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Weight Loss Success Stories: Rachel Loses 173 Pounds Using A Low Carb Lifestyle And With Her Husband By Her Side

Rachel/Mark Lost 173/100 Pounds

Both of us have been overweight our entire adult lives. We met 17 years ago at a bar and that set the tone for the rest of our relationship. We ate and drank to excess for over a decade.

NAME : Rachel/Mark
AFTER WEIGHT : 180/223
POUNDS LOST : 173/100

HOW DID YOUR WEIGHT AFFECT ANY ASPECT(S) OF YOUR LIFE?  Without knowing it was weight related, we were angry and bickering all the time. We drank a lot and that anger was intensified 10 fold. We never liked to leave the house, had nothing to wear, were always sweating, out of breath, and in deep depression.

WHAT WAS THE “TURNING POINT” THAT GOT YOU STARTED ON YOUR WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY?  There was no specific event that triggered our change. After a decade of talking about wanting to lose weight, we woke up on March 1st, 2015, and decided that day that we were going to start a lowcarb diet.

HOW DID YOU GET STARTED?  We agreed that we would cut the carbs. We purchased an Atkins carb counter handbook and started reading labels. We made food at home from fresh ingredients and avoided all sugar, flour, pasta, bread, fruit, and potatoes.

HOW LONG AFTER YOU STARTED DID YOU BEGIN TO SEE RESULTS OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS EFFORTS?  We don’t own a scale, so it wasn’t until two months in that we went to the dr and discovered that I had lost 48lbs and Mark had lost 30lbs. That was the best motivation ever to keep going!

WHAT WAS THE HARDEST PART?  The challenges for us were giving up our unhealthy pattern of eating out and drinking too much alcohol. That had been our hobby for over a decade, so we struggled to find new ways to occupy our time.

DID YOU EVER WANT TO GIVE UP? WHAT KEPT YOU GOING?  We would ask each other regularly whether today was the day we were going to have French fries. Are we giving up today? The answer was always no. We kept each other accountable and supported each other through the struggles. We kept each other going. Also, once we found out about the weightloss in the first two months, we knew we had to keep going.

DID YOU HIT ANY WEIGHT LOSS PLATEAUS? HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THEM?  We don’t own a scale and do not base our progress on a number. We both went from 3/4XL clothing to a Med/Large. We felt healthy. We were taken off blood pressure medication and lost all our aches and pains. That is more important than any number on a scale.

HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO LOSE MOST OF THE WEIGHT?  It took us 16 months to get to where we are now. We had a lot to lose, so it came off much quicker in the beginning, but we are still consistently losing 5 lbs a month.

DID YOU HAVE ANY NON-SCALE VICTORIES?  So many!! The first one was a flight that we did not need a seat belt extender. That was amazing! Another is being able to sit in booths at restaurants! The best non scale victory for us has been being able to shop in the “normal” people sections. No more Plus Size clothes. It has opened up an entirely new world for us and it’s the most freeing feeling in the world that only someone who has been obese can truly understand.

WHAT DOES YOUR DAILY DIET LOOK LIKE COMPARED TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER?  When we were heavier our meals were heavy on carbs and sugar. Potatoes and bread every day, multiple hamburgers and fries, fast food every day, multiple times a day. Now we cook almost every meal at home. We eat a lot of fresh vegetables and salads. We meal plan every weekend and keep healthy food in the pantry and fridge. We explore recipes and make cooking a fun task each day.

HOW DOES YOUR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY COMPARE TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER?  When we first started this journey we had never exercised a day in our lives. Very sedentary lives. Work, then sit on the couch and eat until bed. After we started losing weight we felt good and wanted to do more. We started walking around our neighborhood a few nights a week and built up the amount of exercise over time. In January 2016 we joined a gym and do cardio and weights 4 times a week.


  1. Set achievable goals. Losing 10 pounds is much less intimidating than losing 100lbs.
  2. Make good choices. Once you set your goal, ask yourself every day whether this lunch choice or snack choice helps you get closer or farther from that goal.
  3. Eat at home. When you cook, you know what’s in your food and you can control portions.
  4. Set yourself up for success by planning in advance and keeping it simple.

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