I grew up an active and athletic young man. As a kid, I played baseball every summer and city league football every fall. throughout high school, I kept up my activity with football and weight training and backyard trampoline wrestling mimicking my favorites WWE and WCW stars. I kept my weight at around 190 for most of my high school years, being able to eat whatever I wanted and burning it off immediately. I graduated in 2003 and started a 40 hour a week job in a hot woodworking factory knowing that college just wasn't something I was interested in.
Then in 2006, everything fell apart for me. I was working night shift as a forklift driver and driving outside to fill up my propane tank and ran over a speed bump. Doesn't sound serious to most people, but, a forklift ways 3-5 tons with no shock absorbers and solid rubber tires. It doesn't bounce at all. The shock from that bump jarred me so hard that it knocked kidney stones lose and herniated two discs in my lower back. I didn't tell anyone at work because it didn't bother me that much at the time, but the next day was so brutal. It hurt me so bad that for the first time in my life, I went to the chiropractor. When he X-rayed me he found the slipped discs, L4 and L5 right at the top of my coccyx. I was 21 and had wrecked my back for life (or so I thought at the time).
I opted to see the chiropractor at least once a week for a while but wasn't doing anything other than that to heal myself, the pain was so bad that on my off days, all I did was lay around. Eventually I stopped seeing him and went instead to see a MD. Biggest mistake of my life. He prescribed painkillers to me, which led to the worst period of my life. I never though in a million years that I would become a drug addict of any kind. I despised drugs all my life after seeing several friends and family members spiral out of control. Then the same thing happened to me. He gave me a prescription of 150 pain pills a months after I told him I was running out of 120 too fast and those extra 30 didn't make it any further. 150 pills for 30 days and they wouldn't last 3 weeks. I was taking 2 1/2 pills at a time three times a day to stay as high as possible and forget that I was hurting and had developed nerve problems in my right side. Finally, he referred me to a pain management clinic which just fed the problem more as they gave me Neurontin to help with the nerve problems and made me take Valium before every injection procedure.
A later X-ray showed that my coccyx had started to fuse together with L5 after being jammed together for so long. That's when all the doctors started talking about surgery. I wouldn't do it. I didn't want to give up my pills. By this point, my first marriage had fell apart and I was living with my mom, stepdad and grandmother. My addiction was now into amphetamines to keep me awake because the codeine kept me such a zombie. I was taking Adapex and Codeine at the same time and making my heart go crazy. I truly didn't care if I made it or not.
Then in 2012, I met up with the love of my life. The one that got away for me. I had known her all my life, grew up with her, and knew she had zero tolerance for BS. It wasn't easy, but I gave up the pills to start a new life with her. Marriage came to me for a second time but this one brought something new to me: babies. My first marriage, I had two step children who were already in their teens when their mom and I divorced since my ex wife was 13 years older than me.
Wanting to be the absolute best I could be, I finally weaned myself off of the painkillers and realized that I could function without them and in 2013 , my second son was born and I was still successfully off the pills. However I had started to drink quite a bit. I was also not eating right or exercising. My weight was steadily going up. I had written it off as "happy" weight from being in my new life and having fun. But I was just getting fat. If it tasted good, I ate it. If the burger joint had a triple burger, that's what I got every time. And all that extra weight made my back start hurting as bad as ever. By 2016, I was drinking a six pack of beer a day, at least.
Then in the early part of 2017, I was scrolling Facebook when I saw a video of an overweight man walking with wrap around crutches, struggling to carry himself and a backpack. It was Arthur Boorman. I must have seen his video 12 times along with Jared's, Christina Russell's, and several others talking about how DDP Yoga changed their lives forever. I was 95% percent sure this was the program for me, then the deciding factor was seeing mine and my sons current favorite wrestler AJ Styles doing DDP Yoga.
Growing up, I knew who DDP was, I had three of his posters on my wall when I was a boy. The first wrestling magazine I had featured him and Muhammed Ali on the cover. I was a very devoted wrestling fan during the 1990's and still love it today so, I knew I had to support him and his mission to help people. I ordered the 2.0 DVD set in April 2017 at a starting weight of 242 pounds with a pinched nerve in my right hip and a beat up and aching lower back. For the sake of my kids, I was hoping for the very best.
By the end of the first week, I discovered that I was in much better condition than I thought. Some of my athletic younger self was still in there somewhere. After two weeks, I was eager to try out harder, more intense workouts, so I gave Diamond Cutter 2.0 a shot. It made me feel unstoppable when I finished it! Over the course of the summer of 2017, I kept at it, along with reading the DDP Yoga handbook and learning how to eat right I was seeing some huge changes. By the first of September, I had already made it to the Performance Center to workout live with the DDPY crew and tell them of my progress. I even got to meet the man himself and get a "Great job, Kid" from him. I hit my first big goal the second week of October when I got on the scale to see 212 pounds. 30 pounds gone! But more importantly: I was down from a size 38 pants to a 34. I was in a medium shirt instead of an XL. My back didn't hurt AT ALL anymore. I could hold my foot over my head, I could fold over and put my nose on my knees. All in six months time. All with DDP Yoga.
Nowadays, I can play with my kids without getting tired or just too lazy to do it. I am also running my first 5K this November and am training for my DDP Yoga Instructors certification, so I can help others feel the amazing power of this workout. I have learned from all the negative in my life and have seen first hand what the other side is like. Life is 10 % what happens, 90% how you react to it. I made some poor reactions, but these days I am giving life the BANG!!! These days I am UNSTOPPABLE. UNDENIABLE. UNBROKEN.
Thanks so much Dallas and the DDPY crew I love you guys,
Ben "The Backwoods Beast" Carson