My wake-up call came when I was carrying my 4-year-old daughter up to bed one night.
I couldn’t believe I was so out of breath. My stomach hurt, my body ached, and I had no energy. I was struggling with my blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol. I’m 39 and had my daughter — my miracle baby — after years of trying. I knew I had to make changes so I could be there for her.
I’d already started to exercise, but I wanted to do more.
I had seen Challenge books at work, but it wasn’t until my team had a conference call about it that I knew I’d do it. So I downloaded the app, saw other people’s stories, and knew I could make Better Choices too. I joined a local fitness studio and started taking classes like yoga and high-intensity dance. Now, I take 30-minute classes over my lunch break. Some days, I’ll even take a class in the morning too! I can’t begin to describe the sense of accomplishment when I finish a class.
Before, I considered myself a “sit-down mom.”
But now we get away from the T.V. and spend quality time outside. It brings me closer to my daughter and helps me stay present. I’ll walk behind her as she rides her bike and my husband will come outside too. I’m enjoying every single moment.
I’ve started meal prepping and eating every three hours so my blood sugar doesn’t spike.
Before, I’d skip breakfast and eat big meals for lunch and dinner because I’d get so hungry. I’d only drink Diet Coke, never any water. Now, no more fast food or sodas — only natural foods and water with lemon or flavor drops. I love cauliflower and making cauliflower rice and using it as a substitute for mashed potatoes. I’ve lost 27 pounds so far, my cholesterol and blood pressure are normal, and I’m able to fit into clothes I hadn’t worn since before my daughter was born.
I used to wake up in the middle of the night with leg cramps.
Now I’m sleeping soundly, and as a result, I can focus more. I’m more excited to share with others — I want them to experience the same happiness and health that I’m able to enjoy now. I’m a more well-rounded person who truly believes that one small change can have a domino effect and change your life.
—Tracy Birks, Neighborhood Market #4421; Columbus, GA; $5K Winner