Monday, February 22, 2010

Motivational Mondays (Feb. 22)

Well, Sunday was my long-anticipated speech and while it would be nice to post the speech here underneath, I can't. I wanted Mrs. LB to watch my speech instead of having to worry about recording it so that was that. My blog/Loper buddy Angie was there and said she tried to record it, so we'll see if the video works.

In any case, the speech went well. I was nervous about it and worried about it for awhile but it came out the way I'd wanted it to.

Some of the highlights:

* I thanked Mrs. LB before I started. I said that "Without her, I wouldn't be here today" which is the truth. I wouldn't be the person I am now without my wife. That old cliche "Behind every great man is a great woman"... well, I'm not a great man but my wife is certainly a great woman. But I couldn't resist setting up a bit of a joke because that earned some applause and when it died down I said "... because my wife drove tonight, so I would have needed a ride."

* I had a long-ish speech prepared (it was about 18 minutes) but I was told I'd have 3-5 minutes before the speech. But the speaker before me went long so I figured I'd condense my speech some but still managed to talk about my journey. I talked about weighing in at 308.6, how 7 minutes on the elliptical and 8 minutes on the bike led to three days of soreness and how I lost 10, 13 and 11 pounds the first three months, respectively.

* I'd submitted some pictures and the first one that came up was one of Big LB, and it drew some gasps. Seriously. I think people were like "Wow, is that the same guy?"

* I talked about my weight loss, how I lost 60 pounds with trainer and then 60 by myself in 2007, and how I took up running after that. After briefly discussing my progression as a runner, I talked about how and why I joined the Lopers, how I'd promised my wife that I ever wanted to run a marathon I'd join the Lopers since she was the one who suggested the Lopers in the first place.

* After a brief recap of the marathon and talking about what I'd written on my bib, I closed out with this. It took me a while to figure out how I wanted to end it but I figured it out. This was the picture that was on display for most of the speech:

LB, circa June 2005

"If there's anything I would like for you to remember from this speech, it is this. What I wrote at the bottom of my bib is what I believe. Nothing is impossible. Because if you would have seen that guy four years ago and someone would have told you that he was going to lose 120 pounds and run a marathon, you would have said 'That's impossible.' And I'm here today to show you that it's not."

I walked off the stage into the comforting arms of my wife as the entire banquet gave me a standing ovation. It felt strange to be honest, to have a room full of people standing and clapping for me, but not a bad strange. It took me a while to settle down but Mrs. LB was comforting as always.

Awhile later I was able to relax and after the banquet was over more than a few people came up to me shook my hand such, some discussing their own stories of weight loss and how I was able to do it.

The speech was something I'd practiced for days and I was glad that speech came out the way it did. And I'm glad Mrs. LB and my brother Danny and his wife were there to see it. And maybe, just maybe it will inspire someone to do something they once thought impossible.

15 comments:

5thsister said...

Luis, you'll never cease to inspire because I truly believe that is your calling. I do hope you'll be able to post a recording of your speech. I'll probably be all mush face as here I am crying tears of joy at just the snippets you posted today.

God bless you and your lovely bride!

Amanda said...

I wish I could have been there to hear that speech, but reading about it is enough as well. For me being still in the middle of my weight loss journey it is absolutely inspiring and brings hope to see what you've accomplished! Congratulations. :)

Chicago Mom said...

Wow! Two great accomplishments! I had no idea what a terrific journey you have been on, losing all that weight - congrats! And congrats too on having the courage to give that speech and share your inspiring story. Most people are terrified of public speaking - good for you!

Lisa said...

Amazing. Your running group sounds like a great group of people. I got a little teary eyed reading this post, especially the part about the ovation. Nice job L.B. and very well deserved recognition.

Morgan said...

Quite frankly if I had been there I would've cried because I am tearing up now. I am so proud of you! Congrats on a successful speech and more importantly for becoming an inspiration! Nothing is impossible!

Jephy's Mom said...

LB, marathoner, inspirational speaker, goal setter and achiever. Congratulations on yet another big accomplishment.

Spike said...

thank you for being so honest about your story. you give the gift of hope, and for that we are all better.

thrasherswife said...

I don't think I can say anything better then what the other comments have so well said.... You are truly an inspiration, LB!

Kerrie T. said...

Congratulations, LB. Truly inspiring.

Tricia said...

You are so inspiring. Great job!

Lisa said...

Congratulations! I know that you will inspire others with that speech. You inspire me and I don't even have a weight loss journey ahead of me.

Great job!

Becky said...

Louis, thank you so much for posting about your speech here. I really wish I could have been at the banquet and heard your speech first hand. Your wife must be so proud of you! I am sure you are going to inspire more Lopers (and other people too) to change their lives for the better.

Angie Eats Peace said...

I definitely teared up during your speech. Amazing and very motivational.

Katie A. said...

Just reading your recap gave me chills. You have a way with words LB and I so enjoy all your posts! Awesome job and you are an inspiration! :)

Willoughby said...

I predict that one day you will be sharing your story with a much larger audience than your Loper's group or your blog friends. It is such an inspiring story, it touches everyone who hears it. You truly exemplify "Anything is possible".