Talia Wade loses 110 pounds

Former weight: 296 pounds

Current weight: 186 pounds

Pounds lost: 110 pounds

Height: 5 feet, 6 inches

How long she's kept it off: Wade started her weight loss in July 2009 and met her 100-pound goal in February 2010.

Personal life: "I'm a fifth-grade teacher at Sugar Hill Elementary School in Hall County," said Wade, who lives in Demorest. "I live with my wonderful parents and my fabulous cats. I have a boyfriend named Eric Gray."

Turning point: "My turning point was when I realized that I had no more excuses," she said. "I was miserable. I hated myself. I felt weak and I wanted to feel strong. So when my friend Mike, exercise scientist and personal trainer, presented me with the opportunity to change, I took it."

Diet plan: "Three servings of grains, six veggies, two fruits, two dairy and five proteins; I eat between 1,200 and 1,400 calories a day," she said.

Exercise routine: "My exercise routine is one hour of cardio six times a week," she said. "I also wear a pedometer and get at least 10,000 steps every day."

Biggest challenge: "The biggest challenge has been finding a balance between super-mega diet machine and lazy sloth," she said. "I tend to be sort of extreme in everything I do. So to keep my weight down, I have avoided a lot of things I used to do on a regular basis. ... That's been a huge challenge. Also, when I started this, I didn't think about the loose skin that I would have. It seems unfortunate to have lost 110 pounds and still not feel confident about the way my body looks. However, I am not in this for looks. I've never been ugly and I am not ugly now. But, it could definitely be better."

How life has changed: "My life has changed so much. I have to devote a lot of time to food preparation and planning. ... I am not scared about the rest of my life anymore. I feel more comfortable now, physically and emotionally. I have prayed a lot and asked God to give me strength. I have gotten a lot of negative influences and people out of my life in this process."

Be an inspiration: If you've made positive changes in your diet and/or fitness routine and are happy with the results, please share your success with us. Include your e-mail address, a daytime phone number and before and after photos (by mail or JPEG). Write: Success Stories, c/o Holly Steel, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 223 Perimeter Center Parkway, Atlanta, GA, 30346-1301; or e-mail ajcsuccessstories@gmail.com.