For the Record: The Shoes that Walked 2,700 Miles and Helped Me Lose 80 Pounds

For the Record: The Shoes that Walked 2,700 Miles and Helped Me Lose 80 Pounds

Between April 2014 and April 2015 I walked 2,700 miles (an average of about 7 miles a day) wearing one pair of Nikes and over that period saw my weight drop 80 pounds from 276 to 196.    I was cleaning up my office today and was about to throw out a bag that I thought just had trash in it, when I opened it and discovered “the shoe”, which I had saved as memento  and a reminder of what it took to make the weight go away.  There’s still a good chance I (or more likely Rena) will toss the shoe, so I decided to take picture of me with it and save it online…..

Why I stuck with one pair of shoes is both an inside joke and a bit of psychology.  I was actually trying to hit 196 because that was not just 80 pounds lost — it was actually 100 pounds lost from my peak of 296 in July 2012.  Now … as bad as that was (and it was bad) … I’m 6’5 so keep that in mind.  I was a blob, not a BLOB . . . Well, a picture is worth some words.  Here is a pic of me in the summer of 2012:

And here is one from three weeks ago, celebrating my grandson Mason’s first birthday.

Screen Shot 2015-12-08 at 12.02.20 PM

I’ve thought about trying to write up how I was able to do it but the answer is pretty simple. Eat reasonably, around 2,500 calories a day, and walk 7 miles a day, no alcohol. Seven miles takes a little more than two hours at a normal walking pace (my pace is 18 minutes a mile), so that’s a challenge, but you break it up into as many little pieces as necessary, that helps. I would walk 3-4 times a day. And it wasn’t 7 miles every day. I started out doing a mile or two. Then by the end on weekends I would do anywhere from 10 to 20, and at one point did a marathon walk of 26.2 miles. Once I got past the first month or two when I was getting used to being able to walk longer distances, I set my daily minimum as an hour and a half at 18 minutes a mile — which works out to 5 miles. I tried not to fall below that.

Today, in maintenance mode, I try to do an hour a day and occasionally splurge for longer walks. I seem to be doing well. My wife and I agreed that 196 was too low — at 6’5″, I looked gaunt and unhealthy, so I ate my way back to 215 and have leveled off there. It’s been seven months and I don’t seem to be in danger of relapse. I believe I can keep the weight off …. my plan to live to be 100 depends on it!



1 Comment

  • Frank W. Kresen

    December 8, 2015 at 12:24 pm Reply

    That is awesome, Michael!

    It is a testament to the power of walking as a weight-loss aid — and to perseverance in general.

    You’re an inspiration.

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