iA


So I discovered I’m kind of fat

by Andy Boyle.

This is no recent discovery. I found this out maybe in 9th or 10th grade. It’s no surprise, really — bigger people run in my family. I was about 6 feet tall when I was 13, so I was bound to only get bigger.

Sadly, I only grew two inches up and about 10 inches out. Awesome.

The good news is that cute girls have always liked me. Somehow. And I still made friends. So this is not completely a vanity-based issue. But I did encounter people throughout high school and college who obviously didn’t want me to be part of their clique because I wasn’t a Beautiful Person. And that’s fine. They were obviously worthless people, and I’m obviously totally rad.

That being said, it still hurt sometimes to know I was the biggest person in our group. I wasn’t the most out of shape. In college, I could always keep up in pick-up basketball and football games. But as I got older and older, it became harder and harder to find clothes that fit. Or clothes that fit in my I’ve-never-really-had-much-money-of-my-own budget.

I was about 250 when I graduated high school in 2004. I graduated college 310. Now I’m at 295, which shows what happens when $4.25 pitchers of beer aren’t within walkin distance of your apartment. But still, I’m huge compared to what I once was and I don’t like it. I want to look good in a suit, goddammit.

The last time I went to Macy’s to try and find some dress shirts, the super-skinny store clerk looked me up and down, making a disgusted face before commenting, “Um, you’re going to have to go to J.C. Penney’s. We are not a store that sells size 20 necks.” The 50-year-old, balding man’s comments would have hurt if I didn’t realize he was a 50-year-old balding man who is a Macy’s sales clerk.

J.C. Penney’s only had two dress shirts that fit me. In the entire big and tall section.

That was sort of a wake-up call that maybe I should do something. I’m about 6’2”, 295 pounds, according to the scale. Back in April I trained and ran a 5K. I dropped down to about 283 in a few months of running. I can do it again.

And I have to do it again, and then some. I’m too big. I’m always out of breath. I sweat a lot. This is embarrassing when you’re covering some event and your shirt looks like someone dumped water on you. It’s become a professional issue, I think. I’m too fat to kick as much ass at my profession as I could. I must remedy this.

So here’s my goal. It’s the end of August. By the end of October I want to have lost 10 pounds. I think that’s doable.

Here’s what I plan to do: I won’t eat out so goddamn much and I will get back into good enough shape to run longer distances. No more daily Chipotle after work. No more gobs and gobs of ranch. More fruits and vegetables (bought a bunch today). Drink tons more water. And then I will run three times a week and bike ride twice. Since I get off work about four hours before most people do, I think I can do this.

This is doable. It has to be. I mean, I only get one life. I might as well look damn good in a suit when I die someday.

Addendum: I went running today. A sort of run/walk. I started at week 3 of my Couch to 5K program I did awhile back. Felt alright and doable. Just can’t stop. Won’t stop. Must not stop.