Becca Daniel, 22, of Marietta, lost 74 pounds

SUCCESS STORY / Becca Daniel, 22: From 202 pounds to 128 pounds

Former weight: 202 pounds

Current weight: 128 pounds

Pounds lost: 74 pounds

Height: 5 feet 7 inches

Age: 22 years

How long she’s kept it off: “I reached my original goal weight of 135 pounds in July 2012, so I have maintained my goal weight for over six months, but went on to lose the additional seven pounds which I have kept off for over a month now,” Daniel said.

Personal life: “I live (in Marietta) with my fiance and our two dogs,” she said. “It was pretty amazing. I got engaged the same month I reached my original goal weight. I am an office manager for a family-owned sink wholesale company.”

Turning point: “I never realized I was as big as I was,” she said. “My dad and I went to visit my sister in Alabama, and my dad took pictures during our trip and tagged me on Facebook. I was horrified at how large I had gotten. I never let anyone take pictures of me, so seeing myself in a photo was a true eye-opener. Then I got the courage to step on the scale and my own personal nightmare came true, I was over 200 pounds. I knew right then and there something had to change — I did not want to live my life in the obese category.”

Diet plan: “I had no specific diet plan; I did research and taught myself about nutrition,” she said. She joined the website MyFitnessPal.com, where she logged everything she ate. “I can track my calories, macro-nutrients and calories burned.” Breakfast is two eggs, a piece of turkey bacon and a banana. At midmorning she has a protein bar. Lunch is a spinach salad with grilled chicken. Afternoons are Greek yogurt, and dinner is chicken stir-fry.

Exercise routine: “I work out with my personal trainer three times a week doing strength training,” she said. “I run three times a week, two to three miles at a time … and take a spin class once a week. All together, I work out about five to six days a week.”

Biggest challenge: “The hardest part for me is making it through the holidays. You just want to let loose and enjoy but not overindulge.”

How life has changed: “When I was overweight, I hardly wanted to leave my room,” she said. “I was ashamed of how I looked in clothes and how I felt. Now that I have lost weight, I feel so much better, have confidence, and that has made me so much happier. I finally love myself, and I believe that makes it easier for others to love me. Make new habits and form a new lifestyle, you don’t have to diet to lose weight. … I didn’t eat perfect 100 percent of the time or work out every day I planned, but that’s OK. I always told myself it’s OK to have a bad day sometimes, I just have to pick myself up and tell myself I will do better tomorrow.”

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