Name: Diljot Singh Sachdeva
I've been obese for a long time. I think I was the fattest kid in class from kindergarten all the way through college. I didn't realize how big I had become until I had to buy a new pair of jeans in 2006.
I grew up in the small, beautiful town of Patiala and I remember going to another city to buy clothes. I had to go to one of those stores for overweight people to buy a pair of jeans. That's when I realized I had to do something about my health.
It's been a long journey, and it wasn't easy. Just like everyone who's been through a transformation, I made mistakes and had some rocky patches.
Now that I've changed, I have no intention of going back to that "big and tall" store again—ever!
Health for Life
My path toward fitness has been the cause of some dramatic physiological and psychological changes. I've always loved sports—I used to play tennis, cricket, and football with friends—but I never really understood the importance of a healthy lifestyle.
I started my fitness journey by walking regularly, then reading about training and nutrition. When I came to the United States, I lost 25 pounds without even stepping in the gym. Then, I started Jim Stoppani's Shortcut to Size program and began to see great changes in my physique.
Now, I'm a graduate student working part time. I still train 3-4 times per week. I make sure to listen to my body so I don't overtrain. In the fall of 2012, I started training more for strength and conditioning. I found the Wendler 5-3-1 program, tried it, and loved it. Right now, I'm using that program to work on my overall fitness. I want to put on lean mass and become even stronger.
I'm still an amateur when it comes to eating right and training—I'm not a bodybuilder, and I don't ever plan on competing. I just love fitness and I believe I'm just starting to see my potential.
Because I'm in graduate school, I divide my time among classes, clinic, and work three days per week. So following a specific diet plan is almost impossible. However, I try to eat healthy all the time. Effective weight loss depends on what you eat. This is what I might eat on a typical day:
Diljot's Suggestions for Others
Keep it simple! Change is a process. Genetics play a huge role when it comes to losing weight and building muscle. Don't believe in everything you read or hear. Try programs and learn about your body. Find what works best foryou.
Fitness In India
Just like genetics, cultural factors play a huge role in a person's fitness. I love Punjabi food: butter chicken, tikkas, lassi, all of it. However, it's not really the healthiest food out there.
When I moved to the United States from India, I experienced a huge cultural change. I was eating different kinds of food and my body needed time to adjust. I like trying new foods and new things in the kitchen. Now I'm always on the lookout for delicious, healthy recipes.