Lose weight and quit smoking at the same time? For some of us that may sound just too difficult but not for Tommy Smith who dealt with addiction to cigarettes and fast-food.
Six years ago Tommy was about to eat “an extremely unhealthy log of ice cream cake” when suddenly he said to himself in his mind: “What are you doing?!”. He actually threw the log out of the window and hit his car with the box. Hard to think about more meaningful picture of how bad food affects us.
Obesity was part of Tommy`s childhood and young`s adult life, same us jokes from other kids. That night six years ago he decided to change: he weighed 365 pounds, smoke 2 packs of cigarettes a day and his usual dinner consisted of two double cheeseburgers, two large fries and four apple pies.
Accepting that fast-food is his biggest problem he started by dealing with this issue first. He cut it out definitely. “Fast-food is quick, easy and becomes a habit” he explains. When he managed to erase fast-food from his daily menu he decided also to decrease fatty foods he used to bought in the supermarket. Instead he started buying more vegetables and fruits. After six months he lost 120 pounds.
With weight of 245 pounds he could start thinking about taking up sports. Before it was just too hard – “I could not even run 100 yards without feeling like I was about to pass out” he says. After the months, though, it got easier. But while taking up running he finally decided that quitting smoking is a must. It was four years ago and now he is smoke free.
It is hard to say what is more difficult – losing weight or quitting smoking. For Tommy the first is easier because you see the results immediately – you not only look better but also feel better and your scale tells you that you are doing a right thing. With cigarettes it is not that easy – you know that thanks to quitting it you will be healthier but you just don`t feel it so easily.
Now, with his weight of 210 pound Tommy likes to challenge himself with different running activities – he ran several half-marathons, three full marathons and several obstacle course races and sprint triathlons.
What about his plans for future? “I feel that I have an obligation to help other people who are obese also. I know the reality and torture of living in a body that doesn’t work the way you want” he says.
He attends a local university now and is about to get his bachelor degree in exercise and sport science. Later he wants to get a master degree in exercise physiology. With this, he could really help people who don`t believe that losing weight and healthy lifestyle is achievable for them.