Better than ever: “at age 36, I look and feel better than I did at 26, thanks to my healthier new lifestyle.”
When Amy Whittle took over her family’s manufacturing business at age 26, she suddenly found herself putting in 14-hour days. “I spent all my time in the office and either grabbed unhealthy snacks from vending machines or bought fast food and ate it in my car between appointments,” she says. At the end of the day, Amy was usually too tired to cook, so she dined on takeout pizza or Chinese food. Two years later, the grueling hours took a toll on Amy’s health–not only was she exhausted, but she had gained 15 pounds on her 5-foot-8 1/2-inch frame, bringing her weight to 160 pounds.
Her turning point
Fed up with being overweight, Amy joined a gym near her home. “The club offered members a fitness evaluation and a session with a personal trainer,” she recalls. “During my consultation, I learned that my body fat was more than 30 percent. That’s when I knew I had to do something.”
Her weight-loss & exercise plan
Although Amy had exercised regularly before she took over the business, she decided she needed guidance and hired a trainer. “My trainer recommended I weight train three days a week and do cardio two to three days a week,” she says. Amy also learned how to make healthful food choices, eating 1,800 calories a day from fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein.
Making success happen
In just a month, Amy noticed a difference. “Not only was I 5 pounds lighter, I also had more energy,” she says. Amy made it a priority to leave the office early enough so she could go to the gym.
Amy packed a healthful lunch and snacks to take with her to work. She also learned healthy food-preparation techniques. “I started to use herbs and lowfat sauces to flavor meals instead of butter and oil,” she says.
At the gym, Amy’s trainer changed her routine every 4-6 weeks to challenge her muscles. “After three months, I was leaner and my muscles became visible,” she says.
A year and a half later, Amy was 35 pounds lighter. “I went from a size 14 to a size 4,” she says. “Making a commitment to exercise and eat right has been the best gift I’ve ever given myself.”
Running, stair climbing, walking or elliptical training 45 minutes/2-3 times a week
Weight training 45-60 minutes/3 times a week
To submit your own Success Story, go to Shape.com/model.
RELATED ARTICLE: Amy Whittle
Height 5’8 1/2″
Pounds lost 35
AMY ON …
Doubling up “I always prepare extra servings of lowfat recipes and pack up the leftovers for lunch the following day.”
A backup plan “Buy weights, resistance bands and an exercise ball so you can exercise at home on days you can’t make it to the gym.”
Multitasking “I keep a set of 5-pound dumbbells in my office and do arm curls and other weight-training exercises whenever I have a free moment.”
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