First Week Back – Thoughts

Hey Everyone,

I’m still trying to figure out how I’m frequently I’m going to post, what I will post, etc. I’ve decided that I will do my best to post progress pics, as well as discuss regression in the middle of progress. That will be the theme this week, as well as most of the weeks to come: getting back on track.

This week for me has been particularly difficult. When I started back I also began a steroid treatment which, for five days, had me injecting a gel steroid myself for 5 days. The potential side effects, which I felt, were weight gain, increased appetite, as well as muscle weakness. I gained, while I feel it mostly water-weight (I hope) between 6 or 7 lbs. That’s a bit of a setback. On top of that, I felt really sick  – so much so that I’ve needed about 4 days to recuperate post-treatment. No working out, diet out the window mostly once that monster appetite hit.

It feels like a setback, but I want to view this as an opportunity to touch on one of the most trying obstacles that may come up in a transformative journey, and that is life. Mindfulness, I’ve learned, is ultimately important. I am aware that this is a setback. I understand where I have not followed through. But the key is to not let it set me back completely. I may have gained some weight back, but that doesn’t mean that I have to keep it. There is no real timeline which is now utterly ruined. The only timeline is my life. And hopefully, with care, I still have a long way to go in that respect.

So today, I come back a bit heavier than last week, but with renewed resolve to get back to action. To continue pushing myself to trim the fat.

As for new topics, I’ve talked with a few friends who come at body image issues with different views. I know my blog is primarily about weight loss, but that is merely one part of the body image spectrum. I feel that showing multiple perspectives will help open a dialogue about it, and let everyone know that they are not alone in their feelings of inadequacy at times. Ultimately, I’d like to show that there is no need to feel inadequate, but that is to be arrived at one step at a time. I know I’m still working through that myself.

That’s all for me now. I will continue sharing my experience with you, week by week, as things go along. I’d also like to know if there are things that you, the reader, would like to know about or see? What has you curious when you think about going through this journey yourself, or watching someone else go through it? Please let me know in the comments section below, and thank you.

To Your Health and Wellness,

Martin Arroyo, CPT


I Fell Off The Wagon

Hello readers. It’s been a little over two years since I’ve last posted. I’ve been on hiatus for far too long. While it’s difficult, I have to admit something to you all – I fell off the wagon.

Now I could make this a ridiculously long post, and go into exactly what happened in my life, making all sorts of excuses for why I gained about 100lbs back. That’s right, nearly 100lbs. A Certified Personal Trainer, one who had lost 160 lbs 5 years ago, gained a lot of it back.

To be honest, I had a lot of trouble with this. I was in denial for a long time. I just thought “Hey, it’s not such a huge deal. I’ll just get back on the wagon and drop it all again, no problem.” But that was the problem – I failed myself and forgot my own cardinal rule when it comes to weight-loss: always get back up ASAP. Well, ASAP wasn’t exactly ASAP for me.

Two years from my last post I managed to pack on this extra weight. I went from a relatively lean 220lbs to approximately 320lbs. I went through denial, then feeling like a failure and a hypocrite. I had inspired many of my family and friends with my own personal transformation before, and felt as if I let them down. I felt like a fraud. Who was I to have this Certificate saying I know so much about fitness that I can train others, yet I let it happen to myself again?

Here’s the thing that I’ve come to realize: it happens. It’s life. However, I am choosing NOT to stay down. I think that’s the critical part of not allowing failure to define you. There is a Japanese proverb that says “Fall down seven times, stand up eight.” I’m standing up again.

There are a lot of things that I want to share with you all, not only to get it off of my chest and to help me stay accountable, but because I still feel that I can help at least somebody out there who is in the same position I am right now. Maybe you lost big and gained back. Maybe you’re still trying to figure out how to lose weight. I’ve been there, I’m back there. I know how you feel.

When I first started this site, it was after I had already dropped the weight. There weren’t many progress pics because I was too afraid to take them. I was ashamed of my body. Still am. So much so that it causes me great anxiety to take my shirt off anywhere, even at home. But I’m going to bare all this time. Well not ALL, but I’m going to take the shirtless progress pics so that you can see the transformation happen.

I’m going to share the journey with you all now. I hope for some, you will find inspiration to face your fears. To start your own weight-loss journey if that’s where you’re coming from. Or to just follow along, and see someone overcome being overweight. To see someone become a better version of themselves.

With that, I will say that I have lost close to 40lbs so far, but still have a long way to go. While not exactly a “Day One” picture, it will serve as my day one.

What I looked like before:



… and now…



It ain’t pretty, but it’s where I’m starting. 281 lbs. My day one of all of this. From now on, I’m welcoming you all in to this new journey.

To your health and wellness,

Martin Arroyo, CPT

Forgive Yourself to stay on Track

According to many different sources, January 6, 2014 was the most depressing day of the year. Why? Because that’s the day when most of us return to the daily grind after the holidays, and all of that built up good cheer seems to wear off. It may also be the first day where that “New Year, New Me” motivation began to really fade. Funny thing about motivation, is when that fire starts to wane, we find it hard to rekindle it. There is one thing that you can do and you must learn if you want to keep it going: forgive yourself.

Tell yourself “It’s ok.” It’s that simple. Didn’t make it to the gym today? It’s ok, go tomorrow. Had a donut at lunch? It’s ok, because one donut won’t add inches to your stomach (several of them might, though, so be careful.) We typically beat ourselves up when we fall short of our expectations, even slightly, and lose sight of the forest for the trees.

If there’s one thing I can tell you from my own personal experience in losing weight and keeping it off, it’s this: YOU WILL NOT ALWAYS DO THINGS RIGHT. You won’t always make it to the gym everyday. You won’t always be able to resist that pastry. You won’t always stay within your calorie limit. It’s part of the process, and you have to accept that. And it’s OK.

So instead of beating yourself up, and potentially sidelining your goals, learn to accept what has happened already. Don’t guilt yourself for not meeting your expectations 100% of the time. Forgive yourself, and resolve to do better the next chance you get. Remember, it will happen again too, so what do you do then? That’s right, forgive yourself then too. Let it go, move forward and keep reaching for your goal.

To your health and wellness,

Martin Arroyo, CPT

It’s official! I’m a Certified Personal Trainer!

When I started this blog about 3 months ago, I was just starting my studies for the National Exercise and Sports Trainers Association (NESTA) Personal Trainer Certification. I’m ecstatic to announce that, after 3 months of studying and learning tons of new things, I’m officially a Certified Personal Trainer (CPT)!


So I have my flashy, new certification, and some newly acquired knowledge… now what? Well, I’m far from being a guru, but I plan on continuing to expand my knowledge through new certifications, reading, and learning more so I can share with all of you!

I’ll be posting more about my personal training philosophy, policies, rates and everything else fairly soon. Also, keep an eye out for a review of the NESTA certification and exam (especially for those of you looking to get into personal training.)

I am taking suggestions on topics that you would like to read about – absolutely anything related to health and fitness, motivation, losing weight, etc. I ‘d be happy to address – and, if I don’t know the answer I WILL FIND OUT FOR YOU! 

Hit the comment box below with your suggestions and thanks for reading!

-Martin Arroyo, CPT