Anyone who has seen Jets coach Rex Ryan recently has noticed that he’s significantly thinner than he used to be. But the amount of weight that Ryan has lost is impressive.
Ryan said on NFL Network that he weighed 348 pounds near the end of his first season as the Jets’ head coach, and he decided then that he simply had to make major changes.
“I was always huge and all of that,” Ryan said, via Dom Cosentino of NJ.com. “I just kept getting bigger and bigger, would lose weight, gain weight. We’re getting ready to play Indianapolis in the championship game my first year with the Jets. I hopped on the scale expecting to see 310, something like that, which is still way too high: 348 pounds. I had put on 30 pounds or whatever in a season. When a doctor told me, ‘How many people 350 pounds do you know that’s over 50 years old?’ Not many. He said, ‘Yeah, because they don’t exist.’ And I’m, like, I knew I had to do something.”
Ryan decided that the “something” was lap-band surgery, which makes the stomach smaller. That got major results.
“I knew I had to do something drastic because I had done the other things,” Ryan said. “So there were a couple of options, I figured out what was the best one. I did this lap band, very minor procedure. I’m down 130 pounds. It’s unreal to think that I was dragging that kind of weight around. But I did it because I want to see my kids grow up and I want to see their kids grow up. That’s why I did it.”
It’s not easy to lose weight, and it’s not easy to talk publicly about weight issues. Ryan should be commended for both.