After doctors told him that he had only two years to live, this man set out on a serious weight loss plan to extend his life.
At age 38 and weighing 651 lbs (46.5 stone), Carlos Orosco was sitting in the doctor’s office discussing leg amputation. His weight caused cellulitis, which is a common skin infection that occurs when bacteria enter the body through a crack or break in the skin, leading to chronic swelling and delayed wound healing. As it is usual for overweight or obese people to experience chafing where skin rubs against skin, entry points for bacteria are created.
Carlos went through numerous treatments for this condition, but all of them failed.
“The surgeon started the appointment by predicting that I wouldn’t live to see 41. He told me I’d be 700 pounds by then, and would die from cardiac arrest. At the time, my sister was expecting, and I was going to be an uncle for the first time. I started to think of everything I’d be leaving behind,” he told Runner’s World.
Although he had been on the heavier side his whole life, he started to put on significant weight in his 30s. A sedentary lifestyle, plenty of fast food, and heavy alcohol use all contributed to his increasing weight – and he couldn’t seem to stop.
He was living alone and had no one who would control what he ate or drank. And by the time he reached 38, he was at his heaviest.
Dying young wasn’t part of Carlos’ plans, so he set out to defy the surgeon’s predictions and created a weight loss plan that would help him get his life back.
Instead of proceeding with the leg amputation, Carlos decided to take a different route by deciding to go through a sleeve gastrectomy. However, he first had to lose 100 pounds in order for the surgery to happen.
To help him with that, Carlos quit drinking, avoided junk food and switched it with vegetables, fruits, and lean protein. Within six months, he dropped 200 pounds, and the surgery finally happened in December 2016.
The weight kept coming off since then as he started going on long walks every day. The joint issues and chronic pain that he had before disappeared, and he was able to stop taking six daily medications.
“I feel like a new person, really. I have been blessed with a second chance, another opportunity. I realise that not everybody has the chance, has that second opportunity to do it, and that’s really what it feels like to me, a chance to do things the right way this time,” he said.
When a friend of his died from a heart attack, he participated in a 5K run and fundraiser in honor of him.
That’s when everything changed for Carlos. He became hooked to running.
“I remember the atmosphere, the environment. It caught me. Even before I finished that first 5K, I wanted to sign up for another one,” he said.
Now weighing 185 pounds, Carlos has participated in a couple dozen 5Ks and completed his first half marathon, the Great Turtle Run on Mackinac Island in October.
Now, he’s training for his first full marathon, the Detroit Marathon, this coming October.
“I used to have the mindset at a race that I didn’t belong, that these people were different from me. But on race day, I know I’ve put in the time and the work, and my mind clears of everything except the route in front of me. I finally feel like I belong,” Carlos said.
What an incredible weight loss story! Carlos’ hard work and perseverance allowed him to take his life back and now, he is living his best days doing what he loves.