24Life Magazine: 24 Hour Fitness Interview

Recently, I was featured on 24 Hour Fitness magazine, 24Life. The segment was a transformation piece. We spoke about how I went from nearly 300 pounds, to under 200 pounds and still dropping.

We covered mindset, motivation, weaknesses, and much more!

24Life: Who is are you?

My name is Angel Rodriguez. I live in Queens, New York, and am an Air Force veteran. By day, I provide IT support for a small non-profit, at night I am a no-nonsense group fitness instructor. I also run a fitness blog at NYCTalking.com.

Here is my transformation story.

24Life: Tell us about your fitness journey—where does it begin?

Angel Rodriguez (AR): Where does one start to answer a question like this? Do I talk about when I first discovered weight lifting in high school after Jamal said, “Hey man, you’re kind of stocky!” Or how I trained with the Marines for a few months prior to going to basic training? Do I talk about how amazing it felt to finally attain a six-pack after ballooning up to 220 after the military?

Maybe I should tell you about how I almost reached 300 pounds, was pre-diabetic, had high blood pressure and damn near had a stroke? The story of my fitness journey is long, and has many different chapters. This latest one began two years ago, and it is still being written.

Chapter “now” begins at 38 years old, while I was unemployed, grieving the loss of my father, depressed and at a total loss as to where my life was going. I slept days, and binge-watched TV at night. While binge-watching TV, I was also binge-eating food. That’s how I reached my heaviest weight ever, 280 pounds. My health was declining, and I was on the fast track to a stroke or heart attack. Several emergency room visits confirmed that, but if you know depression, you know this didn’t faze me. I just continued to do it.

No doctor or person was going to get me to change my lifestyle. That was a given, and the world seemingly gave up on me. However, I never truly gave up on myself. Eventually, I found my way back, and that way has led me to right here, right now!

To read the entire interview, click here to visit 24Life magazine!

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