I'm an Addict Who Loved 'Tomorrow'

You can not reason with an addict until the addict is ready. At least that is how I felt. I finally was ready to be reasoned with.
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Addicts love tomorrow. As least I did. Tomorrow was the best day because I was able to start fresh. I was going to change my life. I was going to lose weight and not be over 400 pounds again. I remember numerous times sitting in my Acura at 2am in a parking lot with a bag of Taco Bell next to me. I would be sad because I knew that the bag of food would disappear. All the wrappers would be on the floor. I would always say that was my last bad meal. That was the last time. I would finally fix my craving and start fresh the next day. And why not, I knew how to lose weight. Most overweight people do. I knew at the age of 12 that grilled was healthier than fried, that lower calories meant weight loss. It did not fix my craving. I had Taco Bell wrappers on the floor to prove it.

Addicts love excuses. At least I did. It is not my fault I am the way I am. I am not like other people. I have the hard life. I am the one that always gets the short end of the stick. I got passed over many times at work for a promotion. I was sad. I ate my sorrows away. Life was stressful; I ate my sorrows away. How can I work out at a gym that people will laugh at me? How can you expect me to eat less on Thanksgiving, it only comes once a year. I am busy. You realize that being busy, having things go on in your life, has nothing to do with what you put in your mouth.

Addicts love to feel sorry for themselves. At least I did. I hated myself. I was weak; I was worthless. I cannot control what I eat. Food was the only thing that loved me in my mind. I never looked at the people I hurt. My wife, my parents, my friends. I always felt it was only me that was hurting. I was wrong. Every bite I took hurt those around me. Feeling sorry for myself never helped me. Because when you feel worthless, it is hard to feel some worth again. It was hard to realize food does not love me.

Addicts love to apologize. At least I did. I would always say I am sorry for failing. I am sorry for being the size I am. I am sorry for eating the way I did. I realized that apologizing means nothing if you do not fix it. Empty apologies are the worst, and I was good at giving them. When you are a food addict, it shows. When I walked into a room, people knew I loved to eat. You do not get to 420 pounds by having a second portion at a buffet. You get it by eating a tremendous amount of food.

I was always sorry. I apologized many times.

I finally gave a real apology. I gave one to myself.

You can not reason with an addict until the addict is ready. At least that is how I felt. I finally was ready to be reasoned with.

Do you want to know what weight loss is to me? It is sitting in a classroom taking a test with every single answer in front of you. Then failing the test, and everyone laughing at you because you had every single answer in front of you.

Well, maybe six small meals, more protein and a high intake of water had nothing to do with my weight loss. I had every answer in front of me.

The answers I have known for 30 years.

Weight loss is learning more about yourself. Pushing yourself to a different level. Saying goodbye to every single excuse. Knowing that, you have a problem.

My name is Tony, and I am a food addict. I can consume 10,000 calories a day without blinking an eye. I am a selfish eater, and I know that every binge I have hurts everyone around me, including myself. It is not my parents fault or my wife's fault.

Through it all, I have lost over 200 pounds and maintained most of that loss for over seven years.

I struggle every day. I feel like a failure sometimes. I have gained, and I have lost over the last few years, but I refuse to get back to 420 pounds.

I will be damned if I dwell over a small gain and get derailed back to where I once was.

I will be damned if I stop working out.

Because I actually know a lot about weight loss. That means nothing in my world.

Let me show my kids that a food addict can be successful.

Because results mean more to me than apologies.

And I will fight as long as I am breathing.

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