Pamela Arias lost over 150 pounds. After being overweight for most of her life, Pamela admits she weighs 24 pounds more right now than she did in the 6th grade. “And to think that I lived my entire life this way until I was 38 years old,” she said. “I’m so glad I made the decision two years ago to change my life.”
More from Pamela in her own words –
What habits specifically led you to gain weight? I ate fast food, processed foods and fried foods. This was the only lifestyle I’d ever known.
What made you realize you needed to change? I was miserable every day. I had horrible sciatica, lower back pain, and my knees would give out going up and down stairs in my own home. One day I had taken the kids to the local races. You had to walk an incline to get into the event, but not very far. I couldn’t catch my breath. My husband had to go get the car and come pick me up.
How did you lose the weight? Through lots of hard work, dedication and research. I do both cardio and heavy weight training. I eat a much more healthy diet now than I ever did. I stay away from processed, boxed, canned foods and only shop the outer edges of the grocery store. I count my calories and eat depending on what my goals are.
What diet and exercise methods did you employ? When I started, I could barely move at over 300 pounds. I used walking DVDs in my home and then went outside. Eventually, I joined the YMCA where I took Zumba and Spin classes. Now that I have a home gym, I do kickboxing for cardio, metabolic training using compound moves, along with weights, and I also incorporate heavy lifting three days per week.
Did you have any “ah ha” moments along the way? The biggest “ah ha” moment was when I realized how good I could feel. I never really knew what it was like to feel fantastic and view the world in a completely different way. As the weight has come off, it’s almost like the fog has been lifted.
Biggest struggle in your journey? The biggest struggle along the way has been getting over my food and sugar addiction. Now I focus on good food and I can still eat a lot of it. The sugar addiction has been much harder. I had to learn moderation.
Biggest triumphs? I’ve learned balance. I used to put all my time and energy into everyone else. I had to learn that I’m important too! Another huge triumph would be the fact that I’ve been able to motivate and inspire others to want to change their lives as well. I’m proud to be an ACE Certified Personal Trainer, ACE Certified Health Coach, and Weight-loss Coach.
Current/future goals? My main goal was to feel fantastic and I achieved it.
Advice you’d give to other people struggling to lose weight? Don’t look too far ahead or at the big number when it comes to how much weight you have to lose. There are no quick fixes or magic solutions, and there are no finish lines. You will always have new goals to achieve no matter where you are on your fitness/weight-loss journey.