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Name: Donesha Bolden
Before Weight: 215 pounds
How I Gained It: I have always been on the heavy side all of my life, but I never really gave much thought to healthy living. I graduated from Troy University in 2006 and relocated to North Carolina. My third year there, I started taking Zumba classes, and I had lost a great amount of weight. I lost my mother that same year and made the big move to Atlanta, not knowing if I would be able to find a job or not. That summer, I gained all of the weight I lost back and then some. I was no longer a part of a gym or eating healthfully. I was struggling to find work all summer, hoping that I would be hired that upcoming fall. I had gotten up to 215 pounds when I started working in August 2010. I have always been into fashion, so weight was never my concern. I felt like I was well-dressed most of the time and didn't focus on being healthy at all.
Breaking Point: Over a year ago, I decided that it was time for me to take control of my health and change my lifestyle for the better. I lost an uncle to a heart attack, my grandmother to cancer, my 35-year-old cousin found out she had breast cancer and my 36-year-old cousin was found by her teenagers on their way to school dead from hypertension. My sister has high blood pressure along with several of my cousins and aunts. My grandfather lost his battle with cancer a few years ago as well. I am raising my 10-year-old nephew, and I came to the conclusion that in order to watch him grow up, I had to make a change with my health.
How I Lost It: One of my female cousins had gastric bypass to assist her with weight loss, but I didn't want to go that route. I had been working out with my trainer, Tissilli Rogers, for over a year and only saw small results because I wasn't consistent or dedicated to changing. In October 2011, my cousin introduced me to Insanity. I was used to doing a tough workout, but working out at home gives you the freedom to be yourself. I wanted to quit every day, but I kept going. My trainer started educating me on nutrition, and I lost 30 pounds within 60 days. My goal was 160 pounds, but Tissilli had a goal of her own: 150 pounds.
Last year, I was featured in the Atlanta Journal Constitution for my weight loss. That gave me the push I needed to keep making this lifestyle change. As of today, I have lost 65 pounds, all while working, raising my nephew and working on my Ph.D. in education. My lifetime goal is to inspire that person who doesn't think it can be done through hard work and dedication.
I get up every day and work my butt off because I'm expecting results! I have changed the things that I allow to go into my body, and that has allowed my abdominal area to improve. I eat clean more than 90 percent of the time, mostly fish, chicken and veggies. I do not eat fried foods or processed foods, and I drink more than a gallon of water daily. I complete cardio five days a week at 5 a.m. It gives me energy that I never thought I would have! I strength train with my trainer two days a week, and she keeps me on track with my goals and how I can not only meet but exceed them. My new passion is running, and I hope to run in a marathon this summer. I can honestly say I love working out, and I love encouraging others though my Facebook and Instagram. It's a pleasure to see people write to me and say that I inspired them to make those healthy changes! This is just the beginning and I'm ready for the things to come.
After Weight: 150 pounds
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