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Jim Aycock, 48, of Marietta lost 70 pounds

SUCCESS STORY / Jim Aycock, 48: From 274 pounds to 204 pounds

Former weight: 274 pounds

Current weight: 204 pounds

Pounds lost: 70 pounds

Height: 5 feet 8 inches

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Age: 48

How long he’s kept it off: “I lost 70 pounds by Thanksgiving 2017,” Aycock said. “I have maintained that loss.”

Personal life: “I have been married to Amy for almost 23 years. We have four children ranging in age from 12 to 20,” he said. “I help small businesses thrive in the areas of finance, accounting, operations and human resources.”

Turning point: “Thanksgiving 2016 we were on a family vacation in Colorado. The family had multiple activities planned, including zip-lining and horseback riding. I had to sit out both of those activities because I was over the weight limit. It was embarrassing and I realized that I was missing out on my life because of my inability to make healthy choices. It took me about three more weeks before I started to eat better. I promised myself that I (would) give my new lifestyle the entire year of 2017. I could go back to the way I lived in 2016 if I wanted to after 2017 — and I don’t want to go back.”

Diet plan: Breakfast is eggs, ham and cheese, or cereal. Lunch and dinner are salad with lean protein. “I knew I couldn’t make it through the day without getting hungry,” Aycock said. “I thought back to when I was a kid and I would play soccer. After the game they would hand out orange slices and it was so good.” He snacks on oranges.

Exercise routine: “I have learned that exercise is a group activity for me even if the group is two,” he said. Aycock works out six days a week doing a combination of personal training Monday through Friday at Marietta Performance Training and group fitness classes Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays with his wife at Orangetheory Fitness.

Biggest challenge: “I was very focused during my weight-loss journey,” he said. “I would say one area I had to watch myself was to not get down if the weight was not coming off as fast as I wanted. I like food, including fatty fat Mexican, as my wife calls it. … I think maintaining is harder than losing. Don’t let a bad day turn into two bad days, then into a bad week. I do not follow my eating plan every meal. I like food — not just clean, healthy food. … Amy and I would also discuss her coaching sessions with Jacynta Harb, wellness coach with Sparkle A New You.

How life has changed: “I love feeling strong and being able to keep up with kids, go on zip-lines and go horseback riding,” Aycock said. “… It was nice to get all the compliments of how great I look as I lost the weight.” His advice: “Think differently — you probably don’t even realize some of the habits you have formed and how easy it would be to change.”

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