Hometown: White Plains, NY
Weight Before: 300 lbs
Weight Now: 182 lbs
When you work 16-hour shifts seven days a week, it’s hard to stay in shape. Add to the mix stress over $50,000 worth of debt and a full course of college classes to finish a degree, and the idea of having abs (let alone a six-pack!) might seem like a pipe dream. You can easily end up with the kind of body that could be described as a nightmare—The Blob. Five years ago, Rooz Kheirabi, an IT consultant in White Plains, NY, was living that horror. He weighed 300 pounds and had a size 40 waist. He wasn’t exercising at all, and his job kept him on the road for long stretches. He didn’t even attempt to eat healthy. “I’d drive to one location, get on the train, and head for my next job,” he says. “By the time you get home at midnight, you’re hungry and eat whatever you have in the fridge.”
Kheirabi’s unhealthy ways continued until a trip to the doctor gave him his wake-up call. “He told me I had high levels of fatty liver cell disease,” he says. “And it wasn’t due to genetics or alcohol—it was just my weight.”
Immediately after the checkup, Kheirabi changed his diet. He cut way back on carbs and junk food and started bringing protein shakes with him on the road. Instead of grabbing pizza on the way home from the office, he opted for tuna, chicken, or other lean meats. Next, he cut back on his hours at work, joined a local
gym, and began doing cardio every night. At first he couldn’t finish 20 minutes, but after six months he was running miles.
That breakthrough led Kheirabi to weightlifting. Within a year, he’d lost 70 more pounds and felt much better about himself. To help him stay motivated and keep making progress, Kheirabi hired a trainer and intensified his workouts. Gradually, he dropped another 50 pounds. “I looked in the mirror one day and saw some definition in my upper abs,” he says. “It kind of shocked me.”
Today, Kheirabi, 31, is finally prioritizing everything in his life. He’s completing his master’s degree, and although still working crazy hours, he’s found time to enter two bodybuilding competitions. He’s even studying to be a personal trainer. “Being fit is something I thought I could never do, but now I know I can. It was right there in my head. I just had to grab it."
Rooz's Tip: Be Realistic
“Work on training consistently. The more you get used to living a fit lifestyle, the harder it is for you to bounce back to your old ways.”