Her Way From 240 Lbs to a Trim 118 lbs
Sometimes the first step along the journey to losing significant weight is to set down all the emotional baggage you're carrying. That's what Christina Cores learned as she embarked on the long, hard journey from a miserable 240 lbs to a trim, vital 118 lbs. Exercise and proper diet are indispensable to an amazing transformation like Christina's, but taking a good, long, honest look at yourself and your lifestyle is usually a good place to start.
You'd never know it to look at her today, but the girl who now turns heads wherever she goes once had trouble climbing a flight of stairs. Looking back on her life, Christina now knows that her first steps toward the obesity that plagued her teenage years began at the tender age of seven. That was the year her parents got divorced and the aftermath of this emotional experience took a toll on her eating habits.
"For a while, I lived with my grandmother as things were settling down," Christina remembers. "She loved to cook and she could bake, too. Soon, eating became my escape, as I tried to fill the void with food. I was steadily getting bigger and bigger each year."
Then, at age 15, Christina faced three life-changing scenarios that would cause any teen with a history of emotional eating to further spiral out of control: her father passed away, she moved to a new town and she started high school. Upon reaching 240 pounds and finding herself out of breath while walking up the stairs at school, Christina realized she needed to make a drastic change to help herself before it was too late.
"Everything about being overweight bothered me," she admits. "The way I saw it, I could not do all of the things the other kids could do, because I saw myself as being fat."
So, Christina began her transformation by educating herself on ways to lose weight and change her lifestyle. After seeing the success of several family members who were adopting low-carb eating strategies, Christina became a convert to that methodology. She eliminated as many carbohydrates form her diet as possible for six months, switched from soda to water, limited her sodium intake, avoided processed foods and learned to read food labels. Christina then began slowly reintroducing such healthy carbs into her diet as whole wheat toast and oatmeal.
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But Christina realized that while diet alone might make her thin, it wouldn't yield the fit and toned physique she was hoping for--it was time to add exercise into her weight-loss plan. So, in the spring of 2003, she started a workout that combined cardio and strength-training moves. Later, a women's workout center gave Christina a regimen to follow, with variations she could swap in and out as she progressed. She then joined a gym, where she was able to broaden her training program without the limitations that at-home workouts placed on her.
"I noticed that working out turned into a fun regimen," says Christina. "I had originally thought I would be tired and fatigued, but it actually worked the opposite--it gave me energy and strength. Watching my transformation in the mirror gave me the visual that reinforced everything I was doing."
It took Christina two years to lose the weight, but her scale has steadily read 118 pounds for five years. Now 22, Christina works at a fine dining restaurant in Schuamburg, IL, that specializes in meals that have under 475 calories per serving. She no longer needs to fixate on her caloric breakdown each day because she knows how to listen to her body and make smart choices.
"My diet largely consists of chicken, yogurt, oatmeal, protein shakes, nuts, multigrain, whole wheat bread, eggs, peanut butter, fruits and veggies," says Christina. "And again, I couldn't have done it without Supreme Protein bars and shakes. They help me stay full longer and satisfy my sweet cravings. They are also responsible for giving me that extra energy I need at the gym. I don't get that sore feeling like I did before I used them."
While Christina feels that she's "basically" the same person she was before her transformation, she takes pride in the fact that she's armed herself with the knowledge she needs to keep herself in shape. "I can feel a strong sense of confidence as I no longer take my body for granted," she explains. "It is now clear to me that all of my hard work was for a reason. I am glad that with my success, others are able to take tips and advice from me so that I can help them with their transformation as well."
In fact, that's the direction Christina plans to take her career over the next several years--she's hoping to find a job in the health and fitness field so she can help others do what she's done.
Christina's Workout Regimenwww.christinacores.com
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Treadmill : Total of 30
[10min] Jogging @5 .0
[10min] Run for 1 min @7 .0 / fast walk for .30sec @ 4 .0 / the next 8.8 min is split with the above format
[5min] Incline of 15 for 5min @4 .2
[5min] Jogging for 2min @ 5.0 /Run for 1 min @ 7.0 /Walk for 2min @ 3.0
Range from 5-12 pounds (3x's a week)
100 pounds 3sets of 12 (2x's a week)
10-15 min (every workout)