How 1 man feels after losing 117 pounds: 'I still have body-image issues'

Weight-Loss Win is an original Yahoo series that shares the inspiring stories of people who have shed pounds healthfully.

Lakshya Batra is 29, 5’9”, and currently weighs 158 pounds. In 2014, after realizing his weight was having an impact on many aspects of his life, he was determined to get fit. This is the story of his weight-loss journey.

“I remember being fat ever since I was 10 years old.” (Photo courtesy of Lakshya Batra)

The Turning Point

Weight was an issue for me starting at an early age. I remember being fat ever since I was 10 years old. I began to see my weight as a major problem when it started to interfere with my daily life. My weight was causing so many issues with things like work, relationships, my appearance, and anxiety over sitting in a movie theater or getting on an airplane. I saw my weight as something that hindered everything else I wanted to do. I was tired of always thinking of being fit as the solution to every problem I had.

The Changes

I knew that to lose weight I had to increase my energy expenditure and decrease food consumption. I started by parking my car as far away from my office as I could, always taking the stairs, and walking a lot during my free time. The initial 20-25 pounds that I lost was mostly from walking or light running.

Fortunately, my younger brother was on a diet plan that his trainer gave him, so I just copied that. I started eating less of everything. I had smaller portions and followed a diet that was low-carb, low-salt, no snacking, and included lots of water. I didn’t count calories until much later — I didn’t need to. Weight was falling off rapidly.

When I reached 240 pounds, I joined a gym and began seeing a trainer: Amjad Khan. Initially, my exercise consisted of mostly cardio and body-weight-supported training. Then I started counting calories, using apps like MyFitnessPal and Noom Coach while maintaining my diet.

I started weightlifting with dead lifts, reached 210 pounds, and then turned to more weight training. I didn’t take a single break from the gym for at least a year and a half. I got down to 160 pounds while gaining a significant amount of muscle. My current dead/bench/squat weights stand at 160 kg (353 lbs.)/110 kg (242 lbs.)/120 kg (264 lbs.). I’m proud I accomplished all this without taking steroids or any harmful supplements. The only supplements I took were whey protein, pre-workout nutritional supplements, BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids), multivitamins, and fish oil.

The habit of checking my weight every day was very helpful to me. I always expected to weigh less than the previous day, and if I did, I would make it a point to improve in one area of my diet so that I could have an even better result the next day.

“I started by parking my car as far away from my office as I could.” (Photo courtesy of Lakshya Batra)

The After

I am now very active and very strong. I continually set high targets to test my strength. I love it when I beat others at sports. I always feel happy when I can easily buckle a seat belt on an airplane because now my waist is 30 inches. And I have noticed I get a lot more Tinder matches.

Emotionally, I have my ups and downs. Some days when I wear good clothes and people compliment me, I am very happy. Other days I am constantly looking at my reflection to see if I am still fit or whether I’ve gained weight. I still have body-image issues, which I believe will go away over time.

“I still have body-image issues, which I believe will go away over time.” (Photo courtesy of Lakshya Batra)

The Maintenance

I still work out daily, still always climb stairs, and still park my car toward the end of the parking lot. For my diet, I keep drinking water, eating my vegetables, and looking for a good amount of protein in almost anything I eat. I imagine what I want to look like and measure my weekly progress in terms of both lifting and body-fat percentage. Mostly I want to stay fit, mentally and physically. My life has changed completely, and I would like to make it even better with constant hard work.

I believe either you work hard in everything you do or in nothing.

Batra still works out daily. (Photo courtesy of Lakshya Batra)

The Struggles

I love to eat out, so saying no to that is still hard. It’s very hard to go to parties, just because it would ruin my diet.

At the gym, I see people with much better physiques who take steroids on a daily basis. My struggle is to say no to that approach every single day.

“Nothing can stop you.” (Photo courtesy of Lakshya Batra)


I think if everyone who wants to lose weight had a chance to be fit for one day, they wouldn’t need convincing once they knew what it feels like.

If you have something very important going on in your life, take your time to finish it and be content with the results. Then pick up fitness as your goal, so you can give it 100 percent. Think about your goals so much that they get embedded in your subconscious. Nothing can stop you.

Need more inspiration? Read about our other weight-loss winners!

Weight-Loss Win is authored by Andie Mitchell, who underwent a transformative, 135-pound weight loss of her own.

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