Michael Saltzman 

Agoura Hills, CA

"I began my journey to health in July of 2018 because I finally convinced myself that I deserved to be healthy. Two previous times in my life, I had committed to a weight loss journey and had success. And two previous times in my life, I gained all the weight back and more. I was 320 pounds in July two years ago and I made the decision that this could not just be a weight loss journey. For this to truly work, I had to change my mindset to a journey to health.

Anyone can go on a weight loss journey, and if they have a calorie deficit, they'll lose weight. I did that twice before. However, both times I lost significant weight, I eventually went back to my same bad habits and ultimately failed at keeping the weight off.

I realized to truly make a life long change, I had to make life long goals. That meant changing my mindset to a journey to health. By committing to a journey to health, I was committing to a lifetime of change instead of a number on the scale. Both times I had lost weight before, I had hit a number I was much happier with and started to make exceptions for myself. I allowed myself to make mistakes with my diet and skip workouts until making mistakes and skipping workouts became my routine once again.

I had to identify healthy foods I enjoyed eating, I had to commit to being active every day and I had to eliminate certain foods and drinks from my diet that I had an unhealthy relationship with. I had to cut out soda, especially diet soda completely. I had to remove junk food, fast food and fried foods as well. Nearly all Italian and Mexican food had to go also. These were things I had very little control over and had a difficult time eating in small portions.

I needed to eat smarter, more efficiently, and for a purpose. I needed to commit to having breakfast every morning, eating foods high in protein after workouts for muscle recovery, and identifying healthy snacks I could eat before lunch and dinner that wouldn';t impact my total calories for the day. By monitoring my calories and going to the gym daily, I was burning the necessary calories and eating the right foods to get healthy.

In one year, I lost 121 pounds. I was losing two pounds a week for a year and I went from over 43% body fat to 16.1%. The key to everything I had accomplished was to continue my journey well beyond day 365. I realized right away that the only way to do that was to not change anything about my routine.

I continued to eat the same foods, I continued to work out every day and I continued to monitor my calories. The only change was the amount of calories I was allowed to eat each day. Now, my goal was to eat the same number of calories as I burned. Otherwise, I needed to keep eating the same foods I ate when I was losing weight and commit the same amount of time to my workouts.

It has been 857 days since I started my journey to health and I have no intention of stopping.


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