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Calorie Count Blog

200 Pounds Gone! Another Member's Success Story


By Sheila on Mar 23, 2009 12:00 PM in Success Stories

This week we would like to introduce to you juice4155, who lost 200 pounds and managed to turn around his health and overall life. He is determined to make this weight loss a permanent one and has become a Certified Personal Trainer. We asked him to tell us his story and answer the following questions:

1.  What made you decide to lose weight this time?  Did you have an "Ah Ha!' moment?

There were a lot of factors that helped me lose weight and change my life.  I was 26 years and weighed 451 lbs,  I was tired of being looked at because of my size.  I wasn't able to wear a seat belt or be able to live a normal life.  I would have to wait for tables at restaurants, because I couldn't fit into a booth and I also couldn't go up a flight of stairs without being out of breath.  I had to special order my pants because my waist was so big, 70 inches to be exact.  I told myself that I didn't want to be a sideline dad or a dad that embarrassed his kids because of his size.

My "Ah Ha!" moment came, while I was watching the 2nd season of The Biggest Loser.  Watching Matt and Dr. Jeff, made me realize if they could lose the weight and get healthy, I could too.  I'm an ex-athlete like Matt and Dr. Jeff was twice my age.  There are two other events that made me think it was time to lose weight.  I was at a movie theater and the seat fell out of the brackets because I was so overweight that I pushed the arms out too far.  It was embarrassing to go and explain it to the manager and ask for a refund.  Not only that but, the company I work for had to order me a special chair.  It was time I lost the weight and got healthy.

2.  What other "diets" (programs, products, plans, or services) had you tried in the past?

Once I went for a consultation with Slim 4 Life, but other than that I'd never tried any "diets" before.

3.  What changes did you make to your usual diet, activity, lifestyle, and attitude?  What was the most important change?

I changed everything.  I took one step at a time, I didn't want to get overwhelmed with the whole thing.  My first step was finding a fitness center and someone to work with me.  I was lucky enough to have a gym right down the street from my job.  I did that for a couple of months, making sure I was going to stick with it and enjoy it.  Second step was changing my food choices and calorie consumption.  I reduced my caloric consumption to 1800 calories a day.  I also paid close attention to what type of foods I was eating.  I made sure they where foods that fuel your body, not hinder it.  My meals where well balanced, I made sure there was a healthy carb and protein with every meal.  Once those two things started to click, it was time to change the attitude.  I picked up Jillian Michael's book Winning by Losing, and The Biggest Loser books for inspiration and motivation.  Being that big wasn't healthy and I was killing myself.  I knew I was doing this to save my life.

4.  How did Calorie Count help you to lose weight? 

I mainly used Calorie Count for calorie information on foods.  I would wear a heart monitor to record my calories burned.  Even though I've lost 200 lbs I still use Calorie Count for the calorie information of foods at restaurants.  I did use some of the social features, but not that often.

5.  What was most challenging about losing weight?

Taking it one step at a time and making gradual changes made losing the weight easy.  It's keeping it off, that's going to be the real challenge.  I've had to change a lifetime of bad eating habits.  Even when I was an athlete I would eat whatever I wanted, the coaches wanted you to be big for football.  I didn't care about my weight or what I ate.

6.  How long did it take you to see results?

I started seeing results in the first 3 months.  I dropped 30 lbs in the first 90 days.  I lost my first 100 lbs by May of 2006.  The next 100 lbs took a little longer.  Once you get closer to your ideal body weight, the excess weight comes off a lot slower.

7.  When did you realize that you were a success?

I realized I was a success, when my co-workers, trainers and members at the gym started to notice my body changing.  One of the trainers asked how I was doing it, they had never seen weight loss like mine before.

8.  How do you prevent relapse?

Relapse isn't an option... I will never go back to the way I was.  I have goals and rewards that I allow myself.  One day a week is my free day, I can eat whatever I want.  The rest of the week I eat low calorie and make healthy choices when I eat out.  I also go to the gym 3-5 times a week, I change up the routines so I don't get bored.  If you don't put steps in place to prevent a relapse, you're setting yourself up for failure.  There are no excuses for a relapse.  I care more about myself and I enjoy my life more now than I ever have.  Does it scare me that I may relapse, of course it does.  I have set a maximum weight for myself and I will never go over it.

9.  How has your life changed now that you've lost weight?

Now I can do all the things I couldn't do before.  I can wear my seat belt without an extension, sit in a booth at a restaurant, run up and down a flight of stairs, buy pants off the shelf from a normal size clothing store, sit comfortably in a movie seat and not worrying about it breaking from underneath me and I have a regular chair at work.  The most important change is the pride that I have in myself.  Taking control of my life and my habits has instilled a sense of pride that I never knew I had.  I have become a Certified Personal Trainer to help people that are in the same situation that I was in.  I never thought in a million years that I would be doing that.

10.  What five tips do you have for other dieters?

  1. Take it slow, conquering one change at a time is much easier than trying to do it all at once.
  2. Find a fitness center that you are going to enjoy working out at.  There's nothing worse that joining a gym and never going.  Find a place that is welcoming and the staff is friendly.
  3. Keep it simple... This isn't rocket science, folks.  There's no reason to make it harder that it needs to be.  It's as simple as this;  Burn more calories that you are consuming.
  4. Set goals for yourself.  When setting those goals, go for broke.  Set an ultimate goal and then break it down from there into monthly, weekly and even daily goals.  Be sure to reward yourself for reaching those goals.  I used various things like; getting rid of the glasses and getting contacts, new shoes and of course new clothes.  Those are the most fun rewards to get.... because you're going to need new clothes.
  5. I saved the best for last... Support systems and support.  Find someone or several people that have faith in you and care for you, in your current state.  Tell them what you are doing and ask for their help.  I relied on my family.  All of us have battle with weight our entire lives.  They knew how important it was for me to lose the weight and get healthy.  They actually tell me now that they were worried about me weighing 451 lbs.

Have you achieved success with Calorie Count for weight loss and better health?  Share your tips, challenges and inspiration.



Comments


How inspirational!!



Wow, what a success story! Congrats to you Juice4155.  I love Calorie Count member success stories!



This is such a wonderful story.  I love your comment about taking it slow and making certain you have everything lined up so that you can't fail.  Good idea.



Congratulations, this story is inspirational... I hope I can write my success story this year as well, but I have to live it first =D



Good for you!!   That is an awesome story. I was feeling really discouraged thinking "no one can lose a lot without surgery".   You proved me wrong. I can do this too.  You are such an inspiration - God bless you!   That was a LOT of hardwork and good choices. 



Good for you Juice4155 - I just joined and am overwhelmed at having to lose 49 lbs. and look at what you have done - it gives me the feeling that I can do it to so thanks!



Awesome job!  This is my first post onto this site and you deserve it!  It is important for people to remember that even if you don't need to lose as much as juice4155, it is still amazing when you lose what you need to lose.  Keep up the awesome work!  I, too, am never going back.  Interesting when you finally realize that you have to eat less food than your body burns to lose weight.  How simple!  Now why did that take me 47 years to figure out?



I agree with Cenacooks.  It is easy.  All my life I've heard it's as easy as "calories in, calories out" but never really tried it.  I was always busy trying the latest advertised fad diet. Finally I just simplified everything and  I went on a 1500 calorie diet.  With that amount, if you eat healthy, you get tons of food.  Some days it was too much food.  As a result I lost 80 pounds and I've been maintaining for almost a year now with the "calories in, calories out" method on 1700 calories.  That's more than enough food for me in a day. The most fantastic thing is I know exactly where my body will maintain so that I don't have to worry about weight gain anymore.  I feel like I've been set free from jail or something.



You are an inspiration!  Thankyou for leading the way.  I wish you continued success in everything that you attempt in life!



Fantastic story!

Thank you. I sometimes get a little discouraged when I remember that I have done this at least 5 times...and I have lost a lot each time, from 25 to 30 to 42 lbs. I have bought the new clothes, heard the compliments and praise. Yet here I am heavier than ever.

Lost and gained, over and again, it is embarrassing. I don't want to talk about it among my friends and family, except my supportive husband. Gratefully, no one talks about my weight. And I am valued. No one treats me like less of a person because of it.

I realized this morning that writing everything down has been the most important factor, the most important key to me losing weight in the past.

Now past menopause, knees bad, lipid panel bad and again 50 lbs above my goal weight, I don't even want to talk about it with anyone.

Now I have at 4 things working for me: Calorie count, my boss pays for my health club membership, a goal to change my portion size and a reason to be healthy.

I really appreciate this service,  Thank you!



Congratulations juice4155!

 

I nearly cried reading your story.  You must be so proud of yourself :)



Juice4155, awesome work! You inspire  us all.

I can definitely relate to it coming off slowly once you get closer to your ideal weight. Does anyone know why that is, and what to do to combat it?



Major congrats Juice! 

And thank you for reminding me of what I already knew and what had already worked for me until I stopped working it.

Your story is amazing and very inspirational.  You've given yourself back your life!

Kudos :)



  1. It is a inspiration, I hope that that is me one day


The reason it gets harder to lose as you get smaller all goes back to how many calories your body burns.  The larger you are the more calories you burn.  As you lose weight, you get smaller and then burn less calories. 



Like so many others - I want to congratulate you!  It is so easy for people these days just to opt for surgery - and believe me, I've thought about it!  But I've begun making small changes also.  My eating habits are still bad, but I've purchased a recumbent exercise bike and for five weeks now have been faithful to this (only missed two days in the five weeks). It's something I can do, at the moment, and don't have an excuse NOT to do it - don't need special clothes, special shoes, can do it right in front of tv, etc.  I am 55 years old and need to lose probably a good 100 lbs.  It's been a pretty miserable existence being this overweight - I know you can relate to this! I guess my next step should be my caloric intake, and just remembering you saying healthy carbs and protein will be helpful. Reading your story has been a great motivator for me - thank you so much.



Congratulations! This is so inspirational. I just began my "journey" to lose 100 pounds, and I'm already feeling overwhelmed. You are right: taking it one step at a time is the best way to do it. I realize now that I can't just go to sleep, and wake up weighing 100 pounds less (although that'd be nice! :)) It's going to take a lot of work and a LOT of commitment, but in the end I know it will be worth it! Thanks! <3



juice4155 i just have one question to ask you ok, is it better to weigh yourself without clothes on or with clothes on? thanks myksgirl43



Congratulations!!!  I've been feeling defeated myself about having to lose 160 lbs to reach my ideal weight for my frame. I used to be a model, never had an issue with my metabolism, now I have an endocrinological disorder which made me gain a lot of weight but depression and bad eating habits also developed to contribute to the large weight gain.


One day a week to eat what I want sounds like a good incentive!



YOU ROCK!  You should be soooo proud of this amazing achievement. It makes me feel pathetic thinking I have a mere 30 more pounds to lose and here you lost over 100!!!! If you can do it, anyone can. Thanks for the inspiration.



you do rock! thanks for sharing with us, me!

Carole   :]



thank you.  You have given me the courage to work harder.  To look ahead.  To know that you worked at losing 200lbs. for a few years helps me to understand that it's not going to happen in just a few weeks. It's given me faith that I can also do it.



GREAT to read your story mate, I am in a similar boat, but I only plan to loose 100-120 lbs maximum, as i was 310 at my highest weight as of January this year.

In just 10 weeks, I am currently sitting at 260lbs, which is a 50lb loss in 10 weeks, I know the next 50+ lbs will take double the time as i get nearer to my goal!

It is a big lifestyle change, but it is paramount for success and longetivity of life. I unlike you have no children, I am almost 25, But i have lots of neices and nephews and younger siblings that look up to me on a daily basis.

More then likely after losing the 100lbs i will feel ready to work towards starting a family of my own, currently I am studying at University.

How long did it take to shed the total weight? and do you remember when you lost 100lbs? how long did that take..?

also, roughly how many hours per day/wk do you do cardio/weights. I am doing it myself with a friend in my own home, since I am a student, money is a little issue. I may not be doing enough exercise so I have been cutting back my calorie intake incase.

I hope you read this, and would be great to hear back from you!



hey congratulations! yeap, im currently watching the biggest loser now also...after reading your story, im more motivated to work harder towards my goal...wish you could be my trainer though.. :) wishing you all the best!



You must feel awesome about yourself. I have been working on a mere 30 lbs. for a year now all i have managed is 10 lbs. so i decided to red every positve story i can on people that work hard and made it. I just want to say thank you for letting all of us share your story and i hope you realize how many people you are inspiring & motivating at this very moment if it werent for people like you people like me would give up.

You deserve to be so proud

twiggys sister



Dear Juice5155,

Nobody knows how difficult your journey was, but you must help others now, it is not a goal it is a must.   There are so many people across our country that have no idea how to do it.  I congratualate you on your decision to become a fitness specialsit.  Continue the journey one step at a time, learn all there is to know about strength training and cardio.  I'm sure you are alread an expert in understanding calories, fat,carbs, protien, etc... But, with your story you will inspire your children for life...if you make the committment to go the second mile.  Start off very slow, increase everyday and find and teach people that they must connect with those that genuinely want to help.  No one can do it alone...but remember, you are not in a hurry...and that should at least spend 2 years finding your true friends and those that can help you and your children find financial success and stability for life...no one does it alone.  Congrats so far for an ultra human effort...which I know was mostly because of the love for your family...continue likewise my friend.



talk about self actualization! what an awesome achievement. many congratulations to you!!



So happy for you... Well done!

Cool



This is wonderful news! I kept 25 lbs off for almost two years and now I am right back were I started from. I really appreciate the tips and how important it is to set small goals. Keep up the good work!



You Inspire everyone! COngrats!



Oh my goodness! I am so proud of you. Thank you for being a motivating factor in my life juice4155. I only have about 90 pounds to lose and reading that you lost 200 pounds just gives me hope that I can do it this time. Thank you thank you thank you.



I love this stories, they're SO inspiring =)

And the part where he says you should have support from people around you is SO true. In my case, some of my friends are supporting me and encouraging me to go on, and it's so good when you see them after a while and they all go "OMGWHAT!?Youlostweight?Howdidyoudoit!OMGOMG!" LOL



I've lost 22 inches around the waist. Now on my lost 8 inches. Thanks for sharing.

BOB



What was it like going to 1800 calories a day? Did you feel deprived? What did you do to ensure you didn't eat anymore than 1800? What were your favorite low calorie meals?

 



They say that 900 to 1000 cals. a day isn't enough. It is fine for me. I try to use 40 cal. bread; eat a lot of salads; use palenta and veggies. I do get things with egg beaters. Mix the 65 cal pudding with plain yog.

I keep a picture of when I had a 68 inche waist. Mentally, lossing  weight can uncover the monster within. With me, it has made me more caring, patient and conpassionate.

BOB



Juice4155

Of Course You should be proud of yourself!

And even more amaizing, you are helping others!

God Bless You Lots!



WOW! That's amazing, congratulations! :)



You are a Winner!!!! you are so real and I really like the thing about your process to lose weight. You are my hero! congrats!!!!



You look awesome! Thanks for sharing your story. I know I'm proud of you! You seem like a really great guy. Congrats to you for taking control of your life for the better!



It is so cool that, you lost that much weight. I was at 349 lbs. and lost about 110 lbs. in a years time. What I did was cut out things such as bread and fattening stuff. I began to use a lot more vegetables, fruits and whole grains. For bread I use Wonder Light Wheat, which, is only 40 calories per slice and then there is the meats that I eat such as chicken, turkey, fish, shellfish and buffalo. I have managed to make once boring diet foods taste great. My husband went from 275 lbs. to 200 lbs. in that same year. His doctor at the V.A. told him that, he should go out and take out a millon dollar policy because, the only thing that, will kill him in his opinion is a Mac truck. I make up killer omelets from Southwestern Eggbeaters that, will leave you feeling that you are cheating on your diet yet, how I do it it isn't.

We still go out to eat at resturants on the weekends but, the thing is we look for those that can supply our needs. Subway's vegie sub is great, so is Long John Silver's new diet friendly menu. Even the Olive Garden will work with you to give you a low-cal and low-fat meal.



WOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOOO!!!
your awesome !!!!!!!!!!!!! Laughing



I love the success stories -- they really inspire me. I am so impressed with those of you who have a lot of weight to lose and are able to do it and I am always interested in seeing the lovely & handsome faces emerge as the weight drops off. I have a family member who is so badly overweight and we are all forbidden to discuss it lest she shut us out. Yet I worry about her health. Congratulations to all of you who are taking charge and getting healthy -- it is not easy to lose the weight. I think you are super!



wow! this is such an amazing story! way to go!!



Way to GO! Congrats. I applaud your hard work.

You must feel like a totally different person,

because you are! Smile

 

SUE



Great job! Thanks a lot for the inspiration and tips.



Congrats to you for your great accomplishment. I too weigh over 400 pounds. But I have started walking at work and counting calories. My question to you is where can I weigh my self. I can't find a scale to do it.



I have to lose over 200lbs and I would like to know if you  have a lot of loose skin? If not how did you maintain during your weight loss in order to keep your skin as tight as possible?



Wow...your story is truly inspirational! Thanks for sharing.



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