Weight Loss Stories – Mark Lost 125 Pounds and 10 Inches

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Mark’s Weight Loss Statistics

  • Name: Mark
  • Age: 49
  • Family Status: Married
  • Occupation: Deborah Lippmann cosmetics
  • Location: New York, NY
  • Height: 5’8″
  • Starting Weight: 297 pounds
  • Current Weight: 172 pounds
  • Current Waist Size: 32″

Mark’s Weight Loss Interview

How much did you lose?
I lost 125 pounds and went from XXL shirts to size medium. My jeans went from 42″ to 32″ waist size!

When did you become unhappy with your weight?
My sister Deborah and I grew up in Arizona with a weight problem. Years later I came to understand we were using food to deal with the emotional trauma of losing our father when we were young.

Being in the cosmetics/fashion industry in New York City, I felt out of place for sure and was inspired by my sister’s weight loss journey, which was chronicled over several months in a national health magazine.

What made you decide to lose weight?
At 297 pounds and 40 years of age, I was worried about my health, appearance, and self-image. I honestly thought my life was about over. It seemed every activity was challenging, even getting up from a chair. I was also tired of how others treated me due to my weight.

What were the most important changes you made to lose weight?
First, I stopped buying groceries that were unhealthy or not aligned with my weight loss goals. I was too easily tempted to eat junk food when it was in the house. I started buying only the foods that would help my nutrition and weight loss. I focused on calorie counting and planned to achieve a daily calorie deficit.

Second, I began exercising. I started with walking, a little more each day until I reached 5 miles a day. I worked out at home by getting a rowing machine and a spin bike. After I lost about 60 pounds, I joined a gym to learn proper form, increase my strength and stamina, and learn the best exercises to continue my weight loss.

What was the most challenging thing you had to deal with during your weight loss journey?
The temptation to go back to eating the high-calorie foods I used to enjoy. Dining out with family and friends was almost impossible if I wanted to keep on track.

How long did it take you to start to see results?
Once I changed my diet and began exercising, my weight started to drop quickly. I started doing a photo journal each month to track my weight loss. Pictures of my progress inspired me to continue and work harder.

How long did it take for you to reach your current weight?
About 18 months to lose it all, but the first 60 pounds came off in about 6 months.

Did you have any issues with loose skin after losing the weight?
I had a lot of loose skin and chose an abdominoplasty to remove the excess belly skin.

How long have you maintained your weight loss and what are the most important factors for keeping it off?
I kept it off until I gained about 15 pounds during the Covid quarantine/pandemic and have just lost that excess weight.

What keeps you motivated to continue your weight loss success?
Knowing that my health is greatly improved and that my social life has blossomed.

How has your life changed now that you have lost weight?
My activity level is higher than many half my age. I have strength and stamina. My social life changed dramatically as well. I have recently started a weight loss blog, FitBodyAfter40, to share my experience and hopefully inspire people to follow their dream of reaching a healthy weight.

Do you have any advice for others who are trying to lose weight?
If I can lose over 100 pounds after turning 40, I believe anyone can. It takes determination, permanent changes to diet, and increased exercise activity. It’s really pretty simple. Just put your mind to it and make the changes you want to see and the results will follow, and inspire you to keep with it.

Find a support system to help keep you motivated and inspired, and celebrate when you reach goals along the way. Every time I could fit into a smaller pair of jeans, I was excited and inspired to stay on track.

How did ShapeFit help you reach your weight loss goals?
ShapeFit has inspiring personal accounts of weight loss. The diet, nutrition, and exercise articles are helpful and motivating.

Mark’s Weight Loss Tips

Weight Loss Tip #1:
Plan your diet to achieve a calorie deficit. Eliminate junk food and high-fat, high-calorie foods. Eating more fresh vegetables, fruits, and lean meats. Avoid snacking, especially after dinner.

Weight Loss Tip #2:
Develop an exercise routine. I start my day with cardio and it gives me more energy all day. Find exercises that burn calories and that you enjoy doing.

Weight Loss Tip #3:
Find a support system. Friends and family can offer support and encouragement. I found this to be especially important in the early phase when results are a bit slower to appear.

Weight Loss Tip #4:
Celebrate reaching your goals. As I achieved each goal on my weight loss journey, I gave myself a little reward. It doesn’t need to be anything big. A new book, new clothes in a smaller size, a walk in the park. It just needs to be a little way to celebrate (without food) that makes you feel good!

Weight Loss Tip #5:
Track progress with a photo journal. I took a photo in the same position every month and it kept me inspired, focused, and excited about my results.

Mark’s Weight Loss Eating Plan

What do you normally eat for breakfast?
1. Overnight oats in non-fat yogurt with fresh berries.
2. Egg whites with avocado toast.
3. Cottage cheese with fresh fruit.

What do you normally eat for lunch?
1. Green salad with lean protein, nuts, and seeds dressed with a low-calorie vinaigrette or just a dash of balsamic vinegar.
2. Protein shake meal replacement with banana and half an apple.

What do you normally eat for dinner?
Lean protein like salmon, haddock, or skinless chicken breast with fresh veggies or a green salad.

What do you normally eat for snacks?
Raw nuts, seeds, and celery are my favorite, though it’s important not to overdo it with nuts as they can contain a lot of fat and calories.

What type of nutritional supplements do you take?
Multi-vitamin and protein shake.

Mark’s Weight Loss Workouts

What do you do for weight training?
Dumbbell, barbell, and kettlebell exercises. Body weight exercises using a suspension trainer. Circuit machines.

What do you do for cardio training?
Squats, kettlebell swings, mountain climbers, spin cycling, and rowing. Spinning is my favorite and I start each day with 30-45 minutes of spinning at home.

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