Weight Loss Inspiration: Dustin Lost 75kg Celebrating Wins

The Spontaneous Decision That Started This Man’s Weight Loss Journey

I became a very emotional eater and chose to make bad emotions go away with food.

Dustin A.

San Francisco, CA

  • Health Conditions
  • Weight Loss

Dustin’s Advice to Others

From the time Dustin A. started primary school, he had always been the heavier kid in the classroom. “By the time I hit my teens, I weighed 340 pounds—and I stayed that weight throughout high school,” says the 35-year-old non-profit development manager who lives just north of San Francisco. “I was active—I played tennis and did the shot put and discus for track and field—but I also ate a lot of food.”

After graduation, Dustin put on more and more weight, ultimately hitting 225kg. “When you grow up as the fat kid and people make fun of you, you learn to roll with the punches and cover up your emotions,” he says. “I became a very emotional eater and chose to make bad emotions go away with food.”

Then, around eight years ago, things started to change for Dustin. “I got a job at the humane society, and for the first time ever, I was working a job I really loved,” he says. “I started to feel passionate about something, which really woke me up. The job gave me something to live for beyond myself.”

While Dustin had more to be excited about, he still couldn’t budge the scale. It wasn’t until he went out to buy a new car three years ago that things really started shifting. “I went in to buy a sedan, but a little convertible caught my eye. It just looked so fun! I sat in it and I felt cool for the first time ever,” he says. “I bought the convertible and, it sounds silly to say, but it gave me such a morale boost.” Instead of binge watching TV all weekend, Dustin started going on drives to the coast and being a lot more active. “I wasn’t even trying, but because I was moving so much more, I lost 35 pounds,” he says.

Feeling good as a result of this initial weight loss inspiration, he decided to start tracking his diet. “I realised that I was easily consuming a whole day’s worth of calories in one trip to a fast food restaurant—and then I’d eat an entire pizza that night for dinner,” he says. Dustin came up with a goal: to try to stick to 2,600 calories a day. “I realised there were a lot of foods I can live without,” he says “Like if I wanted pizza, I didn’t really miss the cheese or the meat toppings.”

With those changes, the weight kept coming off. “My first goal was to get under 400 pounds,” he says. “When I got 395, I was so excited because I could buy a scale for my home. It doesn’t seem like a big deal, but the fact that I could step on a scale and it would show a number was huge for me.”

Ready to keep on measuring his success, he bought himself a Fitbit Charge HR for additional weight loss inspiration. “I was only walking about 5,000 or 6,000 steps a day, which wasn’t enough,” he says. “I upped it to 10,000 steps, then 13,000, then 15,000, and now it’s 20,000 steps a day.”

Over eight months, Dustin ultimately got down to 145kg—a weight loss of 75kg. “One of the biggest things to me was that I can now travel and only buy one airplane ticket, whereas before I would have needed to buy two because I was so large,” he says. “My girlfriend and I went to Italy for two weeks this January and it was great. I even logged 25,000 steps in one day!” Even better than seeing Italy was hearing from his doctor that his diabetes and high blood pressure levels were improving. “My doctor was completely blown away the last time I went in,” he says. “If I can get to 300 pounds my doctor will re-evaluate my medicines and see what we can take away—it’s something I can’t wait for.”

NOTICE EVERY WIN

“As I gained weight, I barely paid attention all the things I was giving up, like being able to fit in a cinema seat,” he says. “But when I started losing weight and I got to go to the cinema again, I really celebrated it.”

DON’T BE AFRAID TO EAT

“If I get hungry, I eat,” he says. “I learned the hard way that if I let myself get to the point of being ravenous, I’ll end up binging and eat tons of calories without realising it. Now I don’t let myself get to that point.”

WORK EXTRA STEPS INTO YOUR ROUTINE

“If I get hungry, I eat,” he says. “I learned the hard way that if I let myself get to the point of being ravenous, I’ll end up binging and eat tons of calories without realising it. Now I don’t let myself get to that point.”

Dustin’s Advice to Others

NOTICE EVERY WIN

“As I gained weight, I barely paid attention all the things I was giving up, like being able to fit in a cinema seat,” he says. “But when I started losing weight and I got to go to the cinema again, I really celebrated it.”

DON’T BE AFRAID TO EAT

“If I get hungry, I eat,” he says. “I learned the hard way that if I let myself get to the point of being ravenous, I’ll end up binging and eat tons of calories without realising it. Now I don’t let myself get to that point.”

WORK EXTRA STEPS INTO YOUR ROUTINE

“If I get hungry, I eat,” he says. “I learned the hard way that if I let myself get to the point of being ravenous, I’ll end up binging and eat tons of calories without realising it. Now I don’t let myself get to that point.”

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