Walking to recover after knee surgery turned into a running workout routine that helped Vicki Crowell lose pounds and find her best body.
Name Vicki Crowell
Home Brick,New Jersey
Job Manager, eye surgery center
Weight before 220
Weight after 137
The Gain: Three years ago, life seemed stacked against Crowell. A demanding job and long commute left her feeling deflated. Home was no respite. An increasingly unhappy marriage completed the cycle that saw her gain 50 pounds. “My husband could be very controlling, and he was not supportive of my efforts to lose weight. I put him and everyone else first. I never made time for myself.”
The Change: Knee surgery to repair weight-stressed ligaments–and a lecture from the surgeon–sounded the alarm. Crowell began taking long walks after work and thinking hard about what she wanted from life. Two months later, she had lost 15 pounds. She was so excited that she joined a gym.
The Life: Crowell now wraps up her day at the gym, working out five times a week with either cardio or strength training. Cardio days include interval runs and long jogs. Strength days alternate between upper- and lower-body workouts and favor dumbbells over machines. With a trainer’s help, Crowell also overhauled her diet. Six small meals a day replaced three big ones, with chicken and fish as the preferred entree, and energy bars and protein shakes the regular snacks.
The Reward: “I have more confidence,” Crowell says. “My coworkers joke that I’m a much nicer person now. And my story has motivated a lot of people I know. That makes me feel good.” It shows. Now divorced, Crowell recently started seeing a supportive new guy.
Think small. “Set small goals. Don’t be unrealistic. I had specific goals each week, which worked into the next week, and so on. One positive change leads to another.”
Embrace weights. “Women fear weight training, and I was one of them. But toning your body with weights definitely makes a difference. Once you see that muscle tone, you will be addicted.”
Ask for help. “Tell your friends and family what you’re doing. You’ll be amazed by their support. And if you join a gym, a trainer is worth the investment, at least to get you started.”