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LIVESTRONG Success Story: David Mugovero

by
author image Kelly Plowe, M.S., RD, CSSD
Kelly Plowe is a registered dietitian and the senior supervising producer for LIVESTRONG.COM. She received her bachelor’s degree in dietetics and kinesiology from Michigan State University. Plowe went on to work in Boston as a clinical dietitian while pursuing her master’s degree in advertising from Boston University.
LIVESTRONG Success Story: David Mugovero
David M.'s before and after photos. Photo Credit Andrea Mabry/LIVESTRONG.COM

Overview

In January 2010, I hit rock bottom. I was 30 years old and I weighed 351 pounds. I would often go to a restaurant and have a hard time fitting in a booth. And sitting in a chair wasn’t much better; I always worried it would break. But I had bigger problems than just embarrassment: I knew that if I didn’t do something soon, I was going to die. I started dieting and working out, and I dropped 187 pounds in 54 weeks. Now I’m under 10 percent body fat and am the happiest I’ve ever been!

I went to the doctor’s office and read the bold lettering on my chart: 'MORBIDLY OBESE.' I can still see that image in my mind. I knew I had to do something right then and there, and I never looked back.

John David Mugovero

My Turning Point

LIVESTRONG Success Story: David Mugovero
David lost 157 pounds in 54 weeks! Photo Credit Andrea Mabry/LIVESTRONG.COM

My brother weighed close to 400 pounds when he had to undergo an operation on his heart -- one he wouldn’t have needed if he’d been a healthy weight. He didn’t survive. I grieved for a long time and struggled with the fear of dying. When I thought of my parents having to bury another child, it was too much for me to handle. I went to the doctor’s office and read the bold lettering on my chart: 'MORBIDLY OBESE.' I can still see that image in my mind. I knew I had to do something right then and there, and I never looked back.

My Support System

LIVESTRONG Success Story: David Mugovero
"I found a way to love exercise and now I work out every day." Photo Credit Andrea Mabry/LIVESTRONG.COM

It’s amazing what human beings are capable of when their alternative is death. I was afraid of dying for a long time and that was a powerful motivator. I wanted to keep living for my parents’ sake, but I also wanted to live for myself. My parents were my rock. They gave me the inner strength I needed to change my life around. I also made a number of friends at the gym who were a huge encouragement to me. They made exercising a joy, and their kindness and motivation kept me going.

My Biggest Challenge on the Road to Success

LIVESTRONG Success Story: David Mugovero
"I was afraid of dying for a long time and that was a powerful motivator." Photo Credit Andrea Mabry/LIVESTRONG.COM

Sure, it would have been easier to lose weight with surgery. And I could have fallen for all the gimmicky weight loss options out there. But the truth is, I wanted to lose the weight on my own. Naturally, that was a challenge in and of itself, but I knew that if I believed in myself and gave it my all, anything was possible. If you want to do it you can too. I found a way to love exercise and now I work out every day. I live it and I love it!

My Secret to Success That I Hope to Share With Others

Exercise was hugely important for my weight loss and it’s something that I look forward to every day, but if you’re like me, you cannot work off a bad diet. Tracking your calories is a must. Another suggestion: Stay consistent and keep learning. I frequent the community message boards all of the time to learn more about nutrition and fitness -- and if I can teach and help others too, all the better!

LiveStrong Calorie Tracker
THE LIVESTRONG.COM MyPlate Nutrition, Workouts & Tips
GOAL
  • Gain 2 pounds per week
  • Gain 1.5 pounds per week
  • Gain 1 pound per week
  • Gain 0.5 pound per week
  • Maintain my current weight
  • Lose 0.5 pound per week
  • Lose 1 pound per week
  • Lose 1.5 pounds per week
  • Lose 2 pounds per week
GENDER
  • Female
  • Male
lbs.
ft. in.

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