This week has been marked with some big success. It all started on Monday July 23rd. I stepped on the scale for the first time in 4 weeks. The reason for this was I found myself getting on the scale everyday sometimes 2-3 times a day. I was getting very discouraged and extremely frustrated. I was getting my butt handed to me in the gym and the number was not moving. It was a very frustrating time. After sharing my frustration with Jaysson, and talking with my wife, we decided it was time for the scale to go away. So Jess literally hid it from me, which I asked her to do. I didn’t want to know where it was because I know myself, and I would have waited some night Jess went to work and I would have pulled it out and got on it. I really wanted to stay off it for a good solid 4 weeks. Well weigh in day was this past Monday. I am down another 8 pounds, and weigh 367 pounds. For 38 total pounds lost. Some maybe questioning that a little and may ask I thought you were down 41 pounds. Well you would be right, when I started CrossFit, I was down 41 pounds and after about 2 weeks or so of CrossFit, I managed to put on about 10 pounds. That was part of the frustration, I had worked hard to get 41 pounds off and then starting a new gym I packed 10 pounds back on. Well after talking to a couple of the CrossFit coaches, who I would add are 10,000 times more knowledgeable in this area than I, they talked me through what I had done previous to CrossFit, which was a lot of Cardio but really very minimal weight training. CrossFit added a lot of weight training and my body wasn’t quite used to that, and we figured since I was improving daily on adding weight, then I was probably packing on muscle as well, which is a good thing.  So all that to say I was happy with the 8 pounds lost and am looking forward to more weight loss.

     When I started this journey, I set a goal of losing 155 pounds, and right now as it stands I am only 13 pounds away from being 1/3 of the way through this. I am very much starting to get into the meat of this journey, the newness has fizzled and getting up in the morning to go to the gym is starting to be an everyday struggle. I would much rather roll over and go back to sleep and not go beat my body until I have nothing else in me to give at the gym. I would much rather sit in front of the TV in the morning eating Resses Puffs (Yes I do like children’s cereal) and get caught up on the morning news, and then tune into the Rachel ray show, don’t judge me I work evenings so TV time is in the morning, besides that woman knows how to cook and it all looks awesome. However this weight isn’t going to just fall off, work has to be done for it to come off. I have found a gym that I absolutely love, and more importantly is working for me. The hard work is beginning to pay off, and I am daily seeing results. Right now as it stands I am able to left more, run farther and have the endurance to withstand each and every WOD CrossFit throws at me. Now that’s not to say they are easy, far from it, or that I’m not going 100% each day.

     Some have approached me and asked how my diet is going. To be perfectly honest I’m still figuring that out. I have seen some great results with portion control. However portion definitely needs improvement and Jess and I are figuring that out as we go. Just as I have found with working out, what works for some doesn’t work for others. Same applies with food I think. A big thing is finding what is sustainable. Jaysson and I have talked long and hard on what is sustainable and what is not. Along this journey I have met people that are on similar journeys. In reading their blog information, I am stunned at some of the ways they do things. I have found that they can’t leave home without a food scale. If that is sustainable for them then great, or they can’t leave town without taking their own food with them to last for their trip. If that is sustainable, then great, but I know for me that would not work in any way shape or form. I refuse to be handcuffed to a food scale or making sure I have all the proper food to leave town, it just would not work for me at all. If that works for people then stick with it, it just would not work for me at all. I am thankful for a lady in our church that is a registered dietician at Hy-Vee in Windsor Heights. Her name is Sydney Jacobson. About 3 weeks ago Jess and I had the opportunity to go and meet with her. Sydney walked us through the entire Hy-Vee store and just gave us some great information and what to look for on food labels and what some of those big words mean and how those ingredients affect the human body. She gave us some great information on things to avoid and why those things should be avoided. Jess and I are really trying to make an effort to implement those changes, in the last 3 weeks my Peanut Butter has changed to JIF all Natural, and my milk option has changed. Honestly the milk was the hardest to change. If you’re from Iowa, you most likely grew up on Anderson Erickson. I know I did. Well I have made the change to a Milk option that is bottled in Guthrie Center, it’s called Cloverleaf Dairy. It is a grass based dairy and they add 0 hormones to their cows and honestly I think it tastes better than what I grew up with. Those are just a couple examples of things we have changed in our house. One other thing we have switched to is Quinoa. That has been an interesting switch, just don’t burn it in the pan, I did that the first time.

     The second successful thing that happened this week is I got by body fat checked. I still have my YMCA membership in Ankeny. I found out that they check body fat for free for all members. So even though I haven’t worked out there in a few months I took advantage of their service. The last time I got my body fat checked was at Kosama in March. When it was check then I hit 43% for my body fat, well good news, I’m down 11% from that. On Monday I was at 32% for my body fat, huge blessing there.

     The third successful thing that happened occurred today. Today I completed my first ever 5K. 3.2 miles of gut wrenching running. Running is probably the biggest weakness I have right now. I have struggled with running my entire life. I’m not built for running, but running is part of this process so I have to suck it up and put one foot in front of the other and get it done. When I found out we were doing a 5K for the WOD, I instantly got nervous, and my hands got cold, and my stomach was in knots. I absolutely did not want to go to the gym today. Well my alarm went off at 7 a.m. and I hit the snooze button, I finally rolled out at 7:15 got dressed, grabbed Jess’s gym clothes and drove to the gym. As I was driving over to the gym, a little anxiety started to set in. I was worried that I wasn’t going to keep up and that I would look stupid for taking all morning to run this thing. Well I walked into the gym and instantly I picked out my buddy Travis Bell, and three of my buddies that are Police Officers. The anxiety subsided pretty quickly. They all started to get me fired up and we joked a little about having the ambulance on standby for me. After that Ash explained to me the route and hit the clock and away our class went. As we took off, I tried to pick out a couple people to try and keep pace with. Boy was that the most epic fail ever. It lasted for maybe the first 300 yards and I quickly found myself at the very back of the pack and the last person in the pack looked like a tooth pick. I kept plodding on, and was just remembering what people told me to do, “keep your feet moving and put one foot in front of the other.” Some words a firearms instructor told me as I was struggling with a qualification course, “Just breathe” So that’s what I did, one foot in front of the other and focused on my breathing. I took the advice of one of the CrossFit coaches when we were running on a different day, she told me to pick out targets along the route and run to those. So I started picking out trees, mailboxes, stop signs, the end of a fence, things like that. It worked. Well as I approached NE 66th Ave, I began to meet the class coming back, the pack had thinned pretty good, but everybody was doing well. Ash ran by me give me a quick high five and told me not to quit. So I pressed on, one foot in front of the other, before I knew it I was at the half way point and headed for home. When I got turned around I realized now I was all alone, I wouldnt be meeting anybody else heading back as I was the last person on the route. As I ran North on the bike path back towards NE 66th, I started to get gassed out and my legs were screaming. I needed a push, I started to pray and just prayed that God would give me something to keep pushing me. As I approached NE 66th, I noticed that an Ankeny Police Officer had a vehicle stopped. Boom there was the encouragement I need, I was instantly reminded of my end goal and where I want to be in a full time capacity. I want that more than anything, and as it stands now, I am unqualified for such a position because I am unfit to pass the physical requirements to be a full time Peace Officer in Iowa. After seeing this, I was amped; I ignored the pain in my legs and kept pressing on. As I ran to NE 70th I began to get tired and the pain in my legs was really beginning to get worse, as I was about 300 yards from NE 70th, I found myself praying to just be able to finish this run, and as I kept going I saw a blue shirt and 2 gray shirts come around the corner onto the bike path and they were running towards me and then they stopped and began yelling for me. I instantly knew who two of the people were, they were my buddies Brad and Ben who both are employed by a Police Agency as Officers, I didn’t know who the third person was I had never met her until today. As I got to them they fell in line behind me and kept talking to me and kept encouraging me to finish and not wuss out at the very end of this run. Those three people finished the last ¾ of a mile with me. Words do not describe what it felt like to have 2 of my buddies and a perfect stranger come back for me and help me finish strong. I completed the run in a time of 45 minutes and 45 seconds. Definitely not a world record but definitely a mile stone for me. I have never run 3.2 miles in one setting before until today. I thought it would be impossible for me to run that kind of a distance and live to tell the tale. Well I did run 3.2 miles and I did live to tell the story.

     I am so pumped for the results I have been having, God has been good and has blessed beyond I can even imagine. He has blessed in the weight loss and in the little things, like giving just the right amount of encouragement I need at the right time to get through a 3.2 mile run. A guy from my church who also does CrossFit was sharing with me a verse he came upon on the CrossFit Faith’s website and it was this Galatians 6:14-   May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. Wow, very convicting, and a reality check for me that this journey is nothing I can do, this is the power of Christ in me and the only thing I am to boast in is the cross of Christ. So here is to pressing on and I am excited to see what happens as I progress towards the end goal of losing 155 pounds, 38 down and 117 more to go!

CrossFit Ankeny

    I’m not so good at this blogging thing. Forgive me, sometimes I feel if I haven’t lost some weight or I failed at abstaining from food or if I don’t really have anything Earth shattering to share or something like that, blogging is not the first thing that comes to mind.  So with that let me update you on some happenings. Today I’m going to focus my attention on the where I work out and recap the last couple of days.

     I’ve been doing CrossFit Ankeny now for just shy of 6 weeks.  I am 100% believer in their system. Holy cow, it is crazy some of the stuff they have us do, however what we do is completely functional and applicable for everyday use. It’s just designed for the workout to be done at a high level of intensity. Each workout is different every day. The real beauty of their system is that each workout can be modified for any age range or if you have some sort of injury each and every work can be modified to meet your needs. There trainers are top notch and I have had opportunities to workout with each and every one of them, and they are some of the nicest people you are going to meet. The last 3-4 weeks I have been trying to go twice a day 2-3 times a week. I’ve been working pretty closely with a couple guys named Bart and Travis and they have been working me hard as I press on this journey. I have been thankful for these two guys, as they have taken a personal interest in what I am attempting to accomplish and have pointed me in the direction of my goals.  

     This week I have really started to notice the fruits of my labor. I have hit a couple major milestones this week and I am very excited about it. The last two days I have done what is called RXing the Work Out of the Day (WOD). What that means is this, each day CrossFit has a prescribed WOD. So if you complete the WOD as they have prescribed it without modification, you have RX’d the WOD. The last two days I have accomplished this task.

      Tuesday’s prescribed WOD was to complete 30 Clean and Jerks for time. The prescribed weight for the Clean and Jerks for men was 135 pounds. I was a little nervous and excited at the same time. Nervous in the fact that 135 pounds was only 20 pounds shy of my maximum weight for this lift, but excited in the fact that I have worked hard on these not only at the gym but also on my own time. My employer has a weight room and gives employee’s access to it 24/7. So I have ventured over there and worked on these on my own as well. I found out what the WOD was going to be on Monday night and I was like a little kid the night before Christmas, and it was all I could talk about. I told Jess that I think I could actually RX it and she without hesitation said “Do it.” So the alarm goes off on Tuesday morning and I was up and ready to go for the 6:30 class. As we drove over to the gym, a little anxiety started to set in and my stomach was in knots. I was very nervous, and I didn’t talk much on the way to the gym. As I got to Oralabor Rd and Delaware, I just started praying about it. I am learning that not only is our God a God of the big things he is also a God of the little things. In the grand scheme of things wanting to RX the WOD is a little thing, it wasn’t going to be the end of the world if I didn’t RX it. So I just started praying quietly, and just poured out what was on my heart, and told Him that I would love to be able to RX the WOD and I would love just a little bit of the strength He gave Sampson to bring down that building. Well as I walked into the gym that anxiety was still there a little bit, so I got stretched out milled around a little bit said hello to Bart told him what I was planning to do and he grinned at me and said “Let’s do it.” So with that I loaded my bar with all 135 pounds and just stared at it until the rest of the class was ready to go. Bart hit the countdown timer, it was a 10 second timer and it felt like an eternity. The buzzer went off and I grabbed that bar and got through the first few reps. About rep 10 I was really starting to feel the weight that I held in my hands and it was heavy. As I got to rep 15 people were starting to finish and I was only about half way through it. So I set the bar down shook out my arms and then Jess showed up in front of me. She smiled and asked where are you? so I told her I was half way done. I grabbed the bar again and started going one rep at a time, taking a short break after each rep. Well Jess walked away from me to walk her mom out the door. As I hit rep 24, I was spent, my arms were shaking and I could feel my form was starting to go way down. I looked up to see Bart standing in front of me and he asked how many I had left. I told him 6 more, he told me to pick up the bar and that I hadn’t come all that way to wuss out on the last 6 reps. So I grabbed the bar and finished the last 6 reps, I finished in a time of 10:24. It was a huge blessing for me to get that RX next to my name on the board. I was pumped, tired but pumped. It was an answer to prayer; I was so humbled at how God works things out. What an awesome God we have who not only cares about the big things in life but also the little things as getting two letters next to my name on a dry erase board. Getting those two letters were a big encouragement that yes I can do these workouts as they are prescribed and to stick with CrossFit. It was also encouraging to see my progress. 6 weeks ago we did a WOD with Clean and Jerks and I could only do them with 95 pounds of weight, and that 95 pounds felt like 950 pounds. So in a matter of six weeks I have added 40 pounds to this particular lift, which means I’m putting on muscle and my body is getting stronger. To God be the glory great things He has done! This isn’t anything I can do on my own this is purely the power of Christ in me.

     The other WOD that I was blessed with RXing was today’s WOD. Today was 5 rounds of 10 back squats at 225 pounds and then a 400 meter run. Again I was a little nervous as my max back squat is 250 right now, and I really haven’t worked all that much on this lift, so I thought for sure it was going to be ugly today. I wasn’t nearly as excited as I was yesterday, and I was pretty stinking sore form yesterday as well. I got to the gym at 11:00 loaded up my bar and got stretched out. Travis who teaches form 11-1, was there and he encouraged me to try and RX it today.  So the timer went off and away I went, the weight wasn’t too bad, the run is what I hated the most. However God was good today and allowed me to finish this WOD as prescribed with a time of 21:46, it was the slowest time in my class. Which isn’t a huge deal to me because I’m still lapping the people sitting on the couch, I just like to finish. At the running part of round 4 one of the guys who was already done ran the last 200 meters with me into the gym and as I entered the gym there were about 4 more people standing around my squat rack pushing me to finish. I gutted out the last 10 reps and then took off on my last 400 meter run, my entire class joined me, encouraging me to finish strong on the run. Yet again another reason why I love CrossFit, I have experienced some camaraderie like I have never seen before. These people have already completed the WOD, and now they see me tired and ready to be done, and they joined me and ran 400 extra meters that they didn’t have to do just so they could encourage me to finish strong. It is truly something that words cannot describe; I think you have to experience it to fully grasp it. If you are reading this and would like to experience CrossFit, they do offer a free two week trial that you can try. No obligation to join, just two weeks of trying it. My father-in-law joined me for two weeks and he ended up joining the gym, he got my brother-in-law to come and he and his fiancé both joined and my mother-in-law is doing the free two weeks trial run, and as far as I can tell she likes it too. The music guy at my church, High Pointe Church in Altoona, Matt will be joining me in about ten days to try it out as well, I’m hopeful he is going to join. Matt if you are reading this you are committed now brother; it’s in black and white. So if you are reading this and want to try it out let me know and I would love to have you join me.

     Well I think that is all for now, I have so many things I want to share, maybe in the next few days or shoot maybe tomorrow I will have another post to share. Will see what happens. 


     Been far too long since my last post. It has been an interesting month around the Albright’s. My wife started full time in her job and with that comes new hours she has to work. She is working the overnight shift, which is 11:30 p.m and she gets off right around 8:00 in the morning. So that has most definitely been a huge adjustment for us as I still work evenings.  It definitely has its ups and downs thats for sure. With Jess being gone all night at work, I must admit, it has been very easy to snack late at night and I have found myself falling into that a little bit. Nothing huge such as eating an entire large pizza or anything like that, but I find that I will pick up whatever we have around and just start snacking on it. I’m not eating because I’m hungry but rather out of sheer boredom. What has been bouncing through my head is a phrase that my old pastor from Saylorville would say, and that is “Paths lead to places.” So being on the path of “snacking” that path has potential to lead to over eating and for what purpose? Because Brian is bored?………. Really? That dog doesn’t hunt in my book. So there are nights that have been a struggle to resist that jar of nuts in the cabinet, or the multi grain chips and salsa. Jess does pretty good not to have a ton of junk food around. Just because we have healthy food around the house doesn’t mean Brian gets to eat the entire jar of nuts or the entire jar of peanut butter in one sitting. It’s healthy if you eat it in the correct portion size not all at one time.

     In other news I am still meet regularly with my brother Jaysson, and holy cow, we have gotten into some serious conversations about w hole variety of things. The Bible study we are going through is so applicable to so many aspects; it almost seems at times we spend more time on a topic than we do on food and eating. This isn’t a bad thing. Jaysson has challenged me on so many things, the most recent thing he has challenged me on comes straight out of 1 Peter 2:21-23


     For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. 22 )He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten,)but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly.


     These verses have really challenged me on my thinking and how I react to different situations. There have been some things that have happened and some things that I have felt weren’t necessarily fair in the way I was treated in those situations. Not going to go into detail on that, I just don’t feel that this is the forum for that. Anyway I shared with Jaysson the things that had been going on and he took me straight to these verses. I will be honest I have been on these verses for the last 3 weeks or more. Christ has left us a perfect example of how to respond in situations that aren’t fair. Jesus Christ was beaten, whipped and hung on a cross and He was 100% innocent of the things he was accused of. Yet he did not threaten them he did not revile them. Christ could have had the ultimate back up at his command all he had to do was say the word, but he chose not to threaten the people nor did he revile the people that were falsely accusing Him. That is the example Christ has left for us to follow, and I will be honest, more often than not I fight back and want to defend myself. This is an area of my life that needs work. I have been so thankful for the times I get to meet with Jaysson. I think my wife is even more so, jokingly I asked her if she calls Jaysson and tells him what to talk to me about.  She of course said No, but I don’t know, the jury is still out on that.

    About two weeks ago I joined a brand new gym in Ankeny. It’s called Crossfit Ankeny. Been going for just shy of 2 weeks now, and holy cow is it intense. I absolutely love this gym. These guys that run it don’t let you stop in the middle of the work out. They are all over you, in a good way. It’s not like boot camp or anything like that, they genuinely care that you get the best results possible from your workout. When I have wanted to quit for the day they have been right on top of me, encouraging me to get back in the fight and complete my workout. This stuff is so intense; my only goal walking into the gym in the morning is to finish the workout. Not for a great time but just to finish it. It honestly feels great to finish the workout, now I am usually the last one to finish but I finish. Thank you Lord, I have finished each workout so far. My father-in-law has even joined me this last week, and it has been fun to hit the gym with him in the morning. This past Saturday we completed a team workout, and it was quite honestly the hardest thing I have ever done in the gym. It started that we took off for a 400 meter run, one of us had to carry a 10 pound medicine ball while we ran. Once we completed the rune we came back inside and had 40 130 pound dead lifts to complete, so we split them up in 10 reps a piece. Once that was complete we took off on another 400 meter run again with the 10 pound ball. We came back in and completed 55 box jumps. After that back to another 400 meter run with that stinking ball. We came back in from the run and had right around 70 wall balls to complete. After that back to the run with the ball, by this time that ball is stinking heavy and I must give credit where credit is due, I was gassed out at this point and my father in law I think knew it and he carried this ball a lot more than I did. After the run we came back in and had 80 sit ups to complete between the two of us. After that back to the 400 meter run with the medicine ball that at this point I’m ready to throw in the dumpster as we ran past it. After the run we had 70 reps of jump rope to split between the two of us. After we did the jump rope we had one last 400 meter run to gut out, this time we got to leave the ball behind. We finished this workout right at 31 minutes. I literally almost vomited on the last run. It was the hardest most intense workout that I have done, but once it was over, it felt good to have accomplished that, and I can honestly look back and say I had fun with it. Don’t get me wrong I’m not running out and signing up to do it again, but it was good to have completed it.

     Today I bumped up the workouts. I am starting to do “2 a day’s.” What the plan is and what I have talked with a coach at Crossfit about is coming in during the open gym time from 11:00 a.m. -1:00 p.m. and work on some extra things. I have had a desire to pass the law Enforcement agility test since 2005, and I have yet to be able to pass it. Well in speaking with Bart at the gym about this, I have set a goal to pass the test by December 1st. Bart affirmed that this goal is 100% attainable, so he is working on putting together some workouts that incorporate running, sit ups, push-ups and some stretching so I can reach past my toes. I have been very appreciative of the time the coaches at Crossfit have taken with me. They are upbeat and very much are encouraging me to succeed on these goals I have set. So by the grace of God I hope to accomplish this goal as well as being able to run in a 5K race in October, and if those goals are met then glory to God for that, if they aren’t met then I’m confident when the Bible says in Jeremiah “I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord.” 

      Thank you all who have encouraged me over the last few months, those words of encouragement have meant a ton to me. I would also like to publically thank my number 1 cheerleader; my wife has been with me every step of the way on this and has been nothing but encouraging to me and supportive of me on this road. I have the best wife in the entire world. I don’t deserve her, she puts up with a lot from me. Jess started Crossfit with me this week, and it has been fun to see her get excited about it as well.  Again we are truly thankful for each and every one of you that have encouraged us to press on during this journey. To God be the glory!




Well it has been quite awhile since my last update. To be honest this just may sound like a bunch of rambling, but that’s fine.

     Let’s start with Kosama, I hated it. Some I liked, but for the most part I really didn’t care for it. Let me preface it with this, Kosama works for people and they do have people that see some great results, it just didn’t work for us. Jess saw some progress but not what she was hoping for, and I saw some pretty decent results. My main complaint is the fact that they stack as many people in a room as possible making it hard to move; now I think part of it was the class time we attended. However we would have anywhere from 40-50 people  in this room and it was just very crowded and you couldn’t move without bumping into people and vice versa, it was frustrating, not quite the experience I was hoping for after paying 300 dollars to attend an 8 week class. So lesson learned on that. We instead have taken to running after work. Which that has been a nice change. We go late at night, nobody is out, no cars are out and it’s just Jess and I. We can pretty much run down the middle of the street if we wanted too.

     I am finding that what works for some doesn’t work for others, with this running, I am starting to see even better results than with Kosama, and Jess is starting to see better results as well. With doing this running, Jess and I are going to run Race for the Cure in October, it’s a 5K run and we are looking forward to it and we are starting to get a team together to do it with us. We have an idea for a team and what I have envisioned is put a team to together and call it “Cops for the Cure.” My goal is to have at least one Officer from each Law Enforcement Agency in Polk County be a part of this team and we can run it together. So to all my friends that wear a badge, that are interested in doing this with me shoot me an email, or hit me up on facebook, or call me.

     As this journey continues, the “newness” of It has fizzled somewhat and this is where the rubber meets the road. I was challenged on that on Tuesday morning by my good friend Jaysson. This weight loss isn’t just going to be handed to me, it is something that has to be fought for. I am in the fight for my life with this and every day I have to wake up and battle for this. As you know, I have been doing a Bible study called the Lords Table, and I have been hung up in a certain study that addresses temptation. It used the passage when Jesus was tempted by the devil after he had spent 40 days fasting. The devil made all these promises to Jesus with the catch that Jesus had to worship him. That study has been convicting and encouraging at the same time. Convicting in that Jesus stood against the Devil after not eating for 40 days and had the strength to resist and battle satan, and I fail on a daily basis in areas of my life. I need to do battle with satan, and do it aggressively. I have been challenged to dive into God’s word more, I have tried in this area and it is getting better. Over the last few years I have been in the habit of not leaving my house without being prepared for the possibility of having a physical confrontation with evil people in this world. Likewise I am trying to get in the habit of not leaving my house without being prepared to do battle with the tempter himself. This is an area that needs improvement and as time progresses it is getting better. Ephesians 6 tells us to put on the whole armor of God, and it specifically tells us in verse 17 to take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. That is the only way we are going to combat satan, temptation or any other struggle in life. That is to take Gods word and fight sin with everything we have.

     I will leave you with a link to a song that has encouraged me greatly as this journey has progressed.



     It’s been a few weeks since my last blog post, so I thought that I should update you all.

This week started week 2 of Kosama. All I have to say is, Wow! It’s some intense stuff. It really focuses on Abs, and Cardio. We have been bouncing around between the 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. class. We have really enjoyed it so far. We are contemplating on possibly committing to a yearlong membership at Kosama. We are still thinking about it, it’s pretty pricy to do and they kind of want the money upfront, they do have payment plans but even the monthly plan runs about 80 bucks a month. All in all it is worth every dime we have paid so far. 

     I wish I could report to you that I have lost more weight however I have actually gained a few pounds back, not real sure how that happened, but it did. To be honest it’s been frustrating me a lot. The reason for the frustration is I have a goal to be at 350 pounds by the end of 8 weeks at Kosama. To attain that goal that means the 33 pounds has to come off in the next 6 and a half weeks. That’s an average of about 5 pounds a week. At the rate I started it seemed at the time a very attainable goal, now I have put a few pounds back on and it doesn’t seem so attainable right now. That’s not to say I am giving up or throwing in the towel. As I said in the beginning of this blog, failure is not an option for me. Losing a total of 155 pounds will take time to get off, and quitting after gaining a few pounds back is not a rational decision. So I am going to keep pounding through Kosama and whatever I weigh at the end of it is the weight that God has for me to be at the end of 8 weeks.

     I began a new Bible Study this week. It’s called “The Lord’s Table” it is a study through Setting Captives Free, and it’s about Biblical principals in weight loss. I actually just started it on Monday. The first two lessons were extremely convicting. The first lesson was on motives, and the question is what is motivating you to lose weight? Is the motivation self seeking in that I want people to recognize that I am losing weight or am I doing this to glorify God. I must confess as I thought through the questions, I found that at times I have been selfish and I want people to notice what I have accomplished. Isaiah 48:11 states this For my own sake, for my own sake, I do it  for how should my name[a] be profaned? My glory I will not give to another.” Did you catch that? God is NOT going to share the glory of my weight loss with Brian. Straight up not going to happen, period! I know for me sometimes I get caught up in people noticing that I have cut some weight and I instantly think “yes they are right, I do look good, I have accomplished something important, I have worked hard for this.” Few things wrong with that attitude, number 1.) It is God who has allowed me to be able to drop this weight not anything I have done. Going to the gym and working out is an act of obedience. Obedient in that am I going to obey and honor God in my eating habits and work out regiment or am I going to continue down a road of sinful eating and live a displeasing lifestyle to the God who sent his only son to die for me.

Number 2.) Where in scripture does it say that we are to do things for the glory of ourselves? I can’t find a spot in scripture where it says that. I Corinthians says we are to do ALL things to the glory of God. As I have been chewing on this I have started to think through maybe the self seeking attitude that I have been guilty of having is the reason that God has not allowed me to get under that 380 pound mark and the weight gain is God giving me a reality check say “Brian refocus here this is about me and not you.”

     During this study I will be meeting with a good friend of mine named Jaysson Gurwell. Jaysson and I met just a few months ago. We met through our new church plant, High Pointe Church in Altoona. Jaysson and I met for the first time this morning to go over what we are learning through this study. Jaysson challenged me on a number of things this morning. The main thing we worked through today was laziness. Not only laziness in my everyday life but laziness in my eating habits as well. Jaysson challenged me to address the laziness issue I have. Where I struggle with laziness is not where I am employed, but rather at home. I barely help my wife with things around the house, rarely do I do dishes, make our bed, or clean the bathroom not a whole lot. Jaysson challenged me to serve my wife by helping around the house. He made a great point that service starts at home. I have no problem serving in my Church, I love to do that, I have no problem serving my neighbors on our Homeowners Association Board, and I have no problem serving the citizens of my community in my employment. The person who has taken the brunt of my laziness is my wife and that is 100% wrong, she is the most important relationship I have and I have in essence pushed her aside in the name of serving our neighbors and our community and our church. Not that those things are bad in and of themselves, its bad when they are taking priority over my responsibilities at home. Jaysson challenged me that services begins at home and if I can’t serve my wife effectively then I won’t be able to serve our church effectively nor my neighbors nor our community. How we got into all that in a 60 minute time span, I’m still trying to figure that out, but obviously that is what God wanted to show me this morning. Just as I was challenged this morning and have tons of improvement in this area, I challenge you men, how are you serving your families at home? So my commitment from today on is to serve my wife in whatever capacity that I can before anything else I pour myself into for the day. Will you men that are reading this step up to the plate and join me in this commitment? God has called us as men to be the leaders in our homes, be the defenders of our homes, and we will be accountable to God for how we do that. So that is my update it was more geared towards what I have been learning and not so much about weight loss this time but Lord willing there will be more posts about that in the near future.


It’s been a few days since my last post so I thought I would give an update. I had my follow up appointment with the Sleep Center this afternoon. It did not go as I had hoped. To be honest I am very disappointed about it. As I sat in the Doctor’s Office and listened to what he said I felt so angry and honestly rather embarrassed. We talked about quite a few things but the majority of what we talked about is how restless I have been sleeping. During my study I woke up an average of 42 times. The reason for the waking was the lack of oxygen I was breathing in. The reason for the lack of oxygen is my weight. The Doctor flat out said if you lose weight you can very easily curb this issue, not that the weight loss is a guarantee that it will be totally solved but it will help out a ton. So he said the dreaded words I was hoping not to hear and that is I need a C-PAP machine. I was instantly disappointed. I am disappointed in myself that the years of bad eating habits and the constant weight gain has lead to this. This is nobody’s fault but mine. I am the only person to blame for it. Responsibility is a huge deal to me. I heard for a long time in my field of work a lot of excuses. People are so quick to point the finger at somebody else. There are a lot of people in this world that don’t want to take responsibility for themselves. They are usually selfish and have an “entitlement” attitude. So the last thing I want to do is point the finger. The only person I want to point the finger at is Brian. This is Brian’s fault.

As I left the Doctors Office, I left feeling pretty discouraged. It kind felt like all the work I have put in so far has meant nothing; but the verse that started coming to mind was Psalm 18:30 This God—his way is perfect;[d]the word of the Lord proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him. So my thought was ok God has a reason for this machine and has the Doctor telling me I need it for a reason, so it’s time to apply this verse and live it out. It’s easy to say “ya I believe God’s ways are perfect” when nothing is majorly wrong in your life very easy. How much do you believe it when He throws a trial into your life? I will be honest I failed that today; I instantly started to have the “poor Brian” mentality. Well guess, not poor Brian. It’s time Brian backs what he says. This trial of a C-PAP machine is a trial and I need to rejoice in trials. James 1:2-3 says Count it all joy, my brothers,[b] when you meet trials of various kinds, 3 for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. Trials are a testing of my faith and I need to have a good attitude about it. This C-PAP is not only the consequence of my abuse of food but also a trial. The work I have put in so far isn’t all for nothing, by the grace of God I have lost 22 pounds so far, that’s not anything to be ashamed of. Today’s results were another reminder of the life I am leaving behind; if I hadn’t gotten to 405 pounds this C-PAP machine probably wouldn’t be necessary. So to sum all this up, I have to go back to the Sleep Center for yet another overnight visit on Friday night. I am going to try and have the best attitude I can and kick this thing in the rear and get through this trial.

In other news I am down 22 pounds so far. I am pretty stoked about that. I have been doing the Advocare 10 day cleanse, that has not been fun but I have learned different ways to eat vegetables, sometimes raw other times I sauté them and put them in tuna or I just sauté them and eat them as a side. I have 2 days left on this cleanse and I am looking forward to being done with it. I have found that I do feel better and I have started to sleep better at night and I haven’t taken my acid reflux medicine in 4 days and haven’t had an issue. So that has been good as well. I am pleased to report that I was able to kick the pop thing a week early, which was totally God working in me. Today marks day 9 of no pop and I don’t miss it at all. I have really started to get used to drinking water and it isn’t so bad. Crossfit has completely kicked my butt. Last week I alternated between going to Crossfit and the YMCA. I would be so sore from Crossfit that it hurt to move. So I took my Doctors advice and left my ego at the door, on the YMCA days I would just walk for about 45 minutes on a treadmill that really helped loosen up the stiff muscles I had. This week is a different story; I will be doing Crossfit 4 times this week in preparation for Kosama. Kosama is a 6 day a week program so I need to be ready to be in the gym 6 days a week. Sunday night Jess and I have our big weigh in with Kosama. They will weigh us and take measurements and all that good stuff. So we are looking forward to that, and then Monday morning at 6 a.m. we start Kosama. I really am excited about doing this, Jess and I get to do it together which will be fun. She is pretty stoked herself and has already started to lose some weight herself, I am very proud of my wife for her work so far, she doesn’t have any weight to lose in my opinion but she thinks she does and is going after it. Well I think that is all I have to report on today; again I can’t say this enough thank you all for your encouragement. It is greatly appreciated; some of those encouraging words have gotten me through mornings in the gym and have gotten me out of bed in the morning to get in the gym. They mean a lot to us. I will leave you with this, Last week I had a great opportunity to give an interview to a lady that runs a website on the East Coast, she got turned on to my story because I am friends with her mom and brother on Facebook. Her brother and I are pretty good friends we started college together, he is now married and is currently serving this Country in the United States Army is based in Germany at this time. He has done 2 Deployments in the Middle East, one in Afghanistan, and in the other in Iraq. I am very proud of what he does and am thankful for the men and women of the Armed Forces who sacrifice daily to ensure our freedoms at home. Ben, I am proud of you and thankful for your service and am thankful you came home safely after each deployment. So I will leave you all with the link to the interview Ben’s sister and I did.



Opening Day

Today marks the day I have started CrossFit. I was a little skeptical about going; to be honest I didn’t really want to get out of bed and go. Jess and I had a very relaxing weekend with a couple very dear friends out in Clinton, we kind of didn’t want to leave. Jess and I both love Eastern Iowa, and our friends live in a very rural area on 82 acres. Beautiful part of Iowa, we love being out there. So to hear reality go off at 6:15 this morning I wasn’t real enthusiastic about rolling out of bed.

Anyway I got up got ready and headed out the door. As I drove out there I was a little nervous as to what I should expect, I knew there would be a couple of people there I would know for sure but that would be it. Well little to my surprise as I walked in the door not only was there the 2 guys I know but also my friends Adam, and Megan. I was quite surprised to see them as well. Not that Travis and Matt weren’t enough, the more the merrier in my opinion. It was great to work out with my friends from work, they all are were great encouragers. In my field of work the people I work with start to become almost family like, we work all the holidays , weekends, and everything in between together, so it was great to have them all there today. 

     Travis introduced me to one of the trainers named Jamie and told me that she would be working with me today. I said ok. As Jamie and I started to talk, she told me that she I would not be doing the workout that everybody else was doing. Which at first I was kind of bummed about. It wasn’t the greatest feeling getting pulled away from my friends to do something completely different than they were doing. I started with just some basic warm ups and stretching, and then Jamie told me to do ten pushups. Instantly I had a feeling of fear come over me. I hate pushups and I hate them because I can’t do them. I expressed that to Jamie and she had me do them from my knees. Talk about a humbling experience for me, I was in front of some people that had muscles I didn’t even know existed and I had to get on my knees and do pushups. Don’t get me wrong I’m not upset at CrossFit or anything like that at all. I was mad at myself; it was just another reminder of the consequences of my choices and the lifestyle that I chose to live for so long. So here is my goal I want to work towards being able to do 10 normal pushups without having to drop to my knees. I’m not sure how long this goal is going to take to accomplish but it is one I am going to go after hard and will be reporting on my progress.

     My workout today was pretty intense. If you aren’t familiar with CrossFit, they have the workout of the day (WOD), each WOD is timed and the idea is to get it done as fast as you can. So my WOD was I started on a row machine, I had to row 300 meters. Then I went over a grabbed a weighted ball and did what is called wall balls. If you don’t know what Wall Balls are let me tell you about them. First of all they aren’t fun. What you do is start in a standing position you then throw the weighted ball up the wall at the wall as the ball starts to fall you go down in a squatting position and catch the ball. As you push off out of the squatted position you throw the ball up at the same spot at the wall. I did this 20 times in a row. After Wall Balls I then moved on and preformed a modified pull up 10 times. I did all three workouts 3 times. I completed the workout in a time of 16 minutes and 32 seconds. So to recap today’s workout I did rowed a total of 900 meters, 60 wall balls and 30 pull ups.

     Today also started a ten day cleanse for me. I have never done a cleanse before but I have heard good things about them. I am doing the Advocare ten day cleanse, so with that I also am taking some fiber supplements. So each morning for breakfast I get the pleasure of drinking a 12 ounce Fiber drink. The package says it is a citrus flavored drink, it’s not citrus flavored. I shook that bottle as hard as I could and yet it was the chunkiest thing I have ever drank in my life. It’s pretty nasty stuff to tell you the truth.

     Today I also started reading the Book of Daniel. I started in chapter 1.  Just to give you what is happening in this chapter, Daniel and his friends have been taken captive. The king at the time assigned a daily portion of food to the captives that he had. Well Daniel knew the food that was assigned to him was wrong and it went against his faith. So Daniel took a stand and decided he wasn’t going to defile himself with the king’s food and wine that had been assigned to him. So Daniel approached the guy that was in charge of him and told him about what he had decided to do. The head guy said the king has assigned this to you and if I give you anything other than that you endanger my life. So Daniel makes a proposition to this guy and says test me and my friends for 10 days, give us vegetables and water to drink and then put us up against the other servants and see who is more healthy looking. So the guy in charge takes Daniel up on the proposition and gives Daniel vegetables and water to drink. At the end of ten days God blessed Daniel and his friends for the stand that they took and they were deemed healthier and had a better appearance than the other servants who ate the king’s food. Very cool how God blessed Daniels obedience here.  

     So if Daniel can do water and vegetables for ten days so can this guy. I am really excited to see the result of this cleanse in 9 more days.