When Alex Mastrean realized he was living within the limits of this weight, nearly 300 pounds at 21 years old, he knew it was time to make a change. Though it would be hard work, he was convinced the effort would pay off. Four years later, Alex has lost 100 pounds, is a featured competitor by Tough Mudder, and is pursuing a degree in Astrophysics at Arizona State University. Alex knows that weight loss transforms so much more than your body— it empowers you to live life to the fullest.
Check out Alex’s six tips to get on the road towards a healthy lifestyle, and stay on it!
- Seek motivation.
“I lived my life within limits. It held me back from going out with friends and finding a girlfriend. I felt[being overweight] barred me from things, held me back from living life the fullest, it made me live within the limits of my weight. I was constantly lonely and angry. Losing weight seemed like such a big task ahead of me; I didn’t think I could get out. I got sick of being rejected by girls when I would ask them out. One day I realized I couldn’t go on like that. You are only young so long and if you truly want to experience life, you can’t experience life if you’re overweight. I had limitations from myself but also outside limitations… I couldn’t go skydiving or ziplining at my weight. I was sick of limitations, sick of the anger, and decided to make a change.”
- Start small.
“I started lifting weights. I couldn’t do cardio… it was too painful. I found something I enjoyed doing, weight lifting, and forced myself to do it even the days I didn’t want to. I would tell myself ‘just put in 30 minutes’ and found myself staying for the full hour. Slowly, I changed my diet, drank more water, and drank less soda.”
- Set a goal.
“Every time I consume anything, I think about my end goal and ask, ‘Is this going to get me to my end goal? Am I going to have to put in an extra two hours at the gym to reverse the effects of this?’ Days you want to cheat, pick a healthier alternative like frozen yogurt instead of ice cream and keep the portion small.”
- Stop making excuses.
“Everyone being positive and encouraging is good, but the reason we’re so heavy is because we keep making excuses. Stop telling yourself you can’t and convincing yourself why you can’t.”
- Don’t let short-term setbacks discourage you from long-term goals.
“[Losing weight] was one of the most fun things I’ve ever done. The first week or two were horrible; I wasn’t used to it. I was sore from working out. I didn’t feel like I was eating the foods I wanted to. But then I started getting compliments. Don’t be discouraged if you’re not losing weight on the scale, you might be losing body fat. You can be a leaner, healthier you.”
- Keep your eyes on the prize.
“My biggest accomplishment was finishing my first Tough Mudder. Crossing the finish line made it worth it. The days of dieting and hours in the gym were all worth it, knowing I completed such a tough event. My next goal is to complete the World’s Toughest Mudder, a 24-hour circuit of the Tough Mudder course. After that, I want to complete a full Ironman.”
Living life unrestricted is awesome!
- Start small.