Weight Loss Success Story: Brooke Birmingham

I am back from the beach.  I am working on giving you all the details of my week on another post because I could not wait to share today’s success story with you!

I found Brooke through the blog world and started reading her blog Brooke:  Not on a Diet! She is a huge inspiration and as a fellow blogger who has now reached lifetime with Weight Watchers, I look up to her!

She started her journey weighing 327 pounds.

Weight Loss Success Story Brooke Before Picture

She has lost a whopping 177.6 pounds and is now an “after” weighing in at a tiny 155 pounds:

Weight Loss Success Story Brooke After Photo

You are going to love her story!  Enjoy!

Tell us a little about yourself, your family, your job, etc…

Hello there! I’m Brooke from Brooke: Not on a Diet! I am a healthy living blogger who has 177lbs with the help of the Weight Watchers program. I am married to an amazing man who I refer to Mr. B. He is my soulmate and biggest cheerleader. We live in the great state of Illinois with dreams of moving near the mountains someday. You can find us enjoying a Blackhawks game or a good brew at the bar. I spend my days working with people who have mental illness (until the end of June!) and aspire to be a Weight Watchers leader and a health coach.

How long did it take you to get to your ideal weight? Are you there now?

I started Weight Watchers February of 2009 and hit my goal weight of 150lbs in May of 2013. Which means it took me a little over 4 years to reach my goal.

What was your motivation to lose weight?

My motivation was just to be healthy and to like how I looked in the beginning. My reasons have changed over the journey with now my focus being to be a healthy mama someday so I can enjoy my future children and teach them how to live a healthy life as well. I also want to grow old with Mr. B!

What made you decide to start your weight loss journey?

I was in a pretty crappy relationship right before I started my journey. After I got rid of the guy, I decided I needed to start loving myself and deserved better. My mom invited me to a Weight Watcher meeting and it was exactly what I needed.

What kept you on track losing weight?

Knowing how much better I feel now helps keep me on track. I also believe in never depriving myself of something. If I want a cupcake, I’m going to have it. I am a big advocate of the cheat meal (junk meal, splurge meal, whatever you call it), once a week I have something totally outrageous to eat and I enjoy every bite. Lol. Usually it’s pizza and ice cream or french fries. I enjoy it guilt free and get right back on track the next day. I’ve done it ever since I started losing weight and it has always helped keep me on track.

Planning also really helps! I menu plan dinner every week, while I don’t always follow it according to plan, it really keeps me from doing the “there’s nothing to eat, let’s eat out” song and dance.

Tell us about a typical day in terms of eating and exercise.

My typical eating day starts off with oatmeal with PB2 & a banana or some form of eggs. I also do a smoothie once a week. Lunch is a salad with leftovers from the pervious night’s dinner. Dinner is always a recipe of some sort, just depends on what the menu plan has on it. Snacks are yogurt, fruit, and popcorn.

Exercise has always been done at my home, as I’ve never had a gym membership. I have a vast collection of DVDs (Jillian Michaels is my favorite!) that I do 3-5 times a week. I also have a bike that I love riding along the Mississippi river.

What is the biggest difference you have noticed because of your weight loss?

The biggest difference is how much better I feel. At 327lbs, I used to have the worst time getting around and would suffer massive headaches. Now I can run, bike, and dance like a fool. Those headaches are a thing of the past and I can do things I never imagined possible, like zip lining on my honeymoon!

Obviously I look a lot different too. Now I shop for clothes in places I never stepped foot in and don’t have to go directly to the plus sized section. I can wear dresses without feeling like I’m wearing a bag and the smaller clothes are MUCH cuter!

What advice can you give to others struggling to lose weight?

My advice is to always remember that you are worth it! You are worth all the hard work it takes to lose weight. My other bit of advice is to just do it! You will NEVER regret starting a weight loss journey, I can promise you that. The only thing you’ll regret is never getting started!

Also, write down why you want this. Write down every single reason, no matter now silly and pull out that list when you’re struggling. Sometimes we just need to remember why we’re doing this.

One last thing, measure your success with more than just the scale! That thing can REALLY suck sometimes no matter how awesome of a week we had. Take your measurements and focus on non-scale victories! Maybe you gained a pound, but that same week you worked out 3 times. Those type of things are more important than any number on the scale!

How do you keep the weight off in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle?

I just keep doing what I do and remind myself that there is no other option. I can either eat healthy and feel better, or eat like crap and die an early death. I love life now, I much rather be here for the long haul!

Give us a quote or a motto that you have used to keep you focused.

One that I’ve always used is “There is no other option!” when I’m struggling with a workout. It really helps push me.

I also tell myself that I’m a rockstar daily. Oh and that I’m beautiful!

I want you all to know that no matter what amount of weight you have to lose, wether it be 10lbs or 100lbs, it’s not going to be easy. But, it will always be worth it in the end! Celebrate your successes no matter how small, because no matter what you achieve, you’re awesome!

 

THANK YOU Brooke for sharing your incredible story with us!  I am honored to have you guest post on my blog today and show others that it can be done!

If you are interested in following Brooke further into her journey, you can follow her on her blog, Facebook and Twitter.

I love that Brooke plans meals weekly.  I need to be better at that!  What did you love the most about Brooke’s story?

Like this post? Share it!

  • Angela@Honey I Shrunk the Mom

    What a wonderful success story!

  • Jess

    I just love Brooke in general!! She is one of my biggest inspirations on my own weight loss journey!! I have followed her blog since before she met Mr. B! She gives awesome advice and is just an amazing woman!!

  • http://brookenotonadiet.com/ Brooke: Not On A Diet

    Thank you so much for featuring me! I truly appreciate it!!

    • http://www.itsuxtobefat.com Jennifer Swafford

      You are a rockstar! Thank you for sharing your story!

  • koyaolayinka

    amazing story share…

  • http://www.worldclasslasik.com/lasik/discount-lasik-nj-surgery-centers Discount Lasik surgery

    I love success stories. I keep a collection of them, to get me motivated when I feel hopeless

  • Rikki

    Wow! What a motivating story. Always looking for things to help me stay on track. Does anyone know of a good app to help me follow a food plan and keep track? I am married to my phone and need something to help with me be more compliant.

    • http://www.itsuxtobefat.com Jennifer Swafford

      I have heard that MyFitnessPal is a good one.

  • Karen H.

    Wow, very inspirational! I think I learn a little something from each success story I read. :-) From Brooke I learned, that even though it gets hard sometimes I will never regret it. What I will regret is giving up. I also like that she has done this while having a weekly cheat meal. :-)

    I’ve been using MyFitnessPal and DietBet to keep me motivated and moving forward. Can’t wait until I lose enough weight to start running. :-)

  • http://fandbfood.com/ Sumon Ahmed

    Nice Post. I like the post so Much

  • Laura

    wow..this is just amazing!!! well done, lady! I have only just started to workout myself and always lack the motivation. I do not know about you but I have tried the supplement pills that gave me so much energy! I never believed in any pills or anything like that but i tried and now I can finally get out of bed and work out. I get them from http://www.burneikasports.com if any one is interested. He is a a famous lithuanian sportsman who released a line of supplements :) they are really good! hope this helps someone too : )
    x

  • anna2556

    Wow. I followed the link to her blog and am blown away by Brooke’s confidence and frank honesty. I was especially touched by her post on the dreaded excess skin after weight loss. I have a feeling that it is something I shall be addressing in the future, and I had been absolutely dreading it, thinking that it would prevent so many future goals, but Brooke’s determination and positive attitude has me thinking maybe it won’t be a dream-ending experience after all.

  • med

    waw nice post I love, there are similar story in: losetheweightt.blogspot.com

  • Angela Jennings

    I’m definitely going to go follow her blog now. That story was incredible! I’ve joined Weight Watchers so many times but lacked the discipline to keep at it once I ‘failed’ once or twice. I’m a big fan of the splurge meal too. Although, my problem is…once I start splurging, I can’t stop! So I guess that’ll have to be sometime I incorporate after I have been on this journey for a while ;)

  • Transform You

    This is an amazing journey. 4 years is true dedication. I often tell people that losing weight and keeping it off takes a life changing shift. Many don’t understand what ‘life changing’ really means. I think you did a great job of highlighting things you had to let go of and the changes that resulted because of your desire. It is truly inspirational. I am always impressed to see how many different solutions there are to solve weight loss issues. One of my patients had similar results and you can read more on her story as well.

  • Jasveena Prabhagaran

    I bet anyone who sees her after a long time will NEVER be able to recognise her! This is a WOW. I should definitely read her story whenever I feel like giving up and that would be enough to revive the spirit

  • Janny

    Before and after vid http://youtu.be/q5wMARmlVqQ

    Nice girl hope you like it :)

  • Leslie Thomas

    I really enjoyed reading the post. I think it is so easy to get caught up in how long the journey is going to take. I also like the “there is no other option”. It is so true. I am going to bookmark this blog and post to keep reading. I just started my own blog to document my weight loss journey called Weight4baby. I am so excited.

  • Shanroc

    Amazing transformation!

  • Chelsea Sawyer

    Wow! Incredible transformation. I hope I can also lose weight like this. Inspiring story.

  • Josy

    Brooke, Your achievement is A-M-A-Z-ING! I can hardly believe the transformation, you will inspire and help SO many people to lose weight too! Incredibly well done. I reckon everyone should pin your before and after pics on their fridge!
    http://www.clean-9-detox.com

  • Bjvalles

    I love your success! You are an inspiration. Tomorrow is my first meeting at Weight watchers! Wish me luck!!!

  • indiasupplement

    You look amazing already, please keep us updated. Can’t wait to see you at 15%!