I thought I needed an introduction, even though my profile says I’ve been a member for 5 years. Truth is, when I joined I didn’t post much, and hadn't visited frequently in the intervening years, maybe because I didn’t realize this section of the forum even existed. But after a couple of days reading others’ posts here, it’s without question where I feel most comfortable.
So – here’s me:
I’m a 55 year old male (to be 56 in a couple of weeks), who’s always been fat. I started riding seriously when I was in my early 20s and did great for many years, getting down to about 212, on a broad-shouldered but otherwise average 5’-11” frame. I did club rides, invitationals, metric centuries, several 3-day tours (at 80 or 90 miles a day), and even got into citizens’ class racing. My best finish: 3rd in a criterium in Galesburg, IL, but more often finishing back in the pack, if finishing at all. I’ve dropped out of races as far away as Crystal Lake, IL, and Athens, GA; and was once pulled by an official after being lapped on the square in Madison, WI. A checkered career at best, but still a whole lot of fun. There’s nothing, and I mean nothing, like being able to throw your bike at full speed into a corner on a closed course.
In my 30s my riding kind of fell off (I moved away from the area where I’d lived for my whole life and all the riding friends I had there) and the weight I’d lost started creeping back on. Finally, in my late 40s and early 50s I was stress eating in reaction to a job I hated, and went over 300 for the first time in my life. I was having minor health issues because of it: digestive problems, borderline hypertension, obstructive sleep apnea, etc. I quit that job, started being more careful and responsible in my eating, started some light riding on a new Fisher Marlin with “street” wheels and tires (I didn’t want to get on the road bike – a combination of concern over its durability under me, and not wanting to present to the world the image of an elephant sitting on top of a rail fence). Doing that for 4 or 5 years resulted in about 60 pounds lost. But I lost focus and found earlier this year that my body had “found” 20 of those lost pounds.
So, with the company of my wife, I joined a well-known national weight loss program, and increased my activity – a combination of 1-1.5 hour brisk walks and now regular riding again, and in the past three months that’s taken over 30 pounds off. So now I’m at 236, down 70 from my all-time high, with another 70 or so to go. Between the program and the renewed riding, I feel for the first time in my life like a “normal” weight is possible for me – maybe even by early next year. I’m shooting for 165. Wish me luck.
Anyway, all the other stories and posts from other clydes and athenas here made me want to post this overly long introduction. I’m happy as all get-out to have found you folks, and I plan to make this a regular stop on my internet “tours.” As soon as I can find and organize some old and new photos, I’ll post them in the stickied “before and after” thread. Not that I’m close to “after” yet. But I’ll get there.
Craig in Indy