How I Lost 100 Pounds

Chicago 2006

Check out my “Fat History” Page to find out about my journey!

Don’t yo-you diet or try fads. It’s a simple equation to lose weight:


After my “revelation” to get healthy, I decided to count my calories for one day. I made no changes to my eating habits and just wrote down everything I ate. I looked up the calories online and wrote it all down. I was absolutely shocked at what I was putting into my mouth. I had no concept of serving sizes. I was probably eating 3 servings of food instead of 1 serving. I made poor choices for snacks. I ate too many sweets. I decided to limit my calories to 2000 a day.

This began my calorie counting. It was hard at first. I realized that trying to eat under 2000 calories was difficult to do, and it really wasn’t that much food. I tried to eat fruits and vegetables as my snacks, and eat healthy foods for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner. I found myself reading every label and deciding if I wanted to eat those calories. It was all about sacrificing and substituting.


My weaknesses are sugar (ice cream, cookies, cheesecake) and pizza. I decided to completely cut out pizza from my diet. I knew I could not just have 1 slice and a salad for dinner. If there was pizza in my house, I would eat the entire pizza without any regard to health or fitness. As for the sugar, I started substituting the yummy treats I was obsessed with for lower calorie alternatives: frozen yogurt, Snackwell’s cookies that were about 50 calories each, Rice Krispie Treats for 90 calories. Those were my desserts.

The other part of this equation is EXERCISE. I started swimming at the local pool. I swam a few times a week. I wasn’t a fast swimmer when I first started. I did about 20-30 minutes a few times a week. I swam one length of the pool, rested, then swam back. I had to rest A LOT. But that was okay. It’s all about building up stamina.

I got better at swimming–then the time came when I was able to swim half a mile without stopping! I was so happy and proud! More landmarks arrived: I swam an entire mile without stopping! I ran a 5k! Nothing was going to stop me! 🙂


I know that everyone (including me) wishes there was an easy way to lose the weight. There is no magic answer, no magic pill, no secret diet. Yo-yo dieting will do more harm than good. YOU MUST CHANGE YOUR ENTIRE LIFESTYLE. Eating healthy and exercising HAS to be a change and commitment you are willing to make for the REST OF YOUR LIFE. Even if you reach “goal weight,” you have to keep doing the work to stay where you are at. Reaching goal weight is not a pass to go back to eating poorly and being lazy.  I know, not what we want to hear, right?

You will be amazed at how your body changes. Keep at it!

Vegas 2009

Losing weight was easy in the beginning. It took me just under 2 years to lose 100 pounds (and then I kept going to lose another 10). Two years of hard work. As I got closer to my goal weight, the harder it was to continue losing. My body was fighting the loss; my body was also turning into muscle. The changes I made are going to stay with me for the rest of my life.

Anyone can do what I did.

Weight Loss Log

Date Weight
9/22/06 250
10/31/06 239
11/12/06 236
11/24/06 237
12/03/06 232
12/10/06 229
12/22/06 228
12/27/06 230
1/9/07 227
1/27/07 225
2/10/07 223
3/20/07 216
4/7/07 213
4/21/07 211
4/28/07 212
5/1/07 210
5/5/07 208
5/13/07 205
5/20/07 203
6/2/07 202
6/13/07 200
6/19/07 199
7/13/07 196
7/24/07 194
8/10/07 190
8/19/07 189
8/31/07 186
9/8/07 189
10/6/07 184
10/27/07 183
11/19/07 181
11/28/07 179
12/7/07 178
12/15/07 176
12/25/07 180
12/29/07 176
1/19/08 175
2/2/08 172.5
2/15/08 171.4
2/22/08 170
3/14/08 167.8
3/15/08 167
3/22/08 165.6
3/29/08 163.6
4/12/08 160.8
5/8/08 158.6
5/11/08 157.6
5/18/08 155.2
5/23/08 152.4
6/20/08 159
7/13/08 156
7/19/08 154.4
8/10/08 150.6
8/29/08 148.4
9/15/08 147.4
10/12/08 147
10/31/08 145
11/28/08 146
12/25/08 144.2

My Food Philosophy

I currently strive to eat 1590 calories a day. On days I exercise, I can burn an average of 500 calories, so I will eat more calories than the 1590. Some days, especially on long bike rides, I can burn over 2,000 calories. On days that I have an intense workout, I have to eat more calories to fuel my body. This is crucial to have a healthy body. Starvation does not work!

I am not a doctor or dietitian. The way to achieve optimal health, in my opinion, is to not deny yourself anything but to eat foods you love in moderation. Find “skinny” alternatives. For example, if I’m craving Mexican food, I’ll make a lighter version of things I love: quesadillas and enchiladas with light cheese, light sour cream, lean meats, lots of veggies. Eat smart and exercise!

Questions? Send me an email at

14 responses to “How I Lost 100 Pounds

  1. Hi Lisa! First and foremost, thank you for the wonderful comments on my blog. It’s still hard to open up about anxiety, so it’s always nice to get positive feedback from people 🙂

    Secondly – I was the exact same as you. NO idea what calories were, substituted my usual billion desserts a day, and started exercising with swimming!! I think a lot of it is self discovery too. You can’t do what worked for others, you gotta find a way that works for YOU.

    Keep being amazing!! 😀

    • Thank you! I thought your post on anxiety was excellent. And that’s so fantastic that swimming worked for you too. In the blogger world it’s sometimes hard to find other swimmers. 🙂

  2. wow congrats. Love your advice which is the truth.

  3. Can I recommend a great book? It’s called Intuitive Eating. It really helped me get “in tune” with my natural hunger and fullness signals. It’s the ultimate way to maintain a healthy lifestyle and maintain your weight of course!! Take care! Awesome job!!

    • I read “Intuitive Eating.” I agreed with most of it. I’ve tried to incorporate some of that into my eating habits. In my journey I’ve tried not to deny myself things, but instead to eat them in moderation or find similar substitutes that are healthier.

  4. Thanks for checking out my blog – I agree with you about the exercise – it is such an important part of the mix!

    I’ve been struggling a bit, but it is different now. I used to think that if any weight came back, I needed to batten down the hatch and get ready to see it all pour back on. Now I know 10 is not greater or equal to 100 – hmmm…it took me a while to learn that, but math never was my gig.

    Keep up the good work and thanks for commenting on my blog…keep coming back.

  5. carterhiggins

    Your story is so fantastic and inspiring! I lost 100 pounds last year which was definitely hard, but now that I am learning how to maintain this weight loss I need all the encouragement I can get! Thanks for being that today 🙂

  6. I am glad I found your blog, I like your style. Great work on the weight loss and taking on a new lifestyle. That’s what it is all about. “Dieting” doesn’t work!
    Myself I lost 180 and have been recently getting back down to my healthy range after a 40lb relapse.

  7. You’re such an inspiration. I love your blog. I like that you’re straightforward and honest about everything. Just wanted to let you know 🙂

  8. It is so good to see someone who realizes there is no easy fix, and the changes have to be healthy lifestyle ones, not just going “on” and “off” a diet! What’s so great, too, is that once the changes become habits, the effort becomes so much easier.

    Since I’ve lost most of my excess weight, I’ve seen tremendous health benefits, and am well on my way to reaching my goal. Thanks for your well-written, inspirational story. Looking forward to reading more!

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