Meet Zach Lang. He’s your average 22 year old guy. He was also 50 lbs overweight but hey, when you’re 22, who cares, right? Wrong.
Zach and his fiancé suffered an emotional trauma when they lost their baby in the third trimester. It forced Zach to re-evaluate his life; how he was living it and his own health. He knew he needed to make some major changes. He didn’t have a Bob Harper or a Jillian Michaels screaming at him to keep going. There wasn’t a huge pot of money in it for him at the end, just a crystal clear image of the man he wanted to become so he set goals and began his own Biggest Loser journey.
Zach sits behind a wheel all day driving a truck and delivering beer. It’s a sedentary job which definitely can lead to eating out of boredom. We hears this from a lot of people who sit behind a desk all day but once you make a decision to make a change, you don’t make excuses. He started by going to the local gym and lifting weights. Not really sure what he was doing, Zach just watched others and followed what they did. This was fine for the first 4 months because he was in a comfort zone there. He saw changes in his body and dropped about 15-20 lbs.
During this time, however, his friend KC, an avid crossfitter, kept talking to him about crossfit and how it could dramatically make the difference that Zach had been searching for. Finally, in January 2013, Zach began crossfitting.
I met Zach in late December 2012 and didn’t see him again until the end of March. He had been crossfitting 3-4x per wk during those 3 months and he looked like a totally different person. He had shed another 22lbs. and had added solid muscle. You see, I never knew Zach’s story until we sat down and talked. I was impressed with his changes and how fit he had become and began asking him questions about how and why he did it.
Zach ate garbage food before. A normal day consisted of doughnuts, hoagie and chips, McDonald’s, and about 10 Dr. Peppers. (a kid’s dream day, right?!)
Now, his normal day consists of egg whites, whole eggs, oatmeal, fruit, lean protein, veggies and protein shakes. Of course he has the days where he struggles with food just like everyone does, but just like one healthy meal doesn’t make you skinny; one bad meal doesn’t make you fat, so he has his cheat meal and goes back to clean eating. It keeps you sane. If you deny yourself your favorite foods forever, you will go crazy chasing the thing you crave by eating a ton of other foods when you can simply have your cheat meal and move on. Everyone needs that mental break so take it then get back into the game.
Why did crossfit do what the regular gym couldn’t? The type of workout that crossfit offers, is unlike your average globo gym workout. The high intensity of the movements done in a specific time frame is a workout unlike anything else. Your body is challenged, your mind is challenged and your determination is challenged. Zach accepted and welcomed these challenges because he knew what he wanted to accomplish. When he struggled, it was the cheering from the other people in his class that pushed him to do more than he thought himself capable of and THAT is what makes the difference. Ask Zach what he loves the most about crossfit? He will tell you it’s the people you are surrounded with who want you to succeed, sometimes more than you do when you’re having a bad day, and that seems to be unique in the crossfit community.
Looking at Zach Lang today, you would never believe that he hadn’t been slender and ripped his entire life.
You would watch him in crossfit competitions and admire his hard work. You would call him an “athlete”. You would perhaps wish you were built like him, strong like him, happy like him. But Zach knows this because he lived it. He knows what it’s like to see what you want to become and the hard work it takes to get there.
He knows the will it takes to go to crossfit when you’ve just worked a 10-hour day and the uncomfortable feeling of walking into a box and seeing so many fit, healthy people. He knows the struggle you have when your friends order pasta and beer and you order grilled chicken and lemon water. He knows the frustration of hitting a plateau and wondering if you will drop any more lbs. He knows how it feels to have no confidence in yourself, and how it feels to know you are unhealthy but not sure how to change it.
This is what he also knows; if you have a goal, you don’t let anything or anyone stop you from achieving it. Nobody is destined to be overweight and unhealthy forever, and though it will take hard work to change; it can be done, because he did it. I watched it. Like I said…he’s an average 22 yr old guy…just like everyone else except for one thing…he BECAME the change he used to dream about…and so can you. Take a deep breath, step into a box, start your own Biggest Loser story and become a winner.
Weight August 2012: 250 lbs
Weight August 2013: 198 lbs
Weight annihilated away: 52 lbs