Hi there, thanks for dropping by to your-fitness-journey.com, my name is Joseph. You can call me Joe for short.

I started this site to create awareness and share information on health and fitness as I had a long and complicated history of my health at a young age.

My health and fitness yo-yo.

My journey to fitness and health runs back during my years in high-school. Being overweight wasn’t glamorous for unwanted attention. So I did what other concerned teenagers would do on staying fit I did what most do – going for jogs and eating less.

I wasn’t successful due to my lack of knowledge on fitness and nutrition. My efforts on weight loss were minuscule.

My fat loss and overall health was a roller coaster ride over the years. Due to health circumstances, I wasn’t able to achieve them within the desired timeframe.

My Long Story

Click on the interactive titles below to get the summary of my health through the years.

Warning: Images and descriptions of medical symptoms may offend some, please read them at your discretion.

Goiter – mid 2004

One day I woke up to find a small lump on the left side of my neck above the collar bone. Concerned I made an appointment with my local doctor.

Examining the lump, he concluded that I may have a goitre. He asked if I am eating adequate amounts of seafood. Besides the usual Malaysian diet, I told him I do like seafood and consume it weekly.

The doctor concluded the condition is currently benign and told me to return within six months.

Life resumed, as usual, the next few years.

Fat Loss progress during the period: A few kilos which I think it was only water weight.

Colorectal – late 2004

It is an embarassing topic to mention for some especially if the problem was around the groin.😓

It appeared as a small hole and from the diagnosis of the doctor (which I found unpleasant), he told me the condition was benign. Again I was advised to return within the next six months.

I felt that he wasn’t an expert or he would give more suggestions in taking the next best steps.

Fat Loss progress: There wasn’t any fat loss progress at all 🤣

Hearing loss – late 2005

I have noticed an increase in the difficulty of hearing people and lectures away from a 5-meter radius while studying in Australia.

I thought it was strange.

I decided to forgo doctor visits because I was a student. I didn’t have access to Australian Medicare and I was in OSCH. Because at that time I didn’t know how much medical benefits I could get from OSCH especially on pricing. Besides, being in a regional town Toowoomba, in the state of Queensland it is difficult to get around without a car.

I could get one but I was trying to keep expenses down till I graduate. Besides I wasn’t sure there was an ear specialist around the area. I joined the university gym, in hopes to lose my extended chubbiness and stave off some of the effects of my degrading health…

Fat Loss progress: I managed to achieve moderate results on fat lost and at most was 10kg (22 lbs). The change on my diet was home cooked food I prepared.

First surgery – 2007

After my graduation, things have escalated and their effects on me came crashing down bearing their severity over the years.

I decide to move to Sydney from Toowoomba to get in contact with medical specialists of the city.

I found out later the goitre that fluctuates on its growth turned out to be extending inwards under my collar bone towards my chest. If it wasn’t for the suggested X-ray scan from the surgeon I was told I may choke to death in a few months.

I was shocked! 😱

The surgery conducted had left a long scar on my neck after I have recovered as it didn’t heal as hoped and it is still here today!

Next few months I got my first hearing aid for $600; used – I cannot afford new ones. Eventually, I got enough money to buy new which cost me around $4k AUD each; $8k AUD in total.

I got on with life as usual but I found my hearing gradually decreased…

Fat Loss progress: I went on a research about diet and nutrition online and getting a personal trainer. The maximum fat loss I had achieved was near 20kg (44 lbs) over 3 months.

Deafness – late 2013

One morning I awoke from the amplified sound of my alarm. There was noise for certain but something wasn’t right – then it hit me.

I got deaf in the left ear.

I wasn’t too disappointed as my ENT specialist Dr.Brian Williams did warn me that deafness may one day occur. From his frequent checkups and blood test results of no hormone changes his best advice was getting cochlear implant surgery.

So I got in touch with SCIC and went for their hearing assessment and after their consultation, the day for surgery was set. As far as I remember the procedure took 4 – 6 hours and requires a night stay in the hospital.

There wasn’t any pain at all only minor discomfort and minor need of a workaround during showers. The surgeon, Dr. Catherine Birman has instructed the patched area must be kept dry for a full recovery.

2 weeks after the surgery I had the cochlear device attached and switched on…

Noise filled my ear (or I thought it was) and I was amazed.

I could hear ambient sounds i.e the ticking of the clock, shifting of paper, typing of keyboards but voices were robotic. This was due to my brain trying to get used on the electric signals produced by the cochlear device.

Next few months of frequent usage and visits to the audiologist, I was able to hear almost as good as a normal person.

Note: Hearing rehabilitation may differ from one person to another depends on many factors ie. the length of deafness before surgery, environment and social cohesion of an individual while deaf.

Fat Loss progress: Managed to maintain my weight after the surgery however it didn’t last because of another medical condition below.

Colorectal surgery – mid 2015 – late 2017

Out of all medical conditions I had this one is the most troublesome and depressing of all.

Why?

Imagine of going through the experience on the need to go under the knife every two months; The constant feeling of gnawing pain around the area that is most vulnerable every day for nearly 2 years. 😰

You will understand how it felt.

The tiny hole around my groin area over the years turned into an infection and began to swell. I got an appointment ASAP with my local general practitioner. He then referred me to a colorectal specialist and after his diagnosis, he told me I had a fistula. The surgery procedure in which was placing a band around and slowly move it out.

It was then where my frustrations began because of the constant stain I was unable to lead a normal life. Furthermore, my ability to work out was constrained as I had to stay at home most of the time and cannot move or position my body to perform any strenuous exercises.

Fat Loss progress: Since my ability to move and conducting gym activities hampered this is the time I gain significant weight and when there wasn’t further visits to the hospital required my weight topped at 110kg. (242 lbs)😂

Wow Joe with all that’s happened, I am surprised you’re still going?

Me neither, I didn’t know I still have it within me. I did go through a phase of throwing in the towel. But knowing that I did lose a large amount of fat and weight 2 times previously, I told myself – Just do it!

When the going get’s tough the tough get’s going.

Wait! So why are you sharing us your story?

What I want to say is if you’re experiencing an illness, lethargy and not satisfied with your fitness and health condition it isn’t the end. You need to have the right mindset and take appropriate steps for recovery and reach your fitness goals.

Doesn’t matter how difficult the situation as long you have the right mindset and commit you will get there.

Wait a sec! If you claim that you’re fit I wanna see some pics!

Okay here, stare at my ugliness. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Late 2012

Year 2012 Sept 15
Bad hair day! Average Body fat range. Around 20% – 22%

Sept 2017

Year 2017-Sept-25 body shape
Fattest moment in my life. 110kg tops, big round stomach. This was a month after my colorectal condition is cured.

Oct 2017

Year 2017-Oct-11 body shape
Stomach fat reduced but still have a large pudge.

Feb 2019

Year 2019-Feb-17 body shape
So I got back to where I was on 2012 is where I was near at 93kg body fat range was around 20% – 22%

June 2019

Year 2019-06-05 body shape front
Still hovering around near 20% – 22%. Serratus muscles imbalance on the left was due to a tendon injury between shoulder and bicep muscles. (Will work out the smaller left side)
Year 2019-06-05 body shape side
Side view shows belly area significantly smaller.
Year 2019-06-05 body shape front
45 degree angle with stomach sucked in 😂

July 2019

Slight thinning out on face and the middle part section of my body.

Year 2019-07-24 body shape front
45 degree angle shot.
Year 2019-07-24 body shape left side
Side shot of my left side with arms lifted.
Year 2019-07-24 body shape 45 degree front arms lifted
45 degree angle shot with arms lifted.
Year 2019-07-24 body shape right side
Side shot of my right side.
Year 2019-07-24 body shape front
Front shot.

August 2019

Year 2019-09-13 Gym recognition for body transformation
I got a recognition for my body transformation efforts. My local gym request before and after pics with a back story. This is to to stick it on their wall.
I am on the right track!

Hang on a sec! Where’s the six-pack? And you look different on some pics?

Its currently work in progress, I still got lots of work ahead for me to get my body fat percentage down to 15% to achieve the holy grail of man’s fitness.

Some pictures look different due to the camera angle, lighting and tripod equipment. Besides I am not a professional photographer.

You aren’t a qualified medical practitioner why should I listen to you?

You don’t have too, but from my story above you will find some medical practitioners are narrowly focused and can’t give immediate advise nor put their knowledge into action before its too late.

As the old saying goes “prevention is better than cure”. So if this site serves as a guide for you to achieve your health and fitness goals with fewer obstacles all the better.

So that’s all from me. Work towards your health and fitness goals!