Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The Amazing Shrinking Man

Chad's brother comes to visit once a year.  On last years' visit, Chad and I had just found out about the science behind low carb eating, and were both fascinated by it.  We were at that stage where we wanted to go out and tell everyone about it, even though most people quickly dismissed what we said.  We had read both Good Calories Bad Calories and Why We Get Fat on my kindle, but decided to buy a paper copy of Why We Get Fat as well so we could loan it out to friends and family.

Last June, Chad's brother (who I'm going to call Fred from now on) was a pretty hefty guy.  He's a moderately tall fellow, and he had a lot of muscle, but when you looked at him then, you just saw a fat guy.  He had a couple of double chins, and a pretty big beer belly.  We shared a room at a hotel with him a couple of years ago, and I swear, neither of us got much sleep because he snored so loudly all night long. 

So when he came to visit last year, we decided that was a good time to have him read Why We Get Fat, which is a condensed version of Good Calories Bad Calories by Gary Taubes.  Even so, it's still a pretty hefty book and can be a little hard to get through.  Fred's a smart guy, but he said he skipped through most of the book and just read the conclusion.  I was a little disappointed when he said that, but I figured, hey, not everyone is going to be open to the idea that everything they know about nutrition is wrong. 

In November of last year, Chad and I drove down to spend a few days with Fred.  We were pretty amazed when we saw him, because he'd lost about 20 pounds since we'd seen him in June.  Apparently, he'd taken the conclusion of Why We Get Fat (which includes a meal plan), and just ran with it.  I was pretty happy that he was doing so well, and although I was excited to see if he'd lose any more weight, part of me was worried that he'd stall out and revert to his old ways.

It's June again, and Fred made his yearly visit.  Actually, we all decided to meet up in Cleveland so we could go to an Indians game.  We stayed in a nice motel downtown.  We were all waiting in the lobby of the hotel for Fred, watching out the window for his car.  When it pulled up, Chad went out to help him with his bags, and his mom and I stayed inside and watched.  Then all of a sudden, this tall skinny guy stepped out of the car.  Chad said he was worried for a minute that he was unloading luggage from some stranger's car.  Fred was almost literally unrecognizable.  He was practically a different person! 

At dinner that night, I had to ask (because I'm the only one who's forward enough to ask direct questions) how much weight he had lost.  He said he started at 255 and was currently 190, which is a 65 pound weight loss!  I was pretty stunned.  It was a few days before I could look at him and actually recognize him as Fred. 

I actually just looked at some pictures of him from last year, and now it's hard for me to see that big round guy as my brother-in-law.  Isn't that funny? 

Both he and Chad are pretty private people, so I would never put his picture up on my blog.  So instead, I had an amazing artist make a rendition of the changes Fred has gone through over the last year.

Chad had to borrow a pair of pants from Fred while we were in Cleveland (chad only brought shorts, and one day ended up being in the 50s with Cleveland-strength winds).  Now keep in mind that my husband is a bean pole, and Fred has always been a very hefty man.  Although Chad had to wear a belt and his butt looked a bit like a balloon, Fred's pants fit him pretty well. 

So there you go, friends.  Even though it may not seem like people are actually listening to you when you yammer on about low carb, maybe they really are, and maybe it will change their lives.  So don't stop yammering.

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