To wait means to procrastinate further and Chris Blace didn’t see the need to wait any longer until the start of a new year before making a resolution to lose weight.
The Crofton resident knew he’d reached the point where he needed to do something and committed to the Isagenix program. That was more than two years ago and Blace, now 42, has never looked back with a lifestyle change that not only resulted in the desired weight loss, but sent him in another direction with a corresponding increase in physical activity and stamina.
The five-foot-eight Blace reached a peak weight of 277 pounds in late November 2018. Through friend Chris Wilkinson, Blace embarked on his Isagenix journey right away that December.
“I was going to start in January 2019,” recalled Blace.
But there was no time like the present for him to start trimming the fat, so to speak, and Blace found the program immediately to his liking.
“You just replace your two meals a day with shakes which is very simple,” he said. “Once a week, you do a cleanse day.”
Breakfast and lunch consists of shakes, with a normal dinner.
Blace noted the cost the first few months was about $10-15 per day and that included two meals (shakes), snacks, gentle detox cleansing for intermittent fasting and other healthy supplements.
“After those three months, I was able to customize my monthly order having developed better eating habits and being able to prepare my own healthy snacks. This reduced the cost, but definitely not as convenient as the snacks being delivered to the doorstep.”
It didn’t take long for a slimmer version of Blace to emerge.
“I lost a pound a day for the first 30 days,” he indicated. “It’s 80 per cent nutrition, 20 per cent exercise. There was no exercise in those first 30 days.”
Blace admitted to being nervous about the cleanse days, going a day without eating. But a few small snacks taken between four drinks other than shakes made it bearable.
“It’s a gentle cleansing and intermittent fasting type protocol with light healthy snacks regularly between the gentle cleansing drinks (herbal/botanical blend),” explained Wilkinson.
“You lose your few pounds on those cleanse days,” Blace noted.
After eight months, he had dropped 102 pounds, weighing 175 pounds by September 2019.
“My goal was 60 pounds,” Blace said. “When I got there, I might as well keep going. It’s been a lifestyle change. It’s easy to maintain.”
His current weight is 183 pounds, with some ups and downs, but he’s settled into a range that suits him and where he feels great.
Blace was always very active as a youth, playing both hockey and baseball regularly. He maintained that regimen all through his years at Crofton Elementary School and Chemainus Secondary where he graduated in 1996.
Fitness levels drop off for so many in their adult years and Blace fell into that regimen while concentrating on coaching his boys Carter, now 13, and Owen, 11, in hockey.
Blace’s weight gain continued, he said, “from being less active, poor nutrition and all the stuff you learn afterwards.”
But Blace managed to pick up the physical activity again, starting on Christmas Day 2018 with his first run. It was slow at first, going the distance of a couple of telephone poles around the block and walking the length of two more poles over one kilometre.
“That set my goal to do a 10K,” he pointed out.
It didn’t take long for him to pick up the pace. In April 2019, Blace completed the Times Colonist 10K in Victoria followed by the Royal Roads 10K in May and the Edge to Edge half marathon in Ucluelet during October. He even did the gruelling Grouse Grind in November 2019.
By May 2020, he was on track to enter the BMO Vancouver Marathon but that was cancelled due to COVID. Blace came up with an alternative to match the distance.
“I ran it virtually here going 43 km,” he indicated. “That was a struggle. There’s no cheering, hydration stations or snack stations.”
He plotted a route from his home that wound up four km short so he had to incorporate an extra loop into it before reaching the finish line tape stretched across the family’s driveway by his sons.
The extra athletics has all been a bonus to his nutrition changes.
“I had no intentions of running or doing this beforehand,” Blace conceded.
“Now I’m getting more into trails. I’m maintaining still running – running and hiking.”
Blace doesn’t miss his old way of life at all and there’s been no urges for any burgers and fries in the last two years.
“I learned a lot about food that I thought was healthy, with huge support from Chris Wilkinson,” he said. “He’s the guru of it.”
Blace feels his stress levels and mental clarity are 100 per cent better.
“I feel I’m going to live longer because of this.”