A 700lb man who was confined to a wheelchair because of his unhealthy size has revealed how he lost half his body weight in just 15 months – transforming his entire life.
Zachary Muncy, 23, from Pataskala, Ohio, had always battled with his weight but a deterioration in his mental health after leaving high school led to him consuming up to 8,000 calories a day and gaining 280lbs in just two years.
He ate junk food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, which soon saw his weight balloon and left him in a wheelchair unable to move or breathe without pain.
Then and now: Zachary Muncy, 23, from Pataskala, Ohio, has gone from 700lbs (left) to 335lbs (right) in just 15 months
New man: Zachary started to lose weight in July 2019, after a doctor warned him that his obesity could drastically shorten his life
The turning point came when in 2019, a doctor informed him that his life could be drastically shortened by obesity if he didn’t act now.
‘I’ve been heavy my whole life,’ Zachary told Jam Press. ‘Going into ninth grade I was 280lbs and by senior year I was 400lbs.’
After that, Zachary’s weight continued to spiral out of control, and eventually he tipped the scales at a staggering 700lbs – thanks in large part to his obsession with unhealthy fast food.
‘Before I seriously started my weight loss every meal was fast food – breakfast, lunch, and dinner was always takeout,’ he explained. ‘This consisted of fast-food breakfasts like McDonald’s and Domino’s pizza.
‘I’d eat a whole bag of chips in just a few days and a whole sleeve of cookies in that time frame as well. I’d easily be consuming between 5,000 to 8,000 calories a day.’
Battle: Zachary, who is pictured before his prom in 2013, has always struggled with his weight
Before and after: At his heaviest, he would eat up to 8,000 calories a day while gorging on fast food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. He now follows a strict diet
Zachary decided to change his lifestyle in July 2019, after a doctor’s prognosis left him heartbroken.
He now has a strict diet and exercise regime but has not given up his love of fast food completely. Instead, he reworks his favorite meals into weight-loss-friendly options.
But Zachary, who loves to cook, has stopped drinking fizzy drinks altogether.
‘The first attempt of me trying to lose weight was trying liquid-only diets and I inevitably failed that due to not being able to manage my cravings,’ he said.
‘My current diet is just calorie restricting and it’s been the same for my entire journey. Two thousand calories a day, stay below 2,000 sodium a day, and I hit at least 140 grams of protein.
‘It’s very structured and calculated,’ he explained. ‘My breakfast every morning is simple. I drink a fruit smoothie with spinach and a protein shake.
Swaps: Zachary has traded McDonald’s breakfasts for yogurt, cereal, and juice
Making it work: Zachary, who loves to cook, reworks his favorite meals into weight-loss-friendly options
Amazing: Zachary lost 100lbs in his first three months of dieting thanks to his healthy swaps
‘I’ve been eating the same breakfast for my entire journey. For lunch, I rotate different meals I used to crave and I’ve made healthier alternatives.
‘Some meals I make for lunch will be BBQ chicken and potatoes, chicken Alfredo with wholewheat noodles, big salads and lots of eggs, just to name a few.’
Zachary lost 100lbs in his first three months of dieting and was inspired by the positive effect on his health; he no longer felt breathless or in agony from walking.
He combined his overhauled diet with a rigorous exercise regime, and he has thus far managed to lose an incredible 365lbs – more than half of his original weight.
‘Before I lost weight, I did not exercise. I was wheelchair-bound at my heaviest weight,’ he said. ‘I physically couldn’t walk more than 50 yards at my heaviest and today I’m currently walking five miles, six times a week for a cardio workout.
Incredible: Zachary used to be wheelchair-bound at his heaviest, but now he walks five miles a day, six days a week
Plans: Zachary’s goal is to reach 210lbs and have the access skin that hangs from his body following his dramatic weight loss removed
Positives: Losing weight helped reduce the swelling in his legs, and it no longer hurts him to walk
‘Thursdays are rest days. I walk or jog five miles every day and I weight lift Saturdays, Mondays, and Wednesdays.
‘I’ve never seen a personal trainer.’
Zachary, whose goal weight is 210lbs, has revealed his ‘weight loss secret’ – and it has nothing to do with food, diets, or exercise.
‘My secret is to have friends or an outlet you can vent to about your issues, join a community that’s fitness-oriented so you have people with common goals,’ he said.
‘Weight loss is as much of a personal journey as it is a societal one. The biggest support for my journey has been my mother, my girlfriend, and my family.
‘They took me to my appointments, they were there for me when I had a bad weigh-in and when the depression hit just everything.
Cheering him on: Zachary said his girlfriend has been one of his biggest supporters. during his weight loss journey
Transformation: He admitted that some of his family and friends don’t even recognize him now
Happy: ‘My life has more potential, more joy, and it’s easier to exist,’ Zachary said
‘I’m very blessed and thankful for my support system.’
Zachary’s life has been completely transformed by his extreme weight loss.
‘My life has changed in every aspect,’ he shared. ‘My life has more potential, more joy, and it’s easier to exist. I have a long road ahead of me to accomplish my goals, but I’m very excited.
‘My friends and family are completely blown away and some don’t even recognize me. They’re all very proud and in awe.
‘My new look is a little shocking,’ he admitted. ‘I don’t really recognize myself in the mirror, but, in time, I’ll learn to love the new me. I’ve had no surgeries as of yet. I’m in the works for skin removal surgery, though.
‘I have nothing negative to say about my weight loss. I have my life back.’