Hi Everyone! (Male, 25 years old)Shared this transformation picture on my personal Instagram the other day and wanted to share it here as well since I have used this subreddit as a motivating tool for quite some time now.The picture on the left was me at 315 lbs during July of 2019, the photo on the right was me this past week in September of 2020 at 223 lbs. for a total of 92 lbs. lost in a little over a year. A lot of things contributed to my weight gain. I had lost my family pet of 18 years heading into graduate school and was something that hit me pretty hard. My graduate course put a significant level of academic stress on me that I never had before with endless readings and papers due. On top of that I was stuck in a job that I absolutely hated going to and a toxic relationship that was not beneficial for either parties. I went from around 270 lbs. (still large) to 315 lbs. in less than 8 months. On top of this I was smoking and drinking often to help cope with my issues. I knew I was in a dark place and that if I continued down the same path that would ultimately end up with me in a bad spot I could never come out of. I was scared and nervous to change but one morning had a breaking point. I woke up exhausted even though I hadn’t worked out in months, went straight to the mirror and finally realized the toll my actions had taken on me. I decided right then and there that if I wanted to be happy with myself and in life that I would need to make drastic changes or face the consequences. At this time I was halfway done with my graduate program and thought that if I could finish, it would relieve much of my stress but first had to get rid of the other sources of stress that were aiding to my problems. I left my job and decided to focus solely on my program for a while until I was better. I let go of my significant other, something that I didn’t want to do but understood it was what was best for the both of us due to our predicament. I then decided to start eating right and working out again to get back in shape. I had signed up for a 5K in a month and a half and a 10K a month and a half after to keep me focused and motivated. I started meal prepping healthy foods and going to the gym consistently to help my stress and anxieties that still existed from school. I mostly abided by the following rules that aided me the most in this journey:Drink a ton of water, and I mean a crap ton. (Cut out the sugary drinks like soda and if you have to, use zero-calorie drinks or zero-sugar alternatives to help slowly get off it)Lift weights consistently – Being a former football player I always enjoyed weightlifting but had issues actually gaining muscle cause of the way I was eating. Getting back into the gym was something that helped a lot and is something I look forward to now.Cardio (running or swimming) at least 3x a week to get your heart going. I initially started walking and then upped it to running a mile 3x a week to now running almost 5-6 miles 3x a week. I honestly still can’t believe it.Intermittent fasting – It works. Condense your eating window to 12-6 or 12-8 if it’s easier and make sure to eat your carbs as early as possible so that they are burned off by the time you get to bed.Do not rely on a weight scale. One thing I learned early on is that the weight scale is never a true representation of a person’s health. You can have a ripped individual at 250 and an overweight individual at the exact same weight. I recommend relying on a mirror because at the end of the day that is what will show you how you want to look and how you don’t. Still weigh yourself every week but don’t be discouraged by the number because it fluctuates often.As far as eating I really didn’t do anything too crazy aside from IF. I often thought about what I ate though and when I was eating. If I had a crazy weight training workout I knew to center my food around protein and vegetables. If I went on a long run then carbs would be a smart thing to eat after. Let yourself have a cheat day! I would have a day where I would eat whatever I wanted in the IF window but I made sure I also worked out like a mad man that morning so that way it wouldn’t ever set me back too far.As far as the smoking and drinking, that took a bit longer. Breakups tend to do that to you. But I’m happy to say that I have currently been sober from alcohol for almost a month now and off the other drugs for almost two months. I plan on using it again eventually but only in moderation and only once a month because I know the dangers that go hand in hand with them for me.I also found motivation in certain individuals like Joe Rogan, Lebron James, Georges St.-Pierre, The Rock, and David Goggins. I am in no way endorsing or advertising but seriously David Goggins’ book “Can’t Hurt Me” helped me realize a lot about myself and potential so it is something I would consider looking into if you have the time. If not, listen to him on podcasts and youtube. Really interesting individual. The others were just some of my personal favorite people to listen to talk about their life and how they got to where they are now.Another great piece of advice I can give is that please please please do not get discouraged. It’s a marathon not a sprint so it will take time. Be patient and stay on the path because it will get you results. I currently am not finished with my weight loss as I want to lose another 8 pounds to make it an even 100 and then I plan on getting into both boxing and jiu jitsu for fun as it has always been something I’ve been interested in doing. I think this is everything I wanted to share but if you have any other questions about things I did please feel free to ask me, I would love to help anyone else out there on their journey like this subreddit did for me. Get after it everyone!
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