Tom Walton came out of the blue in regards to joining Hulk/Rebel, and I’ve got to say he’s made one of the biggest immediate impacts on not only himself but everyone who has had the good fortune to work out and rock out with this fella! In all the stories I put out, I’m looking for one common denominator… Inspiration via relation. You can relate to the success story because it speaks to either how you’ve felt before, how you currently feel, what you’d LIKE to do, or all of the above! When you can read about someone “just like you” who is able to pick themselves up by their boot straps and achieve EXACTLY what you fantasize about yet never go for… Well, I’ve found the Chaos theory in full effect here…
“In chaos theory the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions, where a small change at one place in a nonlinear system can result in large differences to a later state. The name of the effect, coined by Edward Lorenz, is derived from the theoretical example of a hurricane’s formation being contingent on whether or not a distant butterfly had flapped its wings several weeks before.”
It’s up to you… Is Tom’s story the flap of the butterfly’s wings that sets you off like a hurricane? Read on…
If It Were Easy, It Wouldn’t Be Special
When self-loathing, lack of confidence, and overall dissatisfaction with yourself is too much to handle, most people have a subconscious reaction to take their focus off themselves with various different behaviors. Some people become so compulsive with a hobby that it starts to become a detriment to the individual to an outsider… yet to the hobbyist the unhealthy obsession trumps the painful truth that they aren’t happy with themselves, thus the lesser of two evils are chosen. Some people turn to a mind altering substance that wipes the crippling self-disgust away and allows the abuser to feel normal, not like themselves which sadly is equivocal to pain and hurt. Sound like anybody you know?
Then, there’s Tom Walton. Tom Walton learned two big lessons as a kid… 1) To treat others better than you wish to be treated and 2) It’s hard to feel worthy of being treated awesomely when you’re the novelty husky kid so he’d better REALLY stick to the number 1. If he gave everyone all his attention, focus, and love unconditionally and steadfastly well then it would be impossible to save enough caring for himself, making it ok that he didn’t feel confident and comfortable with the person he was.
Interviewing Tom, he was quick to point out that on the outside everything was fine in his world. He came from a good family living in the Northern California suburbs. Although always a very husky kid, Tom was always into sports. He even was a Team Captain on one of his High School’s most successful football teams to date and a gifted wrestler who loved the thrill of one on one competition. It was a good upbringing with good friends that accepted Tom for who he was. The only problem was that Tom didn’t accept himself. Busy loving everyone but himself and unsuccessfully trying to use his outer successes to mask the fact that he was depressed beyond anyone’s comprehension, he did what most people do…
He rode it out. Without saying a word or doing anything about it.
Sound like anybody you know?
Out of High School, Tom started dating his future fiancé, found his current full-time job, and lost his drive to play sports since he figured it was “time to grow up.” On his steady climb to 300 pounds, 6 foot tall Tom had an unsuccessfully successful stint with a popular no-carb diet. For those of you who need that to be cleared up… The no-carb diet is notorious for having rapid weight loss transpire for those willing to put down the breads and pasta but can’t stand the thought of putting down the bacon, cheese, and steak. His intermission to his eventual 300 pound mark found a detour… He had gotten down to 213.2 pounds (he made sure to point out the “.2”) and… Stopped. Fed up with the unrealistic restrictions, toll it was taking on his mind and body, and at the inability to physically continue the no carb madness, he quickly gained all the weight back with interest. The worst part… since the weight loss was so rapid, the method so extreme, and since Tom didn’t do any resistance training to acclimate his body to the rapid weight reduction he felt his body looked WORSE at the low weight he haf achieved. He didn’t take the time to implement a healthy lifestyle… rather took the quickest way possible no matter how unrealistic, unsafe, or overall damaging it ends up being in the long run. Sound like anybody you know?
3 months ago Tom decided to join a gym. He had been yearning to find his former athlete for some time now, but found a hard time finding the spark beyond it being an “I’ll start tomorrow…” after thought. One way I like to look at it is a mighty oak tree at one point started out as a little tiny seed. Sometimes you just need to give that seed a little water to start the growth process… Tom’s seed had been planted; he just didn’t know what nutrients it needed…
One day, while cruising around on Facebook (have you heard of it?) he came across a blog I had posted of a couple inspirational stories that came out of the last transformation challenge I had just completed. Reading the stories, he found the common denominator WASN’T that these successes came of having great genes, the sickening ability to be able to push past but seemingly enjoy the “torture of exercise,” or a trust fund set up allowing for an elite team of professionals to “fix them.” No, the turning point in every single story he read was when the person decided they were worth it and no one was going to give them happiness if they weren’t willing to take it first.
He messaged me right then and there. He wanted to know when the next challenge was, when we met, and what he should do to prepare for it. “… Oh, and hey man!”
When Tom joined the gym, he never looked back. He was sick and tired of being sick and tired of being sick and tired. He was fed up with being sad about himself and realizing at his subconscious it was up to him to change that. Rather than taking his mind off of himself with food and loving everyone else to the extremes that he didn’t have the energy left to love himself, he was instead FORCED to learn to love himself. He HAD to deal with his insecurities in such a way that if he were to run away he would be adding fuel to the fire that got him so depressed in the first place. Once he had his mind-set that he wasn’t going to quit no matter how badly he wanted to (and trust me, boy did he ever want to quit!) then he only had one option left… To seize the moment. To be the person he didn’t think he could be by doing the things he wasn’t comfortable doing. “If it were easy it wouldn’t be special” I tell Tom time and time again, and not only does he get it… He lives it.
Tom found his stride, but only he could find it. Rather than waiting on someone to save him, he had the profound realization only he could save himself.
The day Tom messaged me about joining my transformation challenge was a tough day. It was a tough decision yet one he knew deep down he had to make. For himself. For once. Tom told me he wanted to be one of the success stories he read about. He told me he was hoping someone could read what he went through and relate to the point of having the same turn around he did. He wanted to stress that it needs to be a commitment to yourself or what’s the point? The thing he REALLY wanted to hammer home was that eating better, exercising, and stepping outside of his comfort zone didn’t kill him. Quite the contrary, it introduced more life than he had ever felt himself worth to be. His comfort zone kept him from being around people that love him as much as he loves the world. Yelling like a madman when we do the pre-workout chant. Taking his shirt off at the beach to enjoy the sunshine a little more. Wearing goofy outfits and taking part in workouts that he never would have dreamed of attempting a few months prior. Tom even cut his hair into a mullet for 80’s night… AND STILL HAS IT 3 WEEKS LATER! His comfort zone doesn’t hold him back anymore.
Well Tom… here’s your story. You’ve lost 45 pounds in 3 months. You’ve signed up for a 12 mile mud run in September. You’ve learned how to eat for life, not for weight loss. You inspire every day. You’ve learned to do what some deem impossible… To love yourself as much as you love others.
“I’m going to be one of those stories because I’m worth it.”
Well Tom is only at the beginning of his story… but mission accomplished. How do I know that?
Because I can guarantee you’re ready to write your own success story…