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Losing ‘Big Cal’

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One and a half years ago Calvin Nowell weighed in at 450 pounds!

“I turned to food a lot of times for comfort or acceptance,” Calvin tells The 700 Club, “and then I just had a long-term relationship with food that kind of hindered everything that God wanted to do in my life.”

Calvin had slowly gained the weight over a long period of time…

“I never thought of myself as really being as big as I was. At the time, people accepted me. 'Big Cal' is what they used to call me.

But the stares he got from strangers sent a different message.

He says, “You’re getting on the airplane and having to ask for a seatbelt extender -- knowing that the person next to you is really upset because you’re in their seat as well.”

So how did he shrink from a 60-inch waistline to a trim size 36??

“There’s power in surrendering, in yielding, in being vulnerable,” he explains. “Saying, ‘I like food. I need help.’ I think it starts with just being honest with yourself and being honest with God.”

Through prayer and perseverance, Calvin completely changed his lifestyle. He began making healthy food choices and keeping a food journal.

“One week I wouldn’t eat fried foods,” he shares. “The next week I would go to chicken and fish. I would do things over and over in that area, and lo and behold, a year and a half later I’ve lost 215 pounds.”

The first step Calvin took to change his diet started at the grocery store.

“Normally I tend to shop all around the perimeter. Everything you need is on the outside, so I don’t go into the aisles as much as I walk around the whole circle of the grocery store.”

When it comes to consuming veggies, Calvin says, “I love vegetables now. It’s more like an acquired taste. The more you keep doing it, the more your desires change.”

And what about sweets?

“Growing up, we used to have cakes in the house, and everybody would get their piece. Then the next morning they would look for the rest of it, and it would be gone. I have an old relationship with cake. But you know we’re divorced now, and I’m with Christ.”

Calvin hired a personal trainer for motivation and accountability.

He says, “When I started with the trainer, [all I could do] was walk 10 minutes every other day. That’s all I did -- just walking. The next thing you know I’m running, I’m lifting weights.”

He still works hard to keep the weight off.

“It’s hard for me to get in the gym,” he confesses. “I’ve always said [that] I made it a lifestyle. It’s just something that I have to do. I don’t necessarily like working out. To be honest, I don’t like it.”

Today Calvin’s dream has come true. He’s just released his new CD Start Somewhere.

“He wants me to win. He wants me to have victory. I believe that God is who He says He is. You can have what He says you can have. You can take Him at His Word, and He will not fail you. If you go with God, He’s going with you.”