As a child I was a very picky eater and my parents never really pushed me to try new foods. I ate a lot of carbohydrates and sugars (cereals, sandwiches, soda, etc) and ate very little fruits and vegetables, but because I was very active in dance, sports, and riding my bike I remained of normal weight. It wasn't until I was a teenager and I stopped dancing and playing sports that I began to gain weight. The majority of the weight I put on started when I was 16 and got my first job at Pizza Hut. At 18 years old I weighed almost 300 pounds. Then things began to change. When I was 19, I moved out on my own and I didn't have a car so I had to walk everywhere, plus, as most college students know, I could barely afford to eat. The weight began to come off. Through out my 20's I yo-yoed up and down between 250 and 200 and then back again. I tried every concievable diet plan out there: South Beach, Atkins, LA Weight Loss, and just doing it myself. I also tried going to gyms and just using random cardio equipment. Nothing really helped me keep the weight off.
I weighed 250 pounds in 2009 when I began to work at Virginia Mason Medical Center. Virginia Mason offered a Weight Watchers at Work program and I decided to join it in April of 2010. I lost 75 pounds in about 9 months and have managed to keep most of it off. The rigors of the Seattle University College of Nursing got to me during the 2012 Fall Quarter and I put on 15 pounds, weighing in at 190 pounds. This was unacceptable to me. In January of 2013, I re-joined Weight Watchers and discovered the Biggest Loser contest at the William F. Eisiminger Fitness Center so I decided to compete. I entered the contest with the mind set that I WAS going to win. After losing almost 11 pounds and 5% body fat, I DID win.
As a full time law student here at Seattle U, I am always stressed with school work, internship applications, or legal research. I have always enjoyed sports and exercise. I used to compete in triathlons when I was younger, and even played intramural sports in college. Now, I am more of a spectator when I have time. After last semester, I noticed I was eating more of the foods I knew were unhealthy – pastries, pizza, fried foods – and not much of what I knew I should be eating. This habit was more out of convenience and to deal with stress. After finals I realized I was getting a little too soft around the midsection and was feeling really tired, so I decided I would start working out again.
When I first hit the gym I didn’t feel too out of place since I knew a bit about fitness. However, that feeling changed when I could not push nearly as much weight as I thought a 30 year old man who is my size should be able to push. I decided to get a trainer to help me. I chose to workout with Brandon Holt because one of his listed interests was helping others build a routine. He was challenging and got me started with some easy moves to start building some strength. I was getting really angry at him when my rest time was only 45 seconds, but I started noticing improvements in a matter of weeks. I think he noticed that I have a competitive spirit and encouraged me to sign up for the “Biggest Gainer” competition.
I did not think I was overweight, but when I saw how much body fat I had, I really got motivated and started working out four days a week – one day with Brandon, and three on my own. I even started going to some of the nutrition classes the other trainers were conducting. I learned a lot from Chloe and Troy about what to eat and realized that my exercise alone would not get me the results I wanted. I started eating more protein along with better carbs and fat. When I made this change in my diet, and cut out the sugar and soda, I started seeing rapid improvements when I was in the gym. I also started drinking some quality protein shakes after workouts and in the evening. I started to notice that all of the little changes I was making were improving my energy and I was more motivated to hit the gym hard.
The best day of the competition was when I looked back at how little weight I was able to push when I started and see myself pushing more than double that amount now. I didn’t even care if I won because I was feeling so good already. I am really glad Seattle U had this competition and excited to see what’s next in my fitness goals.
Submit Yourself for Consideration
Describe how you have improved your overall health and wellness using fitness, personal training, and/or nutrition through resources provided by Seattle University Recreation and what it has done for you personally.
500 words or less
Please email email@example.com with an attachment of a before and after picture of yourself.