Every so often we stumble across a story of transform that blows us away. Such is the case with our latest Charity Miler of the Week: Andy Aubin!

According to Andy, he had always been a big guy. “It was just who I was,” he says. “I thought: this is the way it is, and this is the way it was meant to be.”

But it turns out that wasn’t the case.

When Andy had a daughter, his life changed. “It became not about me, and more about her,” he said. And part of that was getting healthy.

“I was at the point where I got winded walking up a flight of steps,” says Andy. He finally decided: “Enough is enough, this ends today.”

Andy knew that a diet overhaul alone wouldn’t do the trick — been there, done that. So he started a Couch to 5k program in tandem with using My Fitness Pal, a calorie and activity tracking app, to monitor his habits.

Small changes here and there led to a huge life overhaul, and in less than a year Andy was not only a runner, he was a good one. While stairs were once his enemy, he now tackles regular races — including half marathons. And he continues to surprise himself with the things (and distances) he can accomplish.

“Running constantly provides surprising results,” says Andy. “A year ago I was 330 lbs. and got winded walking up steps. A year to the day of that, I completed a half marathon. Everything is doable. It’s just a matter of going about it the right way and having faith in yourself.”

Andy also happens to be an avid Charity Miles user, and the brains (and brawn) behind the Chilly Cheeks Virtual 5k. While his goals were once driven by weight loss, he now has another purpose. 

“The whole running thing has been for me, and to benefit myself and my family,” says Andy. “With Charity Miles, I can still do that while at the same do something for someone else.”

We applaud Andy for his dedication to his family, his health, and being an all-around awesome guy. Let’s do our Charity Miles in honor of him this weekend. For as he says, “Why would you not take the opportunity to give something back? It doesn’t cost a dime, just your time and energy.”