The 42-year-old member of the Joy Fit Club, who once weighed 347 pounds, relied on fatty foods to satisfy all her emotional needs. From early childhood, Kimberly viewed food as something she could always count on to comfort her in times of distress. “In school, I was called many names, had things thrown at me, and had kids whisper and laugh behind my back,” she recalled.Kimberly spent the next three decades gaining an abnormal amount of weight, subsisting on a diet of large portions: two McDonald’s breakfast burritos with hash browns in the morning; two cheeseburgers with fries and shakes for lunch; and a pizza with four scoops of ice cream for dinner. Overall, it came to roughly 9,000 calories and 150 to 200 grams of fat per day. “Little did I realize it was slowly killing me,” she said.
Kimberly felt like a prisoner of her size. Her life was entirely controlled by its limitations: She couldn’t walk long distances, fit into airplane or restaurant seats, or even apply for a job without feeling like her weight stood in the way. “I worked extremely hard to prove that, despite my outward appearance, I was highly competent, hard-working,” she recalled. “‘Normal’-size people have no idea what they take for granted.”Kimberly thought she would outgrow her obesity, but as she approached 40, she began to believe she might always be fat and that her goals, including having a relationship, would remain forever unfulfilled. She was 39 years old and had still never been kissed. “I stopped thinking about my soul mate, and when I would see [romantic movies], my heart would ache. I would cry, reminded of how truly lonely I really was.”
Although Kimberly was unhappy with her lifestyle, it took years until she finally felt motivated to make a change. It all came down to one moment with a DVD – and Gerard Butler.
She had just turned 39 when a friend loaned her a copy of the movie musical “Phantom of the Opera,” whose title character, like her, was an outcast yearning for love. It had a huge impact. “Gerard Butler’s portrayal of the Phantom changed my life,” Kimberly said. “His talent woke me up from my food coma. From that moment on, my soul was alive.”
Kimberly completed changed her eating habits, switching from pizza to Subway sandwiches for lunch, ditching fast food meals for baked chicken or tilapia, and recruiting family and friends to locate nonfat ice cream that tasted “just like the real thing.” She began tracking all her calories and looking for nutritional information on restaurant menus and supermarket food labels. “The problem is, so many dishes appear healthy by their title, description, or look – but they aren’t,” she explained.
That doesn’t mean Kimberly doesn’t allow herself a well-earned reward now or then. “When I do indulge on the holidays, I appreciate the taste of the food so much more – it is such a treat.”
As for exercise, Kimberly took baby steps, starting with walking every day. She then graduated to a stationary bike, slowly increasing the intensity and time over several weeks. After a while, she added in weight-lifting and general floor exercises, and committed to working out seven days a week.
The transition wasn’t easy; it was often hard to find the energy to exercise in the morning. But Kimberly soon learned that “once you start, you feel the energy come to you.”
In just under 21 months Kimberly was able to shed 211 pounds, and she now weighs in at 136 pounds. She finally feels confident about her appearance, and has found a new zest for life. “I literally run up and down the stairs now. I am never out of breath and look for opportunities to hit the stairs more for exercise � it is unbelievable!”
Physically, she’s now able to enjoy simple everyday activities that once thwarted her, like crossing her legs or sitting in an airplane seat comfortably. In fact, Kimberly just recently met a man, who finally gave her what she fantasized about for three decades: a kiss. “He told me he wished he’d known because he would’ve made it even more special,” Kimberly said. “He’s very sweet and we’ve been getting along very well.” As for her future, Kimberly looks forward to many more exciting “firsts”:
“I want to live for the first time and experience everything – I want to travel, have fun and [go on an] adventure. I lost so many years to my ‘fat suit’... I have a lot left to do.”
Source from msnbc.com TODAY
Damn she's so inspiring. I wanna lose my fat suit too.
347 pounds is 157kg fulala.
Btw, Gerard Butler's performance in The Phantom of Opera is epic!