The story below is one that I found on Weight Loss Success Stories.
It’s inspirational to say the least. I wanted to post it here as well as link to that site for 1 main reason. To further illustrate my point that fat loss is simple and there is no one size fits all diet. You must find one that YOU can live with. Their site if full of success stories from people on all sorts of diet programs.
His words are in italics and my comments are in normal text.
Charles is a 16 year old that became determined to lose weight 14 months ago after a morning scare. At that point he weighed 285 pounds. Within ten months of starting, he had succeeded in losing 100 pounds! Three months later he had lost another 15 pounds to reach his goal weight of 170 pounds. (He is 6’0 tall.)
Charles did this with amazing tenacity and has completely changed his life around. Here is his hugely inspiring story;
Since the age of five, I loved chicken nuggets, fries, pizza and Chinese food. My love for fast foods and large portions were two of the most significant factors that impacted my weight drastically.
I think we can all agree fast food and the super size portions are a leading cause of obesity. Think about this for a minute, you go to a restaurant and when your order arrives it’s an actual USDA recommended portion size.
I doubt you’d be very happy and you would then proceed to tell your friends and family about how little food you got there. Now think about your reaction to receiving a plate with enough food to feed 2 or 3. Now you’re a happy camper and will proceed to tell everyone about how great that place is. Am I wrong? No, I didn’t think so.
I didn’t want to listen to my parent’s concern for me to eat healthy foods. Almost everyday, I desired fried foods that were high in calories and fats. When going to restaurants, I would only order foods such as pepperoni pizza, fried chicken, mashed potatoes, and cheeseburgers without even glancing at the other options on the menu. I also led a sedentary life and played video games or on the computer. I was gaining huge amounts of weight per year.
In May 2011, I went to the doctor for my physical and my weight had peaked at its highest – 285 pounds! My doctor explained to me that if I didn’t do something about my weight, I would have an increased chance of developing heart disease and diabetes later in life, as well as a decreased life expectancy. My mother had diabetes and took insulin 4 times a day. My grandfather had died from atherosclerosis.
I ran out of breath while walking up the steps and during physical education, always came in last, which resulted in taunts from others. Also, I could never wear “cool” clothes for kids my age, and had to wear men’s XXL shirts and huge baggy pants. I was ashamed to be seen in public. In school, I was degraded and ridiculed with hurtful comments and jeers from students. This lowered my self-esteem immensely. I was extremely devastated and didn’t want to go to school or talk to anyone.
One day after getting up from bed, I couldn’t breathe. I felt as if I was going to die. I prayed to God to help me and it was then that I decided to make a serious effort to lose weight and become healthy.
My mom had a workout video called “Sweatin’ to the Oldies” by fitness guru Richard Simmons. It was basically dancing and exercising to great music. It was fun and made me feel good. I read on the internet about healthy eating and devised a menu for myself.
Really? “Sweatin’ to the Oldies”? A low intensity, long cardio, dancing type of exercise program helped him lose weight? With all the fitness guru’s screaming about that type of workout being ineffective for weight loss I just don’t see how that was possible.
Maybe….just maybe, You don’t have to do their much hyped up HIIT routines to lose weight. Maybe all you’ve got to do is simply move more (possibly a lot more) and eat a healthy, low calorie diet that’s simple enough to follow for the rest of your life.
After checking with my physician, I began to eat well-balanced meals which consisted of more protein, less carbs/fats, and I also counted calories. I completely avoided white bread and sugar. Instead, I ate low cal/carb wheat bread and used Equal. I hated salads before, but now I loved it and dressed it up with fresh veggies and low cal dressing. Diet sodas were permanently replaced by bottles of water.
Maybe you’re asking about the whole artificial sweetener thing right now. After all, aren’t they supposed to be bad for you and prevent weight loss.
Obviously in Charles’ case they haven’t prevented weight loss at all. And as for the healthy or not argument, which do you think is more unhealthy, eating artificial sweeteners or weighing 285 pounds?
The first few months were not easy; I battled the temptation of food and just a short walk on the treadmill made me run out of breath. However, I remained focused on my goal and I worked harder each day.
I began running one mile with strain, and after 5 months and 50 lbs less, I was running 5 to 7 miles per day. I started doing muscle toning basics and athletic style cardio workouts using videos which had a definite boot camp attitude.
In 10 months, I was 185 lbs, I had lost 100 lbs.
It has now become a habit for me to eat healthy and on a timely basis. I do not eat dinner beyond 7:00PM. If I get hungry at night, I have sugar-free, fat-free Jello or an Atkins bar. In addition to running, I love playing basketball, and doing strength and weight conditioning.
Charles has adopted some very good eating habits. Yes, there are rules, but the rules are ones that he’s created himself and can live with. They’re not too complicated or require a science degree to explain.
After thirteen months, at 170 lbs, I have lost a total of 115 lbs and maintained my weight.
I understand the plight of teens who suffer from obesity and the emotional and physical strain associated with it. I want to tell them to believe in themselves and do their weight loss regimen a little at a time. Also to never lose faith in themselves or let anyone bring them down by telling them that they can’t do it. Have faith, stay focused, it will take hard work and determination, but the rewards will be great.
Thank you, Charles Haines
Needless to say, if a 16 year old can muster up the will and determination to get his nutrition and exercise lifestyle in order. You can too.
Stop with the excuses and “reasons” that are allowing you to graciously accept defeat in spite of your desire to succeed and win.
What Do You Think?
Have you been inspired to take action? Or are you thinking deep down that he was able to do that just because he’s young, that you couldn’t do it now that you’re older and too busy.