Ansley Caldwell, 35, of Canton lost 52 pounds

In the photo on the left, taken in March 2016, Ansley Caldwell, left, weighed 240 pounds. In the photo on the right, taken in April, Caldwell, right, weighed 188 pounds. In both photos she is pictured with her mother, Annette Caldwell, who was featured in this column May 13. (Photos contributed by Ansley Caldwell)

Editor's note: Last week, Ansley Caldwell's mother, Annette, was featured: https://www.ajc.com/lifestyles/health/annette-caldwell-canton-lost-pounds/hgPIYNAsyVqKdourwbDHvN/

SUCCESS STORY / Ansley Caldwell, 35: From 240 pounds to 188 pounds

Former weight: 240 pounds

Current weight: 188 pounds

Pounds lost: 52 pounds

Height: 5 feet 7 inches

Age: 35 years

How long she's kept it off: She started in August and reached her current weight in April.

Personal life: "I live in Canton. … I'm single," Caldwell said. "I love to travel and have lived in a lot of places, including Portugal, but Georgia is my home and I'm thankful to be back here working and living close to my amazing family, especially my two adorable nieces. I'm a preschool ministry assistant at Johnson Ferry Baptist Church."

Turning point: "Over the years, it seems like I've tried a million different times to lose weight and get healthier, but it never seemed to stick. I'd always start strong, then give up a couple of weeks in, once it started getting hard or I started getting bored. If I didn't see almost instant results, I'd get discouraged and stop trying," Caldwell said. "Last summer, my mom and I were both finally at a place where we knew something needed to change." A friend recommended wellness coach Jacynta Harb with Sparkle Wellness. "We finally decided that we could give it a shot if we did it together — and we haven't looked back since," she said.

Diet plan: Breakfast is Greek yogurt or eggs. Lunch is veggie soup or veggies with protein, and dinner is fish or chicken with veggies.

Exercise routine: "I started walking a couple of times a week, and I joined a group fitness cardio kickboxing class," Caldwell said. "… Before COVID-19 hit, I was doing two kickboxing classes every week and usually walking a couple of times, also. I also took on a challenge of doing one 5K per month for the 2020 year and am enjoying that more than I expected. Since I've been working from home … I've been walking a lot more, averaging two miles per day, and adding … stuff that I can easily do at home without equipment."

Biggest challenge: "Getting past the mindset that it wasn't worth it, that I couldn't actually make any sustainable changes," Caldwell said. "Now that I've realized it is possible, my biggest challenge is maintaining this new mindset."

How life has changed: "I feel more confident — both in how I look and in what I know about having a healthy lifestyle," Caldwell said. "I exercise and enjoy it much more than ever before. I have more energy and am more excited to try new things. I used to have this mentality that 'I'll always just be the fat girl.' " Through her faith, support from Sparkle and her mom, she said, "I've come to realize that I am worth the effort, and I can do this."

Share Your Success: Each week, Success Stories focuses on an individual’s unique weight loss journey. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution does not endorse any specific weight loss program but includes names and links for the benefit of readers who want further information. Have you lost weight successfully with a healthy lifestyle change? If you would like to share your story with our readers, please include your email address, phone number, and before and after photos (by mail or JPEG), and contact us at: Success Stories, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 223 Perimeter Center Parkway, Atlanta, GA, 30346-1301; or email Michelle C. Brooks, ajcsuccessstories@gmail.com.

In Other News