The Inspirational Justin Willoughby

My Bariatric Life Health Guide
  • We have all had moments when we step on the scale, see the digital number blink, curse the digital number, and decide that some pounds must go.  Five or ten pounds to make the swimsuit grade. Five or ten pounds to look good in the dress we want to wear to a child's high school graduation. Five or ten pounds because we have strayed that far from our ideal weight across the holidays. We all have been there.

    Some of us have stepped on the scale and shuddered. Five or ten pounds is a laughable number.  How about fifteen or twenty pounds? Or thirty pounds? How about seventy or eighty pounds? Maybe more. How about over one hundred pounds? Some of us have been there also, and there are certainly those who have conquered such challanging numbers. It happens.

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    What would you do if you stepped on the scale and a number could not register, if the scale was ill-equipped to handle the amount of weight pressing on it? What if the weight you carried was three hundred pounds, or four hundred, or even five hundred? What would you do if you weighed in at seven hundred and ninety-nine pounds?

    Ask Justin Willoughby and he'll tell you.

    One Step At a Time

    It is said that all journeys begin with a single step. If nothing else, the term has become a popular mantra and can be found on coffee cups everywhere. Popular mantras are often psuedo-inspirations for coffee lovers who are constantly preparing to take the first step of the journey at a time other than today. When you hear Justin Willoughby say it, it is different though.  When Justin Willoughby speaks about the first step of the journey it resonates.

    At the age of sixteen, Justin was lying in a hospital bed in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, mulling over the information that the doctors had given him. He had to lose weight or he might very well die. Justin made the decision that precedes all first steps on all journeys. Justin decided to try

    Not knowing whether he literally would live or die, he decided to restrict his focus on the day at hand and not beyond. His regiment of exercise began with the simple act of standing up and then sitting down again. Standing made his legs sore, and sitting down again was a relief.

    His set a goal that he would walk for one mile. It took thirty-three days, but the goal was met. A program of rehabilitation exercise therapy that included fifteen minute workuts on a treadmill and moderate strength training was next. The local YMCA followed as did walking for 45 minutes to an hour. Eventually he ran his first 5K.

    He researched portion control on the Internet and changed his eating habits. White breads, processed meats, and high-fat, high-sugar foods were out and whole grain breads and cereals, milk, cheese, fruits and vegetables were in.

    Since his live or die moment of decision, Justin's lowest weight has been 207 pounds. He is currently at 235 pounds because he now lifts weights more frequently.


    Living life well-fed,

    My Bariatric Life


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Published On: June 23, 2014