Name: Cecily Jamelia
Height: 5 feet, 8 inches
Before weight: 162
How I gained it: For about three years, I dated a guy who was really obsessed with fitness and eating right, so I never really needed to be motivated about working out — he had enough motivation for both us. Our relationship came to an end in January of 2008, and I was freed from the scrutiny (food consumption) and boot-camp-like workouts I had endured. I still liked the results of working out, but without him, I just lacked the motivation of going to the gym. As the year went on, I began eating more and more and working out less and less. Also, I am a mother of two, and my metabolism has never been the same since having kids.
Breaking point: My breaking point was earlier this year. I had been looking at pictures of myself — and I was the fat friend. My abdomen was so distended, my face was full, and my hips were wide! I weighed myself, and I was at least 20 pounds over my average weight. I started running at the park, which was horrible on my knees, then my friend Bernadette invited me out to hike.
How I lost it: We were hiking a couple days a week before we started telling other friends they should come out. Before we knew it, we had six to eight girls on the track, including my good friend and model/TV personality Claudia Jordan. Our workouts became our time to let our hair down and talk about the entertainment industry, our love lives and kids. A girlfriend of mine took pictures of our hikes, and soon we had an unofficial following on Facebook. People were inspired by our hikes, and soon, we felt guilty when we didn’t work out. Weird, right? Then others started asking us about meal plans, which meant we had to actually try to eat healthy! We created diet challenges — we’d go vegetarian for a week, pescatarian for a week, etc., and we posted our results on our Vallywood Fit Girls Club website. A few of us fell off, but many of us implemented some of the new changes in our diet.
We now have more than 1,000 friends on our Facebook fan page, and thousands of visits per week on our website. People have talked to us about a TV show, especially since we are all passionate about encouraging other women, especially black women, to work out. We’re all 30-plus, and the oldest member is 42 (she looks like a 20-year-old!).
Current Weight: 140
It took Cecily three months to lose the weight, and she has maintained her weight loss for six months.