I was a skinny kid until my late 20s, when a desk job and a less active lifestyle started to take its toll. I tracked my weight and waist size for years, hoping that would encourage me to eat less and exercise more. At my heaviest (2008), I was about 50 pounds overweight. I walked and ran on the treadmill a few miles per day as my primary exercise, eventually wearing it out (replaced under warranty!), but not really losing my pot belly.
One of the podcasters I follow started talking about calorie counting a few years ago, and I decided to start using the Calorie Count website. I lost the last 15 pounds in three months. I reached my goal weight in October 2009, and have maintained it ever since.
My focus since then has been on gaining strength and some muscle, especially in my scrawny arms! Right around the time I started counting calories, I bought a set of Jillian Michaels workout DVDs. Jillian got me off the treadmill and introduced me to body weight exercises, as well as some resistance training, and I am grateful for that. I am still a fan of Jillian’s work on The Biggest Loser, and her podcast.
Lots of people go to the gym and find friendship, encouragement, and fitness. That wasn’t true for me when I tried it way back when. Whether it’s a busy schedule, or social anxiety, or whatever reason keeping folks away from the gym, there are plenty of at-home fitness options to achieve the same results. Don’t use “I hate the gym” as an excuse! There are even free workouts available on the Internet… No equipment necessary.