Whole30 Spotlight: Harold Kampbell
Today’s spotlight is one of our favorite Whole30 success stories. We have all watched HK grow as he shrinks over the last year and we’re proud to call him a member of the CFS family!
“As a child, the only time I remember being “skinny” is kindergarten. After that, I was always teased about my weight, and the cruel nicknames still stick with me over twenty years later. As I got older, I just kept getting bigger. I was never happy with what I looked like and I never thought I could be anything different. I started to believe all the lies I was being told by all the people I went to school with. I was constantly called fat, overweight, or other words I will choose not to repeat. I always wanted to be skinny and I tried dieting several different times, but nothing worked and I wouldn’t stick with it because there were no results.
At the beginning of my junior year of high school (2001), I decided that I did not want to be big anymore. I weighed 240 pounds, and I could barely get up a flight of stairs without sucking wind. I bought a used treadmill for $100 dollars and started running in 400 meter intervals. Between each run I would do calisthenics. At first, I could only workout for 10 minutes and over the course of the year, the workouts started to last 30 or 40 minutes. I started to feel fantastic and the weight started to pour off. There was a problem though: I barely ate. I would skip breakfast, eat a lunch size bag of chips (except Wednesdays, that was pizza day so I allowed myself 2 pieces), and dinner was a full meal. After doing this all of junior year I had lost 82 pounds. I weighed 158!
Through all that exercise, I found a love for running that continued. I kept barely eating and running 4 – 6 miles each day/ In the fall of my senior year. I started to have pains in my stomach and the doctors told me I was deficient on some nutrients I was missing because of my lack of eating. So I ended up taking a little bit of time off from running. I started eating at least 3 meals a day and leveled off at 175 pounds. I stayed at that weight for 4 years. I would have whatever I wanted but I thought that was okay because I was running 6 days a week.
I had this attitude about my diet for quite a while until I started gaining weight again in college. I slowly stopped working out while I kept eating the same junk. The weight started to pile back up and at the beginning of 2009, I weighed 220 pounds again. The more I gained, the more I would eat. I wanted to lose it but I always felt bad about myself, which made me want more food. By August of 2012, I had ballooned up to 275 pounds. It was the heaviest I had ever been. I hated myself! This is the part where CrossFit Springfield comes in!
At the beginning of last August, my wife Katy told me I needed to get healthy. I had been saying it for months and she was tired of me saying that without doing anything about it. I had wanted to try CrossFit, but the price was a little too much and the people intimidated me. But after this talk, price was not a question, I had to get healthy! On August 15, 2012, I did my first CrossFit WOD. I did the starter WOD and I could not even finish it, but I was hooked. A week later, I took a rowing class with Grant Wistrom. After talking to him after class about what I should be eating, he told me about the Whole30 and that another session would be starting soon. That session of the W30 is what changed my health and my life.
I lost 10 pounds in my first month of CrossFit without changing my diet. I then plateaued at those 10 pounds. In the past year, doing 2 successful W30′s and doing my best to eat paleo between, I have dropped back down to 203 pounds. That’s a 62 lb loss! I still have some work I want to do, but I have to teach myself that I am not thefat guy. I have 20 plus years of bad eating habits, bad food choices, and a bad self image that is still competing with what I am becoming, with what I want to be!
The Whole30 saved my life health-wise. Going to the box everyday is great, but what I’ve learned is that what I put in my body matters so much more than how much work I do in the box. My health gains have come from the kitchen. The W30 has helped changed my relationship with food. It has helped me change the way I look at food, but more importantly, it has changed how I view myself. I no longer see myself hitting a downward spiral if I allow myself to enjoy an occasional treat. I still have work to do, but everyday my perception of what food actually is changes. Food is no longer the drug that makes me feel better after a bad day or the drug I run to when I am happy and want to celebrate. More and more, I look at food as fuel. W30 has been my springboard to a happier, healthier me.”