He’s no couch potato.
Dylan Wall weighed 425 pounds when he graduated high school in 2017, South West News Service (SWNS) reports. The Dickson County man decided to make a lifestyle change when he visited Austin Peay State University for New Student Day and realized he couldn’t keep up.
“During a tour of my college, I lost my group because I couldn’t keep up,” Wall explained. “I knew I wouldn’t be able to make it to my classes on time if I stayed on that course.”
“Around the same time, my sister also gave birth to my nephew,” he continued. “I didn’t want to set that example for him.”
Before slimming down, Wall ate mostly fast food, processed carbs and meat. For breakfast, he’d pick up McDonald’s, ordering more fast fare than a “normal portion,” he said. For lunch, Wall would get a “double portion” of whatever was being served. Dinner, meanwhile, was less consistent, Wall said, as he would snack “on and off” until he went to bed — which usually meant having “two or three sandwiches.”
“Other than when I left to go to school, I didn’t really leave the house all that much,” he recalled. “It was pretty much like that until the day I graduated high school.”
To begin the transformation, Wall yearned to break his “flavor addiction.”
“I started by doing a taste bud cleanse. I ate only potatoes with no seasoning for two weeks,” he said. “It really helped with my cravings.”
After that, he cut out all dairy and red meat and doubled down on monitoring his daily diet.
“For the most part, I just counted my calories,” Wall said. “I wanted to break my flavor addiction and didn’t want to eat for pleasure.”
From there, Wall began eating egg whites with two slices of toast for breakfast, a turkey sub with no cheese for lunch, and a chicken breast with a variety of vegetables and rice for dinner.
“It took just under a year to lose 180 pounds,” he remembered. “I didn’t step into the gym until I lost that first bit of weight.”
When the time felt right, Wall began exercising with cardio, in an endeavor that felt like “the bane of my existence.” With practice, he picked up the pace. Eventually, he could consistently run a 7:30-minute mile, and also began to embrace upper body workouts, squats and deadlifts.
Wall said that he wanted to bulk up “right away” with muscle mass, after being left with extra skin after the dramatic weight loss.
“The last 50 pounds came off a little bit slower. It took another year to get down that last 50 pounds,” he said.
Looking ahead, the fitness fanatic now plans to have surgery to have his excess skin removed.
“I don’t think I knew how mentally taxing being left with the skin would be,” he revealed. “After coming this far and losing so much, I’m still left with that reminder every day.”
Now, Wall hopes that his own fitness journey will motivate others to strive for their best selves.
“I met my current girlfriend 50 pounds into my weight loss. … Since we got together she’s lost 75 pounds,” he said. “My dad also bet me $100 to see who could lose 60 pounds the fastest. I won, but he lost the 60 pounds too.”