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I have been overweight for most of my life. Sometimes a little, sometimes a lot, but always more than I should. I tried a bunch of different things over the years to lose the weight, but all of my efforts were basically half-hearted, and none of them really produced any significant results. For the past 3-4 years I have struggled with a number of health issues – IBS, Fibromyalgia, high blood pressure, high cholesterol. Mostly, I just felt like crap. Last October, after yet another failed attempt to lose weight and get in shape I was at my breaking point. I knew that there was an answer to my problem, but I couldn’t seem to figure it out on my own. Then I saw a commercial for a weight loss challenge sponsored by H-E-B, a regional grocery store chain, and I knew I had found my answer.

Now I’m not the kind of guy who buys a lottery ticket and thinks he’s going to win. That’s not how my luck runs. But this time felt different. I knew as soon as I saw the commercial that I would get picked as a contestant, and sure enough, six weeks later I was. The contest started on January 5th, and one of the requirements was that each contestant keep a blog about their experiences. So I began writing, and a funny thing happened… people actually started reading the blog and leaving me comments. They gave me support when I was struggling. They told me their own weight loss stories. They told me I was inspiring them to make some changes of their own. I really enjoyed the regular writing schedule, and by doing the diet and exercise stuff so publicly there was a level of accountability that really helped.

The contest ended on April 12th, 2014. I didn’t win the grand prize, but I did lose a total of 32 lbs. I also developed an exercise and food regiment that is completely sustainable, and which I believe will carry me to my ultimate goal of 100 lbs of weight loss by the end of the year. I decided before the contest ended that I was going to continue to write about my experiences on my own blog, and that is the purpose of this site. I have added all of ly posts from the contest to section 1 of the blog, and I will continue to post several times a week, sharing my experiences as I learn to replace food with other things that feed me spiritually and ease the discomfort that living can bring.

Thanks for coming along with me.

Recent Recovery Blog Posts

The last post… 90 Days down, all the rest to go!

Well, here we are – the last official blog post. I have enjoyed writing these posts way more than I expected, and I plan to continue chronicling my journey on my personal website after the contest ends. You will be able to find me  at www.chris-gates.com beginning on April 14th. I am amazed at the changes I have experienced and the things which have become habits that were completely foreign a mere 90 days ago.

Next to the last blog post

Well, this is the next to the last blog post for me as a contestant in the Slimdown Showdown. In really enjoyed answering everyone's questions yesterday, and I will be happy to continue answering any new ones that you might have today, so ask away.   The last 5 days have been challenging. I hurt something in my back and it's healing VERY slowly, so I've had to take it really easy. I was FINALLY

And Away We Go!

Well friends, here we go - week one of the Slimdown Showdown. Last week all of the contestants were at the La Cantera Resort in San Antonio for a week long Fit Camp, where we learned a ton about diet & nutrition and started working out together as a group. It was a great group of people from all over Texas with the same goal - to not only lose weight and get in shape,