• Through years of regular fast food eating, Lester Packard gained weight, surpassing nearly 300 pounds.
• A friend helped Packard develop a body-weighted exercise plan to improve his diet and exercise, while adding to his lifestyle as a first responder.
• As a result, Packard lost nearly 75 pounds in just one and a half years, feeling healthier and fitter than ever.
Lester Packard did not believe he was out of shape. As a paramedic, the 39-year-old from Lakeland, Florida, was active all his life, including at work. With 6 & # 39; & # 39; & # 39; 4 & # 39; he had always been a bigger guy, and most of his life he had not had to pay attention to his weight.
He worked 24-hour shifts as a first responder and turned to food as a substitute for his erratic sleep plan. When he paused, he grabbed fast food: a Wendy's Triple (that's three quarters of a pound of beef) "Biggie Sized" with a sweet tea and a junior bacon cheeseburger. At the station he put down huge plates of food, big bowls of ice cream, and even a 24-ounce glass of chocolate milk. "That kind of food started going into my days off," he says, "because it was easy because we went through a house renovation because x was an apology. It basically became a habit.
The overload of calories took its toll. "I felt like a brick," he says, "I was not very flexible, flexible and flexible, just wanted to sit." He did not feel like himself, and one day he looked at the scales and saw that he was 298 pounds. He had gained 50 pounds in seven years.
He had a newborn son and the fear of becoming a father forced him to reevaluate his life. "I've been thinking about how scared I am to become a new father and what kind of father I want to be," he says. He remembered his own father, who was always ready and eager to practice football whenever young Lester wanted. Being that kind of father for his own son meant something had to change.
Packard turned to his best friend, a firefighter mate who had founded a company called First in Nutrition, which responds to the special nutritional needs of first Responder. His coach reduced Packard's diet and tracked down his food. As a newborn spent his time in the gym, he focused almost exclusively on nutrition. His coach helped him plan the meal during a 24-hour shift at the fire station or on a road trip with a toddler, holding him accountable on the way. (Packard can still eat a big pizza if he wants, as long as he compensates for those extra calories.)