Like many new dads, Ricardo Caceres woke up one day and realized he had let himself go. Struggling to keep up with his daughter, he vowed to start eating healthier and get back in shape so he could be a more active, engaged parent. Here, he opens up about the changes he made to lose 50 pounds and complete a successful weight loss transformation.
It really hit me when I was in the yard playing with my daughter. She was three years old at the time, and there I was in my mid-30s, feeling winded just from trying to keep up with her. I didn’t want to be a dad who was too worn out to play while she was growing up. I realized I needed to get in better shape—for me and for her.
Up to that point, I hadn’t paid attention to my weight. I ate and drank whatever I wanted—a horrible diet—and I wasn’t active at all. I thought I was fine, and didn’t see how heavy I’d gotten. In a word, I was complacent.
An experienced friend started coaching me, which helped keep me accountable from the beginning. I went from not caring what I ate to tracking every meal. For six month I ate at a calorie deficit, about 1750 calories a day. I had 170 grams of protein a day, 30 grams of fiber, and 10 glasses of water. Three days a week I did strength training, and a light workout for two days, with two days of cardio. I did 10,000 steps everyday, and I never missed a macro. (I still haven’t, to this day.)
In six months, I lost 50 pounds. I literally feel like a new person. I eat good food and feel motivated like I never have before. I fit into clothes I haven’t worn in years. I’m sleeping better, and my blood pressure has dropped. My doctor said almost everyone he’s seen during the pandemic has gained weight—I was one of the few who’ve lost weight.
Some people haven’t seen me in almost a year because of the pandemic. They can’t believe how much I’ve changed. They’re beyond shocked. Some of them even think I’ve lost too much weight, which can be really hard to hear. I’d like to settle in at about 170 pounds and twelve percent body fat. It’s going to take a while, but I believe I can do it.
Ultimately, I’m taking it one day at a time. That’s how I started—be better than the day before. I started with ten push-ups, then told myself tomorrow I’d do ten more than that. Eventually I got to 350 push-ups a day. That’s what works for me: Be better than who you were yesterday.
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