Transformation of the Day: Agyei aka AJ lost 81 pounds. She lost the weight despite a number of challenges, including concussion headaches, anxiety and depression. Walking every day and making some serious changes to her eating habits has truly paid off. Her story is more proof that amazing transformations are possible for women over 40. Check out her journey.
What was your motivation?
My motivation is this drive I have to convince women, particularly black women over the age of 40, that weight loss and permanent lifestyle change is possible (it’s the health educator in me). I’m also motivated by seeing fitness experts/body builders like 60 something year old Wendy Ida and 80 year old Earnestine Shepherd out here doing their very thing. They both started weight loss/toning after age 40. Plus, I got tired of my knees hurting, joints and back hurting, busting out of my clothes, and not being able to walk up or down a flight of stairs without getting winded.
How did you change your eating habits?
I stopped eating a lot of stuff GRADUALLY. First, sugar (lost 10 pounds in one month). Then pork, then white carbs, then beef (6 attempts), then most dairy, and then most poultry. I also did JJ Smith’s 10 Day Green Smoothie Cleanse a couple of times (8 attempts).
I’m officially a Flexitarian now. I eat some seafood as my animal protein source 2-3 times per month. I also cut out fried foods and fast foods, except for fries every now and again. My diet is low carb, low fat, low sodium, low sugar and 80-90% plant based. I drink 12 cups of alkaline water each day.
What did your workout routine look like?
I’ve mainly walked off this weight. I walk 3-5 miles almost daily, rain or shine. I’ve been scared to pump iron because muscle weight was making me gain. So, I hired a running coach/personal trainer mainly for conditioning work every 2 weeks. I also did cardio DVD’s in my living room or classes at the gym every now and again.
Starting weight/Current weight
I weighed 297 pounds in July 2016 and now I weigh 216 pounds (as of February 2018). When I get down to 197lbs, for an even 100, I’m throwing the biggest party ever! I’m 5’9.5″ I plan to be bikini ready by June and competition ready by December.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned so far?
I’ve learned is that every journey is different. What works for someone else may not work for me. I’ve also learned that combining different programs is okay. Starting over multiple times is okay too. I’ve managed to lose this weight despite a BINGE EATING DISORDER, an ANXIETY DISORDER, INSOMNIA, CONCUSSION HEADACHES (epilepsy), OVERACTIVE BLADDER, MUSCLE SPASMS, and BIPOLAR DEPRESSION.
What advice would you share with other people who want to lose weight?
My advice is to realize that this is a process and that there are no quick fixes or short cuts to permanent weight loss. What works for one may not work for all. What you see on Youtube may not be accurate. See a nutritionist and physician before starting your journey so you can know what your numbers are (BMI, blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol), the meds you’re on or need, and what’s the best course of action FOR YOU.