About this iReport
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    Posted January 20, 2014 by
    Chicago, Illinois
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Your 'Aha' weight-loss moments

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    Talk About A WAKE UP CALL


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     MarioColao says it took nearly dying to change his habits of eating unhealthy food, heavy smoking and heavy drinking. After experiencing heart attack-like symptoms, he decided to make a change for good and get his life back on track. Since then, he's lost 200 pounds and is on his way to become a personal trainer so he can help others that were in the same situation he was in.
    - kfbrinkley, CNN iReport producer

    You know all the stuff everyone always says not to do? Eating bad, smoking cigarettes, and drinking too much? Well yeah, I did all that. I was on a bad road to say the least.


    I used to eat all the bad food I could, I smoked 2 packs of Newport 100's a day, and I got drunk about 3-4 times a week. All of this was in an effort to deal with long time depression.


    In 2010, when I had finally reached my heaviest weight (460 lbs) I had 3 heart attack scares within a two week span, each progressively worse than the other.


    The third one woke me up out of bed at 3 am, and I got all the wonderful symptoms you always hear about. Left arm numb, heart pounding like a jackhammer, and sweating like I had just run a marathon.


    Sad to say, I didn't call for help. I felt like I had it coming. Even with that thought, I still began praying. I told God that if he let me live, I would do everything I could to make sure this wouldn't happen again. That's when I passed out.


    The next morning to my surprise I woke up, still sprawled out in the same position from the night before. I was so furious with what had happened, that I got up, and looked in the mirror, and made a promise fueled with anger that I would never be who I was again.


    I quit smoking cold turkey, and began my weight loss journey. In 3 and a half years I lost 200 lbs, going from 460-260. I even ran up the Rocky steps when I hit my goal weight. Now, I write blogs and make videos on Youtube all geared towards helping others to reach their goals and hopefully not make the same mistakes I did. I'm also going to school to become a certified Personal Trainer.


    So yeah, my A-HA moment was me almost dying. I'm happy as hell I made it to this point, and that I can now help others. Hopefully my story helps you in some way as well.


    You can watch me be a goof in my fitness advice videos on YouTube on my channel, just search for Mario Colao One More Round Fitness. You can also read my blogs on www.Saiditallbefore.weebly.com. Thanks for reading!

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