I Lost 212 Pounds!*

By , Abigail Cuffey, Woman's Day
Jennifer Hodges, 41
Before: 369 lb
Now: 157 lb
I began gaining weight in sixth grade soon after my parents opened a pizza place. I wasn't active and ate poorly. To deal with being heavy, I was the "funny fat girl" in high school and made jokes about my weight. At 23, I was 250 pounds. People always said, "You have such a pretty face, if you'd just lose weight, you'd be a knockout."
Reality Check

In October of 2008, I fell in the yard and twisted my ankle while playing with my three kids (who were all under the age of 4). At 350 pounds, I was too big for my husband to lift, so he had to get a blanket, roll me onto it and drag me inside. I was humiliated and terrified. What if I had been home alone? I knew I had to make big changes. 
Exercise Made Easy

A few weeks after my fall, I joined a gym near my house. The location was important because I didn't want to have any excuse to skip a workout. I started slowly, just walking for a few minutes on the treadmill. Gradually I increased the time and distance.
Ramp It Up!

My body really transformed once I started taking a gym class called BodyPump, which combines cardio and weights.
Food Changes

After a year of exercise—and losing 100 pounds—I tackled my eating habits. (It was too overwhelming to do both at once.) I cut portions down and cooked at home more often.

By 2011, I finally reached my goal weight. The best part? Now I'm setting a positive example for my family. We swim, run and ride bikes together. We are an active family, which I never would have dreamed of three years ago.

Click here to read more about Jennifer from Woman's Day.

More from Woman's Day:
What is your weight-loss story? What is the secret to your success?

*Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program. 

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Congratulations! Glad you have an active family now. Report
BECCABOO127 2/2/2018
Wonderful! Inspiring! Report
PAULAJEAN659 12/7/2017
Love this! Thanks for sharing! Report
TCANNO 11/28/2017
great job. Mind over matter Report
SHERRY666 9/28/2017
LOVELY*LADY 7/17/2017
:) Report
CONGRATs !!! Great going !! It's been a few years since this was first posted how are things now? Love watching others have success !!! Report
You are a great inspiration. I still need to lose about 65 pounds and your story makes me believe it is possible. Report
That is so inspirational! Great job! You do look beautiful! :D Report
I plan to join a health club tomorrow. Thanks for the insentive!! Report
:) *HUGS* This is fantastic in every sense of the word. :) Report
Outrageously Great job! Report
Congrats on your achievement! You are truly an inspiration. I have been making excuses as to why I can't get started again on my weight loss....it is always next Monday, my knees hurt or too tired.....but after reading your story I know that I can start out slow ( I usually go all in all at once but now that I am getting older not so easy to do). Thanks you so much for sharing :) Report
Story sounds so much like mine just wish I could find that one thing down so I could lose the weight. Report
She is living proof that if you start small, you'll yield big results. All about determination and perseverance! :) this seriously inspires and motivates me. Report
WOW!!! I am inspired by your story!! Awesome job....keep up the great work!!

You are a wonderful encouragement to all of us.
Congrats on your achievement! Report
Congratulations on all your accomplishments!!! You are an inspiration!!! Report
What an encouraging testimony! I am near the beginning stage and have started going to the gym and have only done small food changes and your story makes me know that I am doing what is right for me. Report
Thanks for sharing! Your story is SUPER inspiring! :-) Report
What a wonderful example you have set for your family and all others! Thank you for the inspiration! Report
Congrats! Report
Congratulations! You're an inspiration! Report
Wow this is fantastic. I sure hope that I can have the success that you have had. Report
woooo.. soo inspiring .. i dont even loose 1 kg :( shame on me :( Report
good job, very inspiring Report
Such an inspiration. :) Congrats Report
Thank you for sharing your story and congratulations on your success.

Congratulations!!! You look AMAZING!!!
Thank you.. I can do it too.. I'm just at the begining Report
Well done! Report
awesome Report
Congratulations! I am also a big fan of Body Pump! Report
Congratulations on your hard work and dedication to reaching your goals. You are an inspiring lady. Report
I applaud you, what an encouraging story! Report
What a wonderful blog. You did it! So happy for you and your family. Thank you for sharing your story. Report
Very inspiring and encouraging story. Congratulations on your weight loss success. Report
what an inspiring story.It shows we can do it if we want it Report
Fantastic! You must feel so good! Good for you girl :) Keep it up; what a great inspiration you will be for your children. Report
Thank you for sharing! I have 150 lbs to lose and most days I feel so overwhelmed I figure why bother. I'll keep your story in mind on those days. :) Report
so inspiring, such a beautiful story. you go jen!! :) Report
That was phenomenal---what an inspiration you are! Report
Thank you for sharing your story. You are definetly an inspiration!!! Report
Great job. You are an inspiration to all of us. Report
AWESOME!!!!! Report
Congratulations on making such an important and dedicated commitment to yourself! Your story is so motivating! Report
Praise The Lord! Awesome Story! THANK YOU!
I Let God Lead My Way As He Led Me To SparkPeople! Consistency Yields GREAT Rewards! Working Out Most Days With A Plan That Includes Cardio And Strength Training And Stretching. Tracking My Daily Food Consumed, Water And MEASURING MY SERVINGS. Measuring Changed My Way Of Thinking And The Succesful 2012 I Enjoyed. I'm 4lbs Away From My Goal Weight Of 145. Down 84lbs. It Was Quick The First Year And Then Slowed Becaause Of Different Reasons, Injuries, Overeating and Regaining, and Inconsistency. I'm Truly Enjoying A Lifestyle I've NEVER Lived! What A Blessing! Report
Wow that is fantastic.. It is nice to hear someone who started it the way i just started. i weigh 265 when i started one month ago. I decided that in order for me to not want to quit and complain that it is too much for me I joined a gym down the street and started very slow I was doing 20 mins a day four days a week. then every week i increased the time and intensity of the workout. i now do 1 hour five days a week thinking of going to 6 days. I do the elliptical for 30 mins first time I tried this machine it killed me now i can do it no problem. I then do 30 mins on the recumbent bike and I increase hte intensity every day. I did lose about 12 llbs so far but i think i am gaining muscles now since my weight is not going anywhere. i also eat about 1200-1300 calories a day. Had to change my diet since I am type two Diabetic. i hope I can follow your results and lose the 100 lbs in one year that I am trying for. Thanks for your inspiring story. Report
Thanks for sharing your success story!! It really is one step at a time! Report
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