If you’re a parent you know the feeling of wanting more for your children, greater happiness, more friendships, a better education, etc. That feeling of devotion was especially true for Amanda Gosik, a mother of three from Missouri. Though she had been heavy all of her life, she didn’t get serious about weight loss until a doctor told her that her 3-year-old was considered obese. That was Amanda’s wakeup call.
“That was the sign I needed to get serious and make some changes or my family would suffer,” admitted Amanda. After losing an astonishing 175 pounds, she’s truly leading by example.
More from Amanda in her own words:
When did your weight struggles begin? “I have always been large aside from early childhood. My first and second grade pictures are tiny and then by third grade I was noticeably overweight. My 6th grade year I wore a size 20 pants. I battled to lose during my teens and early 20’s and nothing changed.”
What habits specifically led you to gain weight? “Eating my feelings were a big part of it, I’m sure. Growing up in a house where takeout happened all the time and ‘cooked’ meals were fried or TV dinners didn’t help either.”
How did you lose the weight? “I started by taking small steps. I knew I couldn’t change my eating and exercise habits at the same time so I focused on exercise to start. I walked and did Wii Fit it, and then moved on to videos. I joined a widely known diet program after I lost 50 lbs. I learned a great deal about portion control but knew counting points forever was not feasible. Now I track my food and exercise daily with myfitnesspal.”
What diet and exercise methods did you employ? “Running, walking, wii Fit, various DVDs, and weights (recently). I eat mostly natural foods. Lots of fruits and veggies as well as lean meats (chicken, turkey, and fish).”
Did you have any “ah ha” moments along the way that really made a difference in your transformation? “I think a big moment for me was when one of my children proudly announced her favorite food was Brussel sprouts. She was 6 at the time and at that point I felt like this long hard journey was worth it. I’m not just changing my life but the lives of my three children are better off as well.”
Biggest struggle in your journey? “I think the biggest struggle for me is overcoming my addiction to all the wrong foods. It was difficult and when I took that step my body was so addicted, it went through a detox phase.”
“Biggest triumph has been realizing I am smaller now than in 6th grade, and I did it the healthy way. Another big triumph is finishing a half marathon last year.”
Current/future goals? “I would love to run a complete half and maybe even a full marathon someday.”
Advice you’d give to other people struggling to lose weight? Take it one day, one step, one meal, one pound, one workout at a time. Don’t look at the big picture too often because it can be daunting. Enjoy and embrace the journey and don’t ever let one bad meal or bad day ruin all your work.”