I have had a strong relationship with food as far back as I can remember. My mom worked full time as I was growing up and wasn’t much of a cook at the time. My dad was rarely around and we didn’t have much money. I remember getting excited based on the school lunch menu. (Pizza and spaghetti were my favorites.) After school I was pretty much on my own. I wasn’t what you would call fat, but I did have a very high percentage of body fat as early as age 5 or 6. Compared to kids today I was fairly active playing in the neighborhood, riding my bike, etc. However, my diet consisted of hot dogs, bags of chips, candy and frozen dinners. No wonder I was the kid who never took his shirt off at the pool.
This carried on for years. It wasn’t until I was 14 that I chose to want to lose weight and look more like the kids at school I envied. I was in 8th grade and wanted to play football. When I tried out, I was told I needed to lose weight – 25 pounds to be exact in order to play with kids my own age. There was no way I could play with the older boys, they would have crushed me. I had eight weeks to lose the weight. So my mission began. I had no advice, no reading material, no guidance whatsoever. My diet consisted of carrots, crackers, celery, cottage cheese and water. I’m sure I ate a few other things, but all I recall is how hungry I was. By sheer determination, I had lost 25 lbs on the dot the day of the weigh-in . My mom was worried the entire time that I might be causing harm to myself. The real harm was my eating habits prior to my starvation dieting. The value proposition that came through that experience is even at 14 I found that if I put my mind to it I could accomplish anything I set out to do including starving to reach a goal.
From that point forward I didn’t live on carrot sticks and cottage cheese but realized the correlation between food and fat gain.
When I was 15 we moved to Texas. At 16 I took a bus 30 minutes each way to sweep out an old gym three times a week in downtown Dallas just so I could work out there. By 17 I was working 20 hours a week my senior year in high school at a local health club. It was in my blood. While other kids were studying at the library I was reading anything and everything I could get my hands on about nutrition, bodybuilding and exercise. At 19 I was a manager at the health club, and a year later I started my own personal training business. Now it’s 35 years later and I’m still learning new things daily, and the biggest lesson is to be open-minded both about training and nutrition. I’m 54 now, and I can tell you it takes as long as it takes. It took me 48 years to be comfortable with my shirt off at the pool.
I think when I do seminars, anyone who has ever struggled with any type of weight control often says, “he understands me and what I’ve been going through my entire life.” There is a good reason for that. I am no different than you. I’ve lived it for decades. I’ve also devoted my life to a new way, a better way than starvation diets of carrot sticks and cottage cheese. I’m here for you. Follow me to achieving results you never thought possible, and more importantly, to a healthier new you!