WEIGHT 397 lbs
BODY FAT 52%
WEIGHT 197 lbs
BODY FAT 19%
I loved playing sports, but I was always the big and overweight boy who couldn't keep up with the rest. My older brother was a year and a half older than I and was a natural athlete, so I lived in his shadow. He got me into lifting and training in high school to help me lose weight. I started strong, but fell of the tracks, slipped into old habits, and gained the weight back.
In my early 20s, I was out of breath from simply walking around the block and sweated like crazy doing easy jobs at work. When I moved out on my own, I bought a scale and was in utter shock to see 397 pounds flashing in my face when I stepped on it for the first time. I felt broken, but that sadness turned to anger and then to motivation.
At that point, I hit the gym and used all the tools my brother taught me. There was a long and hard road in front of me, but I embraced the idea and developed a mindset committed to change. My family was supportive and my brother pushed and helped me when I needed it most. People started telling me how great I looked after a few weeks, which made me push harder. People said I was inspiring and it was surreal to hear, but I knew I had farther to go.
Now I use lifting as a stress release. It's almost therapeutic to feel the weights clang in my hands. Every day, I get off work, look forward to the gym, and try and push myself past the next threshold.
When I first started, I kept it simple with light weights, low reps, and long walking cardio. As I lost weight and gained strength, I walked faster and lifted heavier. As I progressed, I started asking the trainers about new lifts and mixed their recommendations into my plan.
I researched online and in magazines to piece together what worked best for me. I was and still am trying to push myself past my comfort zone to see how far I can take my body. There were many times I thought about quitting. In the early days, I stepped on the scale and weighed the same as I did the previous time. I would get down on myself and think that my hard work and effort were for nothing.
To get past my failures, I took a deep breath and reminded myself that it was all part of the journey. I couldn't give up because I came too far and put in too much to worry about a number on the scale. That's when I formed a new attitude and quit stepping on the scale as often. At the end of the day, it was just a number. I felt better, looked better, and lifted more. I didn't need a number to tell me I was doing a good job.
Dieting was difficult until I started to count every calorie I ate. When I got that under control, I had more energy and recovered much faster.
I will continue to work hard and push myself outside my comfort zone. I want to make more gains and cut more body fat. I want to become a better athlete so I can play hockey at a higher level and get into MMA.
- Drink lots of water.
- Count calories and eat clean, whole foods.
- Don't worry what the scale says.
- Set small goals with a few long-term goals.
- Embrace the goal and understand it will not happen overnight.
Bodybuilding.com has been a great aid to my progress. It has a great selection of supplements and provides plenty of knowledge to assist you on your journey.
- "The Push" by Wilderness Crew
- "Stomp" by Young Buck, feat T.I., The Game & Ludacris
- "Hustler's Ambition" by 50 Cent
- "Bodies" by Drowning Pool
- "Desensitized" by Classified