Seven Pounds vs. Twenty-two Minutes

Stig Severinsen.

Ever hear of him?

He’s a Danish man who lives to break records. World records, mainly.

He’s a seeker of wild things.

Most of his records have to do with water.

For example, our man Stig holds the world record for breath holding under water.

If you had to hazard a guess as to how long old Stiggie stayed down, what would you say?

Five minutes? Ten? Twelve?


Twenty-two. Twenty-two minutes under the water.

That is bananas.

They once asked Stig when things became the most challenging in the act of breath holding.

One would think the final moments would have to be the most challenging.

Stig contests that the most difficult moments are right around the ten to twelve minute mark.

The halfway point, if you will.

That’s when the doubt sets in. You begin to think to yourself, “well, Jesus, I’ve been down here a good ten to twelve minutes — that’s at least something”.

The same can be said about weight loss.

I’ve hit the half-way point myself, and it may just be the most challenging stretch of my journey so far.

In early January I somehow managed to gain 7 pounds.

Mainly due to stress, and my mind not being as clearly focused as it needed to be.

This development would have shattered me a year ago. I would have just caved, and said “shag it”. Pouring over reasons as to why I wouldn’t be able to continue losing weight. Whipping myself for backsliding.

In the past, I’ve loved punishing myself — a bit of a Fifty Shades of Dave situation.

But when I hopped on the scale and saw that I’d gained for the first time in over a year — I did something strange. I took action. I called the gym and asked for the toughest trainer they had.

“Find me somebody who will not put up with my bullshit.” Those were my exact words, I believe.

The point is: just when you think you have it licked, just when you feel comfortable — those are the moments where you should be most vigilant.

Fortunately, my trainer friend has made quick work of that seven. They were gone within a week.

Getting half-way to a weight loss goal, or any kind of goal really, is absolutely fantastic. And I’m not downplaying it. Ninety-odd pounds is pretty damn great. For me though, it’s about sharpening my focus, amping up my will, and doing everything in my power to get to where I need to be.

Bearing in mind that the phrase “half-way point” merely refers to the weight. The journey I’m on doesn’t end at a number.

It began just over a year ago, and it will never end.

I’m not doing this to see numbers on a scale. I’m doing this to see a life worth living with the biggest smile I can muster plastered all over my face.

“I want to hold my breath as long as possible… and discover all the beauty that is in the deep sea.”

Stig Severinsen

20 thoughts on “Seven Pounds vs. Twenty-two Minutes

  1. Good for you for making that call and not settling. I’ve been through that self-punishment many times and I know it’s not easy to pull yourself out of.
    Your blog is such an inspiration.

  2. Hi Dave: As I keep trying to remember we never graduate, we keep taking the course. AA has taught me many things and I need to do the best I can. I love your tenacity and desire TO BE!!!!

  3. Needed to hear this today. I have been struggling since December myself and have been gradually creeping up. Three pounds to goal is now 13. Refocusing sounds like the key.
    Thanks for sharing your stuggle. You touch so many with this.

  4. Congrats Dave. I think you’re right about not getting complacent. I have embarked on a similar journey and lost 70 lbs over the past 5 and a half months. I know I can lose the weight. That part seems easy. The trick is keeping it off. Vigilance is critical for the rest of our lives….keep up the good work!

    1. Mind over matter… or something like that. Halfway is better than no way. And once you’ve the time and energy into getting there, you don’t really want to slide back. You’ve got this, David.

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