Everyone meet Russ from Pittsgrove, NJ:
When I got married 9 years ago, I weighed 175 pounds, lifted weights and was in pretty good overall shape. Of course, like most men, after the wedding was over I got comfortable and figured… 'Well, the wedding is over, time to relax!' I put on 50 pounds in a little over 2 years and weighed over 220 pounds. I would occasionally get mad and go on some crazy diet consisting of diet shakes and basically starving myself. I would lose 15 pounds, get happy, and go right back to the same eating habits that put the weight on in the first place.
Then I saw a story about a personal trainer named Drew who was going to purposely gain weight for 6 months just to show people how to get it back off. I thought to myself, "This guy is nuts"! Here he was in the best shape of his life, and he was willing to give it all up just to show people how it could be done. I was inspired to follow him through his journey. I watched weigh-in after weigh-in as he went from Fit to Fat. And in a way, it was like watching a time-lapse video of myself over the last 9 years.
On the night of November 4, 2011, I could hardly sleep because I knew the next morning I would begin my journey back to being fit! I was excited and scared at the same time. Would I do the same things I had done in the past and loose some weight, just to put it all back on plus some? It was a cycle I had seen before and wasn't ready to go through again.
But then I started reading Drew's blogs, and LEARNING how to eat. I started following the meal plans, tweaking them as I went to fit my lifestyle and schedule. I switched from Oreos out of the snack box at work for an apple. I switched diet sodas for water. I started eating lean turkey instead of beef. And I started exercising again. I was actually eating MORE now than I was before, but I was eating the right things instead of the crap I had been. I slowly watched as the pounds starting coming off. I would weigh myself once a week as Drew did and would set goals as I went. I can't tell you how excited I was when I got on the scale and saw a 1 as the first number in my weight for the first time in years! My friends and family have all asked me what diet I'm on, and I'm adamant to tell them I am NOT on a diet, I have made a lifestyle change.
I started my journey at 221 pounds. Today I weigh 172. I have gone from a size 40 pants (which were tight), to a size 31. And the XX_Large shirts have been retired!