Roseann Lost 90 When She Turned 30
Name: Roseann Dashkowitz
Height: 5 feet 10 inches
Before weight: 240
How I gained it: Growing up in the ’60s, eating nutritional, low-fat foods was not a priority for most people, so fat-laden but wonderful homemade meals made up my childhood memories. Having two overweight parents meant that portion control was not important at all, and overeating was a very common thing at my house. Being one of the very few overweight kids in my entire school, my mom put me on my first diet when I was 10, and although the weight slipped right off, it was the beginning of a 20-year weight roller coaster for me. By the time I hit my teen years, I felt very unaccepted in my peer group, and of course, kids that age made sure I knew that I didn’t belong. I walked in the door the first day of school of my senior year weighing in at a healthy 140 pounds, and I graduated nine months later at almost 240! I married at 24 and had twins exactly one year later. The next five years proved to be a time of extreme fluctuations in my weight, as I would starve myself, lose 70 pounds or so, and in a matter of months, gain it all back — plus some. I had begun exercising, but just could not get a handle on how to keep the weight off.
Breaking point: Turning 30 made me realize I needed to make a life-long change. I began to see that my girls needed a mom to help them make good eating decisions, or they, too, would find themselves going through the same pain that I had. I was determined to lose the weight once and for all, and stop the yo-yo cycle.
How I lost it: I followed a Weight Watchers diet on my own, and for the hundredth time, lost that same 70 pounds. It took me about five months to lose the bulk of the weight, and at that point, I bought a book on weight lifting, purchased free weights and a bench set, and I assembled it all in the furnace room of my house. I took a weight lifting class at the local gym, and that was the beginning of my new road to fitness. Once I joined the gym and began working out consistently three days a week, and as I got into better condition, I added cardiovascular workouts as well. I’ve participated in many races and walks and even a sprint triathlon.
I have totally changed my eating habits — I eat very healthy six days a week. I still allow myself one day a week when I eat basically whatever I like, which usually involves French fries and a milk shake! I consider this the rest of my life, and I know that a once-a-week treat is not going to throw me back into an old lifestyle.
I am very happy to be going to my 30-year high school reunion next May, as I am certain that I look better than I did all those years ago, and I know I’ll never be the fat girl in the class. Now, that girl and young woman who was so out of place and unhappy is a faded memory. The greatest outcome from all of this is that my own children are very health-minded and make exercise and eating right a daily part of their lives.
After weight: 150
Roseann has maintained her weight loss for 17 years.
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