Susan Hanks is the reason this True Weight Loss segment makes my heart happy. At one point, her weight exceeded 500 pounds. Instead of turning to fad diets or pills, she just dug deep and swapped bad habits for good ones. She admits it’s been a mental struggle, and she couldn’t have done it without the help of her fabulous personal trainer.
Now, 118 pounds down, this courageous woman knows how to lose weight and stay healthy, she just has to stay the course. “I take it one meal at a time,” she said.
Food was my comfort.
It’s a sentiment we hear so many times at DIR. People turn to food for celebration, comfort, boredom, and it’s rarely bell peppers that they’re mindlessly munching. “I ate all the time, bad food was better, and I never ate healthy,” Susan admitted. “I was miserable. I had no friends and low self esteem. I knew I was eating myself to death. Finally I realized I wanted more out of life. I was tired of just existing.”
He taught me to eat to live, not live to eat.
Susan joined a gym and started eliminating bad food from her diet but still didn’t feel like she had a solid plan. Then, fate intervened. She joined a weight loss challenge but the scale wasn’t big enough to weigh her so she was instructed to go to a local gym. Even though she dropped out of the challenge, the personal trainer who weighed her, Martin, continued to ask about her progress. His concern was so genuine, Susan knew he could help her reach her goals.
With Martin’s guidance, Susan developed a workout plan and a better diet. “I eat fruits, vegetables and chicken. Nothing fried, no fast food, and I make all my meals at home.”
Embracing the triumphs of weight loss.
“I’ve had so many moments that have been awesome,” Susan recalls. “I walked my first 5K, learned how to jog on the treadmill , just did my first fast mile at 16.50, it’s easier to get up and down from the floor, and I’m using machines at the gym.”
My biggest struggle has been cravings. I know it’s just mental.
Even though Martin is her sounding board and counselor, he can’t be with her every moment. Susan had to learn how to be her own voice of reason, something she admits is still difficult, even after 100+ pounds. “My mind runs sometimes and I have to do a lot of self talk. I take one meal at a time , stay positive and know there’s no turning back.”
Advice Susan would give to others embarking on a weight loss journey: Remember, weight loss is very mental. The scale doesn’t define you. Take pictures and measurements once a month. Enjoy the journey and stay positive. Slow progress is still progress!