How I Lost More Than 110 Pounds\u2014and Kept the Weight Off

Jason shares with Men’s Health how he found the motivation to keep pursuing his health and fitness goals, even after several serious injuries.

At my heaviest, I weighed 317 pounds. The biggest contributing factor to my weight was working a stressful full-time job, as well as having a part-time job on top of that. I was frequently on the go for work, eating fast food or carryout for breakfast and lunch more days than not. I also drank limited water. During the day it was coffee and Diet Coke, then every evening when I got home it was nothing but beer until I fell asleep. I got complacent with my life, and at my size, I did not do much of any activity.

During the years of 2015 and 2016, my resting pulse was always at or over 100. I remember being so scared one time, I was just standing at work and my heart was pounding, like it could not pump fast enough. I went to the ER from work and my heart rate was out of control. That’s when I also found out I had high blood pressure and was put on medication. Because of this I had to start seeing a cardiologist too. This was all in my mid-thirties. During that time period there were three trips total to the ER and at least one to urgent care for EKGs because of the same issue. I knew I had to make changes, and I would get serious when I had a health scare.

I did all the right things—limited alcohol and ate right—but it was all short lived. I would go back to my old habits after about a week or two, and it would take months to get back on track. Food and beer just seemed to take priority in life until I would have another health scare, and the cycle continued until I joined WW for New Years in 2017.

When I joined WW I specifically changed my diet. I began doing all the grocery shopping and preparing all meals for my family, even if I had to prepare myself something separate. I would track everything that I ate to ensure it was accounted for on my app. I lost about 70 pounds on WW just by tracking my food intake.

I then began exercising in September of 2018. I didn’t tell anyone I joined the gym, because I joined gyms before and never used the membership. I started with just cardio, building onto the workouts each month. I told myself I needed to go three times a week at least, and I followed through with that goal and bumped that up to five times a week. I just got to the point where I felt better if I was exercising and moving.

I lost a total of 114 pounds. Then, in 2019, I broke my neck and ended up wearing a brace, unable to exercise, for several months. During this time, I was so scared to gain weight among a million other things. Fortunately, I did not gain weight during this time. I tracked everything, every bite, every ounce, every sip to ensure I stayed within my points. After being cleared to return to the gym, I slowly started to incorporate cardio and strength training once again. Once I started the strength training again my shoulder began hurting. I would push through the pain, but later found out that I had an AC separation. This was just all prior to the pandemic starting. I did a few months of physical therapy, and when gyms re-opened, I joined a private personal training studio to continue with strength training but with direction to avoid further injuries.

My family was a huge motivating factor in my journey. I work so hard professionally to ensure my family is provided for, and losing weight was necessary because I did not want to leave my wife a widow and my children without a father. I would ask myself what their life would be like if I were dead, especially because of health issues. I didn’t like those thoughts. I did not want to leave my family sad because of my inability to change my habits. I knew I needed to set an example, especially as my children got older.

Those injuries could have left me dead or paralyzed but I am here working out, running, trying to enjoy life. Those injuries keep me going because this is my second chance and I don’t want to blow it. My life could have been very different, so I owe it to myself to stay active and healthy.

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