Ronnie Brower and Andrea Masella met at the gym while they were both on major weight loss journeys of their own. Little did they know that aside from finding support in each other, they will also end up falling in love.
In 2013, Ronnie had a straightforward conversation with his doctors. At 28 years old and weighing 675 pounds then, he was told that if he didn’t make immediate changes in his unhealthy lifestyle, he would die before he turned 30.
“I was depressed, addicted to pills and alcohol, eating 10 double cheeseburgers or two large pizzas at a time,” Ronnie told Associated Press.
At the insistence of a friend, Ronnie contacted Nick Murphy, the owner of Mission Fitness gym. Under his guidance, Ronnie was able to give up drugs and alcohol and follow a low-carbohydrate diet. He also began working out at home for three hours a day, starting with the simple movement of lifting his arms while sitting on a chair.
Incredibly, he lost 100 pounds within 100 days and was able to leave the house to do his workouts at the gym.
“My job 24 hours a day was to get healthy and save my life,” he said.
23 months after, Ronnie had shed much of his excess weight when Andrea started working out in the same gym in 2015. Standing at 5-foot-4, she weighed her heaviest at 250 pounds.
Andrea saw Ronnie at the gym and recognized him from his 600 Lbs. to Success page. She then reached out to him on Facebook.
“I was just really inspired by him and I thought he was super cute,” Andrea said. “We started talking at the gym and I hate to sound cliché but it was love at first sight.”
On their first date, the pair played ping pong and basketball in the gym.
“I knew on our first date that I was going to marry this woman. But before we even hung out, we would sit on the phone and talk to each other for six or seven hours at a time,” Ronnie said.
The duo eventually became a couple and tied the knot on May 13, 2017, after losing a combined 578 pounds! Ronnie was able to shed 458 pounds while Andrea lost 120.
“We just kind of helped each other through the journey,” Andrea said. “Towards the end we were really each other’s support system, along with our trainers Nick and Jill.”
Andrea was also there for Ronnie when he underwent four surgeries to remove 30 pounds of excess skin.
The couple who “laugh all the time,” Ronnie said, is staying the course with their weight loss. He has a simple tip for others who are struggling with their weight.
“People come to me all the time, asking for weight-loss advice,” he said. “I just tell them there’s hope out there. If you want it bad enough and put your mind to it, anybody can do it.”
Nick, who was chosen as Ronnie’s best man in the wedding, said: “This is a story you could make a movie about. It’s a match made in heaven.”
We completely agree! Ronnie and Andrea made each other better and stuck by each other’s side through the toughest times in their journey. We wish them a happy and healthy married life!
Watch the video feature about the couple below and share this story to inspire others who are in weight loss journeys of their own.