It felt like I was cheating, But I wasn’t.


I want to introduce Mike, a software engineer from Westchester County New York. With his exceptional effort throughout his time here, he has become an absolute beast, overcoming obstacles, and beating the odds. This inspirational story will ease anxieties about improving your lifestyle and making the necessary changes possible. 


Mike came about Live in Fitness through an inspirational fitness video on YouTube, “The Will Tennyson video. Three months ago, I had gotten so bad that my feet were bloated, and I couldn’t fit into my shoes. My dad came and saw my feet, spoke with my mom, and they had an intervention with me. They told me I needed to seek care and see a doctor. I went and found out I was pre-diabetic and had to get on medication for my thyroid condition. After that, I started to seek external motivation to start moving. Then I saw the Will Tennyson video when he attended Live in Fitness. I figured, since they test, and measure everything every week, why not give it a try? It was different than any other camps I’ve seen on the internet where they just focus on cardio and feed you chicken, rice, and broccoli. I called, got more information, and decided to come for two weeks. Thankfully, my boss was supportive of what I had to do with my life and gave me the go-ahead to stay here for a month.”


Mike goes more in-depth on how his weight gain has been an issue his whole life, “Weight issues my entire life, never been a time where I’ve been at a healthy weight. I used to play basketball, lacrosse, and weight training during college. During my time at college, I was 300 pounds. When I got a job in New Jersey, things started to get out of control. I worked from a hotel and would go back home on the weekends. So, I was eating out every day. I got an apartment, then covid hit. Doordash was my best friend. Time went on and I was up to 420 pounds. I always fluctuated. I tried keto dieting and intermittent fasting. While I was on intermittent fasting, I only ate one meal a day. I realized that that was toxic for me because if I only ate one meal, it was a huge binge. I have an addictive disorder. So, I would eat a dozen of donuts, extra-large pizza, and things like that. Eventually, I stopped but then my parents gave me the intervention and it was the kick in the butt that I needed. Tough love was the kickstart to my intervention.” 



Not only did this affect his lifestyle, but Mike also elaborated on how it was his lifestyle, “This was my lifestyle. The biggest thing, I couldn’t move around. When I started to walk around my complex, I couldn’t complete it. It was 1/7th of a mile! When you can’t walk that little, it feels like defeat. I would use Instacart to get groceries. For buying things, I had Amazon. Essentially, I didn’t leave my house. Friends were friends that I met online. My free time was dedicated to playing video games.”


With his huge weight loss this past week, Mike is ecstatic about his progress and how it motivates him to keep going, “The lifestyle change that has been happening the past three weeks has been amazing. I love it. I love that I can go places and walk somewhere. Lifting weight, the progression I’m seeing, it’s great. The way I feel…it’s like I’m taking super depression medications but it’s working out that is doing it for me. The food is amazing. I feel mentally better. Physically, the changes are ridiculous. Having inflammation in my knee right now, I still am performing better than when I came in. I don’t understand how! My ultimate goal is to be under 400 pounds. Overall, when I get home, I’d like to get around 18% body fat. Eventually, I want to see my abs. If I could see that, that would be my ultimate goal.”  


This program is a result-based retreat. Measuring food to the gram in meal plans, exercising five to seven hours a day, and reaching customized calorie goals are all meant to achieve personal goals. Mike shares some key factors that have catalyzed him towards his overall goal, “Personal training. The food is a close second: the biggest revelation, a mind-blowing thing for me, the culinary experience. We made a luxury meal which involved filet mignon and a scallop BLT. I realized that I had all of this, for 497 calories, which was mind-blowing. The fact that I can go home and make this…food can be good. It felt like I was cheating, but I wasn’t.” 


Eric, the President of Live in Fitness, has applied some of his philosophies and approaches to fitness and coaching to this program. Mike elaborates his opinion on these teachings, “The biggest thing I like, is everything is result-based. He knows a lot of the theory but also verifies it. Focusing on lean muscle mass makes a lot of sense but many people don’t really think about it first. You’re supposed to have all macronutrients and never short one over the other or completely cut one out. I like that.”

So far, Mike has enjoyed all aspects of the program. But there are certain details that have really stood out to him the most, “Biggest thing, the professionalism coming from the program. The agreement in the beginning seemed assertive but it’s all about setting us up for success. Chef Jason always said to have the first four days prepared when you go back home. I do have a plan; my parents will help me. My favorite classes have been swimming, yoga, and cardio dance.”


As a lasting piece of advice, Mike shares his insight, “You must really want it. If you’re on the fence thinking about it, look within yourself, or you want to improve yourself by any means necessary, then do it! I realized that even when things were bad, I knew I had to do something about it. I had to put everything to the side and look out for myself. Surround yourself with good influence. But at the end of the day, if you want it, you’re going to get so much out of it that you can never predict how you’re going to feel at the end. It’s always going to feel so much better!”

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