Tag: hungry

#bern200 – How To Gain 225 Pounds In Eight Years


Depending on when you met me, you wouldn’t believe how much my weight has changed over the past 11 years. I used to share pictures of myself from 2002-04 with strangers to show them that I wasn’t fat all of my life. One of the most common questions that I’ve been asked is how I went from graduating from high school in 2002 weighing 180 pounds, to tipping the scales at well over 400 pounds in 2010. As unbelievable as it may seem, it’s very easy to gain an extravagant amount of weight by practicing bad eating habits daily and exercising as little as possible.

In high school, I was a varsity football player, and just as active in recreational sports outside of the fall months. I would routinely exercise and engage in cardiovascular activities a few hours a day, seven days a week. I ate a lot, some home cooked meals and some fast food, but the amount of physical activity I performed made it easy to burn these calories off. In the years following high school my exercise and physical activity was reduced slightly. Relationships, college and work got in the way of working out, but I was still maintaining 225-230lbs, which is more than reasonable for a 5’11 male.

Around 2007 is when I started to feel the most change My fast food consumption increased and my level of physical activity went in the opposite direction, and I slowly morphed into your typical lazy college student. I dropped out of college, accepted a nice comfy call center job, in the next few years I was off of my feet 95% of the day, and spent most of the hours in between sunrise and sunset eating as much fast food as possible, mostly out of boredom / depression. My calorie intake was off the charts; some days exceeding 6,000 calories. Here’s an example of a normal day in 2010:

Breakfast (1500 total calories):

Two (2) Sausage Egg Muffin Sandwich – 900 calories
One (1) Hash Brown – 150 calories
12oz Caramel Frappe – 450 calories

At Work Snacks (684 total calories):
Two (2) 20oz Cola Soft Drink – 364 calories
2oz Plain Potato Chips – 320 calories

Lunch (1665 total calories):
Chicken Burrito (with white  rice, pinto beans, sour cream, cheese, lettuce) – 1075 calories
Chips & Salsa – 590 calories

Dinner (2563 total calories)
6 Slices (3/4) 14″ Large Pepperoni Pizza – 1,980 Calories
50oz Cola Soft Drink – 583 calories

Total Average Daily Consumption – 6,412 calories.

This is an example of a  typical day of consumption for me. If you combine eating like this with zero physical activity, it’s easy to see how I blew up so rapidly. You personally may not eat like this, but more than likely you eat two or three similar meals a day. I did a 180 degree turn on my eating habits, and it was a major contributing factor into how I lost 130lbs in 6 months.

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#bern200 – My Journey To Lose 200 Pounds In 12 Months

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I was a dead man walking. At over 400 pounds, I was risking my life everyday.

It was easy for me to ignore the signs. The shortness of breath, chronic lower back problems, swollen feet / ankles and sleep apnea were just conditions I became accustomed to. Eating fast food three or four times a day seemed like an average life for a twenty-something year old bachelor. I would sweat profusely during my DJ gigs, and chalk it up to my heavy alcohol consumption. Being the confident person that I was, I never saw any of this as a problem, and neither did my friends and family

During countless nights of cold sweats, I dreamed of years in the past when I was slim, active, and healthy. It wasn’t until a nightmare of a heart attack woke me up in tears that I decided to make a change. I made the conscious decision to be a man and take control of my life. One day at a time, I would regain control of my health and my overall well-being.

#bern200 is the story of my journey to shed 200 pounds in 12 months. However, it’s not just about weight loss. It’s about taking responsibility for your actions. It’s about recognizing yourself as you are, visualizing where you want to be, and getting there at all costs. Since March 2013 I’ve lost 130 pounds, but I’ve gained much more in the experience of what happens when you work hard and stay focused. As I continue towards my goal, I hope to inspire you to find the same determination in yourself to pursure whatever your goal may be. Whether that’s losing weight, pursuing higher education, advancing your career, or any other goal, remember this: persistence through adversity is the difference between those who start, and those who finish.

Check out www.djbern.com/bern200 starting October 1st to follow my story as I discuss topics from diet tips, exercise routines, music playlists, and personal experiences that have helped me make my way to my goal.