Nino G.

Get to know him!

Keto Before and After | Weight Loss | Nino G.
  •    5 ft 9 in height
  •    Male
  •    19 years old
  •    Keto-ing for 12 months
  •    Started at 298 lbs
  •    Lost 125 lbs so far
  •    Wants to hit 185 lbs
  •    Prefers a “Meat Lover” diet

Tell us a little bit about yourself!

To be blunt, I’m an average guy who enjoys playing video games. I hang out with friends as often as I can. I smoke a lot of weed which is a blessing and a burden. I try to stay active as much as possible, but the laziness inside me is strong. I work security for a multi-billion dollar company so I get a decent amount of exercise on the job. As far as games go, I mostly play Overwatch and Skyrim, so nothing exciting there. Currently single, but never ready to mingle.
Habits & Mindset

What motivated you to try keto?

A buddy of mine who I played fighting games with introduced me to keto. It was a weird experience because I knew him as this short chubby kid, who always wore a jacket to kinda hide the fact he was chubby. But after seeing him do keto, he was this tall, skinny, good looking kid who didn’t wear a jacket. That’s what really hit me. You could see how much weight he lost, and he had all this confidence from losing 60 pounds. After that encounter, and him explaining what keto was, I was extremely determined to lose weight.

How often do you cheat on keto?

So this is a good question because I’ll say that no matter what, everyone cheats. I’ve cheated plenty of times, whether out of anxiety or because the munchies were too strong and I needed something right then and there. But everyone cheats, intentional or not. For me, it was in moderation. I only really started cheating towards the end of my diet, since I had lost so much weight already. For those that do cheat, it’s not the end of the world. It won’t immediately kick you out of keto. But have vigilance or moderation if you decide to cheat, because one pancake can turn into a whole stack in a matter of seconds.

How do you get (back) into ketosis?

Another great question! This year was a little different than previous years, since I was determined to drop those last 60 pounds. I really wanted to make sure my body hit ketosis at the start of the new year. Before that, I’d just select a day and start from there, mentally planning meals and preparing myself to not eat carbs. That’s essentially how it went. But this year was different. I started 3 days prior to my start date. The first day was nothing but liquids (a lot of water) to help flush everything out. The next day was eating greens and getting accustomed to eating salads again. The final day was turkey and spinach left overs from Christmas. After that, my body hit ketosis and I started my diet from there. My favorite meal is chicken wings, but they have to be naked, deep fried, with extra hot sauce.

Do you track your weight/ketones/blood glucose/macros or anything else?

When I originally started, I tracked how many carbs I would consume in one day, which was around 40 net carbs. But this year, I cut back to around 25 net carbs and really made sure to not go further. I’d just do the math on everything I was eating beforehand and made sure it stayed under 25. Never was super serious with downloading apps or entering in every meal. I made sure to know what I needed to eat to stay at my level. I was fine.

How supportive were your friends & family when you started?

Ahaha so my family was really supportive when I told them I wanted to lose weight. When I told them carbs wouldn’t be in my diet, and that I wouldn’t be eating like they were, they were against it. It affected me a little that my family was both supportive of me losing weight, but not in the style that they’re use to. My mother would question if I was taking any ‘weight loss pills’ (catch my drift?) during the diet or even after quitting. But they see the results now and see me happy, so they can’t really complain about how I did it. As for my friends… Most of them saw the results and were motivated to try keto themselves. As far as I know, 3 friends are currently doing keto. They have thanked me several times on how amazing the diet is and how amazing they feel from doing it. But nonetheless, my friends really did support me through the diet and watch as I shred pounds off my body. They even helped me maintain a clear mind when I really wanted to cheat.

Has your weight loss ever stalled?

Oh god, the stalls… I can’t remember how many times I’ve peaked during keto. I’ve just stalled out and couldn’t lose anymore. When it got to that point, I would just fall of the diet and reintroduce carbs back into my life. Maybe take a few months off, let the body build up some fat and go from there. That helped when I started, but coming back to this year, I really pushed to lose weight so when I hit the 200 lb mark, I started running/working out to help push past the stall. Once I was at the 190 lb mark, I had to work out harder to push to 180 lbs, and then even harder to get to 175 lbs.

What other benefits have you noticed?

I noticed I don’t get as winded as I normally would. A very noticeable increase in stamina and an increase in confidence. An extreme boost in confidence. It was crazy seeing myself drop weight, but when I finally hit that goal weight, I started feeling really comfortable in my skin. I even started taking more pictures of myself. It changed how I bore myself. Before I saw myself as a sad, fat kid who really wanted to be thin. Now I’ve changed to a slim guy who takes pictures of himself in his underwear. This had a great deal of impact on my confidence. My sex drive is through the roof after losing 120 pounds. My sleeping habits have also gotten better.

Did you encounter any obstacles to pursuing keto?

One of the biggest obstacles I encountered was eating the same meal every day. I hated scrolling through my Facebook timeline, high as hell, and seeing a video on how to make buffalo chicken pull apart bread. Don’t get me wrong, I’d try to mix my meals up every now and then, but I really missed the variety in food. Growing up in a Mexican/Italian household showed me you can substitute a lot when eating. Like if my mom made Tacos Al Pastor, I’d just have a bowl of the meat, lettuce, and sour cream. So it wasn’t hard, but it was tedious trying to find food I’d enjoy.

Have you had any side effects to keto?

One really weird side effect I had was runny stool. I think that was my body’s way of saying I was in keto. But I never got the keto flu or some other form of decline. Just runny stool that lasted longer than I’d expected.
Food & Fun

What’s your typical day of eating look like?

Chicken wings! All I’d eat was chicken wings while on keto this year. Also nuts and any snack that are low in carbs. I probably snacked more than eat actual meals. I have 2 big meals for lunch and dinner and snacked before and/or after. As for drinks, I drank mostly water. If I crave anything sweet, I have one diet soda and a bottle of crystal light mix, which is great if you don’t want soda. I probably go through 2 cases of water before my roommates finish one. I try to cook and meal prep as best as I can. But I have such a wonky schedule that it’s tough to make anything at home. If anything, I go to fast food joints and ask for whatever meat meal they had, withouth the bread. Most of the time they’ll give you a weird look, but they’ll do it.

What’s your favorite home-cooked keto meal?

Nothing really special. If and when I’m home and have time to cook, I make a salad or some green vegetables alongside a chicken breast or two. But if I’m feeling adventurous, I cook up a fat piece of steak with some asparagus or broccoli, sour cream and cheese. And that’s my basic home cooked meal.

What’s your favorite restaurant meal?

Outback Steakhouse or Duffy’s. I’m probably one of Duffy’s best customers since I order from them religiously. Spicy wings will always be my jam. And obviously any meat meal they had with salad and broccoli at Outback.

What’s your biggest non-keto temptation?

I have a major sweet tooth, so anything sweet and delicious. I love milkshakes and smoothies, so when I had to give up sweets, it really hit me hard. I remember photoshopping all of my favorite candies, drinks, meals, and even my costume with a weight goal right next to the picture. And liquor. Holy shit did the good drink just vanish from my life. Taking straight vodka or liquor shots are not good substitutes if you enjoy drinking. Just never do that.

Anything else you’d like your readers to know?

I guess what I didn’t mention was that I cut a lot of corners when I was dieting. Obviously, eating breakfast is important when starting your day, but eating breakfast always made me nauseous. I ate out way more than eating at home, so I never had a decent home cooked meal for keto – just salad and a chicken breast. But go crazy with what you eat. If you’re in the mood for a grilled cheese, use 2 thick slices of ham as your bread, and boom, you have a grilled ham and cheese. Easy as pie. Also will-power and motivation really go a long way. So even if you’re having doubts or can’t seem to push past the stall, try to remember why you started keto to begin with. Reflect on your progress and don’t beat yourself up if you can’t get those few extra pounds off (like me). There’s always tomorrow. If you don’t like to exercise, it’s really not needed. However, it does help burn weight off and tighten the skin around loose areas. If you’re starting out keto and want to kick drive your system, drink a gallon of water and go for an hour run/jog. It’ll help your body process the fat and allow ketones to move freely throughout your body.