It was August eight years ago I had my last competition as a super-heavyweight. I competed that day at 328.5 lbs. I also hit my personal best raw bench of 605. It was a great day.

What was not great, was going for a half mile walk around my block the day after the meet. It was a sobering experience. I was sweating like a pig, my low back was burning, and my breathing was so bad that I had to stop. I almost asked my wife to go get the car before I decided to push through. It was the first time Jessica ever worried about how big I had gotten.

That is when I decided it was time to get less fat. There were no grand plans at the time. I just got started. I will never forget, Matt Rhodes told me it only takes three weeks to get in better condition. He was right. By the end of three weeks I was wearing a weight vest making that same walk very easily.

My diet has gone through a good half dozen changes during these past eight years. At first, it was just eating less junk. Then I went to a more strict bodybuilding diet. I lost over 30 lbs and in three months. However, I gained all that back and then some. Partially because I learned nothing during the process and also because for me, it just wasn't a lifestyle I could embrace.

From there I stayed with carb backloading for a while. When I got stuck there I transitioned to a ketogenic diet. After that I moved to a flexible diet, also called if it fits your macros (iifym). What I have now settled into is an amalgamation of intermittent fasting, flexible eating, along with high, low, and medium carb days depending on my training schedule.

Over the years I have enlisted help from a number of nutrition experts. I have also done a lot of my own homework. That's how I have ended up where I am now. With an eating plan I am in control of and that I am comfortable following. The cool thing is, I could see myself eating this way for the rest of my life.

If I learned anything over the years, it's that if you can't imagine staying on a particular diet for a year or more, it's probably going to fail. Mind you, I said probably. I'm sure there are some people who can eat salmon and kale for the rest of their lives. I'm not one of them. You probably aren't either. Let's not make the exception the rule here.

I'm both humbled and grateful I have helped and inspired others in their journeys. Those of you on this path, be disciplined, and be patient. Eight years seems like a long time, but not in the context of a lifetime.

Thanks for reading.