My wake up call came when I decided to hike Mt. Monadnock in early October 2013 for a church fundraiser. I couldn’t even make it half way up the mountain. I was exhausted, in pain, out of breath, and embarrassed. Right there and then, I made the decision that I needed to lose weight. I decided to go on a calorie-counting diet, and when I lost enough weight I would join a gym. Calorie counting did not work, instead I felt hungry all the time. I decided to abandon the diet.
In late October, I went to Chicago for work-related training where I have family. I met up with my cousin Luis. In conversation, Luis mentioned Crossfit to me and told me to check it out. I said, “I will” but I didn’t right away until my doctor’s appointment was around the corner.
On December 2nd, I went to a doctor’s appointment where I received expected and unexpected news. I was overweight (no surprise there), diagnosed pre-diabetic, cholesterol was slightly high, and high blood pressure was an issue. In other words, my body was a mess. I was discouraged, but not defeated. I was determined to change my life. After my appointment, I walked into CrossFit Worcester and signed up.
Arial before starting the CFW on-ramp
During the CFW On-Ramp class, I learned about the Paleo diet. I researched the diet and asked many questions. I received material on a Paleo-eating plan from Luis. I started paleo right away and the weight started melting off. The rest is history.
In 11 months, I went from an enormous 230lbs down to 162lbs. I’ve gone from a waist size of 42 to a 32. My glucose level went from 135 mg/dl to under 100 mg/dl. No longer pre-diabetic. In previous check-ups, my blood pressure was 139/90 or more (perhaps it’s because the doctor made nervous). At my last check-up, it was a normal 122/81. For the first time, I was able to donate blood and my blood pressure was no longer a concern. Another issue was my cholesterol. Before Paleo, LDL cholesterol was slightly high (133 mg/dl) and HDL cholesterol was low (69 mg/dl). My total cholesterol was 202 mg/dl which was borderline high. Now it’s 185 mg/dl (LDL-84 mg/dl & HDL- 101mg/dl) under 200 mg/dl, but I will continue to work on my cholesterol. I need to get my LDL lower. LOL!
The best thing about Paleo is I did not have to keep track of my calories; I started to lose weight effortlessly, and developed a better relationship with food. I no longer consider Paleo a diet, but a way of living. Paleo and exercise have given me a new lease on life. I am healthy, leaner, stronger, and have more energy. I feel LIMITLESS.
11 Months and 68 pounds later
To finish up, I need to thank a few people. I want to thank Paul for having a nutritional program built into CFW On-Ramp class. I want to thank Luis for introducing me to Crossfit. I want to thank CFW trainers especially Zack, who has trained me from the on-ramp class to the present. I want to thank CFW 5:30AM class for being motivational, inspirational, and an enthusiastic bunch. I enjoy doing the WODs with them. I want to thank CFW Paleo challengers for their paleo recipes and continued support. You are the best motivators, and I have learned so much from all of you. Thanks again. I can’t wait to read/hear your amazing stories. Most of all, I want to thank God for giving me the strength I needed. Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” Thank you God.