| The Gaston Gazette
After a lifetime of struggling with his weight, Jonathan Fletcher cuts a much more svelte figure in the past year.
The Gastonia resident went from weight 295 pounds to 212 in just more than a year after deciding to make some changes in his life.
“Ever since I was a child, I hated sports and I had no desire for physical fitness,” Fletcher said about his weight loss. “Now I can do a lot more physically without it being a struggle, like yesterday, putting together a new stage at my church.”
The Keto Diet
His weight loss journey began on Jan. 1, 2020, although Fletcher said he really did not consider his efforts then as a New Year’s resolution.
He began by cutting out carbohydrates and exercising. He now walks three miles every weekday around Gastonia’s Rankin Lake Park.
He was inspired to take that first step after seeing a relative drop a significant amount of weight on the popular “keto” diet.
“What really did it for me was seeing my uncle try the keto diet and he had such great results,” said Fletcher, who is chairman of the Gaston County Republican Party. “I was able to see someone I knew who had real results and I could see what they did.”
Seeing someone else’s success, and then finding his own path toward a healthier life has helped keep him on track.
“Somebody telling you about it doesn’t change it,” Fletcher said. “People told me for years to be healthier and lose weight but I didn’t really care that much.”
Within a month or two of starting his lifestyle change, others began to compliment his progress.
“It feels great to see people notice it even if that’s not why I do it. It is still a great side affect,” Fletcher said.
Fletcher said he would like to get down to 195 pounds so he can credit himself with an even 100 pounds in weight loss.
Weight loss has opened doors to new activities for Fletcher. He invested in a new chicken pen with 13 chickens and began gardening, two things he “never would have done” without better weight management.
“I just feel like how you feel determines how you act and the things that you do more than how people see you,” Fletcher said. “How you look physically only gets you so far but how you feel will get you further.”
Janiya Winchester can be reached at 704-869-1842 or by emailing JWinchester@Gannett.com.