Update 2020: We have been following Melanie’s journey since 2018 and she is still going strong.
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Being proud of yourself is not arrogant. If you don’t celebrate you nobody will. Celebrate the small and big accomplishments Celebrate your growth Celebrate your wins Celebrate your life 🙌🙏🏽 Almost 34 and I couldn’t be more proud. #braiderscorner #blueprint #provision #2020goals #2ndchances #wecanWin #iamsomebody #yourhairisyourcrown #newlevels
Transformation of the Day: Melanie lost 108 pounds. After years of trying to release the weight, her turning point came when she was diagnosed with pre-diabetes. Wanting to avoid a family history of the disease, she did her research on nutrition, completely changed her eating habits and tracked her progress with photos for inspiration. Check out her 3+ year journey.
What was your motivation?
My motivation came when I reached my heaviest weight and was informed that was pre-diabetic. I lost my father and grandmother, who were both diabetics. Also, I had been trying to lose the weight for years, but for all the wrong reasons. I was never successful at losing more than 20 pounds. On top of all this, I battled with seizures and misdiagnosis for ten years.
What inspired you to keep going when you wanted to give up?
I used my pictures to track my progress. Looking at myself daily, I never saw the change. However, when I would look back at my old pictures it inspired me to keep going. I also set new goals for myself which served as inspiration.
How did you change your eating habits?
I started searching on YouTube for meal prep videos. In the beginning, I cut out soda, juice, and all red meat. Then, I transitioned to a more plant based diet, which has now a become lifestyle. I still have meat… chicken, fish, turkey.
I learned what healthy carbs are and started reading books on nutrition. I added more fresh fruits and vegetables into my diet, and increased my protein and fiber by adding shakes to my daily regimen. I drank only water, hot tea, and almond milk.
Foods I cut back on: Processed foods, artificial sweeteners, sugars, fast foods and frozen dinners. I completely cut out pasta, fried foods and ground beef. I only cook with olive oil and coconut oil.
Some of the healthy foods I eat: Raw vegetables and green vegetables (ie: cucumbers, cabbage, etc.), sweet potatoes, beets and radishes. I enjoy salmon, tilapia, lean turkey and brown rice. I make Herbalife protein shakes and teas. I also do juicing.
What did your workout routine look like?
The first year of my journey, I mainly focused on nutrition. I lost the first 40 pounds by just changing my diet. Into the second year, I spent at least 1 hour, 5 days a week, in the gym. I started with a stationary bike and light arm weights. Once I got down to 190 pounds, I started spending more time in the gym and focused on cardio and weights. Now, I workout 4-5 days a week.
What was your starting weight? What is your current weight?
My starting weight was 284 pounds and my current weight is 176 pounds. My height is 5’5″.
When did you start your journey?
December 2014, so it’s been more than 3 years.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned so far?
Don’t be discouraged when the weight is not coming off as fast as you would like. Just stay consistent and disciplined and you will get there.
What advice do you have for other women who want to lose weight?
Learn what your body needs. Listen to your body. Rest when you need to rest, and cleanse your system. Nutrition is the key to any successful weight loss journey and to a healthy lifestyle.