I Love the New Me: 5 Women's Incredible Weight-Loss Stories

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Lydia Fish before

Lydia Fish's Story

Age: 39
Height: 5'5"
Residence: Rocklin, California
Marital status: Divorced
Children: Simon, 14, and Dylan, 11
Occupation: Assistant city clerk, City of Folsom
2004: 226 lbs.
Now: 126 lbs.
Lost: 100 lbs.

How it started: I'm one of 11 kids. My parents fought a lot, and my father was verbally abusive to all of us when he drank. Food was the thing that made me feel good, but it wasn't something I could always help myself to. That's because there were locks on the fridge; my parents couldn't afford to have 11 kids eating whenever they wanted. My mother, who was thin, put us on diets from a young age. She wanted us to understand portion control, but it made me feel like there was something wrong with me. Although my father was an alcoholic, we kids were addicted to food. When I hit my 20s I weighed 216 pounds. I lost 76 pounds over seven months -- about 40 on Jenny Craig, 20 more on Weight Watchers, and the rest on my own. I kept the weight off for two years until I got pregnant. Then I told myself I could eat whatever I wanted.

Breakthrough moment: I remember sitting at my computer in the summer of 2004, wearing shorts, and being shocked at the size of my thighs. I thought, Can I get any bigger? I weighed 226 pounds -- it was a moment of true despair.

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