Fat Habits Die Hard

Excuse the interruption in blogging, but I was not feeling well. I have not been sick in over 1 year, but wow!

So, to those of you who are graceful enough to read on, just a reminder that this is a blog by a guy who lost 150+ Lb and is still dealing with some of the excess “fat mentality.”

In holding consultations with people who are overweight, there are always common isms and denominators. While sitting in my office, any time such a person would have to rise from their seat, they would automatically (I noticed this more in females), and immediately reach for whatever long blouse, or track jacket they were wearing and pull it down so as to cover the butt they were so self conscious of. Other isms included; pulling shirt away from stomach while seated and sucking gut in til the face discolours.

I actually understand this all to well.

As I trained fitness consultants this week, I spoke to them about what an overweight person usually feels upon entering a gym… but we’ll leave that for another blog. I did instruct them however, to not take an overweight person out onto the gym floor in front of everyone and make them do crunches. I set that ground rule out because I remember full well what it felt like to have my flab bounce and undulate from side to side, as my main preoccupation became: GRAB YOUR SHIRT AND PULL IT DOWN so no one can see this happening.., your wildly flailing fat!

Following that consultant training, I had a chance to address the staff at Club 54 Fitness, where I am operations manager. Among other things, I gave a brief version of the horrible experiences I endured as a result of having been so overweight. The story ends with me having lost all that weight, having kept it off for over a decade, and becoming highly successful in the fitness field and in helping people overcome their obstacles.

When I had finished on a high note, there was applause. I mean, here is living proof that fat can be beaten, right up there on stage. I bowed graciously and thanked everyone.

Know what I did as soon as I was done?

I pulled my slick Nike track jacket down as far as I could to cover by (no longer existant) gut and butt.

Go ahead and laugh. I sure did 🙂


And so… I am managing yet ANOTHER gym!

Okay, so please excuse my absence as of late, but life has gotten a little busier.

A couple of weeks ago I became Operations/Consulting Manager at a great gym in Bolton, Ontario. This is the 3rd gym I have managed, but the first one outside of a large franchise. It got me thinking;

Susan is “Miss Fitness”, I call her that, (she would never say anything like that about herself), there is not a pretentious bone in her body. Yet, I find it fascinating that she has “the look”, the experience, yet I am the guy who has worked at gyms on and off for the last 3 years. Me, the former fat guy who could not step into a gym for three weeks because I was paralyzed with fear in the parking lot.

It took me a L O N G time before I felt I looked “okay” enough to begin coaching clients, but to wind up managing a health facility? That never occurred to me.

I can tell you this; managing people is a gift. The people who will not listen and are perhaps “difficult” employees, you  know, the ones that others say should be dismissed etc… to me, those “difficult” types are the biggest gifts of all. They present me with an opportunity to grow and come at challenges from different angles. Is it painful and not “comfortable?” Yes, sometimes.

But to those of you who train hard I ask: “is it painful and not “comfortable” at times? Yes.

Isn’t that how you grow?


Thanks for reading.

No Laces Attached

What blows my mind, is that when I was really overweight, I never bought shoes with laces. Why? Well, I couldn’t bend over to tie them up. Now I am in size 36 pants, I have shoes with laces… do you think I bend over to tie them? NOPE! I leave the laces done up so I can just slip them on. Is that crazy or what? I have a line in my book that reads “my memory of fat refused to develop amnesia.”

I still have a lot of the isms, the habits, and when I am working out at the gym with one of my 2 trainers, they have to constantly deprogram “fat Marco”. It is almost funny, ALMOST, I said!
It comes down to this; looking in the mirror each day and thinking “I may not be where I want to be yet, but thank God I am not where I USED to be!”

Thank you for reading!

Into Every Flower a Little Fat Must Fall

Can you imagine sporting a size 56 waist? Being so overweight that during your first climb up the steps to a gym you had to stop halfway because you were out of breath and your knee was screaming with pain? Can you then imagine getting on a treadmill and in three minutes throwing up all over yourself in PLAIN view of a ton of other people training around you?

Can you then imagine , the death of your sister and father, going through divorce, raising an autistic son all by yourself and losing well over 100 Lb? After all that becoming an award winning fitness consultant and personal trainer? Well, that’s my life. I read that, I think “no big deal”, and did that really all happen to me?

But after having the grace of God to get through all of that, winding up with a woman as fit as Susan… well, you think that would be easy. lmao!

She gets a lot of attention. Guys write in and it is not always respectful. She shows up in magazines, websites and mail starts pouring in. I hear all about it, since I have the privilege of managing her. We are at a gym and it seems like everyone is looking at her… all of a sudden, I feel FAT again! However, the key is to always propel the person you love forward. For me, this is accomplished by not getting jealous or insecure. I will admit, it drove me nuts at first, but I have learned to handle it.

So, it wound up being me who promoted her and got her taking pictures, which she had never done before. I guess this one is for all the couples out there who maybe have one “model” type and one not so model type. The more you push someone down, the more they will fight to rise up. You will take it personally, but it’s not. It is just innate desire and design. It’s no different than a flower which must push through pounds of earth to reach sunlight.

My advice? Water and nurture. It will benefit the flower as well as the gardener.

Thanks for reading

Big Fat, Big Muscle, Big problem!

This week I decided that I am going to switch the way I am training, and eating. Why? Too much size. I kid you not. I am packing on muscle very rapidly and I feel solid as a rock. BUT… I don’t like the amount of size… WHY? It makes me feel “big”. Yes, it is “muscle big”, but the other kind of “big” and I had a relationship for many years and even though I look completely different thanks to body fat %, “big”, no matter how it is defined, bugs me.
Now, I am not a huge bodybuilder type, I weighed less last year, but I was softer in physique. So the scale number does not bother me, I know better. I had set out to pack on some mass; mission accomplished… but clothes not fitting properly, taking up all kinds of room in car or aeroplane seats, even though I am big for different reasons, still bring back an uncomfortable feeling. Unless you have lived it, I don’t think you can fully understand it. No, I am not huge like some of my close bodybuilding buddies are, but still, big enough that it it feels, well… “big” to me.
The tag line for my book is “Sir, Can You Please Move? You Are Too Fat To Sit here.” Spoken to me at the height of my weight by a sweet lady seated next to me on a flight to NYC years ago. Susan and I left for Miami last Wednesday, I got in the seat, look at her and say “Sir, Can You Please Move? You are too BUILT to sit here.”
We had a good laugh about that one. Irony!

Memory of Fat TEN years LATER?

Well, here we are, back from Miami. Harsh! From 25 above to just about 25 below!

We had a blast, but I noticed something; beautiful Susan still got all the attention, naturally and rightfully so. lol.

Well, I got the attention for other reasons, and I am SO okay with that. Someone like Susan who has invested a lifetime of all natural, no-compromise training, deserves it all. I got the attention for my story, which is what got us to the Miami conference in the first place. If the attention factor were to be paralleled to an area of life I love, it would be done so using cooking as an analogy. Susan is the microwave=instant attention, I am a slow cooker= you have to get know me. Yet, we both realize that God has made and gifted us differently, and that is one of the reasons why we work so well together.

We took some pics, and if you read my book, you will understand this; I noticed I am STILL draping my arm over my stomach to cover it, although it is quite GONE! Here is a pic from Miami that details this perfectly. That’s me, pulling my jacket to cover my “stomach”, it is UNCANNY!

Susan and Marco

Stil Hiding the Gut that is No Longer!

Tomorrow, I am going to talk about why I the muscle I have put on is starting to bother me. It’s not why you may think, believe me!


From Miami

Hi everyone.

We arrived in South Beach a few hours ago. Although I am not at liberty to completely divulge what it is we are doing here, (well, partially because I don’t entirely know for myself), I can say that we are being given the red carpet treatment.

At dinner, Susan and I both pined for home cooking. Price of food is as bloated as the food itself!  We did not pay the price as far as the bill goes, but our stomachs ARE paying the price. Ugh!

We were picked up at the airport by someone we had never met, who had been given the following description of us: “Susan is a bodybuilder, and she looks/is very fit. Marco is about 5 ft 11 with salt and pepper hair.”

Yet, we are here because of my weight loss story. Am I ever going to feel like I look “good enough”, so to speak?

As we passed through security at the airport on the way in, even the person performing the checks on Susan said: “You have a beautiful body”. Susan TOTALLY deserves these compliments, and no one is happier for her than I!

People seem to be a lot more appearance conscious here than where we come from, and Susan is getting checked out even more than usual. I often ask her “are you okay, are you bleeding?”

“What do you mean” she asks…

“Just the daggers the women are throwing at you.” 🙂

At dinner, our host said they do not have a “success story” for their product…someone that is fit. When he said that, he looked at BOTH Susan and I.

Know what? That felt good.

Goodnight from Miami