Change Has Come: Dante Pascual Jr.’s One-Year Weight Loss Transformation
To celebrate his achievement a year after he started his weight loss challenge, Dante Pascual posted a Before and After photo of himself on his Facebook account. The post immediately went viral and his transformation took social media by storm (to date, the post has 69,000 likes and 16,907 shares). We talked to this focused, hard-working guy and you too, will be inspired by his story.
The youngest of 4 children, Naga-based Dante belongs to a naturally tabain family. It also didn’t help that everyone in the family loved to eat and that his mother is an excellent cook, preparing Dante’s favorite Kare-kare like a pro.
Before he knew it, Dante’s weight ballooned to 151 kilos, or approximately 332 pounds, in 2013. His waistline was at 58”.
At that time, the extra weight affected the 29-year old’s self-confidence.
“Nakakasira ako ng monoblock chairs,” he recalls. “Namimili ‘yung mga tricycle driver… ayaw nila ako pasakayin kasi baka masira ‘yung sasakyan nila.”
“I felt rejected by people.”
Dante did not take any of these seriously, and life went on for this basketball coach, who mentors Naga City Montessori School’s varsity team. It was only in 2015, when he experienced a health scare, that he realized that he had to make a lifestyle change.
“My blood pressure was 180/140 and my blood sugar level was at 300… the normal level is around 100.”
“I also wanted to be a good example to the kids…paano nila ako susundin if I couldn’t discipline myself?”
The one-year transformation challenge begins
With the help of a friend, Dante started a one-year weight loss challenge, which began with volume exercises.
“For the first week of the challenge, I posted a photo on Facebook. Kung ilan yung likes nung photo, ‘yun din yung number of squats na gagawin ko for the week.”
The photo got more than a thousand likes.
His body initially felt tired and very sore. “Hindi ako makabangon sa umaga. Hirap ako gumalaw at maglakad,” he laughs.
But after two weeks, he realized that he can actually do this.
With a combination of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), elliptical exercises, cardio work, and a high-protein-low-carb (read: no rice) diet, Dante gradually lost the unwanted pounds.
“Consistency is important in whatever you do,” he says.
A year later he is at 76 kilograms (roughly 167 pounds), just right for his 5’10” frame. Dante notes that he is still a work in progress; right now he is building muscle to stretch the loose skin – an effect of his weight loss.
Not only does Dante feel healthier; his weight loss gave his self-confidence a big boost.
Paying it forward
What’s next for Dante? He says a blog is in the works, which aims to inspire people to lose weight and lead a healthier lifestyle.
“I want to pay it forward and help people na nawawalan na ng pag-asang pumayat.”
“Maraming beses kong naisip na ayaw ko na…gusto ko na mag-quit,” Dante says of his journey. “Pero naisip ko rin na sayang naman ‘yung sinimulan ko.”
If there’s one thing this life-changing experience has taught him, it’s that “The desire to change must be greater than the desire to stay the same.”
Dante’s extraordinary story reinforces our belief in the saying: if there’s a will, there’s definitely a way.
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