The days of getting home, grabbing two bags of chips to snack on while playing video games, and downing a 12-pack of soda a day are long gone for Tyler Beckham.
That’s not the only thing that’s gone from the 20-year-old’s life. So are 170 pounds.
Today the Modesto Junior College neuroscience student and membership advisor at the In Shape Health Club on 11th Street in Tracy is at 215 pounds with the goal of entering body sculpting competitions.
Things started going wrong in a big way for Beckham when he was 13. Between a sports injury, family stress, and fast food made worse by being a video game junkie for hours upon hours after school Beckhan found himself on a senior trip at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk unable to get into a roller coaster seat.
“I couldn’t fit on the roller coaster,” Beckham recalled. “It was devastating. All my friends were having fun and I couldn’t join them.”
At about the same time his uncle was successfully battling stage four brain cancer.
“My uncle can fight brain cancer, so why can’t I do something about my obesity?” Beckham asked himself.
Two years ago as a graduating Christopher High senior in Gilroy, the 5-foot-11 Beckham tipped the scales at 385 pounds.
“I tried to do it on my own,” Beckham said of losing weight and getting back into shape.
Things he called minor changes such as cutting out soda and junk food helped him on the way. So did joining a Planet Fitness club. But then he hit plateau after plateau.
That changed the day he walked into the In Shape Club in downtown Tracy and sat down with personal trainer manager Alex DeLeon.
DeLeon took Bechkam through a free FitStart Training Session. It involves a fitness and nutrition evaluation, a starter workout plan, and a 30-minute workout with a fitness trainer.
Today he’s at 215
pounds & 26 percent
That was a year ago. Beckham weighed 250 pounds and was at 48 percent body fat. Today Beckham is at 215 pounds and 26 percent body fat. His next goal is 18 percent body fat.
And while the health and physical impacts are obvious, Beckham points to other pluses in his life.
“I know how to handle things a lot better now,” Beckham said. “I’m not angry as much anymore. I can handle stress.”
He also finds that he sleeps a lot better these days. And instead of playing video games hours upon hours he’s either at In Shape or doing other things.
It’s tough not to be at In Shape. Besides working out seven days as part of his drive to pursue body building, In Shape offered him a job as a membership advisor.
“They told me I was here all the time anyway,” Beckham said with a laugh.
Actually it was due to a lot more than being at In Shape everyday working out. Besides having the ideal fit in terms of his personality to put new In Shape clients at ease, Beckham is a solid example of what people can do by deciding to start a goal-orientated fitness program like Beckham did a year ago when he joined In Shape that is tailored to their personal reality and goals and augmented with nutritional advice.
Beckham’s desire to get into body building has prompted him to take an additional step beyond an In Shape Fitness trainer and team up with a fitness coach. Not only does his coach Raymond Sedillo give him all the pieces to the puzzle he’s trying to put together regarding his fitness goals and health, but he’s also taught him to “trust the process.”
He now is more attentive to small signs of progress that mean lasting change instead of numbers on the scale.
“I don’t judge myself by what I weigh,” Beckham stressed, noting body fat is a better way of judging health as well as vitals such as heart rate and blood pressure. He still steps on the scales weekly but doesn’t obsess about weight.
The journey has been challenging at times.
“It was a little nerve wracking at first to plan six small meals a day instead of eating three,” he said.
And when he does have a “bad meal” he quickly feels the negative impacts on his body such as making him a bit sluggish.
Still, he has his tough moments.
When that happens he calls Sedillo to help talk him out of it. An example was recently when Beckham was craving doughnuts and was about to give into it and buy a bag of them.
“I called Sedillo up and he told me we were going to go down to In Shape right now and work out,” Beckham said.
Regardless of age,
anyone can work
to transform their
bodies and health
Fitness trainers help some members develop a sense of accountability to themselves knowing they are meeting with someone on a regular basis that is helping them pursue their weight, health and fitness goals. The same is true with group exercise classes where students find themselves feeling they need to keep a commitment with a scheduled class, instructor , and fellow exercisers.
Beckham as a membership advisor realizes everyone has different goals. That said, he’s been there struggling with weight and even has tried it on his own before hitting the proverbial wall in terms of his own progress.
“Beckham said it works to have others with expertise help you lose weight and such.
“No matter what age you are — 13 or 70 — you have the ability to transform, your body,” Beckham said.
While it might not be to the level of intensity as a body builder or a long distance runner, Beckham noted you can be belter in terms of personal mobility, strength, flexibility, and general health.
His couch potato days are behind him but he’ll still occasionally play video games for perhaps an hour or so a week.
But there’s a difference now that he’s lost 170 pounds and is exercising. Not only are his reflexes sharper, but he’s more competitive.
“Before I was just killing time,” Beckham said. “Now I play to win.”
That same attitude now runs through his entire life after becoming focused on his health and fitness at In Shape.
As for what he’s day if the 20-year-old Beckham had a chance to go back into time and face his 13-year-old self.
“I’d ask Tyler, ‘what are you thinking?’”
To contact Dennis Wyatt, email email@example.com