In 2016, Wilson Velasquez — a self-described nerd with a Marvel figurine collection to prove it — set out for a fun-filled day at Six Flags with a few of his coworkers. But when he attempted to board one of the park’s roller coasters, he encountered a problem.
At 5’ 8’’ tall and 150 kilograms, Velasquez found out the hard way that the safety bar wouldn’t fit — so in front of his coworkers, he had to disembark the ride. The same thing happened two more times that day, on two more rides. By the end of the visit to the theme park, Velasquez had made up his mind: It was time to change everything.
A little over a year later, the 27-year-old is down more than fifty kilograms — and counting.
Starting His Weight Loss Journey
“I never wanted to go to the gym. No if, ands, or buts about it. I was lazy,” Velasquez explained to . “I just kept going through the motions.”
But after he faced humiliation in front of his friends, Velasquez he knew it was time to try something different — and his first step was joining Planet Fitness. The fitness facility was just three minutes from his job, so he had no excuse not to go. And when he got there, Velasquez said, he just started improvising.
“I didn't know what the hell I'm doing," he said. "I just got there and I saw all the equipment and saw the other guys just doing stuff. It's a mix of emotion when you go into a gym as a big guy."
Staying Motivated at the Gym
To stay motivated, Velasquez wore his favorite comic book t-shirts and told himself he’d just take it one step at a time, first focusing on his workouts without changing a single thing about his diet.
He kicked things off by going to the gym three days a week, promising himself he'd keep it up for two months. He performed full body workouts and walked or ran for 30 minutes on a treadmill.
“I lost maybe 30, 40 pounds (15-20kgs) just working out alone,” he said. “Not even doing anything crazy, not even worrying about eating.”
Changing His Diet
Soon after, people started noticing his weight loss and the compliments started pouring in. He gradually started eating more thoughtfully and healthfully, eliminating foods like french fries from his diet. He also began counting his calories.
“I started watching a lot of YouTube videos to educate myself,” Velasquez explained of his newfound love of nutritional science. He proceeded to lose another 15 kilograms, and the weight continued to flow off.
Over Fifty Kilograms Down — and Counting
Now, fourteen months after Velasquez couldn’t fit into that roller coaster, he’s lost an astonishing 50kg, showed off his epic transformation on Reddit, and said that he’s still going strong on his weight loss journey.
These days Velasquez hits the gym six days a week, working two muscle groups per visit. On those six days, he also goes home and jogs 5km to keep up his heart health.