16 March, 2018
How Gavin A. Lost 132 Pounds By Cutting Out Junk Food
Gavin A. talks about how he lost 132 pounds by eating right, getting active and relying on the support of his peers.
Name: Gavin A.
LIVESTRONG.COM Username: Senxr
Age: 18 Height: 6'1"
BEFORE Weight: 312 pounds Dress/Pant Size: 48
AFTER Weight: 180 pounds Dress/Pant Size: 30
LIVESTRONG.COM: What was your life like before joining LIVESTRONG.COM?
Before I started my journey, I was very dissatisfied with my life. I was overweight and felt like I didn’t have a chance at being successful in anything I pursued. I wasn’t vigilant about my health, and I was disappointed every time I tried being active.
My food intake was awful. I didn’t really eat anything healthy. Instead, I ate what I thought tasted good rather than what was good for my body and mind. I didn’t exercise very much (just when someone made me). Because of my bad nutrition and inactivity, I was in a state of constant fatigue and felt hungry often.
LIVESTRONG.COM: What was your inspiration for making a change?
At first, I decided to stick with a weight-loss plan because I knew what would happen if I continued on my path. I was putting myself at risk for developing heart disease, having a heart attack and not being able to get off the couch. I started to get serious about making a change the summer after my sophomore year of high school.
LIVESTRONG.COM: How did LIVESTRONG.COM help you lose weight?
LIVESTRONG.COM helped me reach my goal by providing fitness, nutrition and health articles for me to read. I used the information on the website to reach my goal.
LIVESTRONG.COM: What was your support system like?
My main motivation for continuing my journey was the cheer squad that I was part of. I fought for all of my teammates, my coach, my captain and my flyer because I didn’t want to let them down. I endured physical challenges that likely would have made me break if I didn’t have the squad as my motivation.
LIVESTRONG.COM: What’s your favorite way to work out?
I enjoy lifting weights, participating in my R.I.P.P.E.D. class at school, cheer stunting and running when I feel trapped. Fighting and sparring are also activities I like.
LIVESTRONG.COM: What’s your weekly exercise schedule?
I attend the R.I.P.P.E.D. class and do Pilates on Monday and lift weights on Tuesday. On Wednesday and Friday I do R.I.P.P.E.D., Pilates and/or general yard work. On Thursday I go running and jogging. I rest on Saturday and Sunday.
LIVESTRONG.COM: What’s a typical day of meals and snacks?
I try to eat five to six small meals a day. I eat snacks when I feel like I need to, but I try not to overdo it. I like to eat raw fruits and sauteed veggies, and I prefer opting for leaner meats and whole-grain bread.
Another trick: I don’t use mayo when I make sandwiches. Instead, I bake or steam a sweet potato until it’s tender. Then I mash the sweet potato with coconut oil or butter and mix it really well. I use this to spread on my sandwich instead of mayo.
The vitamin A in the sweet potato is fat-soluble, so it binds really well to fat cells. The carbs from the sweet potato will help you maintain energy throughout your day.
LIVESTRONG.COM: What’s the range of calories you eat per day?
I like to go for 2,500 to 3,000 calories, depending on my training that day. I’ll eat even more if I am really active.
LIVESTRONG.COM: What are the healthy staples that are always in your kitchen?
Slow-cooked oats, apples, bananas, chicken, sweet potatoes, honey, peanut butter (without hydrogenated oils if possible) and whole-grain bread.
LIVESTRONG.COM: How do you strategize for meals?
I like to prepare food and have meals stored in the fridge so I can grab something and eat it later. And I like to get my grocery shopping done all at once.
LIVESTRONG.COM: Were there any supplements that you took during your journey?
I was focused on fat loss, so I took protein powder. It helped, however, I was told I was using it wrong. Now I know much more about supplements, and I continue to use protein powder as well as multivitamins.
LIVESTRONG.COM: What’s the biggest challenge you faced?
I was really craving junk food when I first started my journey. But I trained myself to swap out bad foods for healthier alternatives, and in time I was craving junk food less and less. I began drinking tea instead of soda, and I started eating fruits instead of sweets.
LIVESTRONG.COM: What’s your biggest secret to success that you want to share with others?
There’s no secret. I changed my nutrition intake, I changed my activity level, I educated myself on the human body and I was persistent in the face of physical challenges that I thought I couldn’t overcome. I did not give up or give in, no matter how bad I wanted to. In addition, I started training correctly, which led to greater muscle development and, eventually, fat loss.
LIVESTRONG.COM: What’s your life like now?
I’m currently a full-time student at Umpqua Community College. I want to get very serious about proper nutrition and training, and I want to share my knowledge with the students and student athletes of Elkton High School.
I use LIVESTRONG.COM when researching articles relating to a specific topic, such as shin splints (fought through those; they suck), healthy recipes, exercise technique corrections, etc. I am beyond thrilled that I am finally lean, thin and healthier than I was two years ago. However, I also feel like what I did was simply necessary.
I like to go by the ATHLEAN-X training and nutrition program, but I didn’t rely on it for my journey. I didn’t even find out about it until a few months ago. Due to my overall improvements, I feel happier and am way more self-confident. Additionally, my metabolism has fired up, I developed stronger and more toned muscles and I have the energy needed to get me through the day and through my workouts. I’ve worked so hard to be the best I can be — and now it’s happening.