That’s me on the left and the right.  On the left, I felt fat and miserable…I was at my END.  I had to do something after all those years of struggling with my weight.  It was time to make some changes.

Now, for the first time in my life, I’m loving what I’m doing….married to Denny, mom to Sean and Keara, a college professor, and learning to live a healthy lifestyle. I’ve been an educator for more than 20 years, schooling others about science, teaching, and informational literacy.  This time, I decided it was time to educate myself about my body and healthy living and focus on ME. Here’s my journey…

1980’s:  While attending middle/high school, I started gaining weight and learning how to yo-yo diet.  During my 8th grade year, I remember skipping lunch, every day, much to the disapproval of one of my favorite teachers.  Before I started high school, I remember wearing a size 4 and weighing 112 pounds….and I thought I was sooo fat.  All through high school, I continued to gain weight, while my self confidence diminished.  I was always embarrassed by my fat belly and size. I graduated high school about a size 12.

1990’s:  This marked the start of college.  I was still struggling to have some type of weight control, but only managed to yo-yo my weight. This began the journey of trying to eat healthier, starving myself, and trying fad diets. Insert cabbage soup diet, drinking meal replacement shakes, and binge eating.  I managed to yo-yo between a size 10 -14 through college, and always embarrassed by my belly and weight.

1995:  I started teaching high school biology. I wanted to lose the weight and began the fat-free craze and walking for exercise.  I became so obsessed with counting fat grams, that I never ate more than 10 fat grams per day.  Basically, I was starving myself, but I was getting skinny.  I remember when I fit into a size 8…I was ecstatic.  I mean, who cares that you are starving???  You are in a size 8.  I became quite obsessed with it all and it all lasted for about one year.  The highlight of that time period, was the daily walking exercise.  I became an avid walker, and still am.  I strive to get some type of daily activity.

2000’s:  I started this decade in graduate school and eventually teaching again. Slowly, I had given up the fat-free lifestyle, but was still walking 2-3 miles about 3 times a week.  All  the weight came back on and then some.  In 2002, I gave birth to my first child, and only gained 33 pounds during pregnancy.  Which isn’t all that bad, but I’ve never been able to lose weight unless I starved myself.  By 2006, when I became pregnant with my second child, I still hadn’t lost all the weight from the first one.  Then, I didn’t lose all the weight after the birth of my second child.  You get the idea….as the years go by I slowly keep packing on the pounds.

2007 – 2012:  I was a doctoral student at the University of Missouri – St. Louis, with 2 small children and a husband that worked crazy hours.  With the stress of going back to school and being a mom, I became a stress eater and my stomach issues were out of control.  I had always had a “nervous” stomach, but now, I was taking Prilosec, Tums, Gas-x, Heartburn relief, Tylenol PM, Ibuprofen, and Zyrtec on a daily basis…just to get by.  Not to mention, I was developing an addiction to diet cola. During this time, I was walking, trying to eat healthy, joined weight watchers, and tried every fad diet you could image.  By the time I was nearing graduation I managed to gain another 30 pounds!

2012:  I turned 40, teaching at the college level, and had at least 40 – 50 pounds to lose.  I kept telling myself that the 40’s were going to be my decade to FINALLY get control of my weight and our finances (after a few years of surviving on a graduate student salary).   I was trying everything to lose the weight…walking, jogging, eating healthy, but my health was out of control.  Everyday my blood sugar was crashing and my stomach pains were severe.  It all felt hopeless.  Towards the end of the year, my husband’s cousin, introduced me to Plexus.

January 2013:  I traveled to Thailand with a group of educators and when I saw all the photographs, I was horrified by my size.  I knew it was time to focus on Plexus and taking care of my stomach issues.  I did a little research and discovered probiotics.  Immediately, I began drinking Plexus Slim consistently, then added Probio5 and Biocleanse each night.

by March 2013:  My stomach issues were gone….and I no longer needed any over-the counter medicines.  And, I didn’t get my usual seasonal allergy attack/infection/illness that would drag on for weeks.   I stopped drinking diet soda, wasn’t craving sweets, and no longer needed that afternoon nap to get through the day.   I was feeling great, but the scale hadn’t moved at all.

by May 2013:  I was packing for a trip to Finland/Estonia and I needed a new pair of jeans…I was down 1 size, even though the scale still hadn’t dropped.   Yahoo!!  With all this new energy, no stomach issues, and just feeling great, I was able to take a group of 12 college students abroad.  I couldn’t have done that before Plexus.  I wouldn’t have had the energy or “stomach” to manage college students in Europe!

Summer 2013:  I paid attention to what I was eating, consistently taking Slim, Probio5, and Biocleanse, and walking daily.  By the first of August, I had lost about 20 pounds, and 3 sizes…I was looking and feeling great.

Fall 2013 – present:  I continued learning more and more about health and my own eating habits. I have very SLOWLY lost pounds and inches.  I’ve learned to listen to my body…eat when hungry and stop when I am full. Right away, I was able to combat many of my addictions, but the last junk food addiction that I had to combat was my addiction to sour cream and onion chips. Happy to say that I rarely eat potato chips now!

Right now:  I am the healthiest that I have ever been and I owe it all to these health and wellness supplements that have helped my body from the inside first.  I feel better than I ever have, look forward to start each day, and just enjoying life.  Thank you Plexus….it has forever changed my life.


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