The IT expert who lost 120 lbs in a year

… Mark Amin chronicles his journey and outlines tips in a new book

By Rehana Ahamad
BUT for as long as I can remember, I have had a constant battle with my weight; from intermittent fasting, to haphazard diets and confessions, irregular works that have made me even heavier, instead. Suffice it to say, I have repeatedly failed at losing mission weight.
January is, as most of us can imagine, widely regarded as the month of decision and research shows that losing weight or getting in shape continues to be at the top of the New Year’s resolutions list, globally. wide, and as we continue to be cautious along the 2021 route, I am also joining the “solution makers” to get fitter.
I have made peace with the fact that I will not be able to do it myself, so as well as securing a ‘gym buddy,’ I will also seek the advice of Mark Amin, an IT specialist who has successfully lost 120. pounds in just one year. I recently heard about Amin’s transformation from his wife Ashme Singh, who was the subject of an article I did a few weeks ago. When she showed me pictures before and after, I was amazed; it was an image out of ‘Biggest Loser’ on television. I immediately thought of the great advice I could get from Amin, and as it happened, he has a lot to give.

After a year of diet and exercise, Mark Amin weighed 180 lbs

As a result, Amin has started writing a book, which not only chronicles his weight loss journey, but also provides tips for people like me, who have failed to bring happiness to our ratings. Amin, a 37-year-old resident of Vreed-en-Hoop, West Coast Demerara, weighed 300 pounds in 2016, and after a year of adopting a new lifestyle, he weighed 180 lbs – a number he has successfully maintained over the years.
“I wasn’t always obese. As far as I can remember, I was an average weight throughout my tertiary education; however, I gradually started gaining weight in 2013 which increased my weight gain by 300 pounds in 2016, ”Amin told the Guyana Chronicle during an interview. He attributes his weight gain to the gradual development of an unhealthy lifestyle.

Amin got a wake-up call in 2016 when he underwent a medical examination. “I was surprised,” he said. The results showed that obese Amin has high cholesterol and high glucose levels.
“This was scary and a big cause of concern for me and my wife. After this, I did my research to understand further what these results meant and how unhealthy my lifestyle was, ”says Amin.
These results inspired Amin to make an “immediate and conscious decision” to switch to a completely vegan diet. “I also suddenly stopped drinking alcohol and started walking every day. For 134 days, I did this every day and lost 30 lbs, ”he told the Guyana Chronicle.
Amin was ecstatic, and perhaps a little too cocky about his weight loss success; unfortunately he suffered a relapse, which caused him to regain all weight.
“So I went back to my normal eating and gained my 30 lbs back. I was at my heaviest in 2017, ”he recalled.

Turning number two for Amin, was in 2018 when his wife returned from her vacation in Florida where she bought him three very handsome shirts, but no one could fit.
“On the spot, I made another loud promise to myself and this time, my wife, that I will wear these three shirts and in a few months time,” Amin related.
“My wife took me to the gym and signed me up for a month’s membership and within a month, I was able to fit into one of the shirts, and two months later, I was able to wear the three, ”recalls Amin smiling.
This was the breakthrough that the IT specialist needed. “After that, it was a continuous process of self-improvement where I went to the gym every day religiously and did a rigorous exercise,” said Amin.

In Guyana, we have been somewhat conditioned to see rice, roti or chowmein as the main components of any “good meal”; this cultural eating habit makes it even more difficult for many of us to embrace substitutions and adopt healthier lifestyles.
“I stopped drinking rice and sugar completely and had no alcohol at all. I’ve done this consistently for two years so far, ”says a now fit Amin.
He advised people to research alternatives for the daily rice and rotis, which can be replaced with quinoa, beans, channa, and specific soups. While reaping the benefits and trimness now, Amin said it was no easy task. He had particular trouble with “breaking bad habits, whether it was eating too often, snacking between meals or drinking.”
Amin had particular trouble with the pressure from friends to partake in drinks and those unhealthy ‘breakers’.

“Sometimes I would respond by saying that I was either on antibiotics or other medicines to avoid any pressure to drink or drink alcohol,” recalled Amin. This, along with his own quiet temptations and cravings, was difficult to maneuver and required a great deal of dedication.
“Sometimes I would have sudden cravings or a desire for rice or sweets, be it chocolate, cake or ice cream,” he noted.
“I am happy to say, however, that since August 2018 when I joined the gym, I have not succumbed to any unhealthy temptations or suffered any relapse. I managed to put a realistic routine around food, sleep and exercise and exercise consistently all the same, day in and day out, ”Amin told this newspaper.

Amin’s journey not only led to him throwing 120 lbs and adopting a healthier lifestyle, but he also transformed him into a more dashing, fitter, and younger man. For those who had not seen him during the year of his intense exercise and diet, he was unrecognizable; so much so, that his wife is often accused of infidelity and auspicious openness with another man.
“Some people even thought we were separated and that I had remarried with another man,” Amin’s wife was honest about this announcement.
Amin sees his transformation as a testament to the fact that human beings can accomplish a great many things, as long as you put your body, heart and soul into something you really want get it. “


When asked about his basic advice for people who want to lose weight, Amin emphasized the need for people to make peace with the fact that weight loss is a process and not an event.
“It wouldn’t happen overnight; changes become recognizable over time, ”he asserted.
Amin also emphasized the need for people to encourage “a slow transition process to lose weight, not a big bang approach. A big bang approach to weight loss may be unrealistically overwhelming, overwhelming and probably lead to relapse. ”
As a victim of the terrible relapse, Amin advocates gradual approaches and the importance of establishing a healthy routine around sleep, eating and exercise.
“Approach exercise as a fun activity, not a burden,” he said, advising people to organize a playlist that would provide motivation for even more time on the treadmill.
“Take time to get to know yourself, your likes and dislikes. For example, I’m a morning person, so I would wake up early in the morning to exercise, while my wife, Ashme, isn’t necessarily a morning person because of her tendency to stay up late at night and doing work; so she would work in the evenings, ”explained Amin.

Amin’s book, ‘Five Steps to a Healthier Lifestyle’, contains five chapters, each containing insight into his journey, along with tips and advice for those who want to follow in his footsteps.
“Chapter One deals with ‘Understanding your body and body type’; Chapter Two is ‘Learning to love yourself’; Chapter Three is ‘Rewiring your brain’; Chapter Four is about ‘Changing your thinking process’; and Chapter Five is ‘Accept and maintain the new version of yourself’. ”
Amin insists that the publication is not a theoretical concept of an idea, but rather full documentation that includes step-by-step approaches to carefully studied and implemented techniques strategic. He hopes that once the book is released in May, it will be a practical guide and source of inspiration for people suffering from obesity and chronic weight problems.
“What I am today and what people see is the finished product of a routine,” Amin maintained.
As many of us embark on our individual journeys to become healthier, let’s hope we are all as successful as Mark Amin.