by Caitlin H,
October 16, 2023
Occupation: Retired teacher
Meal Plan: Balance 1,200
Favorite Meal: Bistro Chicken Salad
Start date: May 2023
Starting weight: 200
Lost pounds: 42
ACTIVITY level: Daily walks? easing back into running
When I get a craving, it’s my trick: I have a small taste of a sweet treat, like the Diet-to-Go brownie that accompanies the grilled cheese and tomato soup meal, while I keep my goals in mind.
My favorite app for tracking weight loss is: I record the results of the weighing in my diary.
When 55-year-old Lara recently fit comfortably into a pair of size 10 trousers she’d held onto for years, it was a powerful moment for her.
“I tried on all my clothes again and thought, ‘Okay, you’re almost there. He continued!'”
While the moment was impressive for Lara, she also used it as a reminder that she was less than 10kg away from her goal weight. Her determination to continue was further strengthened after she saw a full-length photo of herself after three months of hard work and diligence.
“Taking the picture, I was like, ‘Wow! I don’t have a full-length mirror, so seeing it was amazing!” he said. “I’m almost here, but not here yet. I just have to keep going. I like to feel that I’m getting closer.”
And a few weeks later, in mid-September, she did reach her goal weight.
Lara recently retired from a 28-year career working in the Department of Corrections where she worked as a teacher with both young and adult males. In 2019, she also became the legal guardian of her 7-year-old granddaughter.
“I have to push to have energy with her,” Lara said. “We do swimming and tae-kwon-do. She’s so much fun.”
Lara also spent a lot of time running and every year she competes in a half marathon in January.
“Last January, I was so slow, but I finished it,” she said, adding that she weighed about 200 pounds at the time. “I also took my retirement trip to Kauai. I liked it, but because I felt so old, I was self-conscious. I was mad at myself for being so big on this special thing.”
These were the catalysts that pushed Lara to make a change. She had tried dieting before, but finally decided to try Diet-to-Go after reading one Sports Illustrated article about the many benefits of the program.
“My first week, I thought, ‘It can’t be 1,200 calories. it’s too much food,” Lara said. “I didn’t think I was going to lose weight, but I thought, ‘This is heaven!’ I liked the taste. There were so many meals that at the end I thought, ‘Wow, that was really good!'”
Lara decided to stick with it and focus on her three nutritious, portion-controlled meals a day, a far cry from her previous diet of six small meals and snacks throughout the day – something she said was never sustainable for because unhealthy snacking has always been one of her hardest struggles.
“The diet I have to go on helped me with my snacking problem,” she said. “Meals are bigger so I don’t feel like snacking. I’m able to focus on my meals and really focus on how I feel.”
The portion size and nutritional content also helped Lara when she was traveling, like during a recent trip with her granddaughter to Legoland.
“I’ve been able to navigate food better because I’m learning what a meal should be and how to keep it sustainable,” she said. “It’s helped me to keep from going wild and going crazy.”
Lara said losing weight has made a big difference to her confidence and energy levels too.
“I feel more like myself. When I have the extra weight, I don’t want to do anything, feel anything,” she said. “For me, I have to be at a certain weight…I have improved confidence. There are very few things I feel very strongly about, but this is one thing.”
Losing weight also gave her the push she needed to turn her daily walks back into daily runs, something she’d been dying to do.
“It’s become a comfort, something that’s possible,” Lara said. “It just makes me feel stronger and happier.”
Asked what was the most critical factor contributing to her weight loss, Lara said it was the Diet-to-Go.
“Diet-to-Go brings meals to your home, gives you the structure and takes away the preparation,” she said. “It narrows your focus and once you get the hang of it, it’s really easy.”
Lara advises others to give it a try, hang in there and keep going one day at a time.
“I always tell my granddaughter, ‘You can do hard things,'” she said. “I tell the others the same. You’re important enough to do that. You do so much for everyone else. you can do this for yourself and it’s worth it.”
Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager
Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about connecting with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key and people will have the most success losing weight if they engage in common sense healthy eating and fitness.