Hey everyone! Welcome to my first ever fitness blog. My name is Danny Smith and I have recently started working as an attendant at Apex Fitness Center in Highland. I have a passion for helping others and I am hopeful that this blog does just that. As you can tell in the above photo, I'm not in amazing shape. I, like many others, have struggled with eating healthy and maintaining a regular exercise schedule. Between working at Apex and writing this blog, I expect to be forced to keep a healthier lifestyle in the front of my mind so that I can achieve the goals that I have had for far too long.
I wasn't always this out of shape though. For a couple years in my life, I killed it with health and fitness. The guy on the left in that before and after picture was depressed, had no ambition, and spent every Friday and Saturday night at the bars. I was 24 years old and had no idea where I was going to go from there. I knew something had to give. My life needed reinvented. I can't recall whose idea it was, but a friend and I decided we'd start working out together at Apex. We both wanted to lose weight, and we were both pretty clueless on how to do it. We knew that we needed to eat better, and we were under the impression that cardio was the only way to go to lose weight. Also, we were both pretty intimidated by the weight room because we had no idea where to even begin.
I remember only going to the gym every day so that I could help my friend. I had no faith in myself at the beginning. I was still depressed. By not going to the bars on the weekend anymore, I started losing my friends. That wasn't helping the depression much. But, somehow, I kept going to the gym. By eating healthier, I was able to notice pretty quickly that my body was feeling better every day. Our workout regiment was 1 hour of cardio on the arc trainers, twice a day, every day... for six months. I had an exact goal of 50 lbs to lose. It wasn't until about a month in that I really started to believe in myself. The mirror started to show results and that lit a fire under me.
At the sixth month mark, I had lost 50 lbs and he had lost 72. I did it! I was extremely happy that I had reached my goal. A side effect that came with all that hard work was genuine happiness. I wasn't depressed anymore. I had come to the realization that the reason I felt so lost before was because I wasn't doing anything to better myself. I wasn't investing in myself. This was an epiphany for me. It really sparked my passion for self improvement and I wanted to help as many people as I could along the way.
It took me a couple years to figure out just how I was going to help others. I really wanted to do it on a large scale. Eventually, I came up with a clothing brand, Built By Battle. My journey I just described was nothing short of a battle; mentally and physically. I realized that if there is ONE thing that EVERY single human has in common, it is that we all experience adversity. No one goes through life without a fight, and its how you choose to face those battles that defines you. I could have kept being that depressed guy with no direction in life... and that would have been my definition. I chose otherwise, and that made ALL the difference.
So, here I am, out of shape again. Working 2-3 jobs the past few years and constantly working on my business has made personal priorities a little more difficult than I anticipated. Plus, there is one major thing I feel I've done wrong this whole time that I'd like to improve on. When I was on track with fitness before, I was extremely strict on my diet. I felt I had to be that way because I stress eat and I am the pickiest eater you'll ever meet. Unfortunately, I mostly prefer unhealthy options. So, chicken, rice, and green beans daily was the only healthy meal I could come up with since I was too stubborn to branch out and try new foods.
My scale goal is to get to about 225 lbs again and see where I want to go from there. I'm roughly 260 currently. I don't feel like losing weight will be the challenge for me this time. The big challenge will come in trying to drastically improve my food vocabulary. Raising my personal nutrition standards will allow me to maintain my health instead of constantly "yo-yo" dieting. However, I know that I can achieve whatever I set out to accomplish. And if I can do it, so can you!
Like I mentioned before, my intentions with this blog is to help people. I will be documenting my fitness journey and reaching these new goals so that hopefully I can inspire someone to make a healthy change as well. Feel free to leave a comment with any questions or feedback you may have!