Before: 389 pounds
After: 180 pounds
Before: 260 pounds
After: 148 pounds
For Caryn Habermann and her daughter Michele, weight had been a lifelong struggle. “I’d been overweight since the first grade,” Michele recalls. Their lifestyle consisted of many meals eaten on the go, and a lack of physical activity. “My exercise level was zero,” Caryn says. As a result, she remembers struggling to walk, breathe, and function normally. Eventually Caryn piled on nearly 400 pounds, and Michele hit 260.
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The Turning Point
“One day I lost it and broke down. I was at the end of my rope,” Caryn says. “ I knew if I didn’t lose weight, I wouldn’t survive.” She went as far as to schedule lap band surgery, but realized she couldn’t go through with it because she hadn’t given traditional weight loss a fair shot. Instead she decided to give Weight Watchers a chance. (Search: Find a Weight Watchers near me) Shortly after Caryn signed up, Michele joined her.
With the guidance Weight Watchers as their guide, Caryn and Michele began to incorporate healthy eating habits into their lives. Both women trained themselves to control their portions and to resist temptations. “I learned how to be alone with a kitchen near me,” Michele says. “I’ve learned my triggers and the foods that make me do bad things,” Caryn says. While their hectic schedules dictate that they still make it difficult to avoid dining out often, both women say that they have taught themselves how to do so without blowing their diets. “We’ve made this a lifelong commitment,” Caryn says.
5 Moves for a Bikini-Ready Body
Exercise has been another important addition to their lives. Today Michele considers the gym her home -away -from -home. She’s there three to five days a week for two hours, doing a mix of cardio, strength training, and fitness classes. At first Caryn wasn’t able to exercise because of her size and fitness level, but she’s since eased into physical activity. Now she’ll goes for walks or does Zumba with Michele. The payoff has been huge. Michele lost 112 pounds and Caryn dropped a whopping 209.
In addition to the support they’ve drawn from being on this journey together, the positive feedback from their friends and family members continues to motivate keep Caryn and Michele going. The also duo also loves shopping, so the prospect of staying out of the plus-size section keeps them strong. Michele even keeps has a bikini hanging on her closet door as a reminder of her progress and goals.
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Since their dramatic transformations, Caryn and Michele have become role models. to others . “Motivating other people and sharing that success is the greatest reward,” Caryn says. “People I don’t even know come up to me and say that I’m the reason they’re at the gym,” Michele adds. “It’s something we couldn’t have ever imagined [before we lost weight].” There are the little things, too. “I don’t worry that I’m the fattest person in the room, or that I won’t fit in a regular-size chair,” Caryn says. “It’s a totally different room now.”
Set short-term goals. Benchmarks keep you on track and give you a chance to enjoy success even if you’re falling short of your overall goal. “Even if you do fall down, you pick yourself up and move forward,” Caryn says.
Use the buddy system. “It’s important for everyone to have a support system when you need some extra motivation,” Michele says.