Friday, 11 October 2013

How an ill-fitted windbreaker changed my life, by guest-blogger Scott Seymour

Introduction message by Lisa:

I started this blog a few months ago as an outlet to express myself. I’ve always enjoyed writing (which my boyfriend thinks is the weirdest thing) and since the age of 8, one of my goals in life has been – and still is – to be an author.

This blog is new to me. I think it's fun and it challenges me.

Not a lot of people read it (I haven’t even had one comment on it) but I don’t widely share it, either.

In search of new content and out of my own interest, I asked a colleague and friend of mine to be a guest-blogger.

He’s a great writer. He’s also funny, smart, and a true inspiration when it comes to life changes and trying to improve one’s overall wellness. Over the last couple of years, he’s worked his ass off - literally - and I wanted to share his story on my blog to help inspire people, and to give him some the recognition he deserves.

I’m excited to introduce Scott Seymour as my first-ever A Wellness Way of Life guest blogger.

I hope you enjoy his story!
At the Fall Classic, September 2012.
Scott is third from the left, I'm on the far right.

As jackets go, it’s pretty ordinary.

It’s a navy windbreaker that rolls up into a little nylon pouch. It’s light and has a built-in hood that’s great for sudden showers. It’s a decent spring/summer/fall jacket.

And, in the late-winter of 2012, it became the last straw – the final kick in the pants I needed to get an important part of my life back in order. And now, it’s come to symbolize the success I’ve enjoyed so far.

I bought the coat through catalog-order at a local sports/promotion store. That meant I never had a chance to try it on until it arrived two weeks after I ordered it. And when I tried it on that day, it wouldn’t fit. It should have fit. But it didn’t. It was tight around my midriff.

I could zip it up, but it looked exactly like a jacket that’s one-size-too-small should look. It didn’t look good at all.

But I didn’t return it. Instead, I decided I’d try to find a way to fit it.

Right around then, our office was offered a good deal on an annual membership to the brand-new recreation/workout centre that had recently opened. The jacket was the last straw to pushing me to buying a membership.

Since then, I’ve been a regular at the facility, working out in the gym, swimming in the pool and, in winter months, running on the indoor track.

I really remained committed to it and one day in May or June, I tried it on and it fit and looked WAY better. An early win.

I haven’t looked back.

Over the summer of 2012, friends at work (including Lisa Peters of this blog) talked me into giving running a try and I ended up doing some events in the fall. A year later, I’ve already done the 10K Fall Classic in September and, last weekend, I did a 10K event in Sexsmith. Later this month, I’ll be doing 10k in Edmonton at an event that raises money for pancreatic cancer.

I still can’t believe I’m a runner. It’s so far off of what I used to consider as a “recreational” fitness activity. I hated running when I was a kid and adult.

But here I am now – regular gym workouts, swimming, yoga … and running.

Although I haven’t weighed myself, I figure I’ve lost somewhere between 50 and 75 pounds since the spring of 2012. I’m down three pants sizes. I know fit a couple of shirts and a couple of jackets that I wore 12 years ago and I kept in my closet even after I got too big for them.

I’m not a finished product yet. Far from it. But people have been saying nice things about how much weight I’ve lost and that feels good. Positive comments are great motivation to keep up the momentum.

The other day at the 10K run in Sexsmith, the weather was cold and rainy. But I stayed nice and warm – thanks a long-sleeved T-shirt … and a loose-fitting navy windbreaker.