11/08/2013 08:52 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

A Hospital Stay Inspired Chris Ponce To Lose 105 Pounds

Chris Ponce

Got a success story of your own? Send it to us at success.stories@huffingtonpost.com and you could be featured in our I Lost Weight series!

Name: Chris Ponce
Age: 33
Height: 5'4"
Before Weight: 310 pounds

How I Gained It: I didn't care about what I put into my mouth. I ate anything and everything. I'd have fast food almost every day. I'd go to restaurants with free refills on the sodas and usually end up drinking two or three glasses of soda.

Not only was it affecting the way I felt about myself, it also affected the way I slept. Sometime after I gained the weight, I started waking up on the floor at night, running into the wall, knocking the lamps over, falling asleep on the toilet and falling asleep opening the refrigerator. As a matter of fact, it was also ruining my social life. I would fall asleep in class, which was very embarrassing because the teachers would get upset with me. I got into two car accidents for falling asleep behind the wheel.

Not only could I not fit into a booth at a restaurant, but I had to put the seat all the way back while I was driving because my belly was in the way. I had a hard time reaching the pedals. I had a hard time clipping my toenails and tying my shoes. I couldn't fit a belt around my waist.

Breaking Point: I woke up one morning, looked in the mirror and noticed my face was swollen. I later learned that I had had an allergic reaction and had to stay at the hospital. I couldn't speak because they inserted a tracheostomy tube into my throat. I was in there for 30 days, unable to speak, only thinking that the only person I could blame for not taking care of myself was me.

How I Lost It: After the first 10 days in the hospital, I was put on a chopped food diet, since I couldn't eat much because of the tube in my throat. The physical therapy staff helped get me out of bed and walking. Now, I try to make sure I walk every day, whether it be inside a gym or outside on a nice, sunny day. I'm also on the NutraSystem diet. The food tastes great, is convenient and easy to prepare.

Of course, I'm also making sure to eat my fruits and vegetables, drinking only water, fat-free milk or decaf coffee. Now, I have a soda only occasionally, maybe once a month, if that.

When I look in the mirror now I'm not ashamed anymore. I actually like what I see. I'm no longer ashamed to be seen in public. My uncle told me that my confidence is back.

I no longer feel tired or have to take naps during the day. Exercising is much easier to do when you don't have as much weight to carry around. I not only feel 100 pounds lighter, but I also feel 100 percent better.

After Weight: 205 pounds
The Huffington Post publishes photographs as they are submitted to us by our readers.

Check out more of our inspiring weight loss stories below:

Weight Loss Success Stories

For more on weight loss, click here.