This is an incredible interview full of priceless advice that you must read and take to heart! Kurtis is one of my dear friends from growing up, and it has been an honor to reconnect with him, especially regarding his health! The following video was posted on Facebook a few weeks ago, and was the catalyst to throw some questions his way. Be prepared to laugh, to be inspired, and to take away some valuable advice!
You are a long time friend. One of many things that we have in common is pushing ourselves to stay fit and healthy! Currently we have different challenges than we did 10 years ago when we would call each other up and say, Hey! Meet ya for a run? Can you tell us what some of your current challenges are as an adult and how you plan to overcome them to keep up with your goals of healthy eating and a routine exercise regimen?
Ten years ago it was SUPER easy to just call someone up and go for a run. Now, I have a full-time job (most of the time at sedentary at a desk, slightly hunched), a wife, 3 children, a side business… it sometimes seems impossible to get out and run or lift. My body weight used to range from 190 – 195ish (which I considered at the time to be about 15lbs too high) but when I got a desk job 3 years ago at Indiana Tech, it jumped to 230 – 235. Probably because every week in the office, it’s someone’s birthday or going away party or some other occasion that calls for cake or pizza, and it’s the first job I’ve had that required little to no physical movement. My family has a history of heart disease and diabetes, and I really don’t want to go through that, so, even though there doesn’t appear to be time in my life for it, and to many people I don’t seem super overweight, I decided to make a change. I’ve attempted several diets and have deemed them all unsustainable. I knew it had to become a lifestyle, not a two-week 20 lb. assault on my fatness.
A year and a half ago I decided to stop drinking pop, cold turkey. It helped stop the gain, but I didn’t lose any weight. I decided to join the Wellness Committee at Tech and gain some accountability while also helping others. Shortly after joining (about 2 months ago), we all read a book called “From Fat Boy to Fit Man” by Eli Sapharti.
In order to encourage the campus to read the book, and because it aligned with my personal goals, I volunteered to make a commitment to change. The basic theme of the book is that you don’t have to change everything all at once. Just adopt one small change each week (or as often as you’re comfortable with) and over time, small victories lead to big change. So each week I’ve been changing one little thing at a time. The first week, I started running every day (first week was like a half mile, currently up to 4 on my long day). The next week, I quit eating after dinner. I’ve made several changes and the weight is finally starting to come down! The biggest challenge for me is accountability. That’s why I made the video. I was only being half serious with it, but it’s a good motivator for me to keep pressing on.
I saw your video on Facebook and laughed out loud and was inspired all at the same time! Instantly I messaged you to ask if we could share it on the blog. What is your advice to the readers on how to enjoy life, not take ourselves too seriously, yet get down to business when we need to?
That video is pretty much what it’s like in my head most of the time- haha! I’ve literally tried everything you can think of in the diet world (besides swallowing a tape-worm). The only thing that ever worked was accountability (why did you move away and make me fat?!?!?!). I think it’s important to recognize where you are at in your weight loss journey, and to let others know what you are working toward. One of the biggest struggles for me is that, at the office, there is always some form of free food being passed around. Yesterday I was offered a huge cupcake. Because it is known by the entire campus that I’m now on the wellness committee and I’ve committed to taking this “Fat Boy to Fit Man” challenge, the cupcakes were taken from me when I reached for it. Today, someone brought in brownies for a birthday. They are relentless with the bad foods! Anyway, get accountability! The video is a form of accountability. Now everyone on Facebook knows I’m working toward losing weight, and I’ll be embarrassed if I fail. That motivates me! I decided to make a video when I saw one of those side by side pictures that said: What I think I look like doing ‘x’, what I actually look like doing ‘x’. I feel like Rocky, but I still look like a fat guy working out. Deep down, I know I will eventually succeed, and so I don’t take myself all that seriously. Now when I work out, I hear that ridiculously epic music from the preview and it makes me laugh.
How does your family, (your beautiful wife and 3 energetic and awesome kids) provide you support when you are in training mode?
Aimee has been awesome with motivating me to run. She’s realized that I’m actually less stressed and much more energetic after a run. Sometimes when I feel like backing out, she tells me it’s happening and offers a foot rub or other reward. My son Vaughn says, Run… Daddy… Run… Daddy which is entertaining. Nadia and Lana just tell me to run fast so I can get back and play with them.What are a few of your short-term and long-term goals?
I’m really focusing on not caring so much about the number. I can tell I’m losing weight because my face looks thinner and I feel great, even though the scale only says I’m down 5 lb. My goal is to eventually get to around 180, which is nearly 50lbs down! The difference between my approach this time versus all the diets I’ve tried in the past, is that I’m not shooting for a certain date. I’m taking my time making small changes. For instance, I’m now not drinking pop. I’ve weaned myself off of creamer and sugar for my coffee, which cut out about 350 calories a day. I’ve eliminated fast food, which I would have everyday out of convenience in the past. I’ve stopped eating after dinner, I drink a gallon of water each day, I’m taking a vitamin supplement, I’m running almost everyday … one step at a time. In the past, I’d attempt to do all of that instantly. I’d succeed for a week, lose some pounds, then gorge myself and gain it all back plus some. Each time I make a small victory, it encourages me and gives me momentum! Small steps, over time, concerned about wellness not numbers… and it’s really helping.
Can we expect to see an update movie any time soon?
Haha! I’m really looking forward to making a video where I actually DO look like Rocky, once my goals have been reached. If I have a really fun idea and happen to have time to make a few in between… it could happen. I’m pretty random though, so I can’t say for sure. I’m really fond of dub step and have a few ideas floating around about a funny video involving some ridiculous dance moves… but I don’t know. If I do make one, I’ll be sure to let you know!
Let’s all help hold Kurtis accountable! Find him on Facebook and send him a Habitude friend request! Like his Map my Run posts and encourage him along the way! I don’t know about you, but I am looking forward to that progress video!
We are ALL on a journey, and it’s best (and more fun) to do it with friends!
Cassie and Kurtis
Check out Kurtis and Aimee’s side business Epic Organics– its all in the name! These products are all handmade by Aimee. This company is going places-watch our for them!