Ray Allen knows how important it is to have the right mindset when you want to lose serious weight. After dropping almost 60 pounds during a company sponsored weight loss contest, he slowly gained almost all of it back. Now, 50 pounds lighter, Ray says his biggest obstacle was getting out of his own way.
More from Ray in his own words –
My weight struggle began after the Army when poor food choices and not exercising over the course of a few years got the best of me.
In Feb 2012 I realized I needed to make some permanent changes to my lifestyle. My father died of heart disease at age 44 from a massive heart attack. He didn’t take care of himself and one of the contributing factors was his weight. Getting closer to that age, I decided I wasn’t going to let that happen to me.
I lost 50 pounds in 5 months and now I’m slowly gaining weight in the form of muscle instead of fat.
How did you lose the weight? I knew I needed to eat less so I tracked my calories on the website (caloriecount.about.com) This was an invaluable tool. I kept my calories below 1500, but I knew that what I ate was just as important so I gave up sugar, besides what I put in my coffee, and then eliminated anything sweet including cake, donuts, pastries, etc. I also gave up bread, butter, peanut butter (I went through withdrawals) and cheese.
My diet now consists of eggs, brown rice, milk, chicken, chicken and more chicken, yogurt, oatmeal, pasta, Honey Nut Cheerios – Okay, probably not great but not too bad.
I knew I needed to exercise so I started off with 80% cardio and 20% weight training. I didn’t really know at the start that if I integrated weight training into my workout it would help with fat burning. In the beginning I ran on the treadmill or bike, and worked out on the Arc machine. Now I do HIIT, Fitnessblender.com workouts, bootcamp, etc.
How he fights off the dreaded plateau
If you work hard enough in the beginning you will lose weight, but I think when you keep it fresh and new, your body has to adapt and that helps stop the plateau. I just use common sense and what works for me.
In the future I’d like to run a full marathon, and maybe some amateur physique competition at some point, although at this point it might be the senior circuit. Haha!
- Do what works. If you don’t like running, walk, if you don’t like riding a bike, swim. Only you know you.
- Realize your body can go a lot further than your mind is willing to take it.
- When you feel like stopping, keep going, push yourself a little harder each time.
- Fix the mental aspect of why you are where you are. I am a perfect example. The first time I lost 50 pounds I only fixed the outside (I did it to win a contest.) The second time I realized I had to start from within.
I have a motto that I kind of live by: I lost weight, so what? I wasn’t born with it. I am after a bigger, better version of myself.