For those of you who have been around the CrossFit community for awhile you may remember the “Killing the Fat Man” series that was published back in 2012. The series followed Gary Roberts as he began his life transforming journey with CrossFit. Gary was a 187 lbs. Marine who had gained nearly 100 pounds over 20 years. When CrossFit began following him he weighed in at 270 lbs. and was having real fears of suffering an early death from a heart attack. Over the course of the multi part series Gary makes an incredible transformation. He drops nearly 70 lbs. and changes his life completely. He makes the full transformation from a self described couch potato to taking the CrossFit level 1 trainer course and getting his 67 year old father into the gym with him where he makes his own transformation.
Fast forward 5 years and I hear Gary on the CrossFit Radio podcast just last week. Gary has gone through some very stressful life situations over the past 2 years and has fallen off the wagon. He talks about how he tries to keep then nutritional habits but hasn’t really worked out in nearly 2 years. He says that for most of that time “he was living off of past gains”. Meaning he was able to not gain too much weight even though his fitness was slipping because he had a very good fitness level. However it catches up with him and he has lost nearly all of the progress that he made during his initial transformation 5 years ago. The podcast is very emotional and Gary really lets you into his life and how he feels.
While describing his experiences Gary says something that I felt was very powerful. He said he thought that the fat man was dead. He thought he killed him those years ago and that he wouldn’t come back. He realized though that “he will never be dead. He wants to keep getting up, so you have to keep fighting and make sure he stays down. You can never stop.” In his own words he stopped fighting the “fat man” and he came back. He realized that he was stressed out and not as happy as he was so he made the decision to get back to CrossFit and begin the fight again.
Don’t let yourself fall into that trap that you have made a change and it’s “fixed”. Transformation is a journey and it can take you in several directions. Sometimes that direction is backwards. Once you realize that you are going the wrong way, that maybe you have given up the fight, you need stop and assess your situation. Identify what changed, what happened, how did you get here. Then you can backtrack to get back to where you were when you went off track. Then you can continue pushing forward.
If you have never watched the “Killing the Fat Man” series you can check it out on youtube. It is incredibly motivating. Here is the link for episode 1
If you want to give the podcast a listen it’s on itunes under “The CrossFit Podcast” episode 17.05.