I told myself that it was now or never! I wanted to be around to see my kids grow up.
Growing up, I was considered “chubby,” but I always thought I looked pretty good though, so I wasn't really concerned about my weight. Looking back, I see that I should have been. I started to really gain weight at about 21; I was working at a restaurant and began to develop some really bad eating habits. I had been wearing size 12 jeans, but soon I blew up to a size 18! The bright spot of working at the restaurant was that I met my husband, Don, who fell in love with the person I am on the inside. I quit the job before we got married, but the weight kept piling on — most likely because we really enjoyed eating at fast-food restaurants together. By the time we had had three kids, I weighed 275 pounds.
The turning point came when I finally realized that I hated my life. One day our family took a walk along the beach, and I was so hot and exhausted that I had to sit down. My husband and the kids took off, having fun and laughing, and I realized that I was missing out. I felt useless and like I’d let my family down and held them back from enjoying things. It took me some time to realize that I had to make a change. On the first day of my new lifestyle, I weighed myself and was totally shocked: I was up to 324 pounds! I told myself that it was now or never: I wanted to be around to see my kids grow up.
Following Denise’s Example
I began using an exercise bike, cut out snacks and stopped eating late at night. About three weeks later, I found Denise Austin's Getting Fit show on television and decided to give it a try. At first, I couldn't keep up with her, but Denise was very motivating and encouraged me to go at my own pace. After six weeks, I began to see and feel results. I even added one of Denise’s step workout videos to my routine.
It’s been more than a year since I started working out with Denise, and now I can keep up with her. I am 174 pounds lighter, weighing in at 150! I feel as if Denise is my personal trainer: She’s helped me learn not to quit, how to keep trying, and to never starve myself. I focus on what I can eat instead of what I can’t, and I remind myself that it's okay to have treats in moderation. My husband, children and parents have been very supportive.
I’m happier now than I have ever been in my life. I have energy and can do so much more with my kids. I still work out with Denise every morning, and I always will — I feel so much better, alive and awake, afterward. I feel more confidence than ever before, as well. It's not just about looking good, it's about feeling good!