Steve Grunwell

Open-source contributor, speaker, and electronics tinkerer

Stylized photo of an analog bathroom scale

Even More on Weight Loss

It’s been a few months since I’ve written about my weight loss efforts, but I’m proud to report that the progress continues. As of this morning, I’ve lost 46 pounds since June 2015, and I may yet reach my goal of losing a total of 60 by the first of June this year.

Prepare to buy new everything

This May, I’m a groomsman in two weddings on consecutive weekends. The second wedding is renting matching tuxedos, but the first is a less-coordinated “black suit and green tie”. Fortunately, I have a black suit in my closet for just such an occasion, purchased at a discount from Men’s Wearhouse after we rented our tuxedos there for my wedding in 2011. Of course, I was also much heavier then (and Men’s Wearhouse tailoring isn’t exactly recognized for modern, well-fitted suits), so I took my trusty three-piece to a local tailor that came highly recommended. I explained “this suit’s always felt loose, like I’m wearing my dad’s suit.” He smiled, had me put the suit on, and we both laughed and how it hung off my body.

The estimate he gave me to tailor (i.e. completely deconstruct) the suit? $298. Price I paid for the suit in 2011 (after discount but with the original tailoring)? $230.

Needless to say, it was going to be cheaper for me to find a new suit than wearing a salvage title. Fortunately, my friends at Pursuit hooked me up, and I have a nice, well-fitting suit on its way in time for the wedding for roughly what it would have cost me to butcher the old one.

Sweet foods lose their appeal

This morning we went to a first birthday party for a friend’s son. There were sweets aplenty, but I passed on the ice cream entirely and wasn’t particularly excited over the cupcake, either. Instead, I found myself snacking on items from the fruit and veggie trays rather than drooling over the desserts.

Don’t get me wrong: a good piece of New York Cheesecake, a plate of my mother’s brownies, or some Graeter’s ice cream would still get my attention, but this whole shift in my diet has taught me to savor the sweets I eat, rather than trying to get the most sweetness per serving.

I don’t automatically hate pictures of myself

One of the best parts about speaking at conferences is getting to travel to new places, meet new people, and teach them something new. The drawback is that to be a speaker, you’ll inevitably be on stage and get your picture taken.

For example, here’s a cringe-worth photo of me when I attended a We the People Hackathon at The White House for the second time, when I weighed about 260lbs:

Meanwhile, here are photos from two talks this spring, both of which are about 40lbs lighter than in DC:

I won’t be posing for calendars anytime soon (or ever, unless it happens to be an “Awkward Geeks of WordPress” charity calendar), but I can see (and feel) a difference, which feels great.

Plateaus are the worst!

For a good 2.5 months, I sat right around 220-224lbs, bouncing between the numbers but never breaking through that floor. It’s only in the last couple of weeks that I’ve finally dipped into the teens, putting me within reach of my weight loss goal.

Let me tell you: that plateau is the worst. I was sticking to my calorie budget, getting in my steps (well, sometimes), and drinking plenty of water but I just couldn’t drop any more weight. The best advice I can offer here it to stick with it and try shaking up your routine; a few days without alcohol (even when I account for its calories) seemed to be enough to kickstart the weight loss again, and its continued as I’ve added my nightly beer back into my routine.

11 months down

As of tomorrow morning, I have 31 days to lose the remaining 14 pounds to hit my goal. I’m going to do my best, but I’m not so bold as to ignore the fact that May is full of travel, including the two weddings, a bachelor party, php[tek], and a company trip, meaning I’ll be eating on the road, in airports, and socializing over drinks. Regardless of whether or not I hit 200lbs by June 1, I’m proud of the weight loss I’ve accomplished so far and grateful to my friends and family for all of their support.


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  1. You.are.awesome. Congratulations man! You look great and look like you *feel* great!

    • Thank you! I’m one of the only people I know who have lost weight since having a baby ;)

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