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overcoming a life long weight battle: meet melissa

SW: 243.6 |  CW: 198 |  GW: 170

So many women want the magic pill to that answer. We want the quick fix to bad habits that we have spent a lifetime building and reinforcing…over…and over!

“How does one overcome a lifelong weight battle?”
Food has always been my source for everything…you name the emotion…food went with it.  Over 10 years ago, I was introduced to a weight loss program that taught me how to only eat when I was hungry, stop when I was full, and determine what areas in my life I was running to food instead of running to God when it came to my problems.

I lost close to 30 lbs and of course gained it all back like all of the other times.  But the concepts I learned never left me and that is when God and I began to have ongoing conversations throughout the years regarding my weight and why was I running to food instead of running to Him?

“It would be years later that I finally reached my breaking point.”

Don’t get me wrong, throughout all of the years that followed I lost weight…plenty of it…I would lose 10 lbs…gain it back…15 lbs…gain it back…EVEN 20 lbs and GAIN…IT…BACK!!! Ugh- somebody shoot me!

I got so sick and tired of seeing the same goals on different sheets of paper, and in my journals, over and over again that went back years!!! I couldn’t take it anymore.  I knew there was a call and vision for my life that would not allow me to just be a goal setter.  I needed to be a goal achiever in order to inspire other women.

So one day I decided, I wasn’t going to give up, not matter how long it took, no matter if I messed up or not, I WAS NOT GOING TO GIVE UP!!!! I lost the “I need to get it all off in 30 days” attitude and in August 2012 after already maintaining a 15 lb loss for some months, I went for the, “How do I change my lifestyle?” and “How do I learn how to eat in a way that is sustainable?” Not a quick a fix, not a fad, but a long-term solution that would stick with me forever!

So here’s what I did and here’s what I do in hopes to help guide you on your journey.I surround myself around people that live the lifestyle that I want and I learn from them.  By watching them they taught me skills to eliminate excuses. By watching and learning from them, they have taught me the skills needed to elimiate excuses.

  1. Take my lunch to work
  2. Plan my meals for the entire week
  3. Prep my work  AND work out clothes for the week
  4. Pack my work out clothes the night before AND put them in the car
  5. Plan a workout schedule for the week – this eliminates guess work

I always have a fitness goal ahead of me! Whether its learning how to swim to do a sprint triathlon, training for a half marathon, or doing any other type of race throughout the year.

I have a wellness coach.  Not everyone needs one but I did.  After I lost about 20 – 25lbs, I wanted the accountability and needed some more help on the nutrition side

I cut out fast foods and even for a while could not eat at restaurants until I had enough self-control to order healthy items off the menu like a salad or a protein and veggie instead of my normal burgers, fries, and soda.

I gave away my scales and came up with a weigh-in system that worked for me.  After playing this game for years, it was no longer about the number, I was determined not to get discouraged if I didn’t have a loss, if I went up by 1lb or only down by 1lb.  I wanted and needed a lifestyle change not an emotionally-filled weight loss game with the scale.

I often times workout with others  and have accountability partners that know my goals and we can call/text others all the time.

I watched documentaries like forks over knives and fat, sick, and nearly dead to learn how to “eat clean”.

So as I write this over 40+ pounds lighter than when I first started this journey, I can honestly say that I have learned lifelong skills that will be with me forever.

I am at the smallest I have been in over 10+ years and it’s the longest I have kept any amount of substantial weight off.  I am still on my journey, still excited, still encouraged, and look forward to seeing your post about being in the gym or on the pavement on Classy Fit Gals.

Believe God for the impossible!

The very issues, thoughts, and emotions that cause you to eat or overeat…God is ever so patiently waiting on you to share with Him so that He can fill those voids the same way he filled mine.

Stay connected Melissa on Twitter @melissajnixon.

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small changes, greater impact: meet candice

SW: 246  |  CW: 194  |  GW: 160/170

For the entire year of 2011 I knew I wanted to lose weight but I kept letting my schedule get in the way. You know the saying “You make time for what is important?” Well, I was not practicing that and I should have because this was my health at stake! I am an Entertainment & Lifestyle Publicist and my schedule is very grueling –  always on for my clients.

For 2011, we spent Thanksgiving in Charlotte. A month before November, my aunt sent out an email about a “Turkey Trot” that was happening Thanksgiving morning (a 5K). At first read I said “She is crazy! No one has time for that!” I just wanted to sleep in to be honest with you but said “Well, it should be fun!”.

So, Thanksgiving Day 2011 we had a blast doing that Turkey Trot and the fact that I completed that 5K and had not worked out in forever said a lot! I was proud of myself and FELT GOOD!!

Once I got back to MD, I decided to sign up for Fab Body Factory!

I started my journey Dec 2011 and my life is wonderful! When you feel good, you do good. I also feel like I am making better decisions as well.

Small Changes, Great Impact
One of the first things I realized was being able to wrap a towel around my ENTIRE body and especially those hotel towels – they always seem to give you small ones.

Another change was being able to cross my legs without having to “assist” my leg and having room in the chair on the plane, not having my thighs rub on the arms.

The energy definitely shows, as I am pretty much a “gym rat” and always looking to do 5K’s and find new workouts to incorporate into my fitness regimen. In addition, I am finding myself.

My advice to you…

To the women who want to start their journey, it has to come from YOU, from within, YOU have to want to do this.

It doesn’t matter if your doctor is telling you to shed 10-20 lbs, if you’re not ready to do it for YOURSELF it will not work.

 “The worst thing anyone can do is to lose weight for someone else.”

You have to say to yourself…

“Okay [insert your name here], I am doing this for ME! I am determined to take my life back”

Your life will be changed and you will see the difference in your decision. Sometimes it’s something you do and don’t even really share with folks until you get your groove or maybe they will notice your changes.

Know that you will be met with “Well you look fine to me”, “Please don’t lose too much, you want to keep the curves”. What do you say to that? You say, “ARE YOU CARRYING THIS WEIGHT AROUND?” I guarantee they will stop 🙂 Don’t let anyone judge you for the decision you made to take back YOURSELF!

To women who are currently on the journey…

Allow your self to motivate you to keep pushing through the struggles because there will be many. I deal with them everyday but I know living my life the way I do now, I am more happy, it’s easier to shop, I have more energy and I just want more for myself in general. Also, let your journey be someones inspiration. Allow yourself to motivate someone else as well and ALWAYS remember how far you have come! Why would you turn back now? There is greatness around the corner!

What keeps my motivated is knowing how this will benefit me in the long run and also knowing how much I inspire others. That in itself is motivating because I know everyday I tweet/IG a comment or statement about fitness or share pics from my workouts, it is touching someone. When I receive tweets/emails from women and also men stating I motivate them when they feel like not working out? That makes my day! Another motivation is my family because I know they are proud of me. Whenever you see someone on their journey of weight loss please know that is a person of their WORD! May have taken them some time to get to that moment but once they are there, they are not giving up! That shows how dedicated someone is and I want my cousins to be proud of their older cousin. I decided to take my life back!

My biggest sacrifice in order to see results is Definitely turning down events and events where I know I would being seeing some key folks. I had to tell myself “Candice, if it’s meant to me, you will see them again”.

Also, my sleep. I started to get up much earlier to workout in the morning. To some folks that is not an issue but I LOVE to get my sleep but now I am used to getting up early and LIKE to “Rise And Sweat” to get the blood flowing, lungs filled with fresh air! As far as foods, I will never deprive myself because that will cause the binge eating and I don’t want ANY parts of that in my life! With that being said, I know what 3 slices of pizza or 3 cupcakes will do to me if I eat them all at once. Portion control will always work for you, there is no going around that but I also found that I ENJOY eating healthy! Those foods aren’t as bad as what you may think they are.

Connect with Candice on Instagram @CandiceNicolePR

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focused on phillipians 4:13: meet chilitia

SW: 270.4  |  CW: 214.4  |  GW: 170-175

October 22, 2011 was the day I got tired of being sick and tired instead of continuing to cry to my friends…I decided to do something about the situation.

I walked back into my local Weight Watchers Meeting and got back on the scale to face to music.

I was very unhappy with what I saw. I hated looking at myself in the mirror and I hated taking pictures. I was so upset with myself; I would always ask myself why can I never stay committed to something?!?

I have always had gym memberships in the past and could probably count on one hand how many times I actually went. This go around it was going to be different. I joined my local YMCA and said to myself it takes 21 days to create a habit. I knew I could not count on anyone else to get this weight off but myself.”It was like the light bulb went off and suddenly I was focused and have never stopped since that day.”

I started going to my local YMCA every morning before work for at least 5 days a week and surprisingly, it felt great!

I was shocked that I actually was working out and ENJOYING IT!  I had the attitude that I can’t be stopped. I went back to my Weight Watchers meeting the following week for my second weigh in and I was down -5.8 lbs. I was screaming I GOT THIS!!!

July 2012, I joined my local Black Girls Run! (BGR) group because I really want to switch up my workout routine and plus I always wanted to run like others on the green way. So being determined I remained committed to my local Black Girls Run group.  I joined the C25K (Couch to 5K)  group and I completed my first 5K September 2012 at the first Inaugural BGR Race weekend in Atlanta, GA.

After the race I was very emotional and had a proud moment like WOW I just completed a 5K!  I was not to concerned with my time, I was just glad I finished and got to celebrate with my other BGR sisters at the finish line!

Today I still remain committed to my local BGR Group and am now the new Running Coordinator for BGR! Charlotte – talking about excited.

I have completed the Diva 5K race which was held in Myrtle Beach SC. I am now running up to three days a week where the longest distance so far was 6.2 miles! What a major accomplishment for someone that was taking 20 minutes to walk a mile almost a year ago.

On September 8, 2013 I  completed my first 10K with my BGR sisters and let’s just say – I am so excited for what is to come for me.

My goal in my weight loss journey is to continue to inspire others to do the same thing. You may hit bumps in the road along the way but realize that this journey is a process, and process that is not going to be easy.

Just keep pushing and surround yourself around positive people to keep you lifted.

One of my favorite scripture is Philippians 4:13 every time I do something new I always say this in my head, “I can do all things that Christ strengthen me.”

I am still on my journey and I hope I have inspired you to want to join me.

Connect with Chilitia on Instagram @missmccoy.

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second time’s a charm: meet farrah

SW: 291   |  CW: 218  |  GW: 150/160

“This is my second-time around the weight loss block!”

In 2009, I was fortunate enough to join the Weight Watchers At Work session at my job. I lost about 70 lbs and maintained it for about year until my pregnancy.

Needless to say, I gained the weight back plus an additional 10 lbs. I was so angry with myself for allowing my pregnancy as a crutch to “eat for two.'”

By the way, that is the biggest myth in the Book of Weight Loss rules. After having my daughter, I realized that I am not only her mother, but I am also her living example. I needed to be here for her and I also desired for her to have healthier lifestyle; better than I had as a child.

Secondly, most of my clothes in my closet were from my first weight loss. It was not cool wearing maternity clothes AFTER the baby was born – I was not having it. In having my revelations and breaking points, I began to slowly revisit my Weight Watchers tactics.

I started with watching my portion sizes, limiting my sweets slowly, trading my liquid sugars for water, and exercising on a regular basis.

Since January 2012, my life has changed because it’s not a diet anymore – it’s my lifestyle. I finally got it that every day is not going to be stellar moment. However, I am constantly checking myself for areas that I can improve.

I still have a lot of weight to lose, so I have to keep my eyes on the prize. If I feel myself slipping too far, I tighten up my regimen right at that moment and refocus. As before, a failed moment was a failed journey and I would stop – but not this time!

I also have a greater understanding that this thing is no longer about weight loss. It is about taking care of me because only I can take care of my body.

“Others may love me, but only I can love and care of my BODY as it belongs to me.”

The greatest advice that I can give is to cater to your likes. Make it comfortable in your everyday flow of life. If you have a sweet tooth, try alternatives to refined sugars or use honey.

If you are a fried food lover, you don’t have to give it up completely. Maybe once or twice a month to satisfy your indulgence or substitute. Just know whatever you eat that is out of line; you will have to work out harder to get rid of it.

Your daily diet is really what pushes the weight. Trust me, it is not the easiest thing at times, but sometimes you have to take one for team and it all depends on how bad YOU WANT IT!

Some day’s you may feel like you want it more than other times, but the secret is this…Ready?

Here it is…


“Consistency will be your best cheerleader along this journey.”

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did he just call me “pudgy?: meet stasia

SW: 185  |  CW: 146  |  GW: 146 (surpassed it!)

My breaking point….
I had so many, so I thought. The first was was in…

November of 2009
My husband and I went to his school’s homecoming (SSU) and one of his friends asked if he was with the “pudgy girl.” The look on my husband’s (my boyfriend back then) face said it all. I was so ashamed at the moment. A couple days later I attempted to workout but it just didn’t work. I would start and stop and did this for a couple of months and just gave up.

Fall of 2010
I decided  to pick myself up and try to lose weight once again. This time I did a lot better than before (so I thought). I tried a series of diets, which needless to say did not do much for me. Here I was again back at square one, stepping on the scale weighing in at 180. 

March 2011
I started dress shopping for my wedding dress.   After going back and looking at the pictures  that were taken, I just felt disgusted with myself – I felt like my weight was not going to go anywhere and that I was going to be stuck at this weight forever.

May 2011 
One of my friends was going on and on about how she joined Weight Watchers and it was a success for her and I decided it was worth a try. 

June 2011
I started Weight Watchers and in  October 2011 I was down to 152 lbs! I was feeling so good about myself that I went to look for another wedding dress and found the perfect dress for me!!

Least to say, I have been on this weight loss journey off and on for two years.

July 2013 I made a promise to myself that this time is it. I will continue to workout and watch what eat regardless of what ANYONE has to say.

Since losing some much unneeded weight I can say I have become a lot more active. I have way more energy to just get up and go now. I can now jog for THREE MILES without passing out which at one point in time I could barely do a mile without feeling like my legs were going to go out on me.

You have to believe in yourself to achieve your goals.
You have to push yourself and be your own motivation. Don’t get discouraged because you don’t see results right away, because your results will come but YOU will only see it if you KEEP PUSHING! Every time I look in the mirror I motivate myself. I love the way I look and most importantly I love the way I FEEL!  To keep myself motivated I constantly post workout pictures, meal pictures and my weigh in’s. When I get discouraged I have all of this to look back on and it helps keep me going.
My biggest sacrifice to lose my weight was eating late night dinner with my husband. He doesn’t get home until close to midnight and I would wait until he got home to cook dinner and of course I would eat and go straight to sleep. I still eat somewhat late, around 9, but I make it a priority to stay up for at least two hours before I go to sleep. 

As far as cutting out foods, I haven’t done any of that.  By being on Weight Watchers, I learned that I could still eat and lose weight. All I do is focus on portion control and watch how much of something I eat.

Connect and follow Stasia’s fitness journey on Instagram @stasia_j

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the news changed her life:
meet keyondra

SW: 228  |  CW: 165  |  GW: 150

“Everyone has a breaking point somewhere in life, mine came when I got an ulcer in 2010 and thankfully lost 10 lbs.”

I say often since then, Lord thank you for allowing that to happen cause I honestly don’t know If I would have lost weight if it had not.

I decided last year that I would make an attempt at losing weight and lost 15 more lbs… smh so shamed! Lol I spent all that year trying to lose weight and only lost 15 lbs. BUT I lost it! This year was the start of my being serious about my journey.  I’ve met goals that I hadn’t before!!!

I’ve honestly been on my weight loss journey for 4 years… But seriously on this journey for 1 year and some…My life of course has changed drastically! I now shop at stores like: BCBG, ZARA, local boutiques comfortably.

I’ve sadly always had a problem with people looking at me… LOL Definitely because of my insecurities but I now I am walking into rooms with my head held high waiting on them to look… LOL

The way I look at myself has changed!!!

I feel great…

I encourage anyone who wants to lose weight to start right NOW. Start little by little if you have to.  I started by drinking water only and ridding myself of bread. Don’t forget to WORKOUT!!!

You can’t eat and lose weight only, and you can’t workout and lose weight only.  You’ve got to do both AND create your own system that works for you.

Stay connected with Keyondra on Instagram @MocaBarbie

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praying for supernatural weight loss: meet kim

SW 307  |  CW: 228  |  GW: 175

“I had been chunky for most of my life. My mom said it started when my sister and I were little.”

Our family said “they’re too skinny, you need to feed those kids!”

Being young parents, my mom and dad listened to our family and started to “feed us.” I was around 8 or 9 years old. My eating habits spiraled out of control as I was able to make choices on my own. I never ate a lot but I ate a lot of the wrong foods. My mom was never that parent who made us eat all of our food or foods we didn’t like. She gave us the choice to eat or not eat what was cooked. As we all started to learn to eat better we realized that she was not wrong in allowing us to choose but, that we should have been limited in our options.

I started my weight loss journey when I was in the 10th grade. If I remember correctly, I weighed 250-260 lbs. My mom, sister, and I joined Curves for women and I thought oh this is it, I’m finally going to be smaller. But I did not realize the research that I needed to do to help with my success. I also didn’t realize my mindset about food needed to change.

While in high school, 11th grade I believe, I lost 30 lbs because I cut out eating junk food and I had some physical activity in gym. I quickly gained that back when I started my undergrad program, around the time of my parents’ divorce. I’m not sure if it was the stress from the divorce or not that made me eat but my mom had to work longer hours and my sister and I chose not to cook or eat healthy so we ate out! It wasn’t hard to gain the weight (30 lbs and more) with me eating out 3-4 times/day and eating 3000-4000 cals/day!”So, as many people who try to lose weight, we paid for a membership that didn’t get used!”

“I owe my weight loss results to God and the mindset He’s given me to do the research!”I became more serious about losing weight early 2006. Honestly, I didn’t want to lose weight for health purposes, I just wanted to lose weight so that I could wear clothes from wherever I wanted them from! So I did A LOT of research on how many calories I needed to consume and burn in order to lose weight. I “stopped” for a while, about a year, and started back up in 2007. I’ve been off and on the bandwagon but each time I started back the “rest time” got shorter and shorter. Working out and eating right became more of a lifestyle. I’m not perfect now but I surely don’t eat 3000-4000 cals/day like I used to!

I prayed and still pray for His supernatural weight loss and not only the will to workout but also the follow through! My journey has taken 7 years (on and off) but yours doesn’t have to! 😉

I’m not done with my journey, I have 50 lbs left to lose. I will continue to push through and pray! If you are reading this and feel like you cannot lose weight because you’re “too big” don’t give up on the thought! I know what it’s like to feel hopeless and being on the top end of the journey. But trust me day by day week by week and prayer by prayer you will get stronger and more hopeful!

Life for me hasn’t changed much with the exception of me being more conscious of what/how much I’m eating. I still weigh myself daily because it helps me to monitor my progress if I don’t do so well on a day. But I am able to shop in stores that I hadn’t been able to in the past!

I must say THAT ROCKS

Connect with Kim on instagram @keys2luxlife

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shedding the weight gave her confidence: meet apryl-joi

SW: 170  |  CW: 146  |  GW: 140

“It was the main/only sense of accomplishment I felt around that time. I hated both jobs, was miserable, and single. I had no idea where my life was going.  Working out and losing weight made me feel accomplished. Proud. Amazing.”

On the outside looking in, I may seem like a fit girl who has known her way around the gym or someone’s sports field for much of her life or that being fit is and has been an easy journey, but this is far from my truth.

I am a 29 year old personal trainer who wishes to inspire, encourage, and motivate others to live a healthier lifestyle through my own active lifestyle. I’m passionate about people, see the best in others, believe that anything is possible, and want to make a difference however and whenever I can.

Looking at my life prior to now, I would have never imagined in a gazillion years that I’d be where I am today as far as my health and physique are concerned. I must give all praise and glory to God for taking my life on the journey through which it has been so far—it has surely been a ride!

Now, let’s take a moment to get to know me—Apryl-joi. I am a curvy girl with muscles, standing 5 feet 5 inches tall, rocking 146 pounds that have been earned naturally and honestly. But I haven’t always been this girl. At the age of 18, I was diagnosed with an illness that could only be controlled at the time with medications that included steroids. If you know anything about steroids, they increase your appetite, cause weight gain, and cannot be stopped abruptly–but one must be weaned off of them slowly—this means the effects last much longer than anyone would anticipate. THIS is what caused the dreaded weight gain, but to family and friends, I looked somewhat normal and they got used to seeing me thicker than my usual.

Well, I wasn’t. I carried around this weight and rocked size 12s and 14s for 4+ years. The college I attended had an awesome workout facility, but I only took advantage of it about 1 to 2 times per semester. Yeah…the weight was surely going to fall off that way….NOT! While teaching high school Spanish back in September or October of 2008, my best friend encouraged me to start walking and working out at and around the school once the students were gone for the day. I was sick of looking and feeling the way I did and there was a new-found spark in me that was unlike any time before.

I had never taken weight loss and getting healthy and fit seriously until this time around. I took my friend’s idea of getting active and ran with it! Instead of working at school, I snagged an inexpensive gym membership and began to dedicate at least 3-4 days of activity in fitness classes, on the weight machines, and on even got some dreaded quality time on the Stairmaster.

I started at 177 pounds and had a goal to get down to 140 pounds. I didn’t have a time frame in which I wanted to do it, nor did I truly have a plan, I just knew that I would stick to physical activity, change my eating habits slowly but surely, and that I wouldn’t weigh myself for at least 2 months. I wanted to be surprised at my first weigh in and boy was I!

I can’t quite remember what I had dropped by Thanksgiving, but I was happy with the progress (any progress should be celebrated) and I was determined to keep pushing. By my 25th birthday, I was truly ready to reveal the new me. I was no longer self-conscious about wearing dresses, I felt inclined to wear my arms and shoulders out, and my stomach was no longer a huge issue—pun intended.

Overall, I would have to say that weight loss helped me to discover a greater sense of pride and confidence in myself. I am a natural social butterfly, but the weight loss allowed me to be even more comfortable in my own skin. Since my fit life journey began almost 5 years ago, I’ve been able to encourage, inspire, and motivate others through my journey—struggles, minor fluctuations, and all. I have surprised myself with the level of dedication, strength, and perseverance I’ve been able to display.

I’ve proven that a woman can be strong, successful, ambitious, inspirational, and beautiful, both inside and out, through any process or journey, and accomplish exactly what she sets out to do, and more.

The one thing that keeps me going is remembering where I started and never wanting to go back.

Along with excess weight come excess emotions, health issues, and sometimes a negative self-image, which can lead to negative behaviors.

If I had to give one piece of advice to my Classy Fit Gals, I would say to always remember your WHY during your journey and to never, no matter what, give up—a lot is riding on your decision to get and remain healthy.

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tapping into her inner “solance”: meet kendra

SW: 243   | CW: 195   |   GW: 175/180

*Goal Size is 10!!*

“The breaking point in my journey was when I went to the doctor thinking I had sleep apnea because I snored like a monster.”

After wasting time and money to find out that it was a simple issue as me just losing weight, I knew I had to get going.

I started going to Zumba and in February 2010 and became a certified instructor. I knew as an instructor I had to look my best which in turn motivated me to lose more lbs. I wanted to be healthy and not feel like a rock dancing.

When I started my journey I was a size 18 going into a size 20…I knew that was not going to happen and I had to make some life changes. I have been seriously working at this since about June 2010 and it’s been a rocky one. From traveling the world and “living” in a war zone, my weight has definitely been a roller-coaster.

“Getting healthy has changed my life tremendously.”

I know that I WILL maintain a health lifestyle. I am not trying to be a size 2 but a size healthy. Being healthy has made my life more exciting. I would never think I would be the girl that wanted to work out. The feeling you get after a great sweat and good thigh burn is the best. I love doing HIIT, Tabatas, Zumba, and minor weight lifting for my workout rush.

One thing I want women to remember  is who are wanting to start their journey is this – you did not gain the weight overnight so don’t expect to fall asleep and wake up skinny. If you do, let me know the secret! Just take your journey one day at a time and remember not to compare your hips to hips. We are all beautiful and individually made to be YOU and no one else.

Set your goals on how you want to look, and make YOUR vision clear! Make sure you reward yourself (and not with just food)! Give yourself certain incentives that will give you an extra push and make you feel good.

Always a have a great supporting cast…I’m so thankful/BLESSSEDDDDDDDD that I have friends and family who will support my many journeys in life and it helps!

Being healthy should be a journey for all.

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summer 2013:
the beginning of my journey

SW:  225  |  CW: Gained weight back from my smallest which was 190 |  GW:  150

I remember the day like it was yesterday. I went to the doctor for my annual physical and of course I was nervous. Going to the doctor was never an exciting adventure for me – the suspense throws my pressure up every time- and this time it was no different.

As I waited patiently for my doctor to come into my room, I began to pray. I didn’t know what she was going to tell me.

“I knew I was overweight but I didn’t know how overweight I was.”

When she finally came in, she said “Eboné you weigh 220 pounds.” I said “WHAT!” She knew by the look on my face that I was in pure shock, and at that moment the tears began to fall.

It was then that I knew in my heart that I had to make some changes.  I called my then fiancé and started crying. Naturally it was easier for me to blame someone else for my weight and of course I did- but he took the blame like a champ and said “babe,lets work on it together.” We came up with a game plan but so much was going on in our lives that year that health and wellness took a back burner so I pushed it off.

We were both in graduate school getting our MBAs, preparing to get married a few months after I graduated and in the midst relocating to another city.

That was in 2012….

Now here we are 2013 and still my health and wellness was not the priority in my life. Heck I was a newlywed in a new city adjusting to married life. Checking out the restaurants in our new town was recreation for me- it shows in my 2k+ pics on Instagram!

February 2013 – I weighed 225 pounds!

But one day, I got on the scale and it read a whopping 225 LBS!! I knew something was up because my bras were getting tighter, my face fatter and my knees were killing me! Standing for long period of times was hard for me, and let me wear heels…I was really in pain.

April 1, 2013 my husband decided to cancel our membership at the Y and revisit a gym we visited when we first got back from our honeymoon. I said “dude you’re not leaving me, I’m going with you.” So we went, talked to the sales lady and decided it was time to make a change.

Of course the sales lady wanted to add on to the sale so she asked if we were interested in personal training. Knowing the goals we had in mind my husband told her that we needed to discuss in private so she walked away to let us chat.

In our conversation I got very emotional. See, my weight was always a sensitive subject for me-no one ever knew it but it was. I felt my weight held me back from pursuing a lot of opportunities. I’ve felt like this for years! My personal life didn’t suffer at all, I was always fabulous (on the outside) BUT on the inside and my true self esteem suffered.

I knew I was heavy but I had no idea how heavy I was and how bad it was.

Truly God spared my life because the doctor didn’t find any signs of illness, but she did see some signs of high blood pressure and high cholesterol- all of which run in my family. She also said I was at high risk to get diabetes- that runs in my family also so I knew I had to make some changes.  I stood in determination that I was going to break the chain of illness in my family because I was going to start taking better care of myself.

As I was wiping my tears the sales lady came out but this time a cute fit lady came out and introduced herself as Melissa- she is one of the trainers. Melissa was so bubbly and full of energy and I immediately liked her!

Melissa looked at my report and said wow, I used to weigh over 200 pounds so I understand your struggle. I immediately began to cry…AGAIN! There was no way this petite fit lady full of bubbles used to weight over 200 pounds! I knew right then and there I wanted a trainer and my husband supported me in that decision and we decided to make that investment in me.

So, here I am today, sharing with you my personal journey, my testimony to become to best ebby.K I can be.

Left: Summer 2013  | Right: September 2013

“The journey to defeat all doubts that I’ve had in my head for years about loosing weight and being athletic again are broken. ”

I CAN do this and i WILL do this! This is a walk not a race; a  journey to not only see the numbers on the scale go down, but to become who I truly am created to be and that is to BE BEAUTIFUL starting from the inside and having it radiate out- SEE myself as beautiful and most important FEEL the beauty that is within me.

I invite you to stay a while and take this walk with me. I pray you are inspired and empowered to dig within yourself and find YOUrself.

“feel your BEAUTY and OWN IT!©

Stay Connected, Be Inspired!

Update: Since this post I’ve gained some of this weight back BUT I’m not at the beginning anymore so there is still opportunity for me to finally get to my goal weight!