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November 25, 2011

I Am Forever Changed

By Guest
156 Comments

It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Friday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

Hello Mark,

My name is Brian McKenna and I am an inspiration! I am 30 years of age. I live five minutes from Boston, in the town of Saugus, Massachusetts. I am currently 5’9” tall and I weigh 177 pounds!

I would like to thank you for all the work you do and for writing The Primal Blueprint, it is the most important book I have ever/will ever read! I first read The Primal Blueprint in December 2010 and I have forever been changed! While reading your book I would often find myself throwing a fist into the air and swearing vengeance against convention wisdom!

During late 2009, I was 28 years old and I weighed just over 400 pounds and I had not been happy with myself in years. I had just enough energy to go to work then come home and sit on my butt and play Xbox. I was only sleeping between 3-5 hours a night. My diet mainly consisted of coffee truck cuisine, fast food, takeout food, and lots of soda. I would get a cold roughly four times a year, and then the cold would turn into a sinus infection. I also had high blood pressure, and based on how I felt when I started to get hungry I suspected I may be diabetic. I started to think about how I have lived my life so far, and how I have never been happy with my activity level and the way I looked.

So at the start of 2010 I decided to stop drinking soda, instead I drank some grape juice mixed with water. On March 4, 2010 I decided to weigh myself on the shipping scale while I was at work. I weighed just less than 400 pounds. I said some curse words then I decided to start changing what I ate. I left work early so I could purchase a blender so I could start making Alton Brown’s buff smoothies! I had my first AB smoothie on March 5, 2010 just before I left for work at 6:45 am. The AB smoothie became my breakfast every day, my lunch went from some junk off of the coffee truck to something I used to call a salad (romaine lettuce, shredded cheese, croutons, homemade dressing). If I needed a snack I would eat a handful of nuts, and my dinner was usually chicken tenderloins with another poor excuse for a salad.

By July of 2010 I weighed 350 pounds, by November I was down to 300 pounds (I finally got back down to my High School graduation weight!). I decided I was going to start working out again. The last time I worked out was back when I was 19 years old. So I started to work out in the basement with the multi station machine. Lat pull downs, rows, leg presses, etc. I worked out alternating muscle groups; I also worked out every other day of the week. But I did not have enough energy to get though my workouts so I decided that I needed some more carbohydrates. I started to incorporate some pasta into my diet. After a few weeks of consuming pasta and working out I noticed that I stopped losing weight and that lifting x number of pounds on this machine means nothing to me. So via Facebook I asked a friend from high school, who just happens to be a power lifter and own a supplement company, if he would recommend a book about body shaping and nutrition. I was told that he had read many great books, but if he only could recommend one book it was The Primal Blueprint.

I picked up The Primal Blueprint after work that day and I started reading it in the car in the parking lot of the book store. Within reading the first 100 pages of your book, I was forever changed. I finally knew why I started to get fat when I was a kid, and how I became a morbidly obese adult. I decided to start following the 10 Primal Blueprint Laws as best as I could. I made a promise to myself that I would continue to always better myself for the rest of my life! I ate eggs in the morning and some fruit instead of the AB smoothie. For lunch I had a huge salad with lots of vegetables, and topped with some chicken. For dinner I ate more protein and I tried Brussels sprouts for the first time in my life! During that first week of my transition, I noticed I had a lot more energy, so I decided to start going for a walk after work. I think the next week I decided to incorporate some PB fitness. I did my fitness assessment, and then I started on level 1 of all movements! I started to pay more attention to my energy level and my output.

I weighed myself on January 1, 2011 and I weighed 274 pounds! I started to feel this unstoppable power flowing through my body. I could tap into this power at any time and do whatever I wanted to do, then get up the next day and do it again. Go on a 3 hour hike though Breakheart Reservation, no problem! Then the next day do my PB fitness! I had my first attempt at sprints during late January 2011. After I was done with my sprint session I could not believe that I just ran. I had not even attempted to run since my teenage years and now roughly 15 years later I just ran!

I love the way I live my life now. During a typical week I am in bed by 9:30 pm. I get up at 5:30 am, and I have my primal breakfast before I leave for work at 6:30. I work as a metal fabricator and I arrive to work usually 10 minutes before my shift starts. At work I have to wear steel toe shoes. And I spend my working hours standing on my feet running various metal processing machines. I bring a cooler to work; inside the cooler is my primal salad which I made the night before. I usually top my salad with chicken, tuna, or even sardines! I also bring a piece of fruit, some unsalted cashews, macadamia nuts or almonds with me, and one dose of whey protein. When I leave work at 3:30 pm, I have the energy to do whatever I want. Going for an hour long walk in my Vibram FiveFingers. Or having a quick walk before my PB fitness session. I save my sprints for the weekend. These are all things I love to do! For dinner I usually have chicken or a steak, and some Brussels sprouts or beets. Or if I am not that hungry I will have another dose of whey protein.

Throughout my life changing experiences, I have kept others informed of what I was doing and why I was doing it. I have even inspired others to make changes. I am so proud of myself that I made those changes and kept going. I am also proud of anyone that is not happy with the way they live and have decided to change. I would not be where I am now if I did not have the life experiences I have had so far. I will never go back to drinking bottled beverages, or consuming food that is processed. I will always stay active. I can feel all this energy flowing through my body. I have to put it to use!

Enclosed are some pictures of me. The fattest picture of me was taken on April 14, 2010. I weighed roughly 385 pounds. The picture of me with the greatest book ever written, that picture was taken February 2011. The last picture was taken in July of this year around my 30th birthday, and I was weighing around 200 pounds! Please share my story with others and if you want to know more just ask!

Thank you for reading this,

Brian McKenna

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156 Comments on "I Am Forever Changed"

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jenella
jenella
4 years 10 months ago

very nice job, Brian!

wanda sobran
4 years 9 months ago

Brian , you are amazing , you look great !
Keep living the good life !

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

wanda thank you! I will keep living the good life!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thank you! jenella

Corinne Spiers
4 years 10 months ago

Inspirational Brian. thanks for sharing. Stay Primal!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thank you for reading my story and for your comment! Corinne

Rebeccab
Rebeccab
4 years 10 months ago

Way…to…go….Brian!!!!! You are an inspiration.

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thank you!!!!! Rebeccab

Crunchy Pickle
4 years 10 months ago

What a phenomenal story! Great work, Brian! You are a perfect holiday inspiration. 🙂

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Perfect… thank you! Crunchy P!

Timothy
4 years 10 months ago

Absolutely incredible. A conquering hero!

Brian, everyone who knows you must be amazed. I hope that your own journey is just the beginning and that you save many other lives by your example.

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Everyone I know is amazed, I am still amazed and I will always feel amazing!
Thanks for commenting! Timothy

Nick
Nick
4 years 10 months ago

Dayum!!! You lost some weight, man! Congrats! I love it.

Way to go on making the change, Brian – you look so much healthier! I just love Fridays 🙂 – thanks for the inspirations!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Nick, Thank you! I cannot wait till next Friday!

XtineBeanie
4 years 10 months ago

Wow, way to go, Brian! Amazing!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

XtineB, Thank you!

Kathy
Kathy
4 years 10 months ago

Congratulations on an amazing life transformation! It’s funny that we used to drink sugary drinks and fast food because that’s what we thought made us ‘feel good’. But there’s nothing like the feeling good of healthy eating and a healthy body. You look great!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Kathy, Exactly we thought it used to make us feel good. But know we know what feeling good feels like and how to achieve it! Thank you!

Dan
Dan
4 years 10 months ago

Looking good, man!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Dan, Thanks!

Erin
Erin
4 years 10 months ago

AWESOME JOB, BRIAN!!!!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Erin, Thank you!!!!

Primal Housewife
4 years 10 months ago

Truly amazing! You are an inspiration! I love primal success stories – keeps me motivated 🙂

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Primal Housewife, Thank you! and thank you primal success stories!

Simon Kemp
4 years 10 months ago

*thumbs up*

🙂

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thanks! Simon

Tuck
4 years 10 months ago

That’s great, Brian. Congrats and thanks for sharing your story.

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Tuck, Thank you! for taking the time to read my story.

rose
rose
4 years 10 months ago

A thousand high fives!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

My arm.. anyway thank you! rose

PaleoDentist
4 years 10 months ago

what a transformation! very inspirational. Gongrats!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thank you! PaleoDentist

Melissa
Melissa
4 years 10 months ago

Brian, You look fantastic! but I hear in your voice that how you feel is the real miracle here. This is what I try to impart to other people who have doubts about what I’m doing…that I just feel so damn good.

Nice job and thanks for sharing.

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Melissa, It is amazing how great a person can feel when they take the time and make the effort. Congrats on your success! and thank you!

Laurie D.
4 years 10 months ago

Great post-Thanksgiving post to remind us why we are all here. Great job!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Awesome thank you! Laurie

Joe
Joe
4 years 10 months ago

Way to go. Great story, thanks for sharing.

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thanks! Joe

WildGrok
WildGrok
4 years 10 months ago

Super good, very inspiring, I am forwarding this to everybody!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thanks for spreading the word! Wildgrok

Ed
4 years 10 months ago

Amazing transformation….good job!!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thank you! Ed

Susan Alexander
4 years 10 months ago
Brian: Way to go! I admire you and anyone willing to try new things and create a working strategy that you internalize and adhere to long term. In your story, I see nothing about the things that so often hold people back from change (anger, blame, skepticism, the need to defend what you did before, or anything from the whole host of well-worn excuses we’ve all heard). It seems like one thing that really helps you is how you listen to yourself. Your wrote, for example: “I started to think about how I have lived my life so far, and… Read more »
Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Susan, It is amazing! Your comment is amazing as well! I started out small with the idea that I was going to try to make changes. In a short amount of time I realized that I could do it and the attempts before were not even attempts. I kept building on the changes and before I new it I realised that this movement in my life was unstoppable! I had some negative thoughts and feelings along the way but anything negative I turned into a positive!

Grokitmus Primal
4 years 10 months ago

Way to go!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thank you! Grokitmus Primal epic name!

oxide
oxide
4 years 10 months ago

200 hundred pounds in two years, and you’re keeping it off. i say it’s time we ditch Jillian Michaels.

What about the colds and high blood pressure and the sinus infections? Are those gone too?

Brian McKenna
Brian McKenna
4 years 10 months ago

I no longer have high blood pressure, and the last time I had a cold was October of last year!

Susan Alexander
4 years 10 months ago
I so love your comment, Grokitmus. Jillian Michaels is always in my refrigerator, or all places, because she’s sold out to the brand of coconut milk I like best, so I “get” to see her picture several times a day (next to the quote that says she loves coconut milk on her cereal and baked goods (!!!). You can tell just by the look on her face at her that she really doesn’t care about anyone, and that she’s “milking” the moment for all its worth. I wish she would disappear, you know? Meanwhile, those like Brian, though, should totally… Read more »
Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

oxide who is Jillian Michaels? and thank you!

Happycyclegirl
Happycyclegirl
4 years 10 months ago

Awesome job Brian! 🙂

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thank you! Happycyclegirl

peggy
peggy
4 years 10 months ago

wow!! you reduced yourself by 50%!!!
And kept the good half 🙂

What a fantastic job you’ve done and how nice of you to share.
Keep up the good work!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

I am so going to use that line. “I reduced my self by 50% and kept the good half.” Thank you! peggy

Todd
Todd
4 years 10 months ago

Awesome job, sir!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Todd, Thank you!

Jen
Jen
4 years 10 months ago

Brian, love the dedication and spirit behind your story. What an awesome success! Thank you for sharing, and all best to you!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Jen, thank you! and all the best to you as well!

Primal Toad
4 years 10 months ago

Congrats and happy thanksgiving!! Continue to inspire! We need people like you!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thank you! Primal Toad I will always continue!

Jill
Jill
4 years 10 months ago

Thank you for sharing your story. I’m brand new to this and found your words very inspiring. The photos are amazing. It could be father and son, never mind the same person.

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Jill, Welcome I am glad my words and pictures have that effect and thank you for reading my story! I was brand new to all this once but how things can change!

Roman
Roman
4 years 10 months ago

Way to go Brian!!!

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

Thank you! Roman

Lynn
4 years 10 months ago
Brian is my cousin and for all of you reading this, it is impossible to overstate how proud we are of him and what massive challenges he has overcome. Our family is wonderful and supportive in many ways but we also have some pretty horrifying eating habits that tend to get magnified when we are together. But Brian made a decision to change his life and he surrounded himself with a protective blanket of self-care; once he made the decision to change his life, he had the Primal Blueprint by his side no matter what else was going on. This… Read more »
Cindy
Cindy
4 years 10 months ago

“protective blanket of self-care”
Love that statement. Love that philosophy.

Congrats, Brian, you are very inspirational.

Thanks for sharing.
c

Usedtoberlyfat
Usedtoberlyfat
4 years 9 months ago

I did stumble a little but that protective planket of self-care was always there. Thank you for all the help and support. I hope they will decide to change as well.

Duncan
Duncan
4 years 10 months ago

Another awesome Friday success story. Congratulations Brian. (I still can’t eat Brussell Sprouts, though).

bbuddha
bbuddha
4 years 9 months ago

try stir fry with bacon grease and sprinkle crumbled bacon over them. Surprised myself, I actually ate them 🙂

Arty
Arty
4 years 10 months ago

What a transformation…you don’t even look close to the person in the first photo anymore, I can’t believe this is you!

Just awesome dude, very well done:)

DreadedTess
DreadedTess
4 years 10 months ago

Great story! Very inspiring!

Condor
Condor
4 years 10 months ago

Fantastic effort, Brian! Once again PRIMAL living comes to the health rescue!

BW
BW
4 years 10 months ago

Boom. High five brother.

Brooke
Brooke
4 years 10 months ago

This is absolutely AMAZING! When I scrolled down and saw the second picture I was in awe, then I saw the third picture and I litterally let out a gasp as my jaw practically hit the floor. I am truly inspired and although this is my first time visiting this site, I HAVE to buy the book..riiiiiight abooooout….. NOW!

Missy
Missy
4 years 9 months ago

Yes, absolutely read the book, or the 21 day total body transformation. I am going to start my challenge on Monday!

Erik
4 years 10 months ago

Another incredible story, love em!

ms jane
ms jane
4 years 10 months ago

Yes Brian you are inspiring!!! Well done mate xxx

Eric Dobson
4 years 10 months ago

These are the posts I most look forward to each week, out of the 80+ blogs I subscribe to. These posts and the Latest In Paleo podcast really keep me going.

Down 33 pounds in 7 weeks and feeling great!

Brian McKenna
Brian McKenna
4 years 9 months ago

Eric, 33 pounds gone in 7 weeks keep it up you will continue to feel greater!

Brendon
4 years 10 months ago

You are such an inspiration! Way to go! And the best part is that you are saving the lives of others through your transformation! That’s a pretty cool win/win if you ask me.

Brendon
4 years 10 months ago

Loved the “fist pump” as well, as you realize the lie of CW. I have had several moments like that!

BeccainSC
BeccainSC
4 years 10 months ago

Amazing! You are truly an inspiration!

Jonathan
4 years 10 months ago

That is awesome!!

Mo
Mo
4 years 10 months ago

Hi Brian,
I can’t comprehend the enormity of what you had to overcome to achieve this, but I am awestruck nevertheless! Your motivation and discipline, sparked by the PB, are truly inspiring.
Congratulations on reclaiming your life spirit.

wendy
wendy
4 years 10 months ago

Wow…. I can’t stop saying wow…. Very inspiring story, Brian. I just came to the website to look for some motivation and inspiration to start back on my primal journey. I just found it. Thank you!

Brian McKenna
Brian McKenna
4 years 9 months ago

Wendy, I am happy to hear you found your inspiration to start back on your primal journey! I had a little trouble a few months ago so I read The Primal Blueprint again and I was good to go!
Be sure to post your PB success story! and thank you!

marika
marika
4 years 10 months ago

What a great and inspiring story. Congratulations on your transformation.

trackback
4 years 10 months ago

[…] Link – I am Forever Changed – Mark’s Daily Apple Rich, Carla, Dani, Roman, and Jeff doing work! Jeff doing legless rope […]

Laura
Laura
4 years 10 months ago

ok, Brian, all I have to say is ‘WOW’!! What an inspiring story! Thanks so much for sharing.

Bigdick1
Bigdick1
4 years 10 months ago

Wow! You should be so proud!

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