Hitting a weight of 240lbs+ and a body fat percentage of 39%, being able to eat upwards of 10 king sized snickers bars in one sitting, may have been the bottom of the pit.(In terms of my over all well-being and health.)
In a 6 month lifestyle change and body reboot I managed to lose the weight. Beginning as a New Years resolution on January 1st and reaching my goal weight around mid July. I had shot down to weighing around 175lbs with a body fat percentage of somewhere around 15%. The move to St. George was also a positive experience for my weight loss and physical state. The amount of hiking and outdoor activities available, even in the Winter, allowed me even more outlets for exercise. Not to mention living with Tasha was a huge encouragement. We would hit the gym every morning at 5A.M. and eat healthy throughout the day, only to be back in the gym for an evening session.
Tasha and I decided to sign up for the Coeur D’ Alene Half Marathon and began our training for the race. Running is not in the Larsen gene pool. There are some people that have running in their blood…I am not one of those people. Running for me is a giant chore and I hate almost every aspect of it. Although, it got me into the best shape I had EVER been in. The day before the Half Marathon had me at 164lbs with a body fat percentage of 12% to 13%. There just also was a limit of to what my mentality could stand. I hadn’t eaten fast food in almost a year, and egg whites had over stayed their welcome on my daily meal plans. As soon as School came back into the picture and with school came theatre, I took a slight turn towards the unhealthy. Time spent at rehearsal or on homework meant less time in the evenings or mornings for workouts and scheduled meal plans. I began to eat late night fast food again and skipping workouts regularly. By the end of the year I was back to 185lbs and I stopped measuring body fat percentages.
As with the end of 2010, the start of 2011 saw an increase in weight. I hopped and bobbed anywhere from the 180’s to the 200’s and back again. I was then cast in the Neil Simon festival and during the time spent in Cedar I was able to maintain a steady weight that remained anywhere from 184lbs to 190lbs. Living alone gives me absolute control of what is purchased at the grocery store. I have an irrational fear that clerks at grocery stores and fast food places judge me for my food choice. Therefore, I don’t buy unhealthy things. I’m sure it’s not a normal thing, but I honestly don’t want to be cured of that. I’d rather have the fear of a drive-thru than be eating it. As 2011 came to an end my weight and eating habits changed on a weekly basis. One week I was strict and motivated, the next I was eating entire pizzas or cakes by myself. 2011 ended munch like it started…very unbalanced in terms of living healthy.
2012 really was a year of giant drops and gains. By February of that year I had seen an increase of weight into the low 200’s and a complete stop of all physical activity. The summer was spent in the Mountains of Southern Idaho doing theatre and once again I was able to make food choices based solely on what I was willing to purchase. The summer saw a drop of weight back into the 180’s and increase of muscle strength and cardio stamina. The summer ended and I againnnnn became stagnant. I am mortified to say that by October I had jumped to a staggering 216lbs and a body fat percentage of 26%. I had never come so close to my original weight in the last five years. It scared me. I was unhappy and extremely self conscious. I once again made the change back to being focused and energized about my health. By Christmas I was back to weighing around 195lbs with a body fat percentage of 21%
I started the year motivated and determined to get to a point that I am healthy and able to workout daily with energy. I currently weigh 185lbs and have a body fat percentage of 19%. My ultimate goal is to focus on my body fat percentage instead of my weight. There are days where I weigh myself upwards of 5 or 6 times and focus only on reaching a certain weight. I know that when I do that I begin to deprive myself of food or work my body into the ground when It is tired. By focusing on my body fat percentage I have been able to make eating decisions that don’t deprive me and don’t cause my mind to think I’m dieting and go into starvation mode. I have began to focus on muscle gains from lifting as well as increased stamina in cardio. As an actor it is incredibly important that I am comfortable within my own skin as well as healthy enough to portray any part with out having mental blocks. My goals in life would and will be inhibited by an excess of weight. When I have an increase of weight on my body dancing becomes harder and mentally exhausting. The same goes for other aspects of theatre such as; stage combat, warming up, vocal performance, the ability to move in costume pieces, and countless other things. 2013 I know will be a good year and I’m determined to keep my body and mind healthy, moving, and goal oriented. That being said…it’s time for the gym.