One determined woman decided to embark on a fitness journey to reclaim her health. When Amber first started, she had no idea how much this decision would change her life. Fast forward five years, and she’s lost a total of 132 pounds! For her, becoming a mom made her realize the importance of improving her health. Once she transformed her body, she did not look back.
“When I started my journey, my highest recorded weight was 323 pounds. I’ve been overweight all my life since I was a little girl,” Amber said. “When I had my daughter, I was rushed into emergency C-section, and that’s when we realized that my weight had taken a toll on my body. It was causing me to have preeclampsia.”
Doctors explain that preeclampsia can be exacerbated by obesity or overweight. This condition is characterized by high blood pressure, excess protein in the urine, and swelling of the legs and hands. Scientists believe that insulin resistance, inflammation, oxidative stress and vascular dysfunction, commonly found in obese women, may contribute to preeclampsia. While the condition isn’t always life-threatening, severe cases can be fatal.
“I think that was like my turning point because I was about to not only be a mommy, but be a mommy that could possibly lose my life because of my weight. I was terrified.”
From then on, Amber decided to get serious about her health, no matter how hard the journey seemed. When she first started, the biggest hurdle was getting over the mental blocks she had about working out. However, once she got in the right mindset, everything got easier.
Amber hit the ground running and never looked back
“In the beginning it was really difficult for me, especially learning how to eat, learning proper nutrition, and learning how to work out. There were multiple times I went [to the gym] and I’d see people running, just running miles upon miles. Mentally, I would get defeated before I would even start. I think that overcoming my mindset was probably one of the biggest challenges for me,” she said.
Also, it took her a while to figure out the types of exercises she enjoyed. She combines weight training and cardio, but she says cardio works best for her.
“Cardio and dancing just really helps me relieve all of that tension.”
It didn’t take long for Amber to see results, as her body transformed. She stepped on a scale after six weeks of working out at the YMCA and had lost eight pounds! Seeing her efforts pay off encouraged her to keep pushing.
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“I think that was my motivation, like that was just what I needed to get going. It was just seeing those small goals, seeing myself achieving different milestones, and every few months seeing my body changing. Realizing how strong I was, those were probably the biggest motivating factors for me.”
The positive outcomes
Amber has noticed so many positive changes in her life since reclaiming her health. She’s learned how to love herself and her body, and she’s realized the importance of giving herself praise on the journey. Overall, she shows herself much more love than before, and knows that being healthy is a form of self-care.
While she still wants to lose more weight, she’s proud of how far she has transformed her body so far. Amber tries to maintain the same energy she had in the beginning, even on the days where she gets discouraged. Some days she feels overwhelmed or not in the mood for a workout, but she keeps pushing herself. On the hard days, she tells herself:
“Your goal is closer than you think; just look back on how far you’ve come.”
The story of how Amber transformed her body inspires thousands on social media
Amber frequently posts about her struggles and triumphs along the journey toward reclaiming her health. She goes by “Bae Goals” on Instagram, where she shares her rawest thoughts about mental health, exercise, and life in general. She’s amassed 120K followers on her account, and many of them feel motivated after hearing her story. Amber talks openly about struggling with addiction, and shares with her followers how helpful counseling has been.
Oftentimes, being overweight or obese hides even deeper issues that people don’t talk about. Getting to the root cause of the addiction is the first step to overcoming it. Amber has worked hard to achieve her goals and reclaim her health, and her journey isn’t over yet. While she’s working toward her fitness goals, she also has some ambitious business ideas.
Amber believes continuing to share her story and inspiration with others is important. She’s currently working on a book, speaking engagements, coaching, and branding opportunities. After reclaiming her health, she feels called to help others along their journeys too.
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In an inspirational Instagram post, she says:
“I never knew how heavy the weight was until I put it down. The weight of depression, the weight of rejection, the weight of wanting to end my life. I didn’t realize it until I laid all those weights down that they were keeping me held back. Imagine how high you can jump when you’re not being weighed down with [stuff] you can’t control.”
“Give up on giving up. It’s okay to restart. Don’t feel pressured by this Internet to be someone you’re not. Be true to you and be authentic…I am laying the weights down daily. Join me and get your mind back. I’m climbing this mountain not because I want the world to see me, but because I want to see the world. I refuse to limit myself.”