Joe's Story

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I remember the day that I first walked into FUSE... October 31, 2017. Looking back, that was a fitting day, because at that point in my life, every day was like another Halloween. I would stay up late each night eating candy and junk, I had licorice on me at all times, and I even felt like I had a costume on – I no longer recognized myself when I looked in the mirror. Even though I knew I was out of shape, I was still surprised at that first weigh-in to see that my weight had gotten to 225 lbs and my body fat % (which I had never measured before) was 26%.


To say that I felt disappointed and frustrated each day would be an understatement. I needed to hit a reset button and commit to a new normal. Stepping in to FUSE that day (and many days since!) was an absolute life-changer for me.


Counting up the FUSE shirts in my closet, I think this is my 5th challenge. With each one, Matt laid out a detailed nutrition plan. And each time, I struggled for 6 weeks just to come close to the macro targets. I tracked for a while, but couldn’t keep it up. Sometimes, schedule permitting, I would prep meals of brown rice, quinoa, and grilled chicken on Sundays, with plans to eat ONLY those meals and carrots-and-hummus snacks for the rest of the week. And then life happened, and … you know how it goes. But that’s okay, because I tried like hell, and I worked out nearly every day, and I felt good. I recognized myself again!


My goal for over a year has been to drop my body fat % to single digits. For the first several challenges, I got close but could not quite get there. What was different this time? I’m not sure... It could be that I made a commitment to work out at least 6 days a week, and held to it. I also finally listened to Matt and started eating MORE food (most of it healthy).  And I cut out alcohol completely this time, which I hadn’t done before. I’m sure the Beefcake Brotherhood played a big part, too. Trying to keep up with Dan, Austin and Jeff (aka The Mountain) pushed me to my creaky, 43-year-old limits. And then there’s Megan and Kathy, with their constant MEP-ing. Do they scare me? Yes, absolutely. ;-) But they also kept pushing me, in a good way. That’s what I love about FUSE… everyone has their own story, we’re all working on something, and we’re all there to support each other.