Hilo’s Colby La Brie lost 100 pounds and discovered a New Self
One of the best things we can do for our bodies is to maintain a healthy weight.
Most of us could afford to lose a few pounds and in the process decrease our odds of falling victim to high blood pressure or diabetes.
Yes, I know, I’ve heard all the excuses why people can’t find the time to exercise or improve their eating habits. But when I come across those that have made the effort and succeed it is time to rejoice.
One such person is 32 year old Colby La Brie who through his efforts dropped ten inches off his waist size, going from a 42 to a slim 32. He also went from a triple X tee shirt to his current large shirt size.
“In June of 2010 I weighed 295 pounds and by January 6, 2012 I lost 100 pounds,” La Brie said.
La Brie, a KTA Central Warehouse employee, credits much of his dramatic drop in weight to his entering the BJ Penn weight loss challenge.
“I also made a deal with my co-workers that if I lost 100 pounds we would do the Hilo to Volcano relay race together,” La Brie said.
The relay race starts at Coconut Island in Hilo and finishes at Volcano Village, a distance of 31 miles. La Brie and his crew lived up to the deal as they became a relay finisher team.
For La Brie it was his workout in the gym that gave him an introduction to running.
“I never played any sports when I was at Hilo High School,” La Brie said. “So when I started my workouts in the gym the focus was on cardio and strength training.”
La Brie moved some of his workouts to the roads when he started running in June 2011 and then entered his first 5K, 3.1 mile race on September 11.
“I fell in love with running as a result of that first 5K race,” he said. “I got hooked because of the challenge to get better and faster, not only in a race, but when I run alone as well.”
Of course any good weight loss program doesn’t rely on exercise alone as food intake plays an important role.
“I changed my diet by cutting out soda, candies, ice cream and sweets,” La Brie said. “I stopped eating white rice and switched to brown and I’ll eat chicken breast, peanut butter and lettuce which were all things I had never eaten before.”
The results of his weight loss and healthy diet became strikingly apparent as he reduced his 5K running finishing time by more than six minutes in the 3.1 mile race over a three month period,
“I pushed myself harder in every race just to see those numbers drop,” La Brie said.
Colby La Brie isn’t finished yet as this self motivated individual has set the bar even higher.
“I recently started a new goal for myself, which is to run every day for a year,” he said. “I believe that challenging me is what is keeping me active and motivated.”
La Brie continues to cross train at the gym where he will work one on one with a coach.
“I have been working with Coach Jeremy Johnson at Penn’s Fitness Center,” La Brie said. “I try to make at least 35 miles of run time on the road per week and I’ve entered four 5K’s, one 4 mile run and the relay race with my co workers.”
His rapid overall improvement has sparked an inner flame as he sets his running goals even higher.
“My goals this year is to enter the Honolulu Marathon and to qualify for the Boston Marathon,” he said. “I would also like to try a triathlon.”
La Brie new found health success has become an inspiration to all in our community as he now hopes to help others get out and moving.”
“I like sharing my story to inspire people to get out and get moving, get healthy and staying fit,” La Brie said.
A support system helped La Brie in his success and he credits a variety of people in hanging in there for him.
“I would not have done any of this without my biggest motivator, my girlfriend Kaua Puaoi,” La Brie said. “My family, co-workers and friends both old and new all helped inspire me to keep going and keep pushing.”
Down the road La Brie and people like him will save their employers money in health care expenses as they now become healthier and can possible help reduce the cost in our growing national medical care expense. Add to this a reduction in sick leave and an increase in overall production.
La Brie is in a win – win situation and his inspiration hopefully will be infectious so that others may catch the same level of motivation. We all can conquer our own future by reducing down time and prescription cost when we follow a healthy lifestyle.
Exercise and diet is not the panacea for all that ails us as we must include positive thinking and a spiritual belief that we can and must overcome obstacles.
And someday should you happen to see a strong willed individual jogging the roads of East Hawaii remember to smile, say “woof” and never shy away from “Running with the Big Dog.”