Warning: this post is not funny. Feel free to skip if you’re here for a laugh.

You
know in the movies how there’s sometimes a moment of silence right
before something epic happens? Like right before somebody inflicts the
final blow in a fight, or right before the three-pointer is shot two
seconds before the end of a basketball game?

I totally had one of those moments the other night
during the awards ceremony for the Biggest Gainer contest I was in. It
was unbelievable.

Wife and I went to the meeting feeling pretty awesome. I had
gained almost 15bs of lean muscle mass, and she had lost about 15lbs. We
were excited to go and revel in our personal victories.

My trainer had specifically asked me to write and present a
testimonial during the meeting all about how I was freaked out to try
gaining, but trusted him and did it, and then found success. Boy was it
moving! By the end of my speech, I flexed my now-much-larger bicep, and
the entire room erupted in applause. In fact, the whole testimonial
thing was a contest–whoever wrote the most moving testimonial and then
got the most applause won the little mini-contest. Well, one of the
testimonials was this lady who talked about how the Biggest Loser
program literally saved her life. The minute she opened with “when I was
diagnosed with cancer a couple of years ago,” I knew I wasn’t going to
win that one, but it was all right–my testimonial was powerful enough
that I took third place. It was awesome! I had an entire room full of
people cheering me on. They seemed genuinely excited for me as I flexed
for them.

The excitement just kept going. My trainer was pumped. He’s new
to the gym, and so my obvious success (I was WAY ahead of the next guy)
was really good for him. He had invited his mom and step-dad to see me,
and when he was telling the really obnoxious announcer and owner of the
gym franchise the results of my weigh-in, he was literally shaking with
nerves. And then they announced my weight. It was an amazing moment to,
once again, have the room cheer for me. For the first time in my life, I
had an audience cheering for me for an athletic performance.

And then, a few minutes later, after everyone else had weighed in
and the night was winding to a close, the moment had finally arrived.
They were announcing the winners of the contests. My category was first
up. They got the $250 check ready, the obnoxious announcer got up, and I
had that thing happen. That movie thing where all the work I had done
flashed before my eyes, and I saw myself getting up at 6:00 in the
morning and busting my butt and training hard–all the workouts and all
the really sore days. I felt extremely proud of myself, and I felt like I
had finally triumphed in an area that had eluded me most of my life. I
was finally going to be celebrated as the winner, not of some writing
contest or music thing, but of a contest of strength. A contest of physical triumph. This moment was truly significant for me. Though the room was abuzz, everything went silent right before the name was read.

Announcer: And the winner of the $250 for biggest gainer, 2011 IS……


Kyle Anderson!!!!! Trained by Jason!!!!

The entire room kind of looked back at me, sitting on the back
row in confusion, and I could do nothing but shrug. I’m sure it was
clear that I was pretty upset. I looked over at my trainer who was pissed. There was a mistake. I knew it. Brandon, my trainer knew it. The kid they had named had gained significantly
less weight than me, and hadn’t even stayed. They kept calling his
name, and nobody appeared. And I sat wondering what the crap had just
happened replaying that moment over and over thinking “Did that actually
just happen?”

They just plowed forward. They awarded the other awards
as Brandon ran back to have them check the numbers again. And then the
meeting ended. After most people had gone home with the impression that I
had lost the contest and exaggerated my claims in my testimonial, the
trainer doing the calculations came up to me and handed me this:

This is the $250 check with my name written in Sharpie over the other guy’s name. “Sorry man,” the trainer said. “I accidentally calculated the numbers wrong.”

Seriously? You didn’t even check the numbers twice
before announcing the winner of a 90 day fitness competition to a huge
room full of people? You didn’t think the numbers were strange when last
week I was ahead nearly double the next guy below me?

It turns out I was really bummed all night long and into the next
day. I would never have thought that would be my reaction to something
like this, but it appears out that while the money was nice, what I was
really seeking was the moment of triumph where the movie ends with the
crowd cheering and victor picking up the $250 check with his own name on it, feeling like he was getting payoff for his hard, hard work.

I have no idea how to end this. Because it sounds like I’m all
sad, but I’m actually not because this was a couple of weeks ago. Also,
this post was totally not funny, but I thought after talking about the
contest a few times I ought to let you all know what happened.