My Jounney to Sparta: The Chris Davis – Part 10: “It” Hits the Fan
by Chris Davis
In this installment of the Chris Davis Project we find Chris Davis writing after finishing a monstrous weekend of training. He’s beat up, exhausted, and at his breaking point. He’s behind on his weight loss and being pushed by Joe Desena to make more caloric cuts while simultaneously increasing his exercise volume. It’s adding up, surely, and the pressure is mounting as Chris is balancing on the edge, about to fall behind on his weight loss goals. It’s not a good start to the week.
5/29/2012 Memorial Day Weekend Recap
This weekend has been a very challenging weekend both physically and mentally. Things really got hard on Friday morning when I weighed in. I hit a big snag; my weight jumped up to 330lbs. Joe believes that it is because I have added protein back into my diet. We cannot afford to have any weight gain in the program, so we need to remove protein from my diet again. I agree that my weight gain is also related to the protein, but I believe that the weight gain is because my body is using the protein and building muscle because of the speed in which we are ramping up my training. Muscle building is out doing my fat loss right now.
I know these weight gains are not due to increased caloric intake, because there is no way I ate 17,500 calories (what would be required to pack on this about of poundage) on Thursday. So Joe made a deal with me – if I was still at 330lbs by Monday, I would need to go back to a diet of only raw fruit and vegetables. I continued to do the workout we had planned. I did my time on the ski machine, and did my walking and kung-fu lesson that night. I also ate a light dinner knowing that I had a very big walk in the morning.
The plan for this weekend was to get two 13+ miles days in. To me this was a very ambitious goal because last week the goal was two 10+ miles days. So adding 6 miles in a week was a little aggressive, but I like a good challenge sometimes.
The other big challenge is Joe was out of town so I would be doing the walks alone. No one to help keep me going when the time gets toughs – just me and the road. So this would be a true test of my dedication, both to myself and to this project.
Things started out great – I had completed the first 6 miles and I was working through the normal sourness, the joint pain that you get when you start a long walk. This is when I started to notice some new soreness on the top of my left leg. After a little observation of my current stride (because it has been changing from day to day) it looks like I have lost enough weight so that my stomach is rubbing on the tops of my legs as I walk. Up until now this has only happened when I tried to jog or run, but now it is happening when I walk as well.
By mile 8 the soreness had changed to pain and now it felt like someone was jabbing me with a hot poker on the top of my leg, so I stopped to take a look and see what was going on. It looked like a small line of bug bites on my leg. No big deal, I thought, I will keep an eye on it and keep going.
A little later, I ran into Marion Abrams on the road, and we decided to take a break from my walking to do our weekly video filming. After that was complete, I took another look at my leg and I was surprised to see that there were several new sore spots and that some of them had been bleeding. I took some time, cleaned up the area, and it looked a lot better – the bleeding had stopped and it just looked irritated. Determined to finish my walk for the day, I decided to continue on. When I got to my 13.1 mile mark I was so happy to be done. My leg was in bad shape, the raw spot was now about 4 inches long, and about 2 inches wide. But I had finished my walk. After walking another 1.2 miles to get back to my room I called it a day and tried to recover.
* * *
Sunday morning I work up and checked on my leg. It looked better, but it was still raw. I knew that today was going to be a long day. Still sore from the night before, I got back on the road around 6:30 am. By the time I got to the 1 mile mark I knew that my fears where going to come true – my leg started to burn and I knew I was going to be facing a repeat of yesterday. But I know that I need to work thought the pain and discomfort and get this done. I stopped at the 5 mile mark to take a look at it, and the sore was growing again. On top of that, I was starting to get the same bumps on my stomach that I had had on my legs yesterday.
I was so frustrated at this point that I wanted to stop, but I knew if I did it would be a disaster for my progress, so I continued on. By the time I got to the 8 mile mark my leg was bleeding and my stomach was completely raw. A little later I rolled my ankle trying to get out of the way from an oncoming car that had crossed over the white line on route 100. At this point I started to question why I was still out on the road.
I sat on the guard rail for about five minutes rubbing my ankle, and that is when I told myself that I had made it this far, so I can finish this! I got back up and continued on.
About 10 minutes later I was in the valley walking down route 100 when someone pulled up in a pickup truck, and said “I drive a semi around here every morning, and I have been watching you for the last few weeks. You’re doing great, keep up the good work.”
It was at that point I knew had made the right decision to keep going. I had a new wave of determination from this brief conversation and the encouragement kept me going through the rest of the walk.
By the time I got to my 13.1 mile mark, I was in bad shape. Both of my ankles we swollen, my knees hurt, my hip was soar, and my leg and stomach were on fire. But I had completed my goal. I have now walked the distance of a marathon in one weekend. I will be honest; I never thought I would be able to walk this kind of a distance in my life.
* * *
Monday morning rolls around and I am so incurably soar, everything hurts and I need to get up and walk into the office so I can weigh in. I got on the scale and I was relieved to see that I was down to 325.6 lbs. I was quite happy with my progress since Friday. It made all that hard work worth it. I had proven to myself that I could meet my goals by myself, even with Joe out of town. I was feeling great, so I walked up to the general store and got an omelet with extra spinach and a Spartan Green Juice. While I was waiting for it to be ready I send Joe a text message letting him know the good news that I was down to 325.
This is where ‘it’ hit the fan for me.
His reply was: “ Ok, did you get 5 miles in this am?”
First of all, Mondays are supposed to be my day to recover. I replied with “ I have 1.2 miles in today”.
I then get the next messages from Joe while I am starting to eat breakfast. “Ok see if you can get 3.8 done with the pancake (sandbag). I didn’t realize we have till Friday to be at 308ish. So even 315 would not be a disaster. Could you go raw this week?”
I was so pissed off and crushed I could not see straight. I worked hard this weekend and kept pushing through the pain. This is the reward I get?
I took a few minutes to cool off before I replied, “I can go raw for the rest of the week, but need to take a day to recover from the 27+ miles this weekend. The raw spots on my legs are very soar and still bleeding from time to time.”
“Do the rower.” He replied
At this point all I could do was throw my arms in the air and say I give up. I finished my breakfast, and started to leave to go watch the Memorial Day parade here in Pittsfield VT. It was a very small event, but there was a good crowd that showed up. The parade ended in the city cemetery, where there was a small service for our fallen heroes. It is funny how incurably small my problems felt, after experiencing this service. Talk about a reality check that was a big one.
This morning I weighed myself again and I am back up again to 327.2lbs. I am going to keep my deal and make it the rest of the week on raw food, and we will see how thing go from there. I am not happy about this, because I feel that my body needs the protein to build muscle and to help repair the damage I am doing to my body as I continue to push the limits of what is possible. But I guess my opinion doesn’t matter. I am just going to do what I am told until I physically cannot go any further, and my body shuts down.
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