Kristen Tomasic, 45
Pounds lost in 12 weeks: 27.5
Total pounds lost: 60
I struggled with my weight since high school, and it only got worse after college, when I started to put my career–I’m vice president of a software company–and family before my health. When my daughter was born, I never lost the baby weight, and each year, the weight compounded. At my heaviest, I weighed 199 pounds.
Why I Started Walking: I would begin a new “diet” every Monday, but I never really stuck to a healthy eating program or committed to exercise. I started this program because I realized that to be successful, I needed an exercise plan. I was also concerned about some family health scares–a close relative had a stroke, and both of my grandmothers had congestive heart failure–so I was worried that I could be predisposed to some serious health issues.
Kristen’s Best Advice:
“Make a specific diet and exercise plan-figure out how many calories you need and when you’re going to exercise–and write it down so you’re clear on your commitment. Then chart your progress each week so you hold yourself accountable.”
My Biggest Struggle: It was hard to find time to work out. I’m not a morning exercise person, so in order to succeed, I had to walk in the evening. It wasn’t easy. I throw dinner together for my family when I get home from work, so I started walking at night, during the time I normally would watch TV. There were some nights when I wasn’t able to get outside until 9:15, but I walked anyway because I knew that I wouldn’t get up and do it in the morning.
What Kept Me Motivated: I charted my weight loss progress on a spreadsheet, just as I would monitor a project at work. Being able to look back at how far I’d come kept me motivated. Soon after starting the program, I began losing about 2 pounds a week!
What I’m Doing Now: I walk a minimum of 35 minutes 5 times a week. To stay motivated, I use the app RunKeeper (free; iTunes store), which tells me how fast I’m walking and how many calories I’m burning. It inspires me to walk faster!
My Biggest Payoff: I feel great, I have more energy, and losing weight has definitely helped my self-esteem. I used to dress in loose clothing, but now I’m not afraid to wear cute outfits that show off my newly slim figure. Shopping is definitely a lot more fun!