Down 212 Lbs, Tracy Had 'Always Been Obese'*

By , SparkPeople Blogger
Name: Tracy Meuschke (TRACY31502)
Weight Lost: 212 pounds
Hometown: South Bend, IN
Occupation: Stay-at-home mom

What was life like before losing weight?
I have ALWAYS been obese! At the age of 12, I was 255 pounds and on the Jenny Craig program. I stayed on for about four weeks, losing about five pounds, and then quit. I just kept going up and up from there. I was 325 pounds in high school. I was around 300 pounds when I got married and then gained 73 pounds within the first two years of our marriage.  I had lost two pregnancies and just hit an all-time low and didn't take care of myself. I'm sure my weight played a big role in having my miscarriages.

At my highest weight, I was happy with everyone around me, but not happy with myself. I honestly didn't realize I was as big as I was and I didn't realize all the things from which my weight was holding me back.  I mean, shaving my legs or even putting on my shoes was a chore. Walking just a half mile was huge for me. I would breathe heavily even when doing nothing.

What was your "A-Ha moment" that made you get serious about losing the weight?
One morning, I just broke down. I felt like no diet was working and I didn't know what to do. I actually contemplated surgery. But after some praying about what to do, I just started cutting down on what I ate and started moving!

What was the main motivation behind your weight loss?
My biggest motivation was that I wanted to have a healthy pregnancy and baby not just for myself but also because my husband wanted to be a dad so much. Our losses were the toughest thing we had ever been through, but they made us grow as a couple and got me on the track to healthy living! 

Tell us a bit about your weight loss journey.
I started reducing the amount of food I was eating and just started moving more! I lost around 123 pounds and became pregnant with my son. I had a healthy pregnancy, but I gained 75 pounds! So once I had him, I had to start over. But when I did, I went at it full force. I lost those 75 pounds I had gained, plus 15 more, putting me at 235 pounds. (138 pounds down from my heaviest).

When I hit that mark, I became pregnant with my daughter.  I had another great pregnancy but gained 65 pounds, putting me back up around 300 pounds. This time, I started right away and signed up with just days after having my little girl.  I knew I needed some extra help if I was going to lose this weight and keep it off this time for good. I lost 129 pounds with SparkPeople and am now down 210 pounds overall!  The fact that I can log my calories on the SparkPeople app is huge for me.  Setting goals on SparkPeople helps me be accountable. And of course, a huge one, SUPPORT, SUPPORT and more SUPPORT!!! It never fails that if I'm having a rough day; my SparkFriends are there to say just the right thing!

How has your life changed since losing weight and improving your health?

Once I had my children, my motivation was to be a healthy wife and mom! I don't ever want to be the mom sitting on the sidelines that cannot be out there playing with her kids and has to watch her husband out there building memories with them. I don't want to be the mom at the amusement park who has to tell their child: “No, I can't ride that with you because I don't fit in the seat.”  I don't want my kids to miss out on all that life has for them because I couldn't get myself fit and healthy. There is so much more to life than I ever thought there was when I was 373 pounds. I am now truly LIVING!

What a great story, Tracy!

*Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.
Have you lost weight and kept it off using We'd love to share your story. Email us: sparkpeoplesuccess (at) gmail (dot) com

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You look awesome! Report
Thanks for the inspiration! Report
Your success story is very inspiring! Report
I am so incredibly impressed. You kept at it, and even after putting it back on with pregnancies, you still didn't quit. How inspiring. And thank you for honoring God by admitting that you prayed before starting your journey. Report
You are truly an inspiration! Thank you for sharing Report
Tracy, you are such a big inspiration for all of us. The most wonderful part about you (aside from how incredible you look and how far you've come) is that you're so willing to share advice and inspiration with the rest of us. Report
Congratulations on your new lifestyle, you look fabulous! Report
WOW. Wat a great achievement. U worked really hard and ur hard work payed you back with ur weight loss. U are a true inspiration to me. Thanks for sharing your story Report
What a wonderful wonderful accomplishment. God bless. Report
What a wonderful example to follow. Report
Your story is so inspiring - you stuck with it despite gaining weight with your pregnancies! You look fantastic but the things you gained are so imortant, like active time with your kids! You've inspired me - thank you for sharing! Report
Hi Tracy: Can you please tell me if you followed a low fat diet or something like Atkins to lose your weight, I have a nephew who currently weighs 400lbs and I am so afraid that he will die young if we don't try to help him get some of this weight off, he has trouble with portion control and he does not like veggies except for potatoes and corn which are starchy veggies he does not like to exercise and his job requires sitting a lot, we have been able to get him to start walking for short distances any help you can give me on what types of foods helped you to lose the weight would be a tremendous help. Thanks so much for your help. Report
You look like two different people. I'm so happy for you. Be glad you didn't go the weight loss surgery route like I did 10 yeas ago. I initially lost 168 pounds and was over the moon, but I have gained back 55 pounds and feel awful because I let myself do this. Weight loss surgery is great for a quick fix, but it doesn't control the demons in your head that cause you to overeat. Report
Great story of success! Thank you for sharing and the inspiration! Report
Tracy . . .you look really good and cute! Good luck on with your new life and family! Report
It is an amazing story but I to wonder about the excesses skin, I toned up but not as much as I had hoped it would. Report
Incredible and inspiring story!! Congratulations!!! :) Report
What an inspiration! Loved reading your story and for motivating others. It is a journey! Report
I have a question that if you find to personal to answer I 100% understand and do not mean to offend you or anyway. However I am super curios if after weight lose you had skin removal surgery or naturally toned up? I ask only because you look amazing and I have about 140 pounds to lose and my fear is if I will be left with a lot of extra skin. Report
If you were 300 lbs when you married, you are a totally brand new woman that your husband never knew! What an amazing story ... Kudos to you for all your hard work ... Report
Congratulations on your achievement for not showing us that when you're ready -one wont quit on themselves. You look Marvelous...thanks for sharing! Report
You look AWESOME! Love your outfit (red dress, jacket and boots) Since getting married in 2009 and having my daughter in 2010 and my son in 2012 I've really been having a hard time sticking to losing the 60 pounds I want to and seeing stories like yours makes me excited and joyous to KNOW I CAN DO IT TOO! I KNOW I can! In Jan 2012 I lost 9 pounds and was super excited about spark people.. Feb came around and I found out I was pregnant. I was happy, but since the birth of my son it's just been hard to get back on track. Thanks for your really does help people like me who need a boost to get going once again and it's my goal to have MY success story on here next year! Heck, maybe even this year!;) Report
I joined this site in 2010 and never got far. I came on today almost 30 lbs heavier than when I initially joined up and looking for motivation. After seeing your pictures and reading your success story, I am inspired to do this. I had been thinking about surgery because I wasn't sure it could be done. I am 290 lbs. and see that you and others have done it and look so fabulous makes me want to truly do this and feel better, look better and enjoy life more. Thank you for sharing and giving those like me hope and inspiration. Report
So inspiring. I've just signed up today with SparkPeople. Thank you Report
You look gorgeous! Your story is so inspiring. I feel the way you described (on the sidelines) at 170 pounds, I can't even imagine how you felt!!! What a huge achievement. Report
You look fantastic, inspiration for my journey to get healthy. Report
Great story!! Thanks for sharing. You look amazing!!! Report
I get most motivated when I read success stories with before and after pictures, thank you for sharing! Just curious, was there ever a time when a person that you happened to see out in public didn't know you, after the weight loss and what was there reaction? ~Karen~ Report
What an inspiration! Thanks for sharing your story. Report
What an encouragement to read. I am in the 300's and reading this and seeing your photos, I believe it can be done and I can do it. Thanks so much for being willing to tell your story and being a role model for us who can't really see the end of the line yet. Report
Congrats! You look great! And happy! :) Report
You look terrific and ever so HAPPY!! What a great accomplishment. Thanks so much for sharing your story!! Report
Reading your story felt like I was reading my own life story. I know how you feel. I didn't realize just how big I really was until recently when we went on vacation and I saw a picture of myself. It really hit me then. I instantly felt like I could let depression get the best of me. But I have 2 beautiful daughters that need me. And they need me to be healthy and alive. Even though this is the beginning of my journey, I know I can do this. I have a wonderful friend that supports me and encourages me everyday. Your story was meant for me to read. Thank you so much for sharing. You are a true inspiration to many. Keep up the good work!
Congrats.....I work in Mishawaka so were neighbors. I've lost wight over and over. But this time it's much harder and I keep giving up. It helps to read how others have succeeded. Thanks for sharing Report
Such a inspiring story. It touch me very deeply, beacause I to had two miscarriage and i know it was because of my weight. That what insipire me to change my ways, cause one day I do want a child with my husband. My goal is to lose the weight, and not get pregnant until im where i want to be. If I was to get pregnant, I will con to eat healthy food, so I will not gain all of it back. Having my drs. to guide me and remember all the tips I've learned the way Report
I would love to thank you all individually for your kind words but I'm going to do a HUGE THANK YOU right here! Your comments mean so much to me! THANK YOU! If you have a specific question for me you are welcome to inbox me on my sparkpage or you can also find me at
So inspiring! Thank you! Report
Yah! You did it by yourself! No weight loss pill or anything that's amazing. You helped me out in a special way thank you! Report
You look great. I'm trying to loose 30 pounds and it seems like an uphill battle. Thanks for sharing your story. You are truly an inspiration.
WOW....such motivation! I needed to read this today...I'm a bit bummed about a slight weight gain, but I know if you did it more than once....I can too! You look great! WTG!!!! Report
AWESOME! Your weight loss is fantastic! Report
WAY TO GO! Just goes to show it CAN be done, when you set your mind to it.
No weight loss surgery which is a big positive, because you can still eat as regular person. You will keep it off for good because you have proved to yourself that you are worth it, and that you CAN DO IT! Report
This is so awesome--brings tears to my eyes to see you slimmed down and able to love being an active mom. You must feel so good! Report
You look fantastic! Congratulations on your weight loss! I always seem to be the one on the sidelines watching other people do it. I am also from Indiana......hello fellow Hoosier! Maybe one day I will be in your position and have lost too! Wish me luck Report
Congratulations, Tracy!!!! You have done so well & look so good!! Love Maree :-) Report
You are brilliant. Report
Wow what an amazingly great story thank you for sharing! Report
Congratulations to you, for your commitment to accomplishing your goals for a healthier life. I know it had to be so difficult, but your dedication is inspiring. You are doing it! Report
I really enjoyed reading your story. You look wonderful! I am just starting out, and wanted to read a story to help inspire me - and yours was the first one I read. God Bless! Report
What an inspiration! Thank you for sharing. Report
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