John Mattes, age 40, lost 176 lbs. with a variety of Beachbody fitness programs, Shakeology, and the Beachbody Performance supplements. He entered his results into The Beachbody Challenge, and won $6,500!
Tell us about your life before you started the program. How did you feel about yourself and your body?
To be completely honest, my life was totally miserable. In an eight-month time frame from November of 2014 to June of 2015, after my birthday, I almost died twice from complications from blood clots.
The first time they literally said if I had come in five minutes later I would have been dead. The second time I was not presenting as strong symptoms but I felt off and went. It ended up being just as bad as the first time in November. I was sad, only going out of my house to do customer appointments.
After appointments, I would lay on my couch all day and eat roughly 10,000 to 12,000 calories a day of junk. I had no off switch and I was essentially killing myself.
I really did not feel worthy of anyone’s love and was just going through the motions every day with no plan and could not see a future. I was deathly afraid of taking pictures because I thought I looked disgusting.
What inspired you to change your life and begin your transformation journey?
I was, for the first time, really confronted with my mortality and how long my time on the earth would play out. The second time with blood clots was scarier because the symptoms were not as evident as the first time and I thought next time I am just going to fall over and die like my dad did when I was 17.
My doctors were aggressively trying to get me to do gastric bypass. When I was on a cruise with my mom she was even saying I should do gastric bypass because I could not do it by myself. Even all my sisters piled on. At first, I was extremely sad and then there was something in me telling me to show them all.
After my cruise, I started drinking old bags of Shakeology I had around and just reducing calories to a somewhat normal level until I got clearance.
Then I saw Casey Walker’s Yahoo article and I reached out for help. He said he believed in me and the rest was history. Here it was, a complete stranger having faith in me when none of my doctors or family would.
What is the greatest challenge you faced before beginning the program? How did the program and Beachbody® help you overcome that challenge?
My biggest challenge was I was newly released from workout restriction so I was constantly worried about how my leg would hold up because of the massive amount of weight I was carrying*.
At my heaviest, I was 410 pounds. I actually started my first week of 21 Day Fix on a work trip in Las Vegas. It was living hell.
Not only were there temptations at every corner, I was completely disgusted with how out of shape I was doing workouts. I was literally in tears every day for the first few weeks. The Challenge Group was run by my Coach Casey Walker, and Casey himself kept me on track.
He told me just to move, don’t skip a workout, and take your Shakeology every day. I would have quit if it wasn’t for the group. When I finished my first 21 days and lost 21 pounds and 16 inches I was floored because I felt I was doing terrible.
That moment just lit the fire and gave me the confidence to keep going.
What in particular did you like about the program you chose?
I chose 22 Minute Hard Corps because I was committed to several travel dates and I felt it would be hard to give the full attention and have access to weights to do The Master’s Hammer and Chisel properly.
I liked that the program was very challenging for the 22 minutes. I was able to modify difficulty and add tweaks to add in more complexity. So I would add more weight or I would do straight through with no breaks.
The ab workouts, especially Spec Ops Core, are some of the hardest Beachbody has offered. It was a great follow on for the work I did with INSANITY MAX:30.
Describe the results you achieved with your Beachbody program. Which achievements are you proud of?
So here are cumulative stats for my four programs (most recently INSANITY MAX:30) and my month of using Shakeology when I was on restriction.
I went from 410 pounds to 234 pounds, to total 176 pounds lost! 75+ inches! Body fat % from 51% to 19%! My A1C improved! Triglycerides improved!
I was also excited to have my abs come in more, but the coolest thing to do was to tear myself out of my comfort zone and do a Tough Mudder with a group of guys including my accountability partner Doug. I was able to do the whole 11+ mile course attacking it the whole time. I was even able to run down some “youngsters.”
It was awesome to see how relevant the exercises I did in MAX:30 and 22 Minute Hard Corps translated to the course. My cardiovascular fitness is through the roof now.
How has your life changed since completing your Beachbody program?
I am a new person! My posture is different, my attitude is different, my relationships are stronger, and my earning potential at work as increased significantly.
I have also been given a platform to help others which has been a true blessing. The last couple of weeks have been surreal as I have been doing a lot of partner events with peers and salespeople I had not seen in over 10 months, at least 10 people came by and asked if John still worked at Gigamon and didn’t even realize it was me.
The others used words of profanity to describe their excitement. Most assumed I had done gastric bypass and when I told them diet and exercise they were stunned.
Also during 22HC, I got certified as an INSANITY instructor hoping to teach classes at local gyms. I am even scheduled for Country Heat certification at Summit which will be perfect as I complete Hammer and Chisel.
How did participating in a Challenge Group help you reach your goals? How did your group support you and keep you accountable?
The Challenge Group was huge! We were all strangers but the support and positivity bonded all of us very quickly. Any moment I had a minute of self-doubt about being able to do the program or if I wanted to skip a workout, people’s posts about doing their workouts kept me in check.
We shared all the time, and it made doing the program very enjoyable. The Challenge Group also broke me out of my “lone wolf mentality” and allowed me to open up, share, and rely on others for support. I have formed a very special bond with one of my Challenge Group members, Doug. He is now my success partner working with me on combined challenge groups with over 40 people in them!
We talk with each other every day and I know if I even think about straying he is a call away. I participate in our Challenge Groups we run like it is my first Challenge Group to keep me honest and to model the appropriate behaviors to people new to their own journey
How did your Team Beachbody® Coach support you on your journey?
I think almost every other day I tell Casey Walker “thank you for saving my life!” That moment he said he believed in me changed me forever.
He was always there for me and he was pushing me every day making sure I stay grounded in my journey. He even helped me regain my faith in God where I was recently baptized in January.
I was even able to help him most recently when his auto-immune disease flared up again. I was there almost every day he was in the hospital and it brought us even closer together. He thanks me, but I still tell him this is the least I can do; I was dead without him.
He is just so genuine and so real, and he has a huge heart. I was also able to thank Casey and take him as my plus one to my Italy Top Sellers Club trip. It was awesome to let him do something he had never done before. We still talk or chat every day to push each other.
How did a Beachbody Supplement or Nutritional Product or Program (such as Shakeology® or Beachbody Ultimate Reset®) support your transformation? What are the greatest benefits you gained? Did you see benefits to your energy, sleep, mood/mental clarity, digestion/regularity?
As mentioned previously, Shakeology was so huge in curbing sugar and coffee cravings†. It is well worth its price! It was a lynchpin in my eating strategy I don’t know what I would do without it.
I have been using Beachbody Performance the whole time after 21 Day Fix, and I cannot say enough about the quality. All I can say is they flat out work, and I don’t know how I would have been able to attack the programs with a consistent intensity without them. I had not been using Creatine but am now using it at the start of Hammer and Chisel as I am more focused on shaping my body now that I am less than 20 pounds away from my goal weight.
You can change your life, too. Take the Beachbody Challenge for the tools you need to Decide, Commit, and Succeed! Complete any Beachbody program, and enter your results for a free gift and a chance to win cash and prizes.
Results vary depending on starting point, goals, and effort.
*Always consult with your physician about your unique medical needs before starting any fitness program or nutrition product.
†These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.