The Tremendous Transformation of Trei

We all have suffered through hardships in our lives, whether it be in our careers, our lifestyles, or our personal relationships. It takes determination to overcome these setbacks, and a strong perseverance to drive through the spots of darkness we all experience.

Trei, a true example of someone with an incredible outlook on life, reached out to Labrada Nutrition after a year of severity to show his gratitude for our family of nutritionists. Over the past year, Trei has endured hospitalization due to the near loss of function in his kidneys, and the painful passing of a loved one, his brother.

It was due to this that Trei began to reassess his lifestyle, thinking of his son’s need for a good example in his father. His journey began with a Biggest Loser challenge at work, which he went on to win with a weight loss of 43 pounds. He then continued with the incorporation Labrada Nutrition’s products.

Trei, with all his creativity and passion, uses his chef skills to spruce up the protein shakes and nutrition bars he enjoys daily.

“After the challenge, they came out with these protein cookie bars. I added some apples slices to those—they were delicious! Oh, and the Lean Body Salted Caramel, which are awesome. I like adding my own extras to the Lean Body Vanilla shakes as well.” While speaking with me, Trei goes on to stress the importance of how his own journey with weight loss took time and was gradual.

He claims that it means he worked hard, and that the effects mean more. When you can give so much to something such as a workout and a lifestyle change, the differences you see are more real, more impactful.

“I was on the far-right scale of the morbidly obese, and now I’m finally — finally — just overweight.” He states triumphantly.

Trei explains that he didn’t take the easy way out in his weight loss. He worked for the changes in his body, and because of this he feels the accomplishment in a way that improves his outlook on life. Trei says that everyone must find the process that works for them. “I have my tools. The way I eat now—I just don’t feel like I’m missing anything, or missing out on anything. I want to be a better support for others, to help them too.”

With his quick wit and great humor, Trei goes on to tell me about what he calls his “silly pants.” He describes them as a pair of pants he purchased while in college and kept through all these years. With great pride in himself, he expresses to me that he fits in these “silly pants” once again. His weight loss is so extensive, that he can wear clothing from when he was in college! Now we can all give a huge congrats to Trei for that! “Since about four months ago I’ve been wearing my silly pants again. I never thought that was something I’d be able to do.”

And yet, with his dedication and drive, Trei is indeed able to walk confidently in his silly pants! Not only has Trei’s lifestyle change improved his own experiences in his daily activities, it brought him closer to his college aged son, Sam. He tells me fondly of his son’s own athletic abilities in football, and his joy at “being able to toss the ball.”

In a Facebook post he shared with me, Trei lovingly wrote, “I also have my son, Sam to thank. I deeply love and admire my son. I could not have accomplished this weight loss without his love and support.” Family clearly means the world to Trei, who’s enthusiasm brings an undeniable light into any conversation. He laughingly exclaims that he was recently able to ride a roller-coaster with his son for the first time of years. The joy of the clasp coming over him with ease and the flight of the ride honed in how far he truly has come with his lifestyle change. It is an appropriate metaphor considering the roller-coaster of Trei’s own life. “There’s been so many wonderful things, I just can’t even tell you,” he expresses, breathless. “My family and friends—they’ve all been so supportive of me.”

To hear this, that the good things in his life have piled on so thick he can’t fit them all into our conversation, was music. After hearing of his illness, his brother’s passing and the toll it took on him, Trei’s ability to trudge through the darkness into the light was illuminating. His voice was consistently chipper, his demeanor joyful. Trei’s perseverance is an absolute inspiration to all.

Trei was kind enough to share some his recipes with us and everyone else fortunate enough to hear his story. He hopes you can try them out, and that you enjoy them:

Sautéed Spinach
2 tbsp Olive oil
1 tub fresh spinach
1/2 Bermuda onion
6 Kalamata olives with 2 tbsp olive juice from bottle

1) Sauté chopped onions in olive oil
2) Add spinach a little bit at a time. It cooks down very quickly
3) Add olives with juice for a little variety
4) Season with black pepper for taste

Avocado Spread
1 ripe avocado
1 large slice Bermuda onion
1 1/2 tomato
1/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
1/2 a lime
Black pepper to taste

1) Scrape avocado with spoon, remove seed and mash with a fork
2) Add yogurt
3) Dice onion and tomato and add to the mixture
4) Season with pepper and fresh squeezed lime juice to taste

I eat this recipe by itself and for variety. I put two spoonful’s in a corn tortilla with shredded chicken that I baked.

Black Beans & Rice
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 Bermuda onion, diced
1 cup long grain brown rice
1 15oz. can Black Beans
Cayenne or black pepper to taste

You will also need a microwavable bowl with lid that has an air hole

1) Microwave 2 cups of chicken stock in microwavable bowl on high for 2 minutes
2) Add onion and one cup of rice to bowl
3) Cook in microwave on high for approximately 10 minutes until rice is cooked
4) Add beans
5) Put in microwave on reheat and it will be ready to eat.

Microwave Egg Whites
3 eggs
2+ leaves of spinach or kale
Black pepper to taste

1) Lightly wipe the inside of a coffee mug or similar container with olive oil to prevent sticking
2) Separate 3 eggs and put egg whites in a mug
3) Tear 2+ leaves of spinach or kale and stir in egg whites with a fork
|4) Season with black pepper to taste
5) Put mug in microwave on high for 45 seconds
6) Take out of microwave and stir the mixture
7) Microwave on high for another 45 seconds and repeat as needed until the egg whites are cooked

taylor-articleAbout the Author
Taylor Shepeard is a second semester senior at Avila University. She is majoring in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing. When she isn’t reading or writing, she spends her time hiking with her rescue dog and listening to great music.

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