During the summer of 2008, I was getting ready for High School and wanted to start losing weight. Also, at a physical during my 8th grade year, my pediatrician said that I needed to lose weight or I would get Type 2 Adult Onset diabetes, at that time I weighed in at 268.
I talked with my Mom about wanting to lose weight and she arranged for us to join the YMCA as a family. At first I went to do weight training, because I wanted to build up my chest muscles but that didn’t make much of a difference in how I looked or did not help me lose weight. In September 2008, I was frustrated that I did not lose much weight and my mother suggested that we go talk to the YMCA’s nutritionist Kendra Evans and that’s when my weight loss really began.
At the first meeting I weighed in at 260 pounds. Kendra explained that if I wanted to lose weight I would need to eat 250 calories less a day and burn at least 250 calories. She gave me healthy lifestyle tips sheet, food tips and a list of healthy foods to choose from. We agreed to start seeing Kendra once a week to check in on my progress.
So, I looked at the food sheets and tried to figure out meals that I would like eating. I got into a routine of having cereal in the morning and would pack my lunch for school which usually consisted of a peanut butter sandwich on wheat bread, an apple and 100-calorie pudding or pretzels. At dinner, I tried to cut down on seconds, which was hard because my Dad is a really good cook. Mostly I tried to cut down on the starches (rice and pasta). I also stopped drinking 2% milk and replaced it with skim milk.
For exercise, I would use my mom’s elliptical machine in the basement and would try to burn at least 250-500 calories a day. Now, I’ve worked my way up to burning 1,500 calories a day or working out for about an hour a day.
When a year had passed around the summer of 2009 I had lost 85 pounds, and I’ve kept it off. I want to lose more weight and go lower. Now I’m in the 180s, but I’m starting to lose again. And I am not over exaggerating when I say that most of this is because of Kendra, a large part of it was her pushing me and me being determined to do it.
We'd like to thank Matt for sharing his Y story with all of us. Everyday, someone starts their journey to a healthy lifestyle at the Capital District YMCA. If you would like to share how the YMCA has affected your life, email Rob Totaro at email@example.com.