Steve MacFall, a battalion chief for Fayette County Department of Fire and Emergency Services, almost didn’t go public with his story of losing 100 pounds in six months, but in the same way he was encouraged by family and friends to get healthier in the first place, he gave in to pressure to share the story as a means to encourage others.
Based at Station 11 on Flat Creek Trail, MacFall’s job is to lead, and he says leading by example is an important aspect of his job. So when his wife of 23 years encouraged him to start walking with her in the evenings to get some exercise, he says he considered that probably he could stand to shed some of those 290 pounds encumbering his five-foot, eight-inch frame.
“I never set out to lose 100 pounds,” he writes in his celebratory report, which is printed in its entirety on Page Four. “My goal was 25 pounds.”
MacFall said Monday afternoon that, precisely, he is down 102 pounds now, weighing in at 188. And that’s after eating a big, tasty meal over the weekend to celebrate his wedding anniversary.
The trick? Get your pencil and paper ready. MacFall’s secrets were to eat fewer calories, eat healthier food that he actually likes, exercise regularly and stay encouraged through the support of friends and loved ones.
One key point MacFall makes is that he only eats foods he likes. His wife Robin is doing the same thing.
“If you dread something, you won’t do it,” he said.
Nowadays, MacFall wears large shirts instead of XXXLs. His pants are size 33, down from 46, and his collar size has dropped from 19 1/2 to 16.
“I feel a thousand percent better,” MacFall said.
MacFall says he eats plenty, but he doesn’t usually over-eat. He recalls a time when he had gone to Longhorn Steak House and consumed a meal that was somewhere around 4,000 calories. That was for one meal that day. Nowadays, he shoots for about half that for a whole day.
“I found I can function on about 2,000 calories a day,” he said. “It’s a lifestyle change.
“And if I can do it, anybody can do it,” he said.
MacFall’s doctor, whom he visits every six weeks or so, “is speechless”, he says. And he’s not the only authority in MacFall’s life taking notice.
“I think Steve has accomplished something we should all strive to do: To become healthier,” said Fire Chief David Scarbrough. “I hope more of us can follow his example with weight loss and dieting.”