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Meet Zedakiah Koterba

Today we’d like to introduce you to Zedakiah Koterba.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Zedakiah. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
My journey started in the middle of nowhere; the most exciting time I can remember was watching a young woman twirl a Little Caesars Pizza promotional sign as fast as lightning on the corner of 20th and L street in Omaha, Nebraska. Although I miss my family often, living in Los Angeles for over a decade has changed my life for the better. My start as a performer began when I was only four years old.

I would assemble all of our dining chairs together in a row to make up my stage and force my parents as well stuffed animals and vacuums (yes I collected real vacuum cleaners as a small child and I still haven’t figured out why) watch whatever show I was putting on that day. Soon those shows turned into live performances and before I knew it those stuffed animals and vacuums turned into a sold-out Staples Center. Hi, I’m Zedakiah Koterba and when I perform in front of 30,000 people I pretend that they are naked or have heads of cheese.

Nobody in my big midwestern family could believe when I became a recurring guest star on Jimmy Kimmel Live. I would have giant meatballs thrown at my face by Katie Couric, phone calls with Justin Bieber, and duets with Michael Bolton. Jimmy Kimmel was one of the most extraordinary experiences of my life; although I still love going back home and driving past Little Caesars and remembering that girl who was always twirling her sign.

Has it been a smooth road?
I sat there in the doctor’s office being told everything my father had been told before me. The cycle was about to repeat. I was on the road to heart disease and diabetes at only 18 years old and it took that doctor’s visit to completely change my life forever. Although I was technically obese, I didn’t think it was a big deal because many of my family members were so much bigger than me and didn’t seem to do anything about it.

People talk about weight loss like its no big deal, but I’ve never worked harder in my life than I did to lose the 85 pounds that were quietly ruining my health. It started with chicken and kale. It then progressed to hiking and yoga with a massive amount of will power and support from my friends. My mile time went from 13 minutes to 6 minutes and I can now easily run a 5k. My doctor couldn’t believe it when I walked into his office and I had completely overhauled my life.

After I lost the weight, the most noticeable difference was not only how my friends and family treated me but how the industry started to treat me as well. My agents had to adjust from pitching me as a character actor who often played the chubby bully to the teen heartthrob or leading man; and I had to adjust to my new physical appearance as well. If I could go back and change anything from health issues to eating only cans of tuna and living in a garage with my parents and our dog, I wouldn’t, because I know it has shaped me into the man I am proud to be today.

Tell us more about your work.
I live the character. I am the character. I’m not an actor, I’m someone who exists in the shoes of the character for the role I need to portray.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
Honestly, you can’t even get me to complain about the traffic. My heart is here and will never be anywhere else. (Grandma if you see this I love and miss you but dear God I do not want to go back to Nebraska anytime soon).

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