Transformation of the Day: Jennifer lost 165 pounds. She was tired of having very low energy and tired of battling the pounds. After years of trying various diets with varying levels of success, she decided try a different route. 

Jennifer before and after

What was your motivation? What inspired you to keep going when you wanted to give up?
My motivation came from myself. I suffered from very low energy levels. I have battled with my weight all of my life. I knew that I didn’t want to be a so-called “big girl”. I’m super short with tiny bones and I hated the way I looked, so I decided to change that. What inspired me were inspirational weight loss stories such as the ones featured by Black Women Losing Weight. 

When did you start your journey? How long did your transformation take? 
I originally started my journey in 1997. I have pretty much been every size, from 150lbs to 320lbs. I have lost hundreds of pounds throughout the course of 15 years naturally.

From 320lbs, I got down to 225 pounds naturally. However, no matter what I did, ate, or how much I worked out, I just couldn’t seem to get lower than that. I ended up getting back up to 250lbs. At that time, I decided to get the Gastric Sleeve in Mexico (September 2018). It took about a year to lose another 100 pounds with VSG. [Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy] The sleeve minimized my stomach, which is perfect for anyone with food addiction and who feels like they can’t control themselves sometimes. 

The sleeve will not allow you to eat like you’re used to eating. I love it! It has been the best decision ever and has allowed me to work on my mindset and change my relationship with food. I have a lot of loose skin and plan on getting plastic surgery this year, so that I can enjoy my weight loss fully.

How did you change your eating habits?
I’ve done pretty much every diet there is. I’ve done the salad, chicken breast, brown rice, fruit/vegetables, type of diet. I’ve eliminated sweets, fried foods, sodas, etc. One of my favorite “diets” is Keto. Eating low carb works very well for me. I don’t crave sugar or carby foods, and I drop weight like crazy.

Jennifer before and after

What did your workout routine look like?
I started with walking and at-home work out videos 3 to 4 times a week. Eventually, I ended up in a gym where I did cardio and strength training 6+ times a week. 

What was your starting weight? What is your current weight?
My heaviest weight was around 320 pounds. I would lose 60-70 pounds, then gain most of it back. Now, I weigh 155 pounds and I wear a size 5.

What is your height?
5’2 1/2″

What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned? 
I learned to love myself enough to not allow myself to emotionally eat. I definitely have a food addiction. I eat if I’m happy, sad, or bored. I’ve learned to choose different outlets vs turning to food.

What advice do you have for women who want to lose weight?
I would say stay consistent, especially with the nutrition part. If the scale is discouraging you, hide it or get rid of it. (That was my biggest downfall.) Measure yourself, and keep a journal to monitor EVERYTHING. Take plenty of pics throughout your journey because they will definitely motivate you if you feel like giving up. 

A good support system is crucial as well. If you’re in a relationship it’s better for that person to either be on a similar journey or at least respect your journey and not eat badly in front of you. 

Lastly, educate yourself on what to eat and what not to eat. Figure out what type of foods work better for you to sustain and be consistent. For me, if I don’t eat sugar, I don’t crave it. It’s the same with carbs. Even the hunger pangs are different and more to the extreme when I eat sugary foods or carbs. 

If you have questions, feel free to message me on Instagram: @jaii_lo

Jennifer before and after

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