Transformation of the Day: La Toya lost 67 pounds with healthier eating habits, intermittent fasting, and exercise. As she got older, carrying extra weight caused back problems and hindered her ability to be active. Her best friend, who’s a personal trainer, and her brother supported her and encouraged her to keep going.
What was your motivation? What inspired you to keep going, even when you wanted to give up?
I have been living with obesity my entire life. I have tried and failed many times over the years, going up and down on the scale. As I got older, carrying this extra weight (especially around my midsection) created problems with my back and my ability to be athletic like I was when I was younger. I had enough for the limits that excess weight put on my life.
My best friend is a fitness instructor and went through her own 110lb weight loss journey. She has kept the weight off for 10+ years. Her encouragement and tough love pushed me to my next level. When it was hard, she had words of encouragement. It got to the point where I just took her instruction, ran with it, and made it work for my life.
My older brother has also been a huge inspiration as he is a lifelong trainer and working out is just a part of what he does. He helped me understand the need for consistency and for rest and recovery between workouts.
How did you change your eating habits?
The first thing I did was devote myself to healthy supplements that balanced my system, gave me energy, and helped me achieve more restful sleep and lower stress levels. Advocare products have been the consistent base of my weight loss journey for three years now.
I gradually started an eating regimen that naturally veered towards a lower carb intake. I limited my intake of processed foods, bread, and bad carbs and increased my vegetable/whole food intake. Over the last eight months, I decided to adopt the Ketogenic style of eating because it fits well with how I have become accustomed to eating. I also started to incorporate intermittent fasting (16:8) because it flowed perfectly with my lifestyle.
What did your workout routine consist of? How often did you work out?
I developed a lot of low back pain and sustained a few injuries, trying to jump into a workout that was too strenuous for my body size. I scaled back and purchased a semi-recumbent stationary bike for my living room, as well as a few low-impact pieces of workout equipment like a hula hoop and thigh cruncher. I started doing my stationary bike for 30 mins-1hr, one or two times per day, four times a week, consistently in the last six months. I work out for two days, then take a one-day break to make sure my body recovers well and doesn’t sustain any more injury.
What was your starting weight? What is your current weight?
At the official start of my journey, three years ago, I was tipping the scale, just under 300 pounds. I weighed 293 pounds. My current weight is 226 pounds.
What is your height?
I am 5’7″.
When did you start your journey? How long did your transformation take?
I started this last journey in May 2018.
Is weight loss surgery part of your journey?
I went through the preliminary Bariatrics program, but in the end, the doctor felt that I was in an excellent place to lose weight without having surgery.
I have recently undergone Tummy tuck surgery to remove the excess skin sagging on my stomach and causing issues with my spine therapy and recovery. I wanted to wait until I lost 100 lbs. However, I took the Spine Doctor’s recommendation to push the date up to give me a jumpstart on recovering from a bulging disc that I am overcoming. Of course, the best part is having the contour of a nicer-looking mid-section. I am a work in progress, and there is more to come on my journey to reach my final goal.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned so far?
I learned that I have to focus on more than just what I am eating. Advocare talks about the 5 Pillars to wellness. Sleep deprivation, stress, anxiety, and lack of supplementation increase cortisol levels and lessen my success with losing weight. Also, weight loss is a marathon and not a sprint. I didn’t gain all of this excess weight in one day, so I won’t lose it that way either.
What advice do you have for women who want to lose weight?
Even though you have an end goal, don’t focus on the big number. Focus on the next pound. If you fall off the wagon today, tomorrow is a new day, Just get back up and shoot for the goal and overcome.
Also, let go of the guilt of a bad eating day and start fresh. It’s okay! You have to learn to be kind to yourself because society is already cruel and biased to obesity (and the mental, emotional and physical challenges it comes with). You are a work in progress, and your journey is better traveled at a slow and steady pace instead of the fast, rocky road. Be encouraged!