It was the summer of 2014 in Jacksonville, Florida. My wife had just snapped a picture of my daughter and me standing outside a local hot spot. In typical human fashion, we all gathered around her phone to approve of the image before sharing to Facebook. As I looked at her phone, I saw a man standing alongside my daughter, who kind of looked like me but softer around the edges and sure to be heavier on the scale. This man was definitely me, and he had gained 40 pounds over his 20-year Celanese career.

This image would become the motivation in my quest to not only lose weight, but to get healthier overall.

I heard comments like, “That’s all fine and dandy, David. We all want to lose weight; we all hope to be healthier; but how are you going to do it?” That’s a good question, because wanting and hoping are not strategies for success. Well here’s the answer to how we’re going to do it; we’re going to act on the lead measures (daily routines) betting that the lag will come (weight loss).

My wife introduced me to an app she’d been using called “myfitnesspal.” I used this app to log my daily workouts, food entries (2000 calories or less), and daily weight on the scale. The app also helps search restaurant menus to help make wise choices when dining out. The app became my accountability component and my scoreboard to let me know if I was winning or losing. By no means did I meet my daily goals 100 percent of the time, but I sure as heck tried. There’s a quote by John Dryden that states: “We first make our habits, and then our habits make us.” This is so true that almost five years later it’s part of my normal routine in what I eat and what I do to “control” my weight.

As we kick off 2019, I encourage us all to commit to performing daily activities that will drive weight loss and create a healthier you. I’ll end with another quote: “You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” -John Maxwell