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Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

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April 29, 2011

It Was Time to Make a Change

By Guest
93 Comments

It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another dose of Primal Blueprint inspiration. Many thanks to Hank for taking the time to share how he lost nearly 100 lbs in just 6 months, and turned his life around in the process.

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 you send them in. Thanks for reading!

Mark,

My name is Hank Garner and I am 39 years old. I have struggled with my weight my entire life. Except for a brief time in my young adulthood, I have always been over weight.

My wife and I were married 16 years ago. Over the 16 years, we were blessed with five beautiful children. The problem is that every time my wife would get pregnant, she gained weight, and so did I. After each baby was born, my wife went right back to the slim figure she has always maintained and I did not. As the years went by I got bigger and bigger. I am five feet six inches tall and in 2010 my weight reached almost 300 pounds. I am not exactly sure how heavy I actually got. We had a scale that went to 280 and after I started trying to weigh myself, it broke. Go figure. I was easily 300 pounds and I was miserable. I hated everything about myself. I hated knowing that I was not the man that I should be.

October 2010 – Holding My Niece

I started doing research and found that low carb eating worked well for me. I started losing a little bit of weight, but I wasn’t fully committed to it. I had successfully lost about 20 pounds, but I hadn’t committed to a lifestyle. I had a conversation with my wife in early Fall 2010, and told her that I was disgusted with myself and felt like I did not have control of my life anymore. My blood pressure was badly out of control. I had chronic asthma and after any physical exertion I had to use an albuterol inhaler. I watched over the past couple of years as family member after family member was diagnosed with either heart disease or diabetes or both. Some of them were very close to my age. It was time to make a change. I weighed in officially on October 15th at 276 pounds. I set a goal to be 180 pounds. I honestly did not know if I would make it to 180. It seemed like I was stuck being fat. I tried to lose weight many times, but I could never get below below 230 pounds. This time, I was determined, would be different.

I decided that I was going to change my life and to keep myself accountable, I would start a blog. I knew that I would follow some sort of low carb plan so I called it my low carb journey. I would post what was going on with me, the good, the bad and the uncomfortable. I started really digging into the science behind fat loss and discovered Primal living. A friend recommended I read “The Primal Blueprint”, which I did. This book made such sense to me. Everything that I knew deep down inside about nutrition and exercise was being validated. I wanted to learn all I could.

I had tons of questions to ask. The more I learned, the more I wanted to learn, and the more I wanted to help others. I have a history in broadcasting and decided to use this as another way of learning for myself and educating others. I launched a podcast and sought out people that had information about fat loss and people that had made a big change in their own lives. During this time, I was applying what I learned and making a change in my life.

The first month of my journey I lost 37 pounds. I felt like a new man. I removed all sweeteners and dairy from my diet and the weight just kept coming off. I started only eating real food. I started moving more. I lifted weights and started running. As an asthmatic, any exertion was not fun. The more weight I lost I found that the asthma was no longer a problem. My blood pressure stabilized and became normal. I set a goal to run a half marathon. I do that in 2 weeks. I am already up to running 11 miles on my long weekend run.

This Friday, April 15th is my 6 month anniversary. I reached my initial goal of 180 pounds in under 6 months. I still have a few pounds to lose and I want to add some more muscle, but as you can see, I am not the same man that I was just 6 mouths ago.

April 2011 – A New Man

Follow Hank’s progress at his blog, My Low Carb Journey.

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86 Comments on "It Was Time to Make a Change"

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heavv
heavv
6 years 25 days ago

Great job, Hank!

Hank Garner
6 years 25 days ago

Thanks for sharing my story, Mark and for all the great information you share.

Annette
Annette
6 years 20 days ago

Way to go, Hank! Your story just blows me away. You deserve your success. Congratulations!

Primal Toad
6 years 25 days ago

I just read this same success story on Free the Animal…

GO HANK! GO! GO! GO! Your success story has been published on 2 of the most visited primal sites. Next up is Robb Wolf. Go for it!

Would you like to be the first one on my site?

P.S. I will do a podcast with you soon!

Geoff
Geoff
6 years 25 days ago

Robb Wolf isn’t primal.

Primal Toad
6 years 25 days ago

He’s not? So hes paleo? Primal=Paleo. I guess that means Robb Wolf is primal.

Brian Kozmo
6 years 24 days ago

Primal is a form of Paleo. There are paleo diets, for example, that aren’t against carbohydrate and where potatoes are allowed. They don’t believe carbohydare on its own is a bad thing (think of the tribes that eat 50%+ of their calories from carbs), but probably only in the context that it may not be good for people with damaged metabolisms.

Primal Toad
6 years 24 days ago

Primal and Paleo are funny to me. Every individual has such a unique interpretation of what the differences and similarities are.

Sarah D
Sarah D
6 years 25 days ago

Awesome job, Hank! Congratulations!!

Edward
Edward
6 years 25 days ago

Thats a big change in only 6 months dude. You look like a whole different person.

Raul T
Raul T
6 years 25 days ago

Nice work Hank. I myself have lost 60 lbs. From about 230lbs. 28-30% body fat to a new 168lbs 11% body fat. Althought I took my time getting there (about 2 years). I don’t regret it one bit. It feels sooooo good to be able to look at yourself, and your family members look at you as a form of inspiration and encouragement. Keep up the good work. And thanks to Mark, Robb Wolf, Jimmy Moore, and the rest of the low carb, primal, paleo community. You guys are awesome!!

Jill
Jill
6 years 25 days ago

Fantastic Success Story!!! Congratulations on such amazing progress !!

You’re the Primal Biggest Loser !! 🙂

peggy
peggy
6 years 25 days ago

just like everyone else: I love Fridays! I love starting of the day inspired with a story of triumph!
Thank you Hank (& all the others) for sharing your journey 🙂

Randy
6 years 25 days ago

LOVE the story! Contrats on a great life change Hank!

Hank Garner
6 years 25 days ago

Thanks for the kind words, yall!

Hank Garner
6 years 25 days ago

By the way, I wrote this a couple of weeks ago. My half marathon is tomorrow morning.

Nick
Nick
6 years 25 days ago

Hank this is awesome! I’m forwarding your story to a few friends who need some inspiration. I myself have become a new person (not as large a transformation as you, but I FEEL totally different) and I just want to share the knowledge!

Richard
Richard
6 years 25 days ago

Congrats and good luck, Hank!

FoCo Girl
FoCo Girl
6 years 25 days ago

Best of luck tomorrow Hank and way to go!

Karen P.
6 years 25 days ago

Go, Hank, go!

C
C
6 years 19 days ago

Thanks for this story Hank! My parents have been on a Primal challenge (instigated by me) for the last three weeks and I think its catching on. Your story will definitely inspire them.

Lori
Lori
6 years 25 days ago

Hank, what a great story! I started with Atkins, changed quickly to Primal and enjoy every day feeling healthy and strong! I have lost about 30 lbs myself in almost 3 months, with more to lose, but will enjoy every step of the way. You are a great inspiration and I’m sure you will ROCK that 1/2 marathon!

Dana
Dana
6 years 24 days ago

*whispers* You can do a Primal form of Atkins…

Alison Golden
6 years 25 days ago

Good luck with your marathon tomorrow, Hank.

Keep up the great work – your own and what you do for others. Congratulations!

gilliebean
6 years 25 days ago

LOVE IT!! Thanks for sharing your journey on your blog too!

Maggie
6 years 25 days ago

Great job…keep up the great work!

Justin
Justin
6 years 25 days ago

Great job, keep it up!

Timothy
6 years 25 days ago
Hank, such an amazing job! That’s over 30 pounds a month since you began, an absolutely stellar figure. It seems to me that the more overweight and unhealthy someone is before adopting primal methods, the more striking the results. Once your body is accustomed to carrying loads of fat, that same internal scaffolding can be repurposed to carry loads of muscle instead. And, of course, the closer you’ve been to the brink of health disaster, the deeper your resolve to maintain and improve your health once you win it back. Beyond mere physical strength, your psychological strength is apparent. That… Read more »
Timothy
6 years 25 days ago

Apologies for my faulty math. Apparently when the numbers are this big I can’t handle division.

Dana
Dana
6 years 24 days ago

Oh, it gets better. When you’ve been that overweight, you oftentimes have more muscle mass than you would have if you’d been slender the whole time–your body adjusts to carrying all that weight around. So when you lose it, if you can preserve your lean mass, that’s half your battle.

Crunchy Pickle
6 years 25 days ago

Big congrats! I love these stories each Friday to keep my head in the game!! 🙂

Timothy
6 years 25 days ago

I totally agree. By Friday I start feeling a bit knackered, and a great success story like this one reminds me what it’s all about and puts new wind in my sails. I can’t wait to get outside and tear up the pavement in solidarity with Hank!

Darren Dix
Darren Dix
6 years 25 days ago

Awesome work, Hank. Inspiring stuff. Respect to you for having respect for yourself, and for your family.

Kathy
Kathy
6 years 25 days ago

AWESOME!!!!

Maryann
6 years 25 days ago

Way to go, Hank! Another case history to pass along to all my non-believing friends and family!

gt
gt
6 years 25 days ago

Great job Hank. It’s a great feeling. From February of 2010 till now I have lost 109 lbs. 272-163. Keep up the good work!

Steve Willhoite
Steve Willhoite
6 years 25 days ago

Great job Hank! Your incredible resolve and commitment let to an incredible, new you! Keep up the good work.

NaNRunsOnPaleo
NaNRunsOnPaleo
6 years 25 days ago

That is amazing.

Cin
Cin
6 years 25 days ago

Awesome Hank. I really enjoy following your blog and the podcasts that you did with Steve. Good luck with your half marathon!!!

Ealachan
6 years 25 days ago

Amazing progress! Your story is very inspirational. 🙂

kitty
kitty
6 years 25 days ago

congrats — sounds like you’re doing this for all the right reasons, and it sounds like you’re doing this the right way!

DAVE PARSONS
DAVE PARSONS
6 years 25 days ago

Damn fine way to go ..I also have taken it to the limit and returned..I SALUTE YOU and all you have done..welcome to the success pages..I am here also. We are the walking talking proof it works..keep those fires of life burning my friend
GROK ON>>> The Daveman

Hank Garner
6 years 25 days ago

Great company to be in Daveman! I am honored to be among such heroes.

Erica
6 years 25 days ago

WOW Hank that is incredible!! Congrats!

Hank Garner
6 years 25 days ago

Thanks for all the encouragement. I will be tweeting tomorrow about the race. @lowcarbhank on twitter. I will be sure to let everyone know how it goes and post pics and stuff.

albertasara
albertasara
6 years 25 days ago

Way to go! You are truly an inspiration!

Sandy
Sandy
6 years 25 days ago

AWESOME transformation, Hank! Rock on in that race…if it’s your first, it won’t be your last. The sense of accomplishment will get you hooked!

Just Joan
Just Joan
6 years 25 days ago

Very impressive results! I love your website!

Bill Enerson
Bill Enerson
6 years 25 days ago

You Win! Congrats!

Honeybear
Honeybear
6 years 25 days ago

Oh my gosh…these stories are just amazing. I have got to fully commit to PB…I dream of having my own before and after story to share! Have a Grok weekend everyone!

Darcy
6 years 25 days ago

Good luck in the 1/2 marathon Hank and congrats on the accomplishment.

kepo
kepo
6 years 25 days ago

Hats Off!!!!

Emily
6 years 25 days ago

Well if this doesn’t convince me to fully commit to PB…what will? 🙂 Great job sir!

Jake
Jake
6 years 25 days ago

Absolutely outstanding results and write up. You are killing it man! Keep up the great work. Truly an inspiration.

Jana
6 years 25 days ago

wow-phenomenal change!

Hank Garner
6 years 25 days ago

If anyone is interested,I had Mark as a guest on my podcast a few weeks ago. Here is the link http://mylowcarbjourney.com/2011/03/the-low-carb-journey-podcast-episode-22-featuring-mark-sisson/

huntergirlhayden
huntergirlhayden
6 years 25 days ago

Holy night! You’re amazing! I don’t know if I missed it in the comments but is your blog public?
Best wishes in your race tomorrow!

Sabrina
Sabrina
6 years 25 days ago

Amazing work! I am in awe.
You look so much healthier. Good luck for tomorrow!

Be
Be
6 years 25 days ago

What amazing success. And if you look back at it I am sure you will say it wasn’t a restrictive diet but a great lifestyle change. But people want to insist that it is a “fad” or “diet choice” that doesn’t work for all. But it works because it’s true. Congratulations to you!

Mike
Mike
6 years 25 days ago

I love that you said “…just 6 MOUTHS ago.” !! — I feel like I’ve had 6 mouths from the way I’ve eaten with the SAD Standard American Diet.

I’m eating strictly Primal for 55 days: I started on my wife’s birthday April 22nd, and am looking forward to the progress on my birthday June 15th.

Thanks for sharing your story Hank!

Donnersberg
Donnersberg
6 years 25 days ago

Wow, that weight came off FAST. Congrats!

Hannah
6 years 25 days ago

Great job! Keep up the good work, you look amazing, you have not only helped yourself but now you have added so many more years to your life and that equals so much more time with your family!

Shay
Shay
6 years 25 days ago

What a great story and even more amazing results. Thank you Mark for sending these to the community every week, and congratulations Hank for reaching two of your goals. Many more to come!

spksea
spksea
6 years 25 days ago

Ah Hank – that’s fantastic! Good luck in your 1/2 tomorrow!

Sara
Sara
6 years 25 days ago

Wow. Stunning!! And by the way, you have a gorgeous little niece!

Morrigan
Morrigan
6 years 25 days ago

Bloody awesome mate!!!

Well done, you’re an inspiration!!!!

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