Air Force veteran, Firefighter, husband, father, First In Family: Ian Osborne


Being First In to me means living longer for my family and being able to head into retirement feeling confident that I invested for the long haul, like a pension or a 401k.  I’m not going to hit retirement with nothing left to enjoy. Every day I am better for myself and my family and my coworkers than I was the day before.”

Tell us a little bit about yourself... ​

Hi, my name is Ian, I’m 46 and I live in Minnesota.

I’m an Air Force veteran, current Firefighter and work in business intelligence and am also a firearms instructor.

I have one child who became a teenager recently and am married to a beautiful,  kind, patient partner who is a foundation of my success.

I love to run, garden, ride motorcycles, travel, make maple syrup and tend to my bees in my free time.

My wife teased me recently that I should get a 4th job. Needless to say I keep busy.

What brought you to the First In Family initially?

I first became interested in First In Nutrition because I was dieting on my own and had stagnated and slammed into a pretty big wall.

My own worst enemy has always been myself. Specifically, my ego and my stubbornness had held me back for quite awhile.

I’ve had a lot of successes in life when I have researched, gained knowledge and applied it to my life. However after employing; food tracking/logging, intermittent fasting (IF), OMAD (one meal a day) and Keto (low/no carb) diets I was pretty stuck.

So stuck that I gained weight back while giving tremendous effort but become frustrated.

I had seen Jonathan’s post over about a year period while conducting all these experiments on myself and decided to quit fighting and get the help I needed to climb over the wall. 

Tell us a little bit about your background and history with food.

I left high school quite awhile ago when I became an adult and entered the military at 142lbs.  I was so very small at 5’ 9”.  I spent the next part of my service and life lifting weights and bulking up using weight gainer supplements and GNC membership points.

I was encouraged to lift weights at the base gym by superiors and it paid off. I left the service at 175-180lbs and in really great shape. I kept up with running on and off most of my life, but my poor diet really caught up with me.

I would catch my weight gain after 40lbs and go on crash diets to burn it all down only to gain it back.  This yo yo effect was just how I lived.

It was a lot like falling asleep and waking up wondering how you got there.  But I always gained it back.

In fact, over the past 10 years I’ve run 5x a week at a minimum of 3 miles per instance while literally proving you cannot outrun a bad diet.  It’s just not feasible for any sane human being.  

What was the turning point in your life when you realized you needed to make a change?

There were three key factors for me.

The first was when I was being very negligent with personal ladder use at home and my security camera caught me falling from quite a great height which ended up with me being knocked unconscious.  My own Fire Department, my wife’s cousin (A police officer in my city) and the Paramedic, Laef who was my preceptor responded to the 911 call.

But I digress, I put that video on YouTube almost 2 years ago and titled it “Off Duty Firefighter Falls off Ladder”.  The internet of course went at me like a starving dog would a fresh bone.

I found myself putting way too much energy into defending the negativity about my weight and whether I should be a firefighter at all being as fat as I was.

The second factor was when I  was visiting my younger brother in Seattle just a few months later and was at a Seattle Fire Station to run on their Aid Cars for a shift when one of their rookies asked me if my department allowed firefighters to be so out of shape.

Was he being mean?  I think he was holding me accountable even as a rookie and I appreciated it because I was not able to give those that needed me, the best me possible.

The third event was when yet another firefighter Line of Duty Death for heart failure related to exertion after a call happened and I attended his funeral precession with the Red Knights Motorcycle Club.  He was in his 40’s, the same age as me roughly.

Those three events really pushed me to change.  

What was the journey like and what changes did you make?

Everything changed for me when I joined the First In Family.

First and foremost I was no longer alone and was instantly pulled into an amazingly helpful and hugely supportive, positive group.

It reminds me of joining the Fire Service in how you instantly gain a family.

From that point on I was in this thing to win this thing.   I changed how I ate entirely as when I came into the program I was fasting and eating giant meals at night but was on a super low caloric deficit.

The mix of food for me changed and I started eating multiple meals with snacks and was losing weight as calories just kept getting added to my diet week after week. It was incredible.  

How do you feel after making those changes?

I’m happy and content not only because my food is amazing, satisfying but because I’m now immersed with a group of positive, forward thinking people who celebrate my successes and I theirs.

Mostly because previous to being a First In Family member I was totally navigating my nutrition like I was in a pitch black dark world, deep in a maze of my own making.  This program not only turned the lights on, it gave me a guide, a compass a map and a joyful adventure.

As far as my physical abilities are anyone who knows me has seen drastic changes for the better.  I’ve PR’d under a 7 min average 5K which I thought never possible. I’ve PR’d under an 8:30 minute average half marathon and I feel like the hulk on the fire ground.

Its amazing how much more energy I have in general.  It makes sense that when you’re lean, your body is no longer being depleted of energy just trying to carry around all that excess weight.

Try this challenge: Grab a couple of dumb-bells that combined are near what you think you should lose in body fat and walk around for just 5 minutes with them.  It will all make sense. 

What did your friends/family think of your transformation?

There is no way I could have the success I’ve had nor the continued success and improvement I know I will have without my wife in my corner. She’s gone out of her way to help me make this transition to a healthier life.

It doesn’t hurt one bit that her cooking is amazing!

We actually hit it off when dating because we are both “foodies”.  We enjoy a dining experience where the food is hand crafted, locally produced and where a chef can express their personal creativity.

One of the very best things about this program is I haven’t had to give that up. We still go out, only now I plan for it and manage it into my day while still making progress.

Other people in my life have called me names like “slim, skinny”  and the like and its been especially evident that I’ve transformed when I see people I haven’t seen in awhile.  I usually get a “Woah, you look great” reaction followed by a conversation about how.   

Were you active or did you workout during your journey?

I have always been active and I think what people should consider is that it’s nearly impossible to sustain meaningful weight loss via the gym, the track, the road or the pool.

Abs are made in the kitchen.

I chased the fallacy that I could run off excess food  with 1,000’s of miles under my feet and never ever met my body composition goals from running. 

What does being First In mean to you?

Being First In to me means living longer for my family and being able to head into retirement feeling confident that I invested for the long haul, like a pension or a 401k.

I’m not going to hit retirement with nothing left to enjoy.

Every day I am better for myself and my family and my coworkers than I was the day before.

I am First In.   

What was the biggest challenge or change when you started with First In and how did you overcome it?

For me it was getting over the unknown. Remember I came to First In with a giant ego and a whole lot of know it all attitude.

This was uncharted territory for me so the hardest part for me was to drop the ego and lose the fear so I could just trust my coach and the process.

As soon as I did that I stopped resisting and started enjoying the process which of course lended itself to great results.

What’s next for you and where do you see this journey taking you in the future? ​

I mean, I had what I believe to be another 6 months membership already banked when I decided to reup for another year.

I love this program with all my heart, the people, the food and the results.

Why would I want to change something so amazing?

This journey is to keep on getting better and better while enjoying great food and a better life.

What are your top 5 "secrets" for success?

1. Don’t be afraid to ask or in this case pay for help if you’re here reading this, you need it as much as I do and its worth every single penny!

2. You’re not smarter than your coach about your nutritional needs, trust him/her.

3. Be Patient.

4. Doing what you’ve always done has gotten you where you are now, You have to change if you want change. That’s simple a decision and then action.

5. Do not ask Jonathan for any recipes!


Any advice for someone thinking about getting started?

Tomorrow will never be now.

If you want real sustainable results that will leave you happy and begging for more, this is the place for you. 


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Testimonials were given freely and service members did not receive any preferential treatment, discount, or other benefit due to the nature of their service, rank, or position and in no way are the views or beliefs of any branch of the armed forces or uniformed services.