I have been fat, big, overweight, obese, ”fluffy”, ”husky” since I was 6. Never once in my life have I ever been a thin lad. (or lass).

I remember being 8 or 9 at a local shopping mall with my mom, and seeing this thin lady and her equally thin daughter, wishing I was like that.

Last year around 160 pounds.

I remember being 10 years old, north of 120 pounds, and being told I was ”too big” to ride certain rides at a local kids park.

I remember being 15 and north of 160 pounds and climbing into one of those above-ground pools thinking that one day I’d be too heavy to climb it to get into the pool.

When I was pregnant, I ballooned to a whopping 270 pounds because I kept going to food—my ex was controlling, abusive, isolated me, and turning to food was one of those few things I had to utilize as a coping mechanism. ”Oh, you’re eating for two!” was what everyone kept telling me with the intense weight gain—that was seventy pounds I gained in the span of 10 months, not normal. Even after delivering, I only lost thirty pounds, getting down to 240.

For the last decade, I’ve been yo-yoing between 155 and 190 pounds. I would clean up my eating, hit a gym, and do well for a few months. Then I would rebound, cancel my membership, and regain the weight.

Last time I tried to lose the weight by using our on-campus gym—but those rotating 12-hour shifts left little time or energy during each rotation, and because of office politics, I would be so burned out during my days off (it was a 2-day, 2-night, 4-off type of rotation) that I eventually just stopped. The local town gyms either required a yearlong membership, not something I would consider given my on-and-off behavior; or were just so out of the way from my commute, it wasn’t something to consider.

I wanted to use the gym in my apartment complex back in Missoula, but the complex used the pandemic as an excuse to close off half the machines, so I couldn’t even use the gym half the time after work because students would be dawdling on equipment, or just go on and on being athletes or whatever, so that was of no use to me—and I couldn’t use the common areas in my own apartment because there was no open space large enough to do anything, or the little open space available was taken by the roommate to ”relocate” stuff because there was ”no room” in his bedroom to house his stuff. My bedroom, barely larger than 8-by-10 feet, had no open space to exercise, either.

I’ve tried vegan, Paleo, keto, intermittent fasting diets. All would quickly shed the weight; as soon as I would start eating again, the weight rebounded. I need some kind of plan and structure to follow, but something that’s sustainable, that will help lose and keep the weight off for good.

Complicating things when trying to find regimens to follow is the fact I’m transsexual. Do I look at BMI charts, fitness programs, and diets geared for cis men, or cis women? Maybe somewhere in between? Should how much I eat be based on being AFAB, or because I’ve been on HRT long enough I can eat a little more like most cis guys, and still be able to shed weight?

I still maintain my stance that I’m not fond of the ”fat positive” community claiming body positivity for themselves; obesity is a major concern, both individually and for society as a whole. My blood pressure, which had always been great till recently, is going up. My symptoms for prediabetes is resurging. My cholesterol, even factoring in HRT, is starting to slowly rise. That pins-and-needles feeling is coming back if I sit for too long.

Here’s my plan: three square meals, eating mainly unprocessed foods (lunch I’m eating with Ezekiel bread, probably the most processed food I’m eating daily). Eggs or oatmeal for breakfast; a sandwich, yoghurt, and fruit for lunch no later than 1pm; and dinner around 7, mostly a small protein source (like a small steak, fish fillet, or about 3 eggs) with greens and maybe some petite potatoes or rice on the side. Rotate between upper- and lower-body exercises for 6 days of the week, which I’ve been doing diligently for the last 3 weeks. Have dessert a couple of times per week, but to save for the weekends. Diet soda isn’t off the table; a few each week won’t hurt me; otherwise, coffee and water—drinking calories has never been an issue for me (except if I relapse into my alcohol addiction, but I’ll be factoring occasional alcohol into my diet too—it’s all about moderation for me this time).

Instead of losing weight to get healthy, I’m getting healthy to lose weight. A goal weight 140 pounds seems like a good central point to aim for, regardless of sex or gender identity, with a 17-20% body fat percentage. Fit into 28”x28” jeans, small tees, and small to medium hoodies. Currently I fit into 34”x28” jeans and extra large tees, so to shrink three shirt sizes and lose 6” on the waist size. While I like my current pair of jeans, I will have to find an alternative clothing brand, as they don’t carry anything with a 28” inseam in smaller waist sizes, and anything longer will just drag on the floor—and anything catering to short men are just ridiculously priced; cry supply-and-demand all you, but when I can find other brands for $30 or less on Amazon with thousands of ratings that are 4+ stars (aka a pretty good rating), these ”niche” and ”boutique” brands need to explain way more than ”quality” to defend their absurd prices.

The weight is coming off, and this time is going to stay off. After more than 5 years living with my body as is, it’s time to finish my transformation. As I lose the weight, I might cut down on my vaping habit—right now it’s the only thing, besides flavored water, that keeps me from snacking and binging.

Here’s to finally becoming another ”fat boy slim”! 🍻