Monday, February 8, 2010

Before & After

To tell you the truth, I didn’t want to do it.

Put my photograph on this site.

I enjoyed being a mysterious, enigmatic fellow, a guy that could get away with saying any damn thing because he spoke from the shadows. But one day I realized that even though I kid around, even though I sometimes play loosey-goosey with language, even though I often seem to make light of this hellacious journey we’re all on… it’s really serious business for me.

It dawned on me one day that not having my progress photo on my blog was undercutting my message. I mean, I can talk all day long about the benefits of dropping 50, 75, 100 pounds, and some of you may even listen. But if I show you…


We’re visual people, you and I, and the impact of a massive transformation can lift us up, motivate us, remind us that what we’re attempting to achieve isn’t some impossible, pie-in-the-sky quest; the simple fact is that folks are doing it every day.

People just like you and me.

Rachel from Body By Pizza

I stumbled into this weight-loss blogging business the same way you probably did, looking for new ideas to help pull me out of my comfy Lazy-Boy lifestyle. Looking for new weapons in the war I knew I needed to wage against my uncooperative body. Looking for new answers to an age-old question: “How do I lose this weight?”


But in the end, I’m pretty sure I wasn’t seeking a how-to manual.

I was looking for hope.

Seeing photographic proof of a successful weight-loss journey just stirs something deep within you, awakens some sleeping giant that resides in the solemn places of the soul.


Karen from Not Just Celery


It inspires.

It’s a flare to guide our way in the dark, a wind at our back that helps propel us through choppy waters.


These aren’t people who plunked down two bucks at a convenience store counter and lucked their way into a Powerball jackpot. They planned and they persevered, they plotted and they plugged away at it. They dropped their excuses and picked up healthy new habits.

They had good days and bad, successes and setbacks. They may have even questioned if it was all worth it a time or two along the way. But they stuck with it, kept on keeping on, and…

Well, what’s it they say about a picture being worth a thousand words?



These photos are validations that, while these kinds of life-changing occurrences don’t happen overnight, they do happen. They don’t happen without a great deal of sacrifice and a huge amount of effort, but there’s not a one of us who have achieved it that would say it wasn’t worth all the effort and all the sacrifice in the end.



Wherever you are on this journey, whether it’s contemplating taking that first hesitant step or rounding third and heading for home, I hope you’ll meet the challenge you face with courage and commitment.

Tony from The Anti-Jared

I hope you’ll stick with it on the hard days and make it back to your feet when you stumble.

Bitch Cakes at *Bitch Cakes*

But most of all… I hope to see those photos when you’re done.


98 comments:

  1. You all look great! Fantastic is a better word. I know I can do it because I've done it before. I just need to get my butt in gear and work at it again. I've been a major slacker. Thanks for posting these pictures this morning, Jack!! I totally needed it.

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  2. What a fun post! Mr. Sh*t you look Mavalous!
    Cindie

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  3. I love the pics. Since the butt has already been done, and I want NO ONE to know this is me, what do you suggest? Feet wouldn't show it. Hmmm. I'm pondering.

    I'm not as non-committal as one would think! I'm just ... crazy.

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  4. You and the other bloggers all look fantastic!!

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  5. so many great success stories give us so much inspiration! Thank you for sharing your story with us Jack, you look really SHITTY :-)

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  6. Wow! Great pictures! I am going to have to visit some of those other blogs. Very inspiring!

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  7. Great post Jack. Thank you. These transformations are just jaw dropping. I feel honored to be included!!

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  8. Some amazing before and after - thanks for sharing.

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  9. sometimes pictures are worth a 1000 words. Very motivational post. Thanks for sharing!

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  10. You know how hard it is to post the befores and afters, I know how hard it is too. I struggled and struggled on whether to do that on my blog, but seriously, doing it yesterday was tough but it felt kind of good. Like I'm saying, "I'm not going to be that big EVER.AGAIN."

    Thanks for this post and the many links that I wasn't aware of. I really appreciate it. :)

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  11. I look forward to the day that my pictures will speak those 1000 words! Before and after pics are the measure of success for all to see. Yes, they give hope and inspiration beyond any written word!
    Thanks for sharing yours

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  12. yup...all you guys look great.
    When I was still looking for hope that is what I would do...look for people who had lost 130 lbs. there aren't many.
    I was always disappointed if there was no picture..it was almost like it didn't happen.

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  13. perfectly worded...and so true! Thanks for breakin' it down for those who are are at the beginning of their journey!

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  14. I love this post. One of my goals is to GET to my goal and then post my pictures. Thanks for the encouragement Jack.

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  15. One of the most amazing things about before and after pics is seeing the new person that literally emerges as the weight is lost.

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  16. How did you get those two pictures of me in women's underwear?

    Those were supposed to be for the wife on Valentine's Day.

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  17. Thanks! These are crazy inspiring. So far, all I've got is the before picture. But I WILL post that after picture, dammit.

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  18. Teriffic post, terrific accomplishments.

    Congrats to all of you who have gotten to your "after" pictures & to the rest of us - we can do it, too! :)

    Have a great day,
    Lynn

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  19. One thing you said struck me. These people had no excuses. It can be done. I think that not only do these pictures inspire people on their weight loss journeys, but also inspire those who have already lost the weight and need to maintain which in itself needs a lot of support and inspiration if you don't want to go back to that before picture.

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  20. Amazing pics! Thanks for that Jack!

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  21. I love this post! Congratulations to every pictured! You all look fabulous. Now I have new blogs to read for inspiration. Thanks!

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  22. Thank you for this post -- and thank all the others for contributing their pictures as well. You all look gorgeous and inspirational :)

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  23. Thanks for this post and the reminders you give us every day.

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  24. Thanks - this is a TON of motivation in one tidy post!

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  25. Thanks so much for including me in this post!

    Among some familar faces (TJ, Tony, Bitch Cakes, Sean, Jen, and of course, you!) I see a few bloggers I don't recognize so it looks like I have a few new blogs to read!

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  26. My favorite post yet. seeing the results of others makes you feel that it IS possible and so you keep struggling and working hard. Thanks!
    BTW, you look like a different person! Incredible.

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  27. Wow - amazing photos...
    I needed to see this today...

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  28. What a great composite post. You all deserve admiration for all the hard work you put into this every single day...and for posting about it so we can continue our own motivation.

    What a great Hall of Fame!

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  29. Great post Jack, not only because I was included. :) Thank you it was an honor BTW! :)

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  30. Great post! Thanks for the inspiration.

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  31. Great post! Sometimes those pictures can be so motivating.

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  32. What a wonderful post. I really needed that more then you will ever know. Thanks!

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  33. I'm so happy I found this! THANK YOU ( & the others) for being an inspiration.

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  34. Fabulous post, thank you so much for asking me to be a part of it :)

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  35. Everyone of the before & afters is inspiring - thanks for posting your's, too! ;)

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  36. Thanks Jack! You and the other losers look wonderful!!

    I think pictures are a wonderful motivator. I don't really see a difference in myself until I post the pictures. One day I hope to be included in your list of success stories! :-)

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  37. Love the before & afters! Very inspirational!

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  38. This is one of the most inspirational posts I've seen in a while!

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  39. Well I have a heck of a lot of Befores on my blog (some good befores and some bad befores) but not a whole lot of afters. I'm trying to turn a new corner this year and quit excusing my way out of another wasted year. LOVE this post. You are right, people like yourself and other bloggers who share their transformation visually is amazingly inspirational. Thanks so much for this bit of inspiration this morning, I needed it!

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  40. BTW, you have an AMAZING smile!!! Love that pic ;) Don't worry....I know you're married lol!

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  41. I love these pictures! They are all solid shots of hope and remind me that I have much to look forward to as I keep plugging along on this journey. Thank you for sharing!

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  42. What a great post and great inspiration. I wish my butt looked that good lol.

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  43. Such a great post! I'm so motivated by before and after pictures!

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  44. This is a really fantastic post (I know, we all pretty much say that about all of your posts. But it's true! I like your style). It's nice to see all these stories right here in one place... and nice to see what YOU look like too!

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  45. Just what I needed to read and see right now- Thanks!

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  46. Very inspiring post Jack - Thank you for sharing everyone's success. Congrats to all of them!

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  47. I am *so* excited to have photos like that to post when I reach goal! Thanks for sharing!!

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  48. Just wow.
    Such a motivating post.
    Congrats to all the big losers!

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  49. What an awesome and inspiring post- thanks SO much for sharing!

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  50. This was a great idea for a post. Very inspiring!

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  51. WOW.. I just came across your blog and I have no doubt.. I will be back.

    What an inspiring post. I will be one of those people. Soon.. just you watch!!

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  52. WOW, this is a post I will refer back to when I am feeling down and unmotivated. After reading it I am so glad that I sucked it up and bared it all on my blog today...it was hard to do :/

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  53. Amen to this!!! Totally bookmarking this post for days when I need it!!!

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  54. Thank you, great post, great pictures, fabulous motivation!!

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  55. What a great post! I love the pics of all of these folks including you who have accomplished so much. I'm gathering the guts to follow suit.

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  56. What a great post!
    Awesome collection of inspiration :D

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  57. This post is fantastic! It's just what I needed today because I felt like giving up.

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  58. Yay! Congrats!

    Love your blog, would you like to exchange links?

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  59. Wow...you (and everyone else) look fantastic.

    I like your after pic, you looked very perturbed when you were fat :-P

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  60. I love these! :) Sometimes a picture is absolutely worth a thousand words. I've seen most of these pics before but seeing them all together...awesome!!! Congrats to everyone pictured for their awesome weight loss, and now I have some new blogs to check out.

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  61. I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  62. Thanks Jack, I needed to see those! I had a rough weekend and all those pics gave me the motivation I needed to just get down to business again.

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  63. Great post. Thanks for sharing the flares.

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  64. I love how you put this all together! Amazing!

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  65. That's more than enought proof for anyone, and thanks to all who provided the before and after pics!

    Secretia

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  66. Those are amazing! Very inspirational! Everyone looks wonderful, but I was particularly struck by JAG's because that's the kind of body I used to see when I looked in the mirror--and I want to see it again!

    Thank you, Jack. You really know just what to say to appeal to a person's sense of, "I want this!"

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  67. Excellent pics! Weight loss blogging is all about the pictures, weights, measurements. We want the numbers and we want the visuals!

    Now where are your underwear/bathing suit before/afters? Thats the next step!

    I'm working on some new before/durings right now! Thanks for the inspiration - as always.

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  68. I have to admit that pictures of before and after really inspire me! It helps me to see that it's possible I might one day look like that too!

    I'll be sure to send you my pics when that time comes!!!

    -B

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  69. Awesome post. A couple of years ago I thought I'd be up there. Now I'm not so sure.

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  70. Ok! It's inspiring! I admit it! I'm inspired!

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  71. This is an amazing post.

    Week two, I can do this.

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  72. Great post! You're looking really good, Jack. One day, when I am a bit more comfortable, I think that I too will reveal that last ten percent.

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  73. Such wonderful examples to follow! ALl of those people ROCK, and most especially you, Jack!

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  74. You done good, Jack!The progress pictures are what keeps me going. I keep posting recent pictures of myself on my blog because I'm amazed at where I started and how far I've come.

    Love those pics!

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  75. Great post! Seeing all of my favorite bloggers in one page makes me feel like I'm on the right track. Following them and borrowing their ideas might just work for me...

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  76. Oh, my gosh, just stumbled across our blod and your post today HAS MADE MY DAY!!!! How motivating you are! Thank you so much. Yes, I am a Weight Watcher AT GOAL, but after recent foot surgery, fighting a terrible cold, and being pummeled on the east coast by snow storms, I found myself a little tired. However, I now feel re-energized and ready to start another day and keep on fighting. Thank you again!

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  77. Why have I not read your blog before?!?! It is GR8 - very motivational and inspiring. THANK YOU!
    You are looking really good - well done!
    Claire xx

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  78. Good to see Jo getting a mention, I'm sure she's thrilled to pieces

    you guys look fantastic, well done to you all :-)

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  79. P.S. I know you didn't *want* to put your pic on the site at first... but when the results started to show you couldn't help but share and in the end you had to really - it was entirely necessary, both to yourself to demonstrate that your hard work has paid off and it has all been worth it - and also to the rest of us who have followed your blog for months and find it incredibly helpful to see evidence of how you've been able to walk the walk as well as talking the talk.

    We all need proof that this change of lifestyle yields results of the best and most positive kind and you've been able to provide this for us.

    So thanks x

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  80. great, great, great, great post. Just what I needed to start my day. It's all about planning, keeping your arsenal of weaponry. Thanks Jack.

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  81. great post. i hope someday someone will post my before and after on their blog. so great to see such success.

    ETL

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  82. fabulous!!! all those successes!! wow!!

    and of course, love the words xo

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  83. You look fabulous,....thanks for the inspiration

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  84. Thanks for writing this post. It made me tear up due to how inspiring it was. I love the before-after photos the people posted. They're all very real.

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  85. wow!! This was quite a motivator for me!! I try....really I do...but I certainly don't have any awesome before and after pic!! Great job to all of you!!

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  86. I am happy to finally see you, the man behind the curtain! And thank you for asking me to be a part of this post. :)

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  87. This is an AWESOME post! glad to finally "meet" you!

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  88. I don't usually post (yup, I'm a total lurker...) but I have to say...

    What total inspiration!!! Thanks for posting!

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  89. Wow, simply wow. The before after pictures that you've gathered is simply awesome, and your's too ;). I've also made a post on my blog which includes many of the before after pictures with some motivational quotes added to it. Good luck with your weight loss goal :)

    Weight Loss Before and After Pictures

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  90. I am a big believer in the power of photos, and I love a good Before & After series. Thank you for doing this one; it's not just the photos that are inspiring, but your text too. Wow!

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  91. As someone who is just out the gate on a 100+ weighloss journey, I can't thank you enough for posting this.

    I was having a hard day, agonizing over what I saw in the mirror today. Not appreciating the 19 pound loss so far. This has given me the much needed "it's all so worth it" feeling.

    Thanks!
    ~Tara

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  92. I'm just starting out my "health walk", but these pictures are SO inspiring. Thank you for posting them all, and for your blog. I don't have a lot of weight to lose, but I do have a lot of health to gain.

    Thanks again!
    Amanda

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