Tyler Nelson shipped to Marine boot camp in December 2018 after shedding nearly 150 pounds throughout an eight-month period.

Now, he’s officially a Marine.

Nelson graduated Friday with Charlie Company, 1st Recruit Training Battalion, aboard the San Diego recruit depot.

He says he now weighs about 204 pounds ― that’s 163 pounds lighter than when he first tipped the scales at 367 pounds during his weigh-in at his hometown recruiting station of Mankato, Minnesota.

Over the course of the eight months, Nelson’s drive and motivation to earn the title Marine had pushed him to shed almost 150 pounds.
Over the course of the eight months, Nelson’s drive and motivation to earn the title Marine had pushed him to shed almost 150 pounds.

Any Marine who has ever stepped stood on the yellow footprints at the Corps’ recruit depots will attest that recruit training is a transformative and challenging experience.

Nelson said he knew he would overcome the challenges and told Marine Corps Times that his recruiting station was a big helping in getting him ready.

“If you can’t get through the mental aspect of boot camp you won’t make it. But going through the workouts through my RSS [recruiting substation] and the poole functions made it a lot easier cause you know what to expect before you even go out there,” Nelson said.

When Nelson first checked into his local recruiting station, he was well over the maximum allowed weight of 246 pounds needed to ship to recruit training.

He weighed about 220 pounds before he shipped to boot camp, the rapid weight loss Nelson says is owed to strict dieting and exercise.

That diet consisted of three eggs, a banana and an English muffin, followed by a snack of 28 grams of unsalted almonds, for breakfast. And six ounces of lemon pepper chicken, a half cup of rice, one cup of broccoli and carrots, followed by 28 grams of unsalted almonds, for lunch.

Nelson stuck to that diet for nearly four months.

Now that Nelson has graduated from recruit training, he is slated to attend Marine Combat Training, an infantry school for non-infantry-oriented jobs in the Marine Corps.

Following MCT, Nelson will attend school for his primary occupation as an aviation mechanic.