Teracita McLemore, 44, of Jonesboro lost 45 pounds

SUCCESS STORY / Teracita McLemore, 44: From 220 pounds to 175 pounds

Former weight: 220 pounds

Current weight: 175 pounds

Pounds lost: 45 pounds

Height: 5 feet 3 inches

Age: 44 years

How long she’s kept it off: Over a year. She started February 2013 and reached her goal November 2013.

Personal life: “I am married to Alphonso, we have four kids and two grandchildren,” said McLemore. She works in customer service for Delta Air Lines and is a squad leader for Casi’s Straight Military Style Bootcamp (www.casisbootcamp.com). She lives in Jonesboro.

Turning point: “My mom had always had ups and downs with her weight. She passed in 2009. The older I got, I wanted to get off the weight so I didn’t have health problems. My dad had diabetes, my mom and dad had heart problems. I’m in my 40s and I didn’t want the diabetes or the health problems,” she said. “When I was pregnant with my son, I was the heaviest. After so many years, you can’t blame it on the kids anymore … I started by cleaning up my diet, but I needed an extra push so I started with Casi’s Bootcamp in February 2013.”

Diet plan: She eats five small meals. Breakfast is oatmeal with yogurt or fruit. Lunch is vegetables and meat. Dinner is a regular meal but on small plates. “I’ll have a couple of small plates; I eat off that instead of a bigger plate.”

Exercise routine: She exercises five days a week. As a squad leader, she does boot camp five days a week. She also plays team kickball along with kickboxing, Pilates, Zumba and running. “My favorite thing is running — I had never ran before,” she said. “My goal for the year is at least one race per month, but I’d like to do two.”

Biggest challenge: “It’s hard to get it off, that was a whole bunch of blood, sweat and tears to get through it. To keep it and maintaining it is the hardest part to me. I’ve done it so far, so good — just trying to at least do something three or four times per week. I would love to but I can’t run every day because of my schedule. I have DVDs at home even if I get in some crunches — I try to do something to maintain it.”

How life has changed: “It’s a lifestyle change, it’s not just like … the quick diet,” she said. “I’m actually [the weight] my drivers’ license says … I love to run — I didn’t know I had it in me until I did the boot camp. The Hot Chocolate Race is a 15K. I didn’t sign up for the 5K — I signed up for the 15K … I win every race because I cross the finish line.”

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