The 'weightloss challenge' a fitness movement on Facebook by a social media group towards shedding extra flab, continues to gain huge followers. Sripad, a Malappuram native who works for the Kottakkal Urban Bank, is one among the latest names.
Sripad, who was obese earlier, began looking for ways to reduce his weight following taunts by friends. He could not join the activities of his friends, who were in good physical shape. Another problem that Sripad faced when he was overweight was finding clothes of the right size. The young man was so physically unfit that he panted after walking some distance.
“My work schedule did not allow me to visit the gym for workouts. So, I tried to cut down on food intake; but it had no effect,” recalls Sripad.
The youth resigned to his fate and continued to be the butt of jokes. His relatives too warned him about the consequences of overweight in the future.
Sripad felt helpless, but discreetly started looking for suitable ways to reduce his flab. One day, he came across a story published in Manorama Online about a beneficiary of the weightloss challenge. “Realizing that many people have overcome obesity by being part of the group, I too decided to join it,” he says.
The youth regularly checked the group’s updates and joined as soon as it enrolled new members. “Initially, I had mixed feelings about the effort. I thought that maybe I’ll have to quit midway,” he says.
“However, I began taking things earnestly soon. Everyone in the group motivates you so much so that you are on the right track,” Sripad adds.
Sripad’s hard work produced results. “Before joining the group, I weighed 95 kg. In four months, I was 78 kg - having lost 17 kg! As I am 170 cm tall, my aim now is to achieve the right weight for this height, which is 70 kg,” reveals the young man.
He now continues his workouts and diet to hit the target.
Sripad explains how he could achieve his dream of losing fat. “The first step that I took was to avoid rice altogether from my diet. My daily intake comprised mainly of ‘chapatis’, wheat bread, white of egg and pulses like green peas,” he says.
He also modified his diet suitably. “For instance, if I had a heavy breakfast, I would slash the amount of the other meals. Moreover, I drank at least 3-4 glasses of water before every meal. This reduced my appetite,” says Sripad.
This diet continued for several months. In addition, he included more protein-rich vegetables in his meals. “I changed my old habit of eating whenever I felt hungry. Instead, I fixed the time of my food intake. A major change was that I totally avoided the evening snacks,” he continues.
Swimming was another activity that Sripad took up along with his workouts. During the first phase of the weightloss challenge, the youth used to be hungry most of the time. However, he learnt to control his urge to have food.
Sripad attributes a large part of his success story to his mother. “She prepared all the dishes according to my requirements. Even though mother preferred rice and curries, she ensured that I received my share of chapatis every day,” he says.
On some rainy days, Sripad was reluctant to get up. “But my mother forcibly woke me up, saying that it was time for workouts. ‘I don’t want to see you obese’, she would say,” according to the youth.
Now Sripad is in total control of his eating habits that he even skips rice at functions. His friends who earlier made fun of him also congratulated Sripad on his achievement. “They say that they never expected such a change to happen to me,” winds up an elated Sripad.