I think my weight loss story started out similar to most others in a sense that I was doing it out of desperation and I was tired of feeling bad for myself. I had always been bigger than most kids throughout my childhood, but I liked being bigger because I felt like I could use it to my advantage with my height in sports.
Once I got into high school, I ballooned up to 330 pounds my freshmen year and always thought that I weighed a lot less than I actually was. My reality check came when we had taken our freshmen physicals for sports and I was tipping the scales at 305 pounds. Even though I was alarmed, I thought I could still work with what I had, but I was completely wrong. That year I couldn’t make it through the first two weeks of football conditioning so I gave up and focused on my one love, basketball.
Being 6’1 since 8th grade and outweighing the other kids had always been an advantage. The hard part was that once I got to high school, there were other kids just as tall or taller than I was. I had horrible conditioning and was always the last one in sprints. I was put on the “B team” that year and rarely played.
Jake (top right) at 330 pounds.
As freshmen year went on I was eating constantly. Whether it was burritos at the school cafeteria or fast food on the way home, I just didn’t have enough restraint to eat less. I knew I needed to change and that these habits weren’t healthy. We would watch our previous games to make adjustments and I would see nine players and then myself trailing along holding us up from running our plays.
The moment that I knew I wanted to change was the last game of the season. I was put in for the final minutes and I was fouled while grabbing a rebound and trying the put the ball back up. I was given two free throws. After taking a couple dribbles, I was about to release the ball when, from in the stands, a small group yelled out “fat ass” and “cheeseburger”. I had never been called any names, by anyone, in my life until that moment. It left me feeling pretty upset.
That night I knew I wanted to try and change for the better.
The next morning I went to the varsity basketball coach, who also happened to be one of our P.E. coaches for the freshmen class. At the end of the session I told him everything that had happened and that I wanted to get in better shape to continue playing sports. He told me that as long as I showed up and continued putting forth my best effort, he would help me the best he could. From that day on, I spent an extra 15 minutes at the end of each P.E. class working one-on-one with him, performing exercises I was too afraid to do in front of my classmates. On top of that, I was out on the track running sprints with the varsity team to get extra conditioning and running at night by myself on the weekends. I started to pack my lunch with more fruits, vegetables, and healthier alternatives to the foods I normally ate. I was still enjoying the breakfast burritos from the cafeteria, but only once or twice a week. Near the end of the year, all my clothes started to get looser, I was running faster, and I was performing the normal drills without getting winded. The best part of the process was this new-found confidence I had gained that I never had before. I went from staying in, talking to no one, playing video games, and eating large amounts of fast food to wanting to go out with friends and do outdoor activities. I went from wearing big, baggy clothes and worrying about the way I moved in them to wearing normal clothes that fit me just right and purchasing my very first pair of jeans.
Jake (top right) at 330 pounds.
As the year came to a close, I ended up having to transfer schools, but I promised myself I would keep up my habits with running every day and making healthier food choices. Coming into October of my sophomore year, I weighed 195 pounds which is probably a weight I hadn’t been since 6th grade. Halfway through the year, I finally used the gym pass that my parents had bought me the year before. The only times I went before was when a few buddies wanted to play basketball, but I never went up the weights area because I was always too intimidated and wasn’t sure what I was doing. I had gotten to the point where I was being called too skinny so I decided to start and try to build some muscle. Seeing my muscles actually moving in the mirror was so exciting and I couldn’t believe that’s what they looked like after losing all the weight. I was hooked and starting going every day. I bought health and fitness magazines, consumed more protein, and saw what workouts the elite level athletes performed. I had no clue what I was doing, but I knew that I had the dedication, motivation, and consistency necessary to keep progressing and reaching my goals.
Coming into my junior year, I weighed a lean 230 pounds and felt like I had achieved the best shape of my life. I went from wearing shirts under my jersey because of my pudgy arms, to just wearing my jersey. From a size 50 waist down to a size 36. Finally putting a decent amount of muscle mass onto my skinny frame. I did things toward the end of my high school career that I would have NEVER done if I were overweight. I went to our school’s dances, danced in front of the entire school at our spring pep rally, and dated for the very first time. I think the best part of it was people asking for my advice on how to reach their own personal fitness goals. It felt like people put their trust in me to help them help themselves.
Jake at a lean 230 pounds.
Since then, my passion and intrigue for health and fitness has been renewed and I am so excited to bring this site to you. I hope to help you achieve the same satisfaction, confidence, and self-fulfillment that I’ve come to experience. I chose to pursue a degree in this field because I know the joy and happiness I experienced when I hit my goals and if I can help others experience that same satisfaction, then I’ll have accomplished what I set out to do.
The goal of the content I create for my clients is to offer methods and ideas that have been tried and tested, as well as how to apply them. I am not here to criticize your methods or the way you train. I am here to give you as many different options as possible to help reach your own personal goals, as well as support and cheer you on as you progress. If any advice or information I present to you, sticks with you, then that’s great! Maybe you choose to stick with what has been working for you, but you have hit a road block and become stagnant in your process. I am here to try and help you around it and get you back on track.
I feel like I can relate to most people because I know I’m not the strongest, fastest, or have the best physique, but I do have desire to help others, improve upon myself at every opportunity, and learn as much as I can along the way!