It’s amazing to hear about stories like this. Reddit user named Bigrob7605 (Robert Long) claims to have lost an astonishing 138 pounds by changing his lifestyle and playing the popular VR game Beat Saber.
We here at VRFI write about success stories like this so frequently it never ceases to amaze us when we hear of a story like Bigrob7605’s. The power of Virtual Reality is that it is an ideal platform to create adherence to a fitness routine. The bonus is it is inspiring people to make changes to improve their health!
Below is Roberts original Reddit post and a quick interview we had with Robert.
I would like to say hello to everyone! And sorry in advance for kinda going all over the place. When I wrote this I was in a pretty emotional state, especially sharing such a deep part of myself with the rest of the internet. So I tried to tidy up the best I could without losing the original post’s intent: To show others that every other type of workout just did nothing for me. So I set out to find one that was perfect for me. Because we are all different and what works for me may not work for others.
It worked for me because it drew in my inner child so I was able to give my all and have fun doing it. If you give this workout and game your all, you will see some amazing results. Who knows you all may even fine-tune this workout better than I even have now. And some it may not work much. The whole idea that everyone is different thing does apply. But with that all said… I would like to share the following details. My name is Rob if you could not tell lol. I also have no fear of judgment anymore because I don’t really care if people judge me; because those are the people who judge others and mock them so they can turn a blind eye to their own flaws. Anyways!
Some years back I had 2 car wrecks. Not 1 but 2 lol. Figures lol. So after having those car wrecks I did what most people do and I tried to sort my feelings about what just happened to me and try and work past the depression and anxiety and the memories those two wrecks left. But aside from the mental scars… My body was knocked around pretty good. And I was left with a hurt back and neck. Oh, how I long for the day they have actual “body shops” for people instead of cars. Go in, get a new spine, and bam you are set =P. And because I don’t live in said future. I have to suffer and deal with it.
Because it was hard to get around and I felt so depressed that my life felt like it had been taken away, that I didn’t lose weight. Because of stress hormones and the normal intake of food to maintain my current weight, at that level of activity of not moving much at all, means you gain weight. And by the time you notice it is almost always too late to do anything about it and you become locked in that prison, fated to die in horrible ways such as a heart attack or stroke or clot.
Doctors didn’t say much besides, lose weight so we can cut your back open and fix it. And of course, I did not want to have my back cut open. So time goes on and I get it out of my system having my pity party. And I start to see my kids are going to lose me soon if I don’t do something. So I got off my butt and found something that would help. And I looked around for a long time until I found a simple diet that works well and is cheap and easy for picky eaters. And even a method to workout and get the best effect.
So after some time I finally found the answer and got VR. Because I knew 3D playspaces are nothing more than a virtual spacetime, that VR was going to be huge, and people would soon bring apps like this to life. So I planned ahead and got a great deal on the Vive. Close to 3 months ago, I saw Beat Saber and fell in love with it right away and knew it was for me. Fate if you will. Because it combined all the things I loved into one thing, as well as not just what I want but what I need. It is one hell of a workout. It took the amazing neon and lasers of the 80s, the DDR feel of the 90s, the pop feel of the 2000s, the EDM side of the 2010s, and the tech that’s out now; and gave birth to one hell of a VR app that will go down as a legend in the coming culture wave of the 2020s and the tech boom of VR.
So anywho, I ended up getting a scale and start recording my journey of weight loss and getting back into being healthy again. And well. Sad to say I started this journey at 468LBS. Horrible, I know. But after that day I started my new diet also. A greek yogurt for breakfast at 8 am. A fiber bar for a snack at 11 am. A protein bar for lunch at 2 pm. A hand full of nuts for a snack for 5 pm. And a normal dinner at 8 pm. So my key was to eat less than I burn in a day. Because weight loss is a numbers game and you have to work out and burn more calories in a day than you consume in food, it forces the body to burn fat and not store it, so the weight will just come off.
I also watch my salt intake so I don’t get a ton of water weight. Just make sure you drink enough water because without water you can’t burn fat as well. Just like if you have too much salt and you are bloated. You have tons of water you can’t use to burn fat so you are messing yourself over. Just eat like 1500mg-2000mg of salt a day and you should be good so you don’t hold onto pounds of water you can’t use and raise blood pressure to counter the extra fluid retention. Some people will need to tweak it up or down depending on other factors such as special diets.
So then began my search for workout time and methods. I started out doing normal on Beat Saber and got better and just goofed around. But once I worked out a great routine after a week of goofing off with stuff, I managed to make a great 30 minute per day routine. So if you had a normal day of walking and moving around you would just do one 30 minute session of songs. Or two 30 minute sessions per day, if you have had a slow day and not done much walking around or sat most of the day. But, do not do an hour at once. I have, and I did burn 1500+ calories in that one workout, but yeah. Recovery was fun lol. Don’t overdo it. Oh, and if you feel dizzy, please use some of your 5 minute relax time. Do it to just get your balance back and see if you need more water or are just building up your resistance level. Or you could even have skipped a meal maybe? Because sugar levels will drop and you can feel dizzy sometimes.
Here is the key to using Beat Saber as a workout and not just a game. Most use it by just standing still and move very little and when they move they move just a little. You have got to have the play space on this thing set up so you can move around. This is your workout area and it needs to be clear. Are we clear? lol. Good. Then you will need to ensure you are safe and keep all stuff out the way. If you don’t, you could crash into something because you have got to move around as much as possible. Now, load it up and then set a timer for 35 mins. 30 mins for workouts and 5 for relax time and quick stops for 30 seconds to catch your breath and select a new song or whatever. So you will have 30 minutes of full workout time unless you wait around too much looking for songs to play.
Now, when you load up a song you are going to want to try and feel the beat/bpm. I am not kidding. Let the music take you and just feel it in your soul. Let that inner kid out. And try and step left and right and bop a lil’ back and forth and get into it. It’s supposed to be fun so have fun and cut loose for your workout. Get into the music and really feel it; focus on playing for fun for the workout. Later when it’s for winning, focus on your perfect slices with less movement. But for now, it’s about having fun and not doing this to burn calories. I even recommend using the No Fail option to take off the pressure and get the best out of your workout if you are not very good at slicing and dicing. And when you are done, take off No Fail and load up some songs in Expert or Expert + and kick some butt, and then walk away with the high score if needed.
I also highly recommend you get the mod installer and put custom songs in the game. I have 1500 I use all the time and my kids love it also. So now that you have got your back and forth, you will want to not just stand there, you want to move as much of your body as you can without hurting yourself or being uncomfortable. You want to be relaxed and if you are hurting just push on because it will get better. Just gotta dull those pains out by making your body tune it out until it heals up from the fresh blood being pumped into the area to promote healing.
So just keep it up like I did. I am now down to 330 pounds. In 2 months I have lost over 138 pounds. And not only is my body in much better shape. But my resting heart rate was 75 to 80 before. It’s now 45 to 50. And I feel great. So if I can do it. So can you. Need to lose a few pounds? It’s easy in VR. Need to lose a buck fifty? Welcome to your temple. This will be your place of change and maybe even start a journey on the path to enlightenment. Who the hell knows. The sky is the limit. So enjoy and workout safe, please!
If you are new to working out or have medical issues as I did, please make sure you work closely with your doctor to monitor your weight loss and workouts. That way they can be sure you are safe and healthy enough to do it so you don’t have a heart attack. Because this game will have you move around a lot and pushes you to move as much of your body as you can, you really work that heart out good. So start slow and work your way up. And slowly you will notice your resting heart rate will drop.
So do not panic unless you have chest pains and or can’t breathe. If so contact the correct medical services you need for the issues you have going on. Once you get down to the 50s area it’s a sign that you have a healthy strong heart. And because of it beating less when at rest. It means you will most likely live longer. The more bpm the shorter you live. The slower it beats the longer you live. Well in most cases that works. Aside from issues not involving the heart and accidents and stuff.
I also went from 9 RX scripts to no RX scripts. And went from having sleep apnea and diabetes to hardly any apnea and my diabetes is now gone. So thanks for making such an amazing game, Beat Saber! And I hope others have as much success as I have using the Beat Saber workout. Also, some friends who are big-time local trainers have seen my progress and are even interested in their gyms maybe getting units and putting Beat Saber in with headphones for people to work out. So that is awesome also. Also thanks for reading =).
I hope my journey is enough to prove to anyone looking to lose weight that it’s not hard. It’s just sometimes we miss a few things that didn’t stand out to us. To use to our advantage to get healthy and back into shape. Most of the time it’s right under our nose! We just need to add another piece of the puzzle to the big picture, find our next step, and have no fear and just level up ya know? Until you think beyond the walls of the box. You will never grow beyond its boundaries. Because we can’t expect more from life if we fail to demand more from ourselves. But please feel free to add anything below! About tips, tricks, methods, and songs that really get the best workouts per body part. And even record your journey here and share your story with others!
Thanks for reading! And please be sure that if you are going to try the workout. Please do so under your doctor’s supervision if you have any medical issues. Just to be safe. And if you do the full workout an hour a day. It will really get you dropping weight pretty quick. Just make sure to drink enough water. And ensure you are getting things like magnesium and potassium in your diet. And other required vitamins. That way your body will adapt pretty quickly to the fat burn mode it is now in. And if you give it 100% and really do this hard and really move those arms and legs and want this, then you will be fine. But if you give it a little time and wonder why it isn’t working. It’s because it needs all of you. You have got to give your all and remember to have fun. I do workouts with fun and then practice skill later and try and get my score up with less workout in mind. Because you can lose a pound or two a day if you weigh a lot and really give it your all and diet as well. So don’t be shocked when you get on the scale and you are seeing pounds drop.
(Update) I thought I would add this. May 29th, 2018 was the day I got Beat Saber, so it starts the day I got it up till now. So my bad for the 2 months time frame. Everything kinda just happened so fast it was not even funny. And it seems some medical people have been concerned about my health and the aggressive way I did my weight loss. I won’t joke around. I just kinda fell in by accident almost. I was just having so much fun playing the game that until my clothes started falling off I did not even notice. So that was when I knew it wasn’t just a game for me. It was a way to escape that prison I was in. And after that, I started to take it seriously.
With a doctor’s help and Samsung S3 watch, I tried to make sure my diet was tweaked and I was getting everything I needed in my diet. And that means labs with my doctor also. This is because I was worried that with my size and all the extra activity, I did not want a heart attack or stroke. So I am glad to say I had the full check up a few times and my heart is great. Better than it was before the crashes. So I don’t know if this diet will work for you like it did for me. Because I look at the results and I can hardly believe I dropped this much. People may think I started this with a solid goal in mind. But really, I just wanted to have some fun. Maybe pass some time. But little did I know I would find the perfect workout for me.
I have been contacted by so many people who have had large results of 60 to 10 pounds so far playing. And some who are just starting to work out who want to see max results. So for you, I will say this — work hard in this game and put in the time and effort and work to really give it your all. Don’t half-ass it and give it all you can. Because if you do. I promise you may not lose a pound or 2 pounds a day, but maybe you will who the hell knows. But I hope you do match what I have done. It’s not a contest for me. I don’t care if you only lost 1 pound. GRATS TO YOU! So with that said I hope everyone does this safe and keeps your doctor in sync with the workouts on the VR and Beat Saber. Better safe than sorry!
And I have gotten some pretty direct messages about everything being a lie. And that’s ok. You are welcome to your opinion and view of it. And it’s cool with me. Hate away. I think most just don’t see the effort I gave it on the other side of the screen. How could you? You can’t see the times I push myself until I can barely stand and almost fall. You can’t know how weak I am after I do an hour, plus all the running around in day to day stuff. You can’t see me and just know it can be done just because I have seen people on The Biggest Loser give it 100% of what they could do. And they showed people the impossible by dropping sometimes 34 pounds in one week.
What a funny word. Impossible. The very word is a play on words. Because the word removes itself from even needing to exist. “I’m Possible”. Yet things in this universe that seem impossible such as the delayed choice quantum eraser. And if you understand more of that experiment you know how that is pretty creepy. But if you don’t, let’s just say that the photons sent information and changed the timeline itself in a way to give a result that seems impossible. But there it is. Something that would seem impossible being not only possible but required for our universe to work. So open your mind a little and think past those box walls in your head. They do nothing but limit your growth. So we are here and alive thanks to impossible events at the quantum scale.
So think what you want. Think it’s fake or I am laying in my death bed because my workout is so unhealthy. Or I defy the laws of physics. Maybe you don’t understand what it’s like to finally wake up one morning and see your future. And see yourself having a heart attack. And leaving your kids behind alone and young. That gave me everything I needed to not just get to my goal. But to make sure I didn’t give up. It has been proven that if you set a realistic goal and believe you can do it 100%, you will in most cases hit that goal.
Sure you will have issues hitting that goal. Like the time I ended up in the ER because my heart rate was too low shortly after I got my Samsung S3 watch. And the times I had been dizzy because my calorie intake was way too low. Even the times where life didn’t give me time to workout because I was so busy. But, I pushed past the BS. And did what was best for me and my kids. So you can hate and doubt all you wish. It won’t change the fact I am happy with life again. And I will live longer to watch my kids grow up. No doubts will ever take that from me. I am proud of myself. I have my life back. And every week I take my belt down another notch and look at clothes I used to wear compared to now. Such a big difference for sure. So hate away! Because no one is going to take away the fact that I am proud of myself.
So with that update said. I admit that I have seen my biggest losses when I first started. I was getting 2 pounds a day easy. But that went down as I lost weight. My doctor said it is normal for weight loss to slow down and get a lot harder as I drop weight to a closer range of what is normal. And I have seen that slowing down. So yeah my numbers look awesome. But nothing close to the bosses at Biggest Loser. Man those men and women dropped weight like crazy. So yes I made a Biggest Loser style workout on Beat Saber, but I did it in a safe way, and I am getting the rewards for giving it my all. So just believe in yourself. And if it hurts (Not chest pain hurts), push it and get past that point. The pain will turn into gains I promise!
There are items I recommend you use if you do this workout, just to be safe. You don’t need them but they gave me an extra edge to really push the hell out of the loss amounts. Get a blood pressure cuff to keep track of your BP. Make sure it’s in a good range. And check your pulse and take note of resting BPM and fat burn BPM. And be sure to use a calculator to find your target range for your age and gender. That is very important. And sugar tester if you have one to fine-tune your eating down to a range that will not drop your sugar too low and you will not be dizzy. Other than the normal dizzy spells you get for converting from storage mode to fat burn mode.
Thanks for reading,
After reading Rob’s story on Reddit, we reached out and asked him a few questions to learn more about his transformation journey.
VRFI: What would you say to someone who is searching for a workout and wants to use VR for weight loss?
Rob: That the most important part of this is if you want to use Beat Saber as a workout, you have got to love what you are doing. If you label it in your mind as a routine chore you have to do. Then you will be less likely to use it. That’s why you have got to remind yourself that this is not a workout. It’s having fun! And the fun you have will reward you with better health. Because if you are not into working out and lack the motivation, then you will not see the numbers lost that you want.
So I recommend in letting out your inner child to play. Clear your mind of all the adult things like stress and try to not bring them into the game. That way when you play, it’s so much fun that you can hardly stop playing. The max I have gone at once is a little over an hour at once. So if you can manage it, enjoy it. The weight will come off. But if you really want to see good numbers you got to give it 100%. None of that slow-moving and standing still. You need to keep that body active.
VRFI: How has your heart rate improved since working out with VR?
Rob: My heart rate used to climb up to 158. But now it maxes out at 138. My old resting heart rate used to be in the 80s. And sometimes 90s. Now it’s gone as low as 43 if memory serves correctly. So it averages around 45 to 50 most cases. I have heard that this is low but my doctors are aware and are not concerned. I’ve had multiple tests done and my heart is strong and in good shape.
VRFI: What is the best workout for Beat Saber?
Rob: Well, I found that the best workout for Beat Saber is one that you set aside the mentality to win with a high score and focus on fun factor and keeping your body moving as much as you can. The more you move your body, the better you will do at losing weight. It’s why I try and play hard like they are real swords and chop. But I always make sure my play space is as safe as can be and there is zero chance of taking off someone’s head. The force I put behind the sabers is pretty hard. And I also like to use my body and bop and move to the BPM. So the better the BPM the better the workout. Because you can move side to side and really get a decent workout going.
VRFI: Is Beat Saber really a workout that’s on the same level as tennis?
Rob: I have been able to confirm that I lost the same amount as playing a game of tennis. My heart rate was even matched and sometimes went higher than playing tennis. Also, don’t be scared to turn on the No Fail option and practice new songs or just to take off the pressure for the workout. That way it’s all about having a ball and dropping pounds. Some songs are great for working out. And others are good for just trying to pick up your gameplay and workout styles.
VRFI: Can you tell us more about how you structure your eating for max weight loss?
Rob: I use a pretty simple diet. Nothing too crazy. I can list what my normal day meals look like. I try and start my day at 8 am and eat a package of Activa greek yogurt with probiotic, the larger one with 12G of protein. Then at 11 am I eat a Nutri Grain Bar (fruit filled). Then at 2 pm for lunch, I will do an Aldi brand fit&active protein bar (Strawberry) with 12G of protein. Then at 5 pm, I eat a serving or 2 of pistachio nuts, that way I get the potassium and magnesium I need to ensure my heart get’s what it needs to stay healthy. And then at 8 pm, I eat a dinner or whatever I feel like. I can have a healthy dinner and lose more. Or I can just eat a normal serving of something like grilled chicken breast and a side of something else that gives me my fix of carbs for the day if I am feeling drained. And this seems to keep the hunger away pretty well. And if I get hungry I just drink some water or water with those sugar-free flavor packets. They are pretty cheap at the dollar store.
VRFI: Working out and losing weight takes re-energizing with sleep. How long do you sleep?
Rob: My sleep schedule is pretty simple really. I head to bed at 11 PM most cases and get up at 7 AM.
VRFI: Can you tell us more about how you get in your steps in and out of VR?
Rob: As for other workout stuff. I try and work it like this — if I have had a very busy day running around all over the place and have done my 10K steps. I will do a half an hour workout. If I have done only 7K steps I will try and do a 1 hour workout. Not all at once. I do 30 minutes and then before bed I do another 30 minutes. And of course, I swim in the pool on weekends. And talk walks around the park when I can with my kids. I have finally just started getting more active outdoors now that I can walk anyplace for miles and not get tired and my feet do not hurt anymore.
VRFI: Thank you, Robert, for letting us learn more about your journey and how you are going about it. We will be cheering you on and look forward to you reaching your goal weight of 220 pounds.