Sarah Ditched Diet Pills, Started Running
Name: Sarah Sullivan
Before weight: 183
How I gained it: In high school, I was very active. Once I graduated, I gradually started gaining weight. Instead of the freshman 15, I gained more than 50 pounds over three years. I was a very emotional eater. I would eat because I was unhappy about gaining weight, but then I would be unhappy because I ate. It was an endless cycle.
Breaking point: My last semester in college, I went to Disney World with a friend. It was my first Disney trip, so of course, I took a ton of pictures. Up until this point, I was in denial about my weight. I had managed to avoid all cameras and mirrors, and I wore stretchy pants and t-shirts everywhere. I use to try to joke and say I love stretchy pants because they can grow with you. When I got my pictures back from our trip, I was disgusted. I knew I had to do something. So I tried the easy route — diet pills. I think I tried just about every diet pill out there and guess what? None of them worked!
How I lost it: My sister knew how unhappy I was, and she talked me into joining a gym and hired a personal trainer for me. Even after joining the gym and working with a trainer, I still struggled to lose the weight. It helps to have a workout partner — someone to motivate you when you can’t motivate yourself. My best friend Lauren was also struggling with her weight, so we started walking three to four times a week. When that got boring, we started walking and running. I never thought I would be a runner. Then Lauren talked me into entering a 5K (3.2 miles) with her. My only goal was to complete it without stopping to walk, and I did it in a little over 32 minutes! After our first 5K, we were hooked. Since then, we have completed several 5Ks and a few 10Ks. We average about 20 miles a week now. In addition to running, we also do strength training twice a week.
I think a key factor for losing weight and maintaining it is to have some type of fitness goal — that way you are constantly challenging yourself. We just started training for our first marathon!
After weight: 134
Sarah has maintained her weight loss since October 2007. She’s lost 49 pounds, and Lauren has lost 36.
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