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157 pounds

Salter 200 Academy Professional Mechanical Scale, Red and Black

Yeah, another diet update. I'll be starting up a separate blog for this soon, but for now I'm talking about it here.

Above is a rather ritzy mechanical scale. It's a lot more than people normally spend on a bathroom scale. Then again, a proper physician's scale costs a whole lot more, so I guess that puts the price in perspective.

So anyway, I finally broke under 160 pounds. According to some "ideal weight" calculators, the ideal weight for my height is between 151.9 and 159.4. In other words, right around the middle at 156 is pretty much where I should be. And as you can tell from the title of this, I'm really close to that.

Two things have happened that are a really big deal.

The first time I've fit 34-inch waist jeans in over 25 years

I was wearing 38-inch waist "relaxed fit" jeans, and had been for a long time. My original starting weight when I began dieting was 196.8. When I dropped down to 165, I had to buy a new belt. My jeans were falling off me even with the belt I had, so getting a smaller one was required.

When I dropped to under 160, that's when I couldn't wear 38-inch waist jeans anymore. Even with the smaller belt, the pant legs got really baggy and the waist area scrunched up from having to tighten the belt so much just to keep the pants up.

I headed down to my local Walmart to get new jeans, and I was certain that 36-inch waist was the size that would fit.

It wasn't.

When I put on the 36-inch waist jeans, they were still too big.

I tried on the 34-inch. They fit. And comfortably.

Words cannot adequately describe how this moment felt, but I'll try anyway.

For the entirety of my adult life, I've never fit a 34-inch waist jean. The last time I did was in my teens. To actually comfortably fit a standard straight leg jean (meaning not relaxed fit) in a 34-inch waist size is nothing short of miraculous. I looked at the fact they fit, looked at myself in the mirror, and that right there was when I truly knew I'd lost a whole bunch of weight. Properly, of course.

The first time I've fit an L size t-shirt in 25 years

For my international readers, know that shirt sizing in America is distinctively different compared to the UK, France, Japan and other countries. Our sizes are bigger because our people are bigger, as in fatter.

The generic adult male sizes for t-shirts are small (S), medium (M), large (L), extra large (XL) and extra-extra large (XXL). After that come the super-fatty sizes of 3XL all the way to 10XL. An example of a shirt that has all the weird sizing options we have is here if you want to check it out. Even the odd sizes like 3XLT (eXtra-eXtra-eXtra Large and Tall) are there.

Anyway, my size for a very long time has been XL. On the same shopping trip I went to buy the 34-inch waist jeans, I tried on some L shirts. They fit. And comfortably, just like the jeans did.

I honestly never thought I'd ever fit into an L size tee ever again, but now I do. This follows the same experience my jeans did in that I've not fit this size since my teens.

87% of males 30 to 44 in America are fatter than I am

Global fat scale

To be someone male and age 30 to 44 that isn't fat in America these days is becoming rare. I have a BMI (Body Mass Index) that would be normal in Japan where the mean BMI for 30-44 males is 23.52. In America, the mean BMI is for my age group is - get ready for this - 28.64. Bear in mind that 25 BMI is overweight, 30 BMI is obese class 1, 35 BMI is obese class 2 and 40 BMI and above (the morbidly obese range) is obese class 3. The average in America for my age group is being overweight and dangerously close to obese class 1.

Yes, I'm happy to be in that small number of men in the 30-44 age group who aren't fat. But at the same time, the numbers above concern me. Why? Because a man of my age and BMI shouldn't be a rare thing in America, but it is. And that's the scary part.

This honestly makes me wonder how long it will take before having a BMI of under 25 will be considered "weird" in America.

Maybe it already is.

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