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Elizabeth H. - Columbia, MD 

My goal: Lose weight by eating healthy and exercising (i.e. developing a healthy lifestyle that I will continue throughout the rest of my life) 

My success (thus far): I have lost 91 lbs., and I am approximately 20 lbs. away from my goal weight. 

My Story: Most people talk about the freshman 15 that occurs your freshman year of college due to alcohol and fast food. I gained a lot more than the freshman 15 throughout college and my first two years in the business world. When I graduated from college with a degree in accounting, I worked for one of the big four accounting firms, which included late hours, long days, eating out, frequent traveling, extended hotel stays, etc. This was not a healthy lifestyle for me, and it added to the college weight I had put on. After two years of living this unhealthy lifestyle, I accepted a job with a better work/life balance and was able to finally take a look in the mirror. When I did this, I did not like what I saw. I didn’t know how I let myself get to be so unhealthy. I decided to make a change.  

The first thing I did was join Weight Watchers in order to begin eating healthier. I have been a Weight Watchers member since December 5th, 2012, and I attend weekly meetings in order to weigh in and learn more about nutrition. Through Weight Watchers, I have learned the importance of what you put into your body as well as the importance of portion control and a daily log, which tracks food consumption and exercise. It helps for planning ahead and making smarter, more conscious food decisions. 

Another important change I made to live a healthier life was beginning to use my Life Time gym membership on a regular basis. Prior to December 2012, I used Life Time at best once per week. I played sports in high school (basketball and lacrosse) and was a very active individual, but I didn’t make time for exercise in college and during my first two years in the working world. In December of 2012 at the beginning of my weight loss journey, I began going to the gym on a regular basis. I am now at the gym 4-6 times a week. At the gym I try to change up my routine to work different muscles. In doing so, I have tried a number of different classes along with many weight and cardio machines. I typically spend 1.5 hours, 4-6 days a week at the gym doing cardio (elliptical, treadmill, stationary bike, or Stairmaster) and weights (machines and free weights). In order to get the most out of my workouts, I use a Polar watch to track my heart rate and calories burned during my workouts. I also participate in classes such as Hot Yoga, Hot Vinyasa Yoga, and Cycle. Finally, I spend time with a Life Time personal trainer, who has taught me some great new exercises in order to continue to vary my workout routine. 

One of the things I have learned throughout my time at the gym is that I truly enjoy taking time out of my day to spend on bettering myself. This has made me become a more active person in my everyday life, and I continue to try new activities, such as kayaking, hiking, running outside, yoga, etc. I have even found that I love hot yoga so much that I have joined a yoga studio (Charm City Yoga) in order to strengthen my practice. I also have a “bucket list” of active things that I would like to try sometime in the near future. 

Overall, losing weight and exercising regularly has made me a stronger and more confident individual. I am truly proud of how far I have come, and I look forward to what my future has to offer now that I have taken control of my health and my life. 

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