It’s in the “Want,” Not Just the “Will”

It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Friday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

real_life_stories_stories-1-2It was Fall 2013, and I was just finishing up my annual physical checkup. This year was no different: hearing from the doctor about how my bloodwork numbers were incredibly bad and how I needed to explore some other options in my diet (and needed more exercise). I was also informed my weight was at 332 lbs, the heaviest I had ever weighed in my life. When it was time for me to leave the doctor’s office, I even received a gift, considering my numbers were on the edge of me becoming diabetic: I got to take home a blood glucose monitor, just to kind of keep an eye on things. That little device would never come out of the box.

In the meantime, I would go on with my daily routine. Waking up in the morning, after not getting enough rest, dreading getting out of bed and walking on my sore knees and painful plantar fasciitis feet as I got ready for my workday. I just so happened to work at a grocery store, so anything I wanted food wise was available to me on an almost daily basis, and I was sure to take advantage of that. Fresh bakery donuts in the morning, whole frozen pizzas or frozen dinners, conveniently prepared in the break-room microwave for lunch, and pick me up snacks in the afternoon, all right there. I needed those things, because, dang, I was hungry and I was working hard, right?

Sure, I was overweight, but that didn’t mean I hadn’t ever tried not to be. As far as I can remember, I had always been considered overweight. A few years before reaching my heaviest, I had a couple hernia surgeries and each time was reminded that I was “morbidly” obese. At one of these consultations, the idea of bariatric surgery was even pitched to me. So around that time I took interest in some diets, with none of them really staying with me or making me feel like I wasn’t depraving myself of something. I did lose 20 lbs at one point, proving that I could at least lose weight, but it ferociously came back to me with additional weight added on. But in the Spring of 2014, I noticed someone who had lost a decent amount of weight and was determined to find out how they did it. I found out that I needed to look up Mark’s Daily Apple.

Wheels were about to be set in motion, or should I say, I was about to be set in motion on. I really like information and MDA seemed like it had much to offer. So I poured over the website quite a bit, and on July 1, 2014, decided I would give some of the principles a shot. I set what I felt were small, realistic goals, and decided to pursue them. The grocery store wasn’t all bad after all as it’s not a sedentary job, and it did allow me to lift heavy things now and again. There were also a lot of opportunities for me to look at labels and see just what I had been putting into my body, and it alarmed me. I started eating different, kept a watchful eye on my carb intake, and didn’t feel it was unbearable. I never knew I liked almonds so much, or that I could crave a good salad over a bunch of potato chips any day, and heck, grass fed beef tasted so much better than any beef I had eaten in the past.


After a few months the weight was steadily coming off. I decided I would start taking walks outside every now and then. I was enjoying being outside and getting some fresh air and sunlight. However, I knew cold weather season was on the horizon, so, I needed to get indoors, but somehow keep up my activity. So, I joined a gym and just started strolling on the treadmill for awhile. Eventually I decided I wanted to try to speed it up and try the running thing, and decided I wanted to get some sort of weightlifting in as well. The weight continued to come off in a steady manner and I wasn’t starving.


That brings me to where I am now on this journey. I sit here today weighing 178 lbs, having run one 10k and two 5k’s with very reasonable results (2nd in my age group in one!). There will be more runs in my future. But, most importantly, the Primal lifestyle will continue into my future. I no longer have to get out of bed in the morning with my foot or knees hurting. I’ve been to the doctor recently for another one of those annual physicals, and my numbers have taken a complete turnaround, with nowhere close to the word “diabetes” being brought up. Having just turned the age of 40, I think I may be in the best shape I have been in my life.

FEB16My story reads pretty clear and smooth, but, I will be the first to say it necessarily wasn’t, I just didn’t allow myself to give up. I had the foggy low carb flu in the beginning. I had some bumps in the road, but, you just get back to it and tomorrow is a new start. I still have some cravings and I still eat some bad things (80/20 rule, thank you!). You just have to be mindful of yourself and let your body reset, I think that is what has been most impactful to me. When I eat something out of the guidelines now, I can definitely feel how it alters the way I feel, giving me insight into whether I actually want to eat that option in the future. There really is so much more to The Primal Blueprint than the weight loss, I just can’t begin to write it all here and that is why I believe it works for me.

I have always been a little reluctant to write my “Success Story” because, what you have read here are just “chapters.” My story is not done, I can confidently say that with the lifestyle The Primal Blueprint has given me. Along my journey I have heard things such as “Determination” and “Willpower” and it brought to mind to me one day early on in the process, that it was “WANTpower.” So, I extend to you the questions, how bad do you “want” to lose weight, have a better understanding of your body, or even just simply feel better? You can do it, it can be done and with the help of MDA, I became proof!


Tadd Davis

TAGS:  guest post

About the Author

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

64 thoughts on “It’s in the “Want,” Not Just the “Will””

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. I may be a bit biased or vain, but, I think this is one of the best success stories I may have ever read! 🙂

    1. I’ll agree with the best success story for sure! You’ll have to make your own judgement on the biased or vain. lol

    2. This does not apply

      “I may be a bit biased or vain”


    1. Great job Tadd!

      And Paleo Ron Burgundy, I have to tell you…it’s been, what, three or four years now, and I STILL read Every. Single. Word. of your comments in the Ron Burgundy voice.

      Every comment, every word, every single day. I think I might come here just for that aspect, at this point! And the Friday success stories.


      1. Yes, Paleo Ron Burgundy, you were one of the first commenters I ever noticed on here and it gave me a smile, so, it is an honor to have you comment on my story!

  2. Great job. Encouraging story. (all but the St. Louis Cards T-Shirt!!) Keep up the good work.

    1. Cardinal Nation! It’s the Cardinal way….never give up! Really, Thanks!

      1. Congrats from one StL fan to another. You look like you feel great!! 🙂

  3. You’ve done an outstanding job. Keep going on your journey man, this truly works & is an enjoyable way to enhance your health!

  4. I have known Tadd on a personal level for over 10 years. I have watched this journey, his struggles and his achievements!
    Tadd’ s self worth, self esteem and his new dedication to life have been a testament to his remarkable stamina during this journey.
    Tadd, you my friend, have done an awesome job, you are a totally different person, the energy you have now is only a small part if the “New” you!!
    It is an honor to call you friend and “congratulations “.
    God Bless You!!

  5. This was such an uplifting story! I love that you call it ‘want’power, and I believe for real change to happen in life you need both the will and the want and you obviously have both. So inspiring!

  6. Amazing work. I’m only at the halfway mark of a similar journey myself.

    1. Then you are at an excellent point, congratulations! Look at how far you have come and not how far you have to go!

  7. Thank you for sharing these inspiring chapters from your ongoing story, Tadd! I love how you look beyond “willpower” and white-knuckling it…instead asking: What am I saying Yes to? What do I really want?

  8. Hurrah! You look so radiant and happy for your success, it makes me feel happy for you, too! I’d like to give you the honorable nomination as the “biggest loser”, but can not, because you are the biggest winner!

  9. Phenomenal story and pics. I like the tag “wantpower” too because I think applies not only on the upswing, but also to those perhaps trying to calorie restrict or continuing about their normal diet, the “wantpower” of whatever bad food someone is stuck on can be strong.

    Anyway, I’m happy to read this part of your story today.

  10. Very encouraging. Just what I needed to hear today after being stuck in a slump for a few months. You look so healthy and happy. Congrats!!

  11. Congratulations! I love the way you lay out the small steps you took that added up to big changes over time. Way to go!

  12. Wow, what a transformation! Big time props! Just don’t overdo the long distance cardio. But, I’m sure you know Mark’s advice on that topic. 🙂

    1. Thanks, I definitely have a copy of Primal Endurance and made it my sort of “experiment” over the winter.

  13. Go Cards! Just like the Cards never (ok, almost never) give up, your story has shown your determination! Great job.

  14. Congratulations on your metamorphasis! Quite an accomplishment.

  15. You look great man! Keep up the good work. Even though I’m a Braves fan AND I hate running, you are a genuine success story. Sorry I had to pester you a touch but gosh, good stuff!

    1. Thanks, any baseball fan is alright in my book. I think we shall forever be thankful to the Braves for Waino!

  16. I am so proud of you, Babe!! I have been lucky enough to be by your side before and during this journey and see the amazing transformation it has meant both inside and out! You have changed so much and are a better husband and father for it! Thank you for taking control of your life and health and being such a great role model for me and our son! You are such an inspiration to all of our family and friends and now all the readers here! Way to go and Congrats on sharing your story! Thanks to Mark and his team for all they have given to our family as well!
    We love you more than all the hearts!

    1. Awwww, so great to hear all this love!!!!! I am sure it had SO much to do with Mr. Davis taking such amazing steps toward loving himself!!!! xoxoxoxo

    2. Thank You, Mrs. “Wantpower” for giving me the time and space to do what I need to do. Most of all, putting up with the smell of bacon cooking daily 🙂 (just kidding, readers out there, not daily, well….pretty close, lol)

  17. What an awesome story! I especially like the part about just getting back on the program when we aren’t eating perfectly. This applies to me today as I’ve been eating too many almond flour pancakes; I kind of feel sick. But tonight, I will have beef stew with lots of veggies and get back up on the horse, just as you suggest. I also began testing my blood sugar again, which is a big motivator. I like the “WANTpower” part too. Congratulations, and thank you for the dose of inspiration. P.S. That’s a cool note from Mrs. “Wantpower.”

  18. Really terrific job my friend, you’ve accomplished so much for yourself and your family by choosing to take control and reclaim your health. You’ve made the world a healthier, better place and that’s good for everyone. Spread the stoke!

  19. So proud of your accomplishmentsTadd! You told your story so eloquently.

  20. Fabulous chapter in your story sir! A transformation indeed, and now spreading the word for others – nice work. Great role model for your family too.

    I think the difference for me was definitely in acquiring the “want” to feel healthy, not just the “will” to deny myself so-called “bad” food. You described that way better than I could.

  21. Absolutely wonderful. Congratulations. Very inspiring! Thank you.

  22. Tadd Davis,

    My congratulations to you! Your story is another great inspiration for me.

  23. You should be really proud of your accomplishments. Think of the ripple effect and how you are helping others…your family as well as strangers…and their families… And so on. Pure awesomeness.

  24. I am so excited to hear your success. Thank you! I am feeling a little stuck and want to use your story to accelerate myself. WANTPOWER

    1. Maybe you are not stuck, just taking a pause, just get back to it, I want to read your story!

    2. I’m in there with you. I made rice pudding the other night and tested my blood sugar: 196. So I made cauliflower rice tonight. Stories like Tadd’s, motivate me. I only need to lose about 20 pounds, and Tadd lost so much more than that. There’s so much information out there about white rice being ok for some, etc. But some of us just can’t eat starchy food like that. Tadd, I meant to say also, how awesome you look, so healthy and vibrant. I didn’t feel so vibrant after eating all of that rice pudding.

  25. Great work, great attitude and great achievement! Well done!

  26. Very inspiring story, but can anyone point me to any studies that indicate that grass-fed anything is better than the grain-fed one?


  27. Tadd, You don’t even look like the same person from where you started, maybe a much younger distant relative? And I’m guessing the same pair of jeans in both pictures? Well done Mr. WANTpower! Awesome!

  28. Incredible! I too, think you look like 2 different people in the before and after shots! You look really happy and content in your last pic, so awesome!

  29. Simply incredible. Rock the Grok! You saved your life and probably others as well.

  30. I find it hard to believe that #43 is the guy in the top pictures, too.

    Great story, and congratulations. Your success story will help others.

  31. Great job, Tadd. You’re an inspiration. I fell off the Primal wagon at Thanksgiving and am just now getting back on, in March. But like you say, every day is a new start.

    1. It is, take the small steps to start again. You can and will do it if you want to.

  32. Excellent story! I love that you consider this to be ‘chapters’, not the complete tale. Keep up your Want-Power and you’ll be golden.