eat Quinoa (I’m not a hipster or a hippie, I’m an adult).
I have never been one to post casual selfies. People don’t need pictures of you. If they really love you, they’ll remember what you look like. But I will post some titillating, unrendered, #nofilter, before-and-after pictures at the end of 90 days. You can be the judge of whether the program works or if I just wasted my time and money eating swordfish and quinoa. I gotta stop watching those late night ads.