Transformation of the Day: Chanel lost 30 pounds. In high school, she began to experience rapid weight gain and PCOS symptoms, but she wouldn’t be diagnosed until she was in college. During her journey, she found success with a plant-based, gluten-free, and dairy-free diet paired with lots of exercise.
I was always an active person, so when I began gaining weight at a rapid pace in high school, my body was going through it. Also, my period stopped coming. All of this worried my doctors, my parents, and myself.
I tried so many diets and weight loss remedies, but nothing worked. By the time I entered my freshman year of college, I had gained a lot of weight. I gained the freshmen 15 as well and maybe more. Even though I was active, my diet was not the best. I was very insecure and embarrassed.
In 2018, I made the choice to start my weight loss journey seriously. In the first year of my journey, I lost 30 pounds. I went gluten-free and dairy-free, I was diagnosed with PCOS, and my period finally came back.
While I’m still learning my body and what works for me, I’m so happy I decided to live a healthy lifestyle. It’s not easy, but that’s what makes it a journey.
Tell us more about how you changed your eating habits.
Changing my eating habits was probably one of the hardest things I had to do. Because I have PCOS, I went vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free. Now, I am just gluten and dairy-free. However, I watch my meat intake and try to stick to a vegetarian diet for the most part.
One of my favorite things to make is tofu. I know tofu can be a hit or miss with many people, but it’s so versatile. When seasoned correctly, it can be delicious. I am a very picky eater, so finding things to replace my favorite foods (like cheese and bread) was hard. I found replacements that I love, and it made being gluten and dairy-free so much easier. I also practice intermittent fasts which I think helped so much to repair the body internally.
What did your workout routine consist of?
I worked out every day when I began my journey, sometimes early in the morning or late at night. My main goal was to keep active, which included jump roping, going to the gym, going hiking, working out with YouTube workout videos, or dancing.
Since I am a full-time college student, I do my best to exercise as much as I can with the pandemic happening and having to learn from home. Now, my favorite things to do are walking, YouTube workouts, and yoga. My goal is to be active for at least 30 minutes minimum daily.
What was your starting weight? What is your current weight?
I’m not exactly sure what my starting weight was, but I’m pretty sure I was around 250 lbs or higher. My current weight is about 220 lbs or less. I’m not focused on the scale. My goal is to feel comfortable in my skin and not look at numbers. Instead, I look at how I feel and how my clothes fit.
What is your height?
I am 5’6″.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned so far?
My biggest lesson is that nothing comes easy. I would love to snap my fingers and be at my goal weight. I would love to close my eyes and fast forward through the challenging moments.
The journey isn’t meant to be easy. It’s meant to shape you into the person you will become by the end of it. It’s a learning process, and I’m continually learning about how my body works and what I need to be my best self, both mentally and physically.
What advice would you like to share with women who want to lose weight?
Keep pushing. I know sometimes it feels impossible, and the goal seems unreachable. On those days when you feel like you can’t, those should be the days that you push the hardest.
Also, give yourself a chance to adjust. Losing weight takes a lot of mental as feel as physical work. I’m still learning to give myself a break. I’m learning to understand that I’ve reached some goals, and I should be proud of myself for not giving up.
Lastly, surround yourself with people who love and support you. It will make your journey so much better because you have the support of people who believe in you.