Gen Neeley had always been a bigger girl. She said that by the time she hit high school she weighed around 230 pounds. She was bullied, taunted, and ridiculed. As a result she had no self-esteem. It was so bad that she dropped out of high school at 16 and got her GED instead. In 2007 she had a baby at the age of 19. When she was pregnant she only gained 20 pounds and then lost that plus some extra right after the baby was born. She maintained a somewhat steady weight of 220 for a few years but then was put on anti-depressants and the weight started to creep back up. Her final breaking point was when she became pregnant with her second child in 2009 and was at 265 at her first OB appointment. She came close to going over 300 by full term.
Gen decided that a change was in order so she started going to weight loss meetings and faced her fear of others judging her. There was a contest where you could win money if you lost the most during the 12 week program. She said that she was motivated by that and felt that she was more motivated to lose weight due to the fact that everyone would be watching her progress. She stopped drinking regular soda completely. Her meals every day were two protein shakes and then one meal that was 500-600 calories. She dropped 20 pounds in the first round of the contest. She said that she felt great about losing the weight but ended up dropping out of the meetings. She went back up to 250 pounds.
After a few months Gen remembered how good it felt when she was losing weight but didn’t want to diet again. She got an app for her phone and started counting her calories. She got an elliptical machine for her home and she would walk for an hour a day. She learned about portion control and eating the right foods. Over time she ended up losing more and more weight. She is now down to 162 pounds. She says that it is not about dieting, you shouldn’t diet. You should make permanent healthy changes in your life. If you want a piece of pizza, eat one, just make sure you don’t eat the whole thing. Learn self-control and portion control and you will be on the right track.