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We're engaged! :) July 2012

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My boyfriend and me, March 2012

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Just after finishing my first 5K race, May 9, 2010

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LISAPOOH34 is a SparkPeople Motivator!

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My Spark Story began on June 15, 2006. At that time, I weighed 243 pounds. Over the following 14 months, I lost a total of 93 lbs. with the tools and support of SparkPeople!

In May, 2008, I was featured in Health magazine's "I Did It" column, which highlighted some of the new habits and strategies that I learned here on Spark People. I was overwhelmed by the reaction I received from the Spark community, and am still honored to be considered an inspiration and motivator to so many people. I'm really just a regular gal, and I assure you, if I can do this, you can too!

When I think back on the pre-Spark me, I know she wouldn't believe how far I've come. She never would have believed that I would be able to lose all the weight without constantly feeling hungry. She would think it impossible that I would enjoy and even look forward to exercise. She thought that returning to my pre-high school graduation weight (and below!) was just a pipe dream. But look at me now! I've even surprised myself!

People are always asking me how I did it, and I have to tell them my secret--there is no secret! It's genuinely all about calories-in/calories-out. Good old fashioned diet and exercise! I read a quote in a magazine once that said if there was a surgery or pill that could permanently cure obesity, there would be no more overweight people in the world. There is no magic way to lose weight and get healthy!

But it's not about all or nothing. If I could teach anything to someone who is working on achieving their own goals (weight loss or otherwise) I would tell them to take baby steps. It's so much easier, mentally, to break a task into smaller bites, rather than trying to devour it all at once.

My strategy during the 14 months it took me to lose 93 lbs. was to eat between 1200 and 1350 calories *most* days, and try to stay in the right proportions of carbs, fat and protein. I monitored my sodium, fiber and calcium to make sure I was within reason there as well. I drank about 8-10 glasses of water per day, and worked out first at Curves, and then by walking, running, bicycling or using a workout DVD, usually 3-4 times a week.

I tell everyone who asks (and some who don't!) about the wonderful tools and support on this site, without which I feel that I'd probably still be sitting on my couch with a bag of chips, feeling terrible about myself.

I encourage you to read my blog from the beginning, because I tried to record my thoughts as honestly as possible as I went along. After I initially reached my goal, the focus changed a bit, and those entries are there too. The biggest lesson I'm currently learning is that it's a journey, not a destination. The focus and goals may shift along the way, but you have to stay focused and never lose faith in yourself. Good luck on your journey!

Member Since: 5/11/2006

Fitness Minutes: 16,299

My Goals:
Current goals:
1. Accountability.
2. Consistency.
3. Feel and look good.

It's that simple. The rest should, theoretically, fall in line.

Round 1:
June 15, 2006 starting weight: 243

Short term goals:

218 by 8/5/06 (my 30th birthday!)--**Achieved 7/29/06**

199 (return to ONEderland) by 10/5/06--**Achieved 10/10/06**

191 (move from obese to overweight BMI) by 11/15/06--**Achieved 11/15/06**

188 by 12/31/06 (because my resolution for 2006 was to lose 50 lbs.) **Achieved 12/6/06**

175 by 3/15/07 **Achieved 3/7/07**

165 by 4/30/07 **Achieved 5/16/07**

159 (healthy BMI) by July 1, 2007 **Achieved 6/20/07**

Goal: 155 by August 5, 2007 (my birthday) **Achieved 7/1/07**

My Program:
I spent a little over a year going from 243 lbs. to 150 lbs., and now I am working on maintaining my new healthy weight and lifestyle. I'm still figuring out how to eat enough but not too much, and building exercise into my weekly routine. During the winter, I workout regularly at the gym, and in the summer I like to add outdoor activities like biking and running.

Personal Information:
I'm Lisa. I live in suburban Chicago. This journey started when I was about to turn 30 back in 2006, and I'm looking to making the next decade a lot better than the last!

Other Information:

Read More About LISAPOOH34 - Profile Information moved here. (Updated May 4)

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