Weight Loss Success Story: Laura Dryden

Today’s weight loss success story is Laura.  At her heaviest, in 2010,  she weighed 258 pounds.  She now weighs an incredible 135 pounds and is maintaining.  Check out her before and after photos:

Weight Loss Success Story Laura Before and After Photo

Today, she is going to remind us that we have to do it for US and how important tracking is.  I just love her story and I found so much motivation from it.  I know you will too!  

Enjoy!

Tell us a little about yourself, your family, your job, etc…
Hi! I’m Laura and I’m 23 years old. I live in Cambridge, UK. I recently got engaged to Phillip and I have a little fur Baby(cat) called Kia. I work full-time as a Test Engineer.

I’ve been overweight most of my life. It goes as far back as primary school where I was always bigger than my friends. I gained weight throughout High School, College and University.

I never weighed myself or got weighed until I was in University and weighed in at 258 lbs. I had made feeble attempts to lose weight before then but no success. Getting around campus was a nightmare and I was always so out of breath walking to classes.

Weight Loss Success Story Laura Before Photo

I was always so down and disappointed when trying to buy clothes. At the time, the plus size stores only had certain styles of clothing and I didn’t really like them. I always wanted to wear what was in fashion and that wasn’t always possible.

How long did it take you to get to your ideal weight? Are you there now?
Its taken me about 3 years to get to my ideal weight. I got to my goal weight of 135 lbs in November 2013 and have been maintaining since then.

What was your motivation to lose weight?
Primary motivation has been to make sure that I am healthy and happy.

Weight Loss Success Story Laura After Photo

I wanted to feel good about myself and be able to love my body. Eventually, the motivation was to inspire other members of my family to lose weight too and hopefully encourage them to make the changes too.

My then boyfriend, now fiance, was a huge source of motivation and inspiration. He too was overweight and had been through his own weight loss journey. He was a constant motivator to me. He never once tried to push me more than what was needed and had said from the very beginning that he would love me no matter what size I was, he just wanted me to be healthy and happy.

That.. and the clothes I dreamt of being able to fit in clothes from high street rather than trying to get ANYTHING that would fit.

What made you decide to start your weight loss journey?
I don’t think any particular moment caused a spark for me to lose weight. I think I just woke up one morning and decided that I’d had enough. I didn’t want to feel miserable anymore and made the decision there and then to make a lifestyle change.

So, the main reason for starting has been for myself. You should ALWAYS do it for yourself…not for someone else.

What kept you on track losing weight?
At the beginning of my weight loss, after making the decision to make the change, I went to the doctors every month for weigh-ins to keep me on track. I would set myself small goals that I would aim to try and reach by the next weigh in.

I eventually joined the site MyFitnessPal and decided to track my exercise and calories. I have been doing this ever since and it has been a great tool during my weight loss. I am able to see and be in control of the calories that I am putting in my body.

Tell us about a typical day in terms of eating and exercise.
I usually run 4 times a week – 2 weekday runs and 2 weekend runs. I do 3 miles on weekdays and 5+ miles on weekends.

Weight Loss Success Story Laura After Photo

So a typical day including exercise would be:
Waking up and going for a run – These are usually fasted runs. I don’t eat until I am back from my run.
Breakfast usually consists of Porridge with Almond Milk.
Lunches are usually soups, especially in the cold winter months.
Dinners usually consist of a meat such as fish or chicken along with veggies such as peas or cauliflower and some sweet potato fries or mash.
Snacks are usually whatever I fancy. I’ve never been keen on restricting things from my diet, so I do allow myself to have the occasional biscuit or sweet if that’s what I want.

What is the biggest difference you have noticed because of your weight loss?
This would definitely be my energy levels and my confidence.

I hardly had any energy before starting my weight loss journey. I was always tired and lethargic and it was SUCH an effort to get around anywhere. Now, I’m able to run for at least 2 hours at a time before I feel tired and everyday tasks are just so much easier.

My confidence has improved too, though not as much as I’d like. I used to shy away and wouldn’t really like talking to people. I’m slowly coming out of my shell, but I’m not 100% yet. I still feel very awkward in social situations and worry about judgement a lot.

What advice can you give to others struggling to lose weight?
Don’t give up!

No-one ever said that it would be easy. It definitely isn’t. You just have to keep pushing it and keep going until you get where you want to be.

Set yourself small goals to meet over a reasonable time frame.

How do you keep the weight off in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle?
I track everything daily – both exercise and food. It’s been a staple in my weight loss as I can control and monitor exactly what is going in and what is going out.

I don’t restrict myself of anything and that’s been a golden rule for me throughout my whole weight loss. If I want a piece of cake, I’ll have a piece of cake.

Restricting myself of certain foods only made me want them even more which lead to binging on those foods. I allow any food that I want as long as it is in moderation.

Give us a quote or a motto that you have used to keep you focused.
“The voice inside your head that says that you can’t do this IS A LIAR!”

I LOVE that quote!  We all CAN do it and we WILL do it if we put our mind to it.  What an incredible story, Laura.  It makes me want to track EVERY day EVERYthing I eat in My Fitness Pal or on my WW app.  Tracking is key and you have just re-affirmed that to me!  You look amazing and I know you are now living the life you were meant to live!  Way to go!

If you want to follow Laura on her journey, you can visit her BLOG or “Like” her page on Facebook or Twitter.

 

Are you a success story and would like to share your own success with our readers?  If so, click HERE and fill out the form!  You DO NOT need to be at your goal weight to be on the blog!  There are all forms of success!  Thank you!

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About Jennifer Swafford

Jennifer is an elementary school teacher who is trying to lose 100+ pounds. She has certainly learned how much It Sux To Be Fat and is here to motivate you to live a healthy lifestyle.