Richard Widmark Meet the man who's yoga photo went viral

Inspiring story of yoga newbie Richard Widmark and how he began his yoga journey to weight lose, weighing 700lbs.

  • Published:
Richard Widmark play

Richard Widmark

24/7 Live - Subscribe to the Pulse Newsletter!

Read this inspiring story of yoga newbie Richard Widmark and how he began his yoga journey to weight lose, weighing 700lbs.

At age 38, Richard Widmark weighs close to 700 pounds. He’s already lost weight practicing yoga, but that’s not really all that matters because, through yoga, Richard Widmark has also felt encouraged to think more positively about himself, to make healthier choices and to take steps to improve his life.

Most people learnt about Richard when theycame across his photo shared around on facebook.

His accompanying words about working to overcome years of self-hate and his astonishment at how his teacher saw the worth in his pose when he, at first glance, only felt disgust, was something that really struck home with everyone.

Widmark then wrote, ”Years of hating myself won’t go away over night, but with the help of supportive friends I’ll get there. Yoga is for EVERY BODY.” Yeah, man. This, we thought, is what matters.

In a recent interview with Richmond CBS affiliate WTVR, Widmark explained that he’s had a history of eating as a method of self-comfort and has been dealing with the consequences both physically and emotionally for years.

“As the years went by, I started losing friends, which made me have a lot more time to myself,” said Widmark. “Then, my friends are getting married having kids and here’s me — a big failure at life.”

At one point he was at such a low that he attempted suicide, he said.

However, his life began to turn around when he decided to make healthier choices and started documenting his raw food diet adventures through his The Raw Xperience blog and YouTube channel.

This led Widmark to yoga because he happened to know someone who taught at a local studio, and he preferred being encouraged instead of being disciplined or, rather, shouted at in a boot camp-style fitness class likely found at a gym.

So far, his yoga practice has helped him lose about 20 pounds in a couple of months, but just being healthy is what’s most important to him, he says. He’s lost weight and self-hate, but he’s gained self-esteem.

“I feel amazing for doing it and I hope that everybody does yoga,” he said.

Meanwhile, a group of his supporters are helping to raise money for him to travel to see mega motivational speaker Tony Robbins. The GoFundMe page explains:

Our friend Richard hasn’t had the easiest life, but for the last couple of years he’s been trying to better his health taking it one day at a time. There have been many ups and downs and despite the wonderful person that he is, it’s often been a lack of self-love that has made him give up on himself over and over again. After years of struggling, he recently decided to overcome one of his biggest fears and attended a Yoga class.

We wish him all the best on his journey. Keep it up!