Transformation of the Day: Jacquetta lost 62 pounds with healthy eating habits and exercise. After working the nightshift for ten years, this RN decided to go to grad school and become a Family Nurse Practitioner. While in school, she was diagnosed with several ailments, and she reached her highest weight. To turn her health around, she decided to dedicate one year to get into the best shape possible.
I have been a registered nurse, working nightshift for the past ten years. I decided to further my education, so I entered the MSN program in November of 2016 to become a Family Nurse Practitioner. In 2018, I entered the clinical portion of the program, and my life spiraled out of control.
I maintained a workout regimen before graduate school. However, during the clinical portion of the MSN program, I stopped all physical activity so I could work full-time and continue school. In March 2019, I noticed that I could no longer wear my biggest pair of work scrubs. Not only could I not fit into my scrubs, but I had an array of health issues.
I had developed GERD and gastritis so bad it would wake me from my sleep. I began to snore, my appendix had to be removed, and I felt just horrible carrying the extra weight on my joints. I also was diagnosed with PCOS, and my cycles were 45-50 days apart. I was told I had insulin resistance by one of the doctors.
I knew I had gained weight, but I was afraid to look at the scale. When I finally decided to step on the scale, I had reached my highest weight of all time: 198.3 pounds. I’m only 5’2″. I was shocked, and I stood there in disbelief. I knew something had to change. At that moment, I made a promise to myself that when graduate school was complete, I would invest in myself for at least one year to get into the BEST physical shape possible and try to reverse some of my health ailments.
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I wanted to take my fitness to another level, so I hired IFBB pro Kevin Johnson. I was so uncomfortable in my skin that I did not wait until graduation day. I began working with Kevin on April 3rd, 2019, one month before graduation. Kevin provided a detailed meal plan and a workout regimen. My sessions with him consisted of an hour of intense weight training three times a week. In addition to the weight training, I did 30 minutes of cardio five days per week.
I stopped eating out for every meal and meal prepped five small meals a day consisting of a protein and a vegetable. Some of my meals also required complex carbohydrates. I ditched the sodas and sweet tea and drank three liters of water daily. I also took a multivitamin, probiotics, and turmeric daily.
People often ask me, “What motivated you to get in shape?” My initial motivation was my health! I also was very uncomfortable in my skin. Giving up was never an option because I knew I did not want to continue the lifestyle I was living. As a healthcare worker, you see and treat chronic illnesses that are often preventable. My quality of life mattered to me, not just how I looked. I am a single mother to a beautiful 20-year-old daughter who looks up to me, and I wanted to set an example that anything is possible once you set your mind to it. I want to be around to meet my grandchildren and live a fulfilled life.
There are days when I want to give up (especially during quarantine due to COVID-19), but I look back at the pictures taken on April 3rd, 2019, and I realize I have worked too hard to quit. I get up every single day and follow the plan, no matter how hectic my life seems.
I currently weigh 136 pounds, making my total weight loss of 62 pounds in 15 months. I am eight pounds away from my goal of 128 pounds, which will make a total of 70lbs down when achieved. This is not just a fad. It’s a lifestyle for me now, and I am invested and excited about my future. As far as my health, no more snoring, gastritis, GERD, irregular cycles (33 days apart now), joint aches, or pains.
The biggest lesson that I have learned, as cliché as it sounds, is consistency is key! Take one day at a time, and if you have a bad day, do not give up. Instead, reset and start again.
The advice that I would give to my Queens: Set a goal, be CONSISTENT, visualize your end results, get a trainer or an accountability partner, and just eat the chicken! Fast food is not going anywhere. One day of cheating is one day you’re delayed from reaching your end goal.