A 27-year-old woman has revealed how she shed close to 40lbs and achieved the body of her dreams while burning 1,000 calories a day through virtual reality gaming.
Marissa Bruch, from Leipzig, Germany, spent years battling an ‘unhealthy’ relationship with food, while trying a myriad of diets, including a plant-based regimen and the keto plan, in an attempt to lose weight.
When she was a teenager, dental assistant Marissa would even starve herself for two days at a time in the hopes of slimming down, but nothing worked – until she discovered virtual reality gaming.
Trim and toned: A 27-year-old woman has revealed how she transformed her body and shed 40lbs by doing virtual reality gaming
You go girl: Marissa Bruch, from Leipzig, Germany, spent years trying to lose weight through fad diets, including keto and plant-based regimens, but nothing worked until she tried VR
Kapow: She first tried VR gaming in June 2019 when her husband bought an Oculus Quest headset (seen) and urged her to test out boxing game Thrill of the Beat
Transformed! Marissa was stunned by how much of a sweat she worked up during that first session – and she quickly realized that VR could be the perfect fitness option for her
Marissa found forking out on recipe books and stocking up on new ingredients ‘exhausting’ because it never made her feel motivated and didn’t bring her enjoyment.
However her life changed when her husband bought an Oculus Quest virtual reality headset in June 2019 and suggested that his wife try one of the active games – such as Thrill of the Fight, a boxing game.
The dental assistant became instantly ‘hooked’ and was soon working up a sweat, jabbing her virtual opponents and winning fights.
Woah: According to Marissa’s Apple Watch, she can burn up to 500 calories in 40 minutes
She also played the physically challenging VR game Beat Saber, where the user slices musical beats with colored sabers.
Marissa was burning 500 calories during a 40-minute session with her new hobby and the weight soon began to fall off.
The dedicated gamer even upped the ante by adding weights to her arms and body while playing.
Marissa has lost a total of 40 pounds, going from 199lbs to 159lbs in just 18 months.
‘I’ve struggled with my weight for more than 10 years and had an unhealthy relationship with food,’ Marissa told Jam Press.
‘I’ve tried a lot of diets like many women and it felt exhausting even if I managed to lose a few pounds. Back in my teenage years I even ate nothing for two days at a time which was too extreme.
‘Whenever I changed my diet I needed to buy super exclusive ingredients to make the recipes better but none of my diets helped me to lose weight for good.
‘I’m not a gamer at all and was never interested in games before my husband gave me the Oculus Quest to test – then I was really hooked.
‘I wear an Apple Watch so I can see how many steps I take and calories I burn. It takes about 40 minutes to burn 500 calories, depending on the game.
Top picks: Marissa’s favorite games are Beat Saber – a music game that requires you to slice musical beats – and Thrill of the Fight – a boxing game
Trim: Marissa has lost a total of 40 pounds, going from 199lbs (left) to 159lbs (right) in just 18 months, and she is hoping to reach her goal weight of 150lbs soon
Obsessed: ‘I’m not a gamer at all and was never interested in games before my husband gave me the Oculus Quest to test – then I was really hooked,’ Marissa, seen with her husband, said
‘Beat Saber is so fun because of the simple gameplay and the music.
‘You can play in multi-player with friends and climb in the ranking if you get good results, and I’ve been playing it every day for a year and am still interested.
‘In Thrill of the Fight, I am a fighter in a boxing ring and the first minutes feel real.
‘You have to move like a fighter to win – the game is so demanding that when I started I was done after two fights.’
Stamina: Marissa is now fit enough that she can do two 40-minute sessions a day, during which she burns a total of 1,000 calories
Marissa has now built up enough stamina to incorporate two 40-minute sessions into her day, burning around 1,000 calories daily.
The healthy gaming hobby has also encouraged her to clean up her diet, by filling up on fruit shakes, quinoa bowls and fish with vegetables.
The dental assistant said: ‘I play at home or outside in my garden so sometimes my neighbors spot me playing but I don’t mind and never worry about how I look while playing.
‘It’s not a magic weight loss tool and you have to stick with it but for me it works better than a fitness studio because I can play whenever and wherever I want.
‘I don’t have to drive 30 minutes to a gym and can just put on the Quest and burn some calories. I’ve even taken it on holiday with me.’
After losing the weight, Marissa feels more confident than ever and has embraced one of her key passions: fashion.
She added: ‘I’m very interested in fashion and beauty and feel I can now wear nicer clothes, and find more in the stores or online.
‘I feel happy and confident and will keep going.’
Marissa plans to lose another 11lbs to be at her target weight of just under 150lbs.