Weight loss by the book: Amazing Loser Dan Pickens
While weight loss isn’t rocket science (just er… regular science), it definitely takes grit and determination to do and you could do worse than taking advice from those who have been there, done that and got the (significantly smaller) t-shirt. This week’s Amazing Loser Dan has been so successful on his weight loss journey partly down to absorbing as much information about weight loss as he can, and now he’s passing on what he’s learned…
- Name: Dan Pickens (ask him anything on Talk, follow him on Twitter or Instagram)
- Location: Williamstown, New Jersey
- Job: IT technician
- Height: 5’8″ (173cm)
- Age: 29
- Highest weight: 265lbs (118kg)
- Lowest weight: Currently 190lbs (86kg), with a goal weight of 170/175lbs (77/79kg)
- Plan: Low carb, high fat, moderate protein Paleo/keto hybrid.
How did you get to the position where you needed to lose weight?
[blocktext align=”right”]”I cared way more about my beer intake and ‘having fun’ than my health”[/blocktext]
What negative experiences did you have of being overweight?
The most negative impact that my weight has had on me was what it did to my confidence and self esteem. Being overweight instills a sense of inferiority from a young age.
The first terrible anxiety I ever had was in elementary school when they were doing scoliosis tests and I was so afraid of taking my shirt off in front of the class that I begged my father to let me stay home from school. That pretty much set the tone for my entire life to come.
In highschool, I made many awkward and flat out terrible attempts at dating girls, and I had zero self confidence. I was awful at speaking in front of crowds and in social situations in general. I was generally a very lazy person. It was all because of my weight and the image I had of myself in my brain. When you grow up like that, it bleeds into your adulthood, and it really took me a while to believe in myself and get my life together career wise.
What made you decide to change?
The breaking point came when my wonderful girlfriend, now fiance, bought me a pair of jeans that were a size 44 waist, and they were SNUG on me. It was very crushing. I looked in the mirror at my chubby face and man boobs and just could not take it anymore.
This started what I would estimate as a 2 year journey to get my ass in shape. In the beginning, I made some progress but it still went up and down. I experimented with a lot of ways of eating before I found what works for me.
I didn’t really get locked in until September of 2016, when my fiance was diagnosed with Stage 1 Ovarian Cancer and I made a promise with myself that I would be fit and healthy for her while she was going through this. In my mind, there was no excuse for me to be fat and unhealthy while she was fighting this (she is doing great now and recovering).
On top of all of this, I was deathly afraid of my family medical history. My mother died when she was 33 years old. She was a very unhealthy woman. I was looking at myself at 27/28 and going down that road, and I did not want to end up like that.
What made it different from the times before?
How did you do it?
As far as diet, I eat most likely what would be called “Lazy Keto”. I do my best to keep my carbs under 20 grams per day and to keep my body in ketosis. Some days here and there I go above and hit around 40-50g of carbs.