“We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty”- Maya Angelou
Throughout my journey as President of BHL, I have been transformed. Each year has brought me so much joy, so much inspiration and most importantly has brought me the blessing of loving people that have been a part of this remarkable voyage. 12 years ago when I, along with my mother decided to start BHL I had no idea how much my life would change. I get asked all the time about my story, and for many years I have shared bits and pieces, but for the first time I AM SHARING MY STORY WEIGHT LOSS STORY!
HOW IT BEGAN
When I began BHL, I weighed 215 pounds. I was overweight, unhappy and smiling through all the pain. I wanted so badly to remove myself from the body I was in, but I did not know my way out. I felt stuck. I drowned myself in work, I made sure no one ever saw my pain, and without even realizing it I was a ticking time bomb. My health was slowly but surely deteriorating and as much as there were a million signs, I closed my eyes and pretended they were not there.
One evening while I was in Colorado I was extremely sick. I could barely breathe and felt like the world was closing in on me. I went to the friends I was staying with and we went to the ER. The second the doctors saw me they immediately admitted me into the ICU. I remember hearing the panic in the doctors voice and remember thinking “this is it Kurian, you had a good life”
My body had gone into complete renal failure and was finally telling me “ENOUGH!” I was so sick that I didn’t even know where I was. A few hours later I woke up to hearing the doctor calling my mother and saying “if I were you I would get here soon, you might need to say goodbye to your son”
Hearing those words, I vowed to myself if I get out of this alive, I will take control of my health and I will never go a day without telling someone that I love, that I loved them. I would never go a day without flooding my existence with love. I would make a conscious decision to keep my heart open to those I love. I would share my truth as much as I could.
Even though I fail at that promise to myself I also have always recommitted to that commitment. So now in 2021 I sit here writing this story with the knowledge that I not only have lost 100 pounds, but have found my true joy!
HOW I DID IT
The number one question I get asked is “how did you do it?” And fortunately the answer is very simple. I ate less and walked more. I decided to do what I call the half diet. Everything I wanted to eat, I ate but only ate half of it and got rid of the rest before I could eat it. So if I wanted a snickers bar, I cut it in half. If I wanted a salad I cut it in half. This way I knew I was immediately eating half of what I normally ate.
Once I started losing the weight and feeling better, I realized that I could eat more food as long as it was healthy. I realized nothing tasted as good as skinny felt. I wanted to see bigger changes since I knew how good I was feeling so I decided to move my body for at least 25 minutes a day.
As my life started changing I started getting inspiration and information from people in my life that I knew had the knowledge on how to get me to the next level. I looked to people like Steve Cook, Mike O’Hearn, Michael Dean, Sean Alexander, Nick Topel, Carson Twitchell, Alec Varcas and many more. I had so many people in my life that were there and all I needed to do was ask. There is so much information out there, but the key for me was being open and honest with myself and the people around me so that I could grow and become a better version of myself everyday.
Once I started hitting the goals I had set for myself, I made sure that I would celebrate them. I would celebrate them by doing something or buying something great for myself. I would take small trips, buy myself something special like a bag or a fancy scarf but I also made sure that I planned out what my prize would be. I needed to be able to look ahead.
My biggest rewards were a surgery where I could remove all the excess skin and a new wardrobe! Both of these rewards allowed me to keep on track. Knowing there was an end game allowed me the drive that I didn’t think I would have without these rewards.
NOW THE HARD WORK
Never in a million years did I think that I needed to be mentally prepared for what was to come. I just assumed I would lose the weight and everything would be great! Oh how wrong I was. Once I lost the weight I realized that I needed to work on the way I saw myself. I needed to work on loving the man I was and the man I had become.
For most of my life I felt like the ugliest man in the world. I felt like because I was heavy, short, and in my eyes completely undesirable, I was also not worthy of love.The funny thing is when you think those things, you tend to hear and see those things in your life.
I was having experience after experience where I would hear people speak poorly of my looks and thus not willing to get to know me. So when I lost the weight I kind of assumed that would all go away, but it does not.
Having faced this hard truth, I needed to figure out a way of loving myself no matter what body I was in. Recognizing that I was loved not because of how I looked, but because of who I was.
I lost the weight in hopes that looking better meant people would love me more! I am an addict for love, but the truth is the people who loved me at my biggest still loved me and that the people I wanted to love me when I was big, and did not, are not worth my energy.
Losing weight is an amazing feat but loving yourself is the greatest gift you can ever give yourself. Gone, for me, are the days of wanting to be thin to fit into anything other than my best body and best life.
So here were the basic things I did that made me love myself more. I promise you that if you do these simple things, your life will change.
- Do not start your morning with your cell phone. Let your brain wake up and choose what it hears, instead of letting your phone decide for you
- Write in a gratitude journal every day. Write 10 things you are grateful for. Try to be different everyday.
- Stop comparing yourself! Someone said to me that comparison is the thief of joy and oh my gosh are they right! Allow yourself to sit in the beauty that you are the only you in this world. You’re unique and that makes you lovable and great
- Text at least one person every day and tell them one thing you love about them! The universe is watching and I promise you will get that love back in return!
If you hear anything in what I have written, I want you to hear this! YOU ARE LOVED!!!! You are a unique and beautiful individual. People will try to break your spirit, you will try to break your own spirit, but don’t allow it. Sit in the knowledge that someone in the world at all times loves you.
It took me a long time and a lot of self deprecating thoughts to finally lean into the fact that no matter what I say to myself or anyone says to me, I AM WORTHY OF LOVE AND GIVING LOVE, and so are you.
I believe with my whole heart that love is the answer. If you can make decisions based on love instead of fear, I know the world will open itself up to you in ways you never thought possible. Whether you want to lose weight, run a marathon, find a new career or even buy something you have always wanted, make the decision to do it with love as your foremost thought.
I will say it till I am blue in the face, love is the answer. My journey has been flooded with love, and flooded with the knowledge that anything is possible.
“I am a human being, therefore nothing human can be alien to me” If someone else has done it, so can you! Words are powerful, they are real! So speak positivity into your life. Let positive words of love absorb into your heart which in return you will see them play out in your life.
I love you all! I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your support, encouragement, positive thoughts, prayers and most of all for your love!
PHOTOGRAPHY BY MARCOS COVOS
FILM BY: JAMES FIERROS
CLOTHING BY: HARPER & JONES