Family Status: Single
Occupation: Sales and Marketing
Hometown: Kingston, Ontario, Canada
Height: 5 feet 7 inches
Starting Weight: 351 pounds
Current Weight: 175 pounds
Current Waist Size: 30″
Lynn’s Weight Loss Interview!
How much did you lose?
I’ve lost 176 pounds and went from a size 28 in pants down to a size 11/12! I did it on my own by working very hard.
When did you become unhappy with your weight?
I got married young and have been with my husband since I was 17 years old. I had 2 children and over the years I just kept gaining weight and not really caring about how I looked. I became comfortable and the weight piled on.
What made you decide to lose weight?
I became very unhappy with my life and myself. I was very overweight and a very insecure person. I had 2 beautiful little girls and was married, but I would cry myself to sleep. I had a friend start to encourage me and give me helpful ideas which made me believe that I could do anything I set my mind to, even at 40 years old. I really started looking at myself and my life, and knew I could make changes if I really tried.
My husband and I were experiencing martial issues at the time, so one weekend I rented a hotel room to really pull myself together. I had to fight to be healthy and happy again. I started to watch what I ate and decided to walk a little bit at a time. I could barely walk upstairs without being winded, but my girls kept telling me to keep going. I then decided to end my marriage around this time knowing we were better friends. I decided at 41 years old that I would become a motivated single mom.
I pushed myself every day to be better. It hasn’t been the easiest path raising 2 beautiful girls on my own, but I never gave up. Each day became easier and in the first 2 weeks I lost 4 pounds. After a month, I had lost 10 pounds and after 1 year I lost 100 pounds! I ate right, exercised and believed in myself again. I had a very special friend who kept encouraging me to keep going and offered me support along with healthier eating ideas and my friend even worked out with me. I’ve been working a full-time job along with a part-time job for 2.5 years as a single mom, but I’ve never given up since that first day and I’m always trying to be better inside and out. I fought the temptation to eat sugar and as time went on I began to actually run up the stairs and not lose my breath. I now run with my kids, fit into rides with them and I also help anyone I can to believe in themselves and make them believe that they can change anything about their lives if they just try. I’ve never given up, even through the hard days.
What were the most important changes you made to lose weight?
I wanted to be around to see my daughters grow up and have families of their own. I wanted to hold my grandchildren one day and I wanted to live longer so I could enjoy life to the fullest!
What was the most challenging thing you had to deal with during your weight loss journey?
Mostly being a single mom with a very busy life. It was finding that little bit of time some days to make sure I kept trying. Even if I was tired or craved ice cream, I kept looking in the mirror and telling myself, “You’ve come this far, don’t give up!” I was offered to have gastric bypass, but I decided to turn it down and just do it on my own.
How long did it take you to start to see results?
Within a few months I started to really see changes. But after I changed my hair and lost 100 pounds, my friends who I hadn’t seen in quite some time almost didn’t recognize me. That made me feel so accomplished!
How long did it take for you to reach your current weight?
It took me almost 2 years as life wasn’t always consistent.
Did you have any issues with loose skin after losing the weight? If so, how did you deal with it?
I do have loose skin, but when I look at it the only thing I see is how far I’ve come and it reminds me of how hard I’ve worked.
How long have you maintained your weight loss and what are the most important factors for keeping it off?
You have to eat right and exercise. You don’t have to deprive yourself of things you enjoy, you just need to make smarter choices. Most importantly, believe in yourself again and you will stay determined and keep it off.
I have had tremendous support since the onset. In particular, one friend believed in me and took time to assist me with each step of my journey, offering support, training advice, dietary tips and overall wellness suggestions, which I followed very closely. His name is Rob. I should also mention he is not a personal trainer but someone with tremendous life experience. He has been instrumental in my journey. However, I know he would never take credit, preferring instead to tell the world I did everything on my own accord.
I had great support from other friends, too! Tammy and Karen provided me with endless encouragement but when I approached Rob it was different. He is not only knowledgeable about working out, diet and nutrition, but he seems to hold the secret to motivating people unlike anyone else I have ever met. Rob did not just sit on the sidelines waving pom-poms like many others. He actually reviewed my eating habits, asked about any medical concerns, the amount of time I could realistically commit to training, my food likes, dislikes and sensitivities, and then within a day, he came back to me with a plan that seemed both realistic and attainable.
Rob explained how food needed to be viewed as fuel for the body. He taught me how the timing of food intake changes the way a person’s body responds by utilizing the energy. He detailed how eating well can provide many of the nutrients I was lacking, as well as how nutritional supplements can assist, too. He crafted a personalized exercise routine and assisted me through his willingness to answer my questions day or night. Additionally, he took time to meet me at the gym and show me how to properly lift weights, stretch, warm-up and cool-down.
As I progressed and achieved each milestone, Rob gave me new ideas to keep pushing myself past each plateau. Through his suggestions and guidance, I began losing weight safely and properly. This, of course, lead to other amazing outcomes such as a sense of achievement and feeling as if I could do anything I set my mind to, both personally and professionally.
In the beginning, my transformation seemed slow. Despite the gradual weekly weight loss reflected on the scale, it took me a couple of months to see noticeable physical changes. However, even before I could see the improvements myself, my daughters commented about my increased energy levels and how much healthier I was appearing to be, which really helped me remain focused. I have tried very hard to improve all areas of my life. I seemed to have lost myself for a while during my failing marriage but I found myself again. Rob was there every step of the way with helpful ideas and encouragement. Through his help, as well as the unwavering support of my daughters and friends, I can honestly say that I am motivated to continue my journey and to see where life takes me!
What keeps you motivated to continue your weight loss success?
My kids! They are my world 🙂
How has your life changed now that you have lost weight?
It has changed so much! I’m happy and confident now. I go hiking, face my fears every day and I’m willing to do things now I could never have imagined doing when I was overweight. I feel happier and look forward to taking off more weight!
Do you have any advice for others who are trying to lose weight?
Don’t think that you don’t deserve to be happy. You always have a choice in life on which path to take. Leaving a marriage, being a single mom working 2 jobs and changing myself wasn’t easy, but anything is possible if you want it bad enough. Don’t be afraid, just live a better life! We only have one life to live so make the best of it!
How did ShapeFit help you reach your weight loss goals?
I’ve been reading ShapeFit’s weight loss stories for a while. I relate to those stories and they pushed me to believe I can do this!
Lynn’s Weight Loss Tips!
Weight Loss Tip #1:
Eat less but more often (every 2-3 hours). Pick up an apple instead of a chocolate bar. Count your calories and measure your portions to get you to your goal weight.
Weight Loss Tip #2:
Exercise! In the beginning, start slow because overdoing it when you first start out can be hard. Join a gym or find a way at home to set aside time each day to exercise.
Weight Loss Tip #3:
Find a good multivitamin because you want to ensure your body is getting everything it needs to stay healthy.
Weight Loss Tip #4:
I bought a dress I knew I couldn’t fit in. I hung it there and looked at it as often as I could to remind myself that the dress was my goal! Pick out an outfit you want to wear and let that outfit be a visual inspiration to inspire you.
Weight Loss Tip #5:
Don’t ever feel alone. There is always someone who loves you or will be there to support you. Share your successes with people and just push yourself a little more each day knowing you deserve to be a better you.
Lynn’s Weight Loss Eating Plan!
What do you normally eat for breakfast?
I usually eat an egg or a fruit salad.
What do you normally eat for lunch?
I have a salad or some protein like chicken or fish with a veggie.
What do you normally eat for dinner?
Dinner varies. I only eat red meat once a week so I choose a healthier protein with a side such as vegetables, or something else that’s low in fat.
What do you normally eat for snacks?
Almonds, fruit, peppers.
What type of nutritional supplements do you take?
I take a multivitamin.
Lynn’s Weight Loss Workouts!
What do you do for weight training?
I workout at Planet Fitness. I recently began a weight lifting program to begin to tone up while still losing fat. Cardio and yoga are also great for toning up.
What do you do for cardio training?
I like doing the treadmill along with biking and jogging for my cardio.