My Journey to Here and Now
Even with the gung fu, the cardio, and eating right, the only thing that has remained over time is the weight. See sawing back and forth from about 235 lbs to 250 lbs. The weight was still a yoke around my body that just refused to let go. My wife, Amy, put us on all kinds of diets. We learned how to count calories and carbs and adopt the paleolithic or pre agricultural caveman menu. I would experience moderate success dropping ten pounds or so over a period of months and then we would go back to eating normal again. When I say eating normal I still mean a gluten/dairy free diet but even then a lot of these good foods are packed with carbohydrates. I was a carboholic and it was a constant war with my body. Then January of 2012 I peaked out at 270 lbs and I snapped. I had never weighed that much in my life. I felt panicky. I had to do something. I was angry that everything I was doing to maintain my health still did not seem to effectively have an impact on my weight. I train 5 to 6 days a week… two to three hours a day… taking one day off to allow my body to recuperate. What the hell was going on?
I came across a program called the Gabriel Method. John Gabriel was a fellow who weighed 410+ lbs which he gained over a process of eleven years. Every diet and form of exercise he tried failed and he just kept gaining weight. I could relate to this concept with a great deal of frustration. He began to study the university materials on why people become obese. He discovered that scientists have realized that we have a primal mind hard wired into our bodies just beneath our conscious awareness. This primordial understanding contains the same thought paradigms that drove our neanderthal ancestors back in their day which kept them alive. This part of our programming understands only three things when it come to stress. Either you are starving to death in the face of famine. Your are freezing to death due to temperature. Or you are in mortal danger by an external threat like a saber tooth tiger wanting to have you for lunch. The primal aspect of our internal nature does not understand the subtle nuances of modern stress which relate to finances, relationships, personal welfare, etc. It only understands the three basic forms of stress.
So the reasons for weight gain according to your primal mind are really quite simple. If you are facing a famine crisis it would make sense that your body would want to gain weight to keep you alive. That famine may have nothing to do with food. You could have cupboards full of sustenance and a stable paycheck every month but if you are emotionally or even spiritually lacking in your personal life or having trouble paying the bills on time then this primal instinct can only interpret this stress as a form of starvation in spite of the nutritional resources you have available. So in an effort to keep you safe it begins to pack on the pounds of excess weight.
Worrying or anxiety or any form of nature is interpreted by this primitive instinct deep within our genes as being related to freezing to death. So the only natural way to ensure that you will not freeze to death is to pack on the excess weight to keep you warm.
For most of us the mortal danger of life and death is not something we have to face but the previous two dangers are reason enough for those “fat” switched to be accidentally turned on which would explain why some of us gain the weight that we do in spite of all of our efforts to avoid it. The word FAT is in and of itself an acronym that stands for “Famine And Temperature”…
Once he understood this John Gabriel lost 210+ lbs in less than a year. I was inspired by his story.
I know this is what has been my problem. Somewhere inside of me this primal instinct has been trying to keep me safe by interpreting my everyday stress as either starving to death or freezing to death. So I have been slowly identifying the underlying roots of the anxiety I have been carrying around with me that has manifested in literal excess baggage for my body. This is why diets haven’t worked for me. Every time I would start counting calories and carbs I would go to war with myself which would instantly place me into famine mode. I was miserable. So I knew there had to be a way to do this that did not include this inner struggle which was turning the fat switches on instead of off.
It is the paradigm formula of the image in the mind to which you become emotionally connected to effect the results that you produce which ultimately becomes your reality. This simple equation works both for you or against you depending on where your frame of mind is. Bottom line is as John Gabriel puts it, “A body that wants to be thin will be thin no matter what kind of fuel you put in it.” The trick is to turn the “FAT” switches off. Eating the right amount of calories and carbs and exercising smart should come as a natural process of weight loss without the internal struggle which makes all the effort futile.