Few people can boast being healthy and fit immediately after graduating college. Cafeteria food, late-night pizzas and beer can take a toll. But 22-year-old Alex Clary got an especially harsh wake-up call when he visited his doctor’s office for a check-up after graduation.
During some routine tests, Alex says he learned that his blood pressure was “through the roof” and his cholesterol was “out of control.” Though his family history made him susceptible to heart disease, Alex knew his weight — 233 pounds — was also a big problem. His doctor advised him to start dieting, and immediately put Alex on medication to lower his blood pressure and cholesterol. Alex says, “That was the trigger, I thought, ‘I’ve got to do something about this.’”
Finding a Workout That Worked for Him
Weight had always been a problem for Alex. He was the “big kid” in school growing up, and never had much luck sticking to a diet or exercise routine. In college, he would occasionally go to the campus gym, but didn’t really know how to structure his workouts. While he’d lose a few pounds here and there, he’d quickly fall back into his old habits — and the unhealthy dining halls at school didn’t help. “I’d either watch what I was eating or exercise, but until this past year I’d never combined both,” Alex, now 24, says.
Alex, who lives in Noblesville, Indiana, had been on blood pressure and cholesterol medication for about a year when he saw a commercial for DailyBurn in January 2014, advertising a free 30-day trial. When he and his wife saw the app pop up on their Xbox, Alex says they decided to sign up. “Our community has a small fitness center, but to get myself to go when I got home from work was hard,” the 2nd grade teacher says. He’d tried other at-home programs but wanted more variety. Plus, he felt many of the workout DVDs he’d picked up were geared more towards women. “As a guy I felt weird doing Buns of Steel!” Alex says.
"It was like a switch flipped as soon as I changed my diet...It was so exciting.”
Ready to make a change, Alex and his wife decided to try DailyBurn’s Tactical Body Training program with trainer Cody Storey, because they didn’t own any at-home gym equipment. “It was very hard — it’s a challenging program. But I felt like even at the fitness level where I was starting out, I could still do it,” Alex says. “I could scale things back if I needed or step it up if I felt like I could and I felt good when I got done.”
Over the next month, Alex completed the full 28-day TBT program. “But [I] didn’t change my diet and I got to the end… and my weight hadn’t changed. I didn’t feel like I looked different,” he says. “So I thought, ‘Let’s keep dong this but let’s change my diet.’”
Seeing Big Results — On the Scale and Off
The decision to focus on both nutrition and exercise turned out to be instrumental for Alex. While he says he loves pizza and wings as much as the next guy, Alex’s problem had always been portion control, rather than junk food cravings. But after using a calorie-tracking app for the first time, he was able to make major strides in improving his diet.
“It was like a switch flipped as soon as I changed my diet. That first week I lost a couple pounds, then a couple more the next week,” Alex says. “It was so exciting and there was nothing more motivating than actually experiencing that change.” Alex and his wife started eating more chicken and lean protein, and adding more vegetables to their diet. Some of their favorite meals: lentil tacos and vegetarian chili.
Eventually, the couple decided to incorporate more strength training into their routine, and slowly started to build up a home gym — amassing dumbbells, kettlebells and heart rate monitors to help take their workouts to the next level. After finishing TBT, they moved on to DBK, a kettlebell workout. Other favorites: Cardio Sculpt and Intelliburn.
Getting Healthier, One Workout at a Time
The summer after he started DailyBurn, Alex returned to his doctor for a follow-up appointment. “I went back and…saw my doctor to follow up and he said, ‘I don’t even recognize you,’” Alex recalls. His health had markedly improved and he felt great.
Since beginning DailyBurn in January 2014, Alex has lost about 75 pounds. And though his wife didn’t have as much to lose, she also shed 15 pounds.
So what’s next? Alex says his goal this year is to maintain his weight loss and continue to push himself when it comes to his workouts. “Doing the DailyBurn challenges [within each workout] and keeping track of how many burpees, or squats, or push-ups, you can do in a minute is really cool, too,” Alex says. “You can see that you’re making progress in your fitness — besides just that number on the scale.”
To learn more about DailyBurn or try a free 30-day trial, head to DailyBurn.com.
Note to reader: For those seeking to lose weight, keep in mind that extreme weight loss can be harmful to your health if done improperly or too suddenly. Always talk to your doctor before beginning any exercise or weight loss program. DailyBurn users who worked out for 30 minutes or more at least five times a week for 60 to 90 days reported an average weight loss of about one pound per week. The content in this article relates to the core service offered by DailyBurn. In the interest of editorial disclosure and integrity, the reader should know that this site is owned and operated by DailyBurn.
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