WHAT IS FORMERLYME?
FormerlyMe is an online movement to motivate and inspire people to become the best version of themselves by showing them my journey and experience in trying a new workout and lifestyle regime every 30 days. Every post, update, and video is ‘formerly me’ as I endeavor to become the best version of myself and become FormerlyMe. Each month CP Magazine will showcase a part of my journey to becoming the best version of myself. I hope that in turn this inspires and motivates you to start your own journey as well. For this month’s story we will focus on the second month of my journey.
My second month I switched from a traditional gym to something different. I choose to start a month of F45 High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) at the College Park location in the Woodlands, Texas. This is the fast-growing chain of fitness centers partly owned by Mark Wahlberg. Yes. The same American actor, producer, businessman, model, rapper, singer, and songwriter (don’t forget
Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch!). I was excited to train with F45 and ready for the challenge of a 45-minute workout. My trainer for this month would be Derrick Byrd. Derrick has also been through his own weight loss journey years before and knew the experience I was going through first hand. You can see his before and after picture on the right.
With F45 and Derrick leading the way, my next big change was adapting to a vegan plant-based protein nutrition plan utilizing the Arbonne 30 Days to Healthy Living package and program. I heard a lot of things both good and not so good about the vegan diet, and as a lifelong meat eater I was very leery of trying this out. Part of the mission for FormerlyMe is to try new things out, and this was something to take seriously in my journey. I wasn’t prepared for both the good and bad things this nutrition plan has in store for me.
By the end of the first week of my new nutrition plan I encountered my first gout attack in my journey. My entire adult life I suffered from gout attacks. Gout is pain and inflammation that occurs when too much uric acid crystallizes and deposits in the joints. This is caused by a combination of high blood sugar and uric acid in the blood. I remember when I had my first gout attack in my mid-20s. It felt I had sprained my ankle and I couldn’t recall what I did to hurt it. When the doctor told me it was gout I was given some ibuprofen and sent home. It took over a week to clear up that attack. Since that time I got to learn the foods that caused flare ups and even acquired medication to combat the attacks if they were severe. Over ten years I learned to avoid foods like asparagus, seafood, and all you can eat steak buffets were off limits to me also. From time to time I would get an attack, but I had managed to keep them to just 1-2 minor attacks a year but here I was suffering gout attack after gout attack and knew it had to be something in my nutrition plan. Plant Based Proteins have peas and peas were on the high purine list. Now that I knew what was causing my gout attacks, and it was simply a matter of adjusting the nutrition plan to lower the amounts of plant-based proteins I ingested to offset the attacks.
While I was trying to adjust the amount of plant-based protein I was ingesting I eventually had to succumb to the pain and discomfort and cease my workouts at F45. Yet I did not want to stop working out. I switched to a low impact exercise to keep me moving and burning calories. I choose the elliptical machine. I wasn’t giving up, but rather making fast adjustments to keep going no matter what. I couldn’t stop in my second month of my journey and I powered through many of workouts on the elliptical machine grimacing in pain. I was not going to quit.
In spite of the challenges I faced with the gout attacks, I ended the second month with a total weight of 16 pounds lost! I attribute the loss to the plant-based nutrition plan, and the high levels of cardio I was achieving day by day. I was burning 2-3 thousand calories a day in spite of my gout attacks and pain. Losing .33 kilos a day was a tremendous achievement given the new challenges of balancing out the plant-based protein against the continuous gout attacks. I was getting healthier and hoping that with persistence I could eventually get rid of the gout attacks altogether. There were positive changes form this plant-based plan that I felt after the first few days. I noticed my energy levels were going through the roof. I was able to run further and do more and more cardio than ever before. There is a documentary on Netflix called “The Game Changers”, and although it may not have their facts 100% right I will testify to the fact that most of what they say is true as I have personally see the benefits of a vegan diet. Benefits that I cannot ignore and the main reason why I keep a nutrition plan that is 75-90% plant-based today.
You can watch my videos of me training with Derrick Byrd at F45 on the FormerlyMe YouTube channel here:
Follow my journey online at FormerlyMe.com and on the YouTube channel. Next month I will cover my time continuing a modified plant-based protein nutrition plan and working myself up to running an indoor marathon (42.195 km). Until next time that has been FormerlyMe!
Follow F45 College Park: facebook.com/f45trainingcollegeparkplaza
Follow Derrick Byrd: instagram.com/derrickbyrdfit