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On November 8, 2014, John Glaude uploaded a video to YouTube. Up until that point, he’d had varying degrees of success with his “Obese to Beast” channel. His first video showcased his amazing transformation documenting his weight loss, from 360 pounds down to 190 pounds of muscle. After November 8, however, John took a big, brave, revealing step forward. This is the step that took him from “just another guy” who got control of his health and eating habits, to someone incredibly brave, inspirational, and by now, iconic. The video title told you everything–My Biggest Insecurity: Loose Skin. Millions of people identified and empathized with John’s vulnerability. Over eight million have since witnessed John’s brave moment, and countless more have shared their stories and use him as a beacon of inspiration for their own transformation. Now, a year later, he’s started his own business, has several irons in just as many fires and continues to inspire and live through his transformation. John took time out to talk about his still-transforming world.
How has your life changed since going viral?
JG: I’ve done a complete 180 – everything has changed in my life. I’m very busy and happy to be so busy. Before the video I was working two jobs, waking up at 3 a.m. to make it to Starbucks and working at 24 Hour Fitness. I’d see people ordering 600 calorie drinks before the sun even came up and was thinking what the hell?! Parents would be dosing their kids with sugary drinks and although I enjoyed the company I couldn’t stay. Since then I’ve been working on various projects and of course, I did The Ellen Show where I got the new car. I still don’t walk around shirtless but that’s nothing to be ashamed of. The stretch marks and battle scars I’ve earned make me just as proud now as I was then.
Has the initial awe of YouTube fame worn off?
I’m still in somewhat of a shock – people look to me for answers and trust me with their inner thoughts they can’t tell their friends and family. It’s a good thing! If I can help anyone in any way I can, I will. My life has totally changed for the better because of the video.
What opportunities has your notoriety opened up for you?
I realized that my dreams could become a reality and it made me work even harder to reach those dreams. I was on the Ellen Show and that was a life-changing experience, obviously. And it was so weird, just the other day a random person at Target recognized me from the video, which I thought was really cool to know that what I did resonated with people, it’s very powerful. I’m really excited to be working on my own YouTube show about transformation with Quest Nutrition, too. There will be big news about that soon.
How has your workout and diet regimen evolved over the course of the year?
Right now I’m actually trying to bulk up for my first physique competition and that involves getting in a better relationship with food. My top weight was 360 and my lowest was 190 – currently I’m at 205 and I’m okay with that. At first I was too anxious with food, trying to find a balance between having a fear of food and too much of a love for food. I feel like I’ve struck a good balance now. I know I can have slice of pizza or birthday cake and I’m not going to gain a bunch of weight. My understanding of caloric ins and outs has gotten better and I don’t have fear in my mind anymore which is something that used to be in my head all the time. And I don’t drink! That’s a big part of it, I don’t drink alcohol.
Do you have a go-to cheat snack these days?
I used to be a S’mores Quest Bar guy, but I’ve been obsessed with the Pumpkin Pie one recently. I have a trick with protein powder, too. I use Quest’s salted caramel powder add two scoops and a tiny bit of water and it forms like a pudding or a frosting – so I’ll have that as a snack companion to dip apples in. It’s delicious.
Check out John’s one-year anniversary video for his inspirational transformation.