JOSEPH BENJAMIN, 27, let an afternoon radio job meld into late night sets at the club. He’d drink whatever cocktail he was handed, became “good friends with the Uber Eats drivers,” gained weight, and “didn’t like my body.” In 2021, after about a year of this, he noticed his breathing sounded like snoring. He took control of his schedule and habits, lost 48 pounds, and is now breathing just fine. How he did it:
MAKE THE GYM YOUR ENERGY DRINK
Benjamin started with a schedule revamp. He forced himself to become a morning person when he was switched to an early radio shift. He’s not a coffee guy, so he relies on a 6:00 a.m. F45 class—functional training in a group setting—to amp up for the day. (He even creates the remixes for the classes.) “It also instilled some kind of much-needed awareness of my body,” he says. Now he’s more careful about what he does to it.
CLOSE THE KITCHEN EARLY
He stops eating around 6:00 a.m.—three hours before he goes to bed. Late-night eating, he discovered, is linked to late-morning sleeping and all-day sluggishness. He didn’t change his meals much (you can still catch him with a burger sometimes), but once he started eating earlier, cutting the late-night snacking, and getting to bed on time most nights (because“I’ve gotta be an adult tomorrow”), the weight came off.
ASK BEFORE YOU DRINK
When Benjamin does night time gigs, he’s learned to turn down the free alcohol. To lose weight, he decided to drink only once a week. He credits his gym routine with helping him find the discipline to do it—that and the Do Not Disturb function on his phone to avoid late-night invites. If he wants to imbibe, he asks himself, “Is this drink worth the harm to my body?” Usually, the answer is no.
A version of this article originally appeared in the September 2023 issue of Men’s Health.
Cori Ritchey, NASM-CPT is an Associate Health & Fitness Editor at Men’s Health and a certified personal trainer and group fitness instructor. You can find more of her work in HealthCentral, Livestrong, Self, and others.