Erik’s Fat Boy Motivation: today there is no picture, no catchy slogan, or simple phrase. Today is about perspective. Today is about how strangers will see you, acquaintances see you, and friends see past what others focus on.

I’ve been thinking about strangers quite a bit recently; this idea of a stranger has no idea, unless I tell them, where my journey started. If I meet someone now they will never know 316# me or the one that indulged in close to 350 grams of sugar daily. If they meet me in the gym they will only know me as the weird guy that falls on the floor exhausted after each workout or the guy that wears a hoodie during a workout and pulls the hood up before starting sprint intervals.

Acquaintances will see the most dramatic effects physically because they do not know me that well. They will see how two and a half months of lifestyle change has proved effective and will be excited for me. But they will never know of how much work has gone into that time to foster those results. They will never take the time to hear my story and hopefully find strength to make their own changes.

Then there are friends. They are who have loved me and cheered for me even at my biggest, welcomed and accepted me despite any negative self image I wrestled with. They were there as I wrestled with previous attempts to be healthy building me up and cautioning me when what I was doing might not be the healthiest. They have seen the lifestyle change in its fullest, not just with food and exercise but with my mental change as well. They have seen more confidence and determination, they have seen dedication arise like nothing before.

So when you meet someone and they give you a dirty look or are unwelcoming because of how you look remember they are a stranger who you may never see again. When someone comments on how great you look and want to know your secret but don’t really have the time for you to tell them, they are an acquaintance who has only sees the outside. Then there are friends who will be there to cheer you on in good and bad.

If you are struggling then surround yourself with friends. Find a workout buddy to sweat with, go to the farmers market with, and to help keep defeat at bay. The other two categories aren’t capable of that.

Have a great day and a great workout!

Your friend,