My name is Michael, and I now own my life. There is something liberating about taking ownership of yourself, when all you did was refuse it for so long. I can remember saying to myself that it was not that bad. You can fix this anytime you want, so why stop now? I even had a running joke with my students because of my weight. Lipids are fat. I’m fat, so therefore just remember Lipid-Man. This became part of my yearly lessons. Looking back on it all I really was doing was masking my pain with humor with no end in sight.
I remember sitting in front of my computer countless times with the DDP Yoga DVDs in the shopping cart. Each time thought I would close the browser, and not follow through on the purchase. There is no way that I could do this was the thought in my head. I could not see past where I was at that time. I always liked DDP from when I was younger, but he is a wrestler and I’m just a normal guy. Things like this don’t work for me. Once again, all I was doing was making excuses for why I could not do something.
Then around the middle of December, I finally decided enough was enough. I watched Chris Jericho, Mick Foley, and AJ Styles talk about what DDP Yoga did for them. Seeing people that I admire having success, and the change it did for their wrestling careers was inspiring. Next thing I know, I clicked order and stared at the confirmation screen for at least 30 minutes. It was go time from that moment on between my red headband and I.
Every thought ran through my head. What if I can’t? What if I stop? What if I get hurt? Then the best question I ever pondered on came to me. What if I do it, and it works? What if I stop focusing on the negatives, and think about what it works. The only thing difference between possible and impossible are the letters I and M. It hit me…I AM the difference! I listened to DDP Yoga radio every Wednesday, watched Motivational Mondays with DDP, and researched why people were successful. If I could mirror their habits, then maybe, just maybe I could do this. My lower back has been messed up since I was a little kid. I chipped a disc, and followed it by spraining my back. I always thought I could survive because of my age, and never thought about making my back stronger. Now at almost 35 years old my back spoke back to me, and said now or never! Within the first weeks of starting DDPY my lower back felt like it did when I was younger. For the first time in what seems like forever I was able to reach down and touch not just my toes but the floor with my palms!
The biggest change for me was deciding to go with the phase three eating plan. I honestly do not know what inspired me to do it. I think it was the idea that I needed to go big or go home. I have had digestive issues for the last 15 years, and been subject to countless tests to see what was wrong. Each time there was never a definitive answer, but I was always recommended to change how I was eating. Becoming gluten and dairy free on day one was tough, but the rewards have been well worth it. Since starting to eat cleaner and closer to the Earth my energy and mental health has changed.
Fast-forward to today and I have gone from over 206 lbs. to 170 lbs. That is something like 35 lbs. lost!!!! That is crazy to me! My daughters everyday encourage me and let me know that they are proud of their Dad, and want to do my workouts with me. My wife is quick to tell me that I am not the same person I was a few months ago. She stresses that it is not the physical change, but the mental change that is most impressive. DDP has become a member of our extended family. He comes with us on vacations, to my school where I do sessions with students, and to every person I meet when they ask what I have done. My gratitude has determined my attitude! I am giving back the things that I have learned and taken from the program.
Next, on my agenda is to become a certified DDP Yoga instructor, and bring it to my community, students and their families. I also want to complete some crazy obstacle/adventure courses, but really all I want is enjoy this version of me! I am also going to attend DDP Yoga workshops, and maybe just one day attend one of the retreats.
Thank you DDP and everyone at Team DDP Yoga!!!