Transformation of the Day: Cassandra lost 77 pounds. After losing loved ones and facing the end of a relationship, she found herself in need of self-love, support, and a lifestyle change. This mom wants to be a healthy example for generations to come in her family. With the help of her trainer and nutritionist, she is doing just that. Check out her journey.

Cassandra before and after

Age: 46
Height: 5’6″
Starting Dress Size: 24
Current Dress Size: 14
Starting Weight: 267 pounds
Current Weight: 190 pounds
Representing: Baltimore, MD

What was your motivation?
My motivation is my children, my future grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. When I looked in the mirror, I saw my ancestors and future generations, the bloodline. My actions would affect my loved ones who will come after me. I don’t want to be a burden on them as I get older. To help others, I must be healthy. As African-Americans, we are a target for unhealthy eating and inactivity. My motto is “Reject those things that no longer serve you.”

What inspired you to start your weight loss journey?
For over 20 years, I have struggled with my weight. I was always trying to lose weight only to gain it back when “life” happened. After my divorce in 2000, I gained over 100 pounds and reached my highest of 262 pounds. In 2003, I successfully lost 75 pounds in time for my commencement at Morgan State University.

In October 2018, my man at the time inspired me to lose weight by joking and making a point that I needed to drop some weight to be able to run away from dangerous situations. In January 2019, I took my before videos for the Fitness on Fire Online Training Program. I was saddened and disgusted by what I saw. I’d let myself go again while being comfortable in a committed relationship with a man. I made a commitment to myself that no matter what life threw at me, working out and taking care of myself would be my #1 priority. To know thyself is to love thyself.

I had accepted the belief that weighing 267 pounds was “normal.” What was not normal was to have rolls of fat covering my body and not being able to breathe. Each roll of fat of cellulite represented the hurt and pain I was addressing with food. This was the first time that I realized that the most critical committed relationship/union is with myself. I started to love on myself to heal from the past.

My aunt passed away in July 2018. Then, a close friend died suddenly in late January of 2019. Finally, in April 2019, my relationship with the man of my dreams ran its course. I was devastated but determined not to give up. I faced some dark, painful nights. The strength I got from those around me showed me love as well.

Seeing the success stories on the Fitness on Fire page also inspired me to start and continue. I was determined to see my before and after pictures with that strong fire logo. I was driven to earn the title of Fitness on Fire success story.

How did you change your eating habits?
Shortly after signing up for the Fitness on Fire program, I started following Nutritionist Guru‘s directions. Before that, I was eating to soothe the pain of deep issues that I encountered during my life as the pain came to the surface. Fried Chicken, French fries, and Half and Halfs soothed my stress and anger on the inside and satisfied my diluted taste buds. Eating those foods put a burden on my digestive systems and colon. I wasn’t even pooping on my own. I was using laxatives every other day.

I started listening to my body instead of what others were telling me. On the Fitness on Fire program, my body started performing more efficiently. I also started intermittent fasting on a more consistent basis.

What did you stop or start eating?
Fried foods, meat, and dairy are my vices. If I did eat vegetables, they were cooked down to nothing and covered in cheese. They also cause my intestines to blow up like a balloon and cause major constipation.

On the Fitness on Fire program, I started drinking smoothies again. Water became my priority while doing intermittent fasting. Once I drank all my water, then I could eat. I would begin to fast at 8 pm and end my fast at around noon. Then, I would eat meat with vegetables before 8 pm. Protein powder and other supplements help with hunger pants and withdrawals.

Coffee is also another vice that I had to give up because of all the sugar and cream I was putting in it. To keep my energy up, I stopped eating “foods” that didn’t fuel my body correctly and didn’t show me love. At 46 years old, I had to start eating like a responsible adult instead of eating junk like a selfish child. Also, the Fitness on Fire program requires you to be accountable for every morsel of food you eat and every drink you take before you eat or drink it. Taking pictures of my food made me rethink why I was eating empty, fattening foods. I started watching YouTube videos from Nathaniel Jordon on how food impacts the mind, body, and spirit.

What did your workout routine consist of?
My workout consisted of 6-7 days of straight resistance training given to me by my online trainer, Fire. I also started running. At first, I was intimidated by running. Seeing all that fat jump up and down while I was trying to run was embarrassing. Once I embraced running just a little bit, I fell in love with it. I told my self that, “how people see you is none of your business”. Running is freeing to me. The action of running for me releases tension and taps into my internal power and stamina. Running clears my head and brings me back to balance.

How long did your transformation take?
The transformation took about eight months. Seeing my stomach and legs shrink motivated me to keep going. I was able to fit into jeans that I had never worn because they were too small. Also being able to see my private area without having to lift my stomach was really motivating for me.

Initially, I found the Fitness on Fire Online Training Program to be tedious in terms of sending daily pictures of my body, the workouts, and food. However, when I started to compare photos from when I started to now, and it was very motivating. After my relationship ended, I was devastated, and Nutritionist Guru helped me to change my view of the situation. She reminded me that I had to turn a negative into a positive. There were times I was crying on the treadmill and couldn’t eat because of the emotional pain, but I kept pushing. Earlier in the journey, I stopped going to the gym for a week. Fire said to me, “You know what would happen to you if you didn’t show up to work for a week with no call, you would be fired.” Now, I treat going to the gym as a career that I love. Vision produces results, which Fitness on Fire online training program provides. You see the significant changes while following the program, which can be sustained for life.

What advice do you have for others who want to lose weight?
Love yourself enough to change. You are a divine being with a temple that MUST you must maintain. The most important relationship you have is with yourself. Take responsibility for you. Believe in yourself. Take care of yourself.

Make positive and healthy life choices. Be the master of your life. Allow the authentic self to shine by turning your light up. No matter what happens, keep your energy high, and push on.

Remember why you started and keep moving towards becoming a better version of yourself every day. Knowing yourself is to love yourself and loving yourself requires positive conditioning of your mind, body, and spirit. Stay positive at all costs, even when people around you are negative. Turn it around for your good.

Evaluate your daily habits and change those that are no longer serving you. Prayer/meditation, exercise, and proper nutrition are key. The Fitness on Fire Online Training program team taught me to be consistent with loving me every day!

You MUST be healthy! Be committed to learning about yourself every day. Push past those beliefs that restrict your thinking and turn limits your abilities. Look in the mirror and say positive affirmations. You will hurt, and you will want to give up but know that growth requires pain and sacrifice.

Instagram: @Cassielou1972

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