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5 Women Behind Your Favorite Viral Success Stories Share Their Best Weight-Loss Tips

  • Kelsey Byers

    Despite being fit and healthy in high school, this mother-of-one began struggling with her weight in college. She gained more than 50 pounds before deciding to make a change. By following a healthy diet, lifting weights, and eating more calories than ever before, Byers has lost more than 40 pounds and is happier than ever before. 

    Her best piece of advice: "Have a long-term mentality. Don't do anything restrictive like dieting or cutting carbs. Basically, don't do anything you can't do for life. Commit to a healthy lifestyle change and the weight will come off -- and stay off."


  • Erica Buteau

    Erica Buteau

    Erica Buteau

    Even after being on two blood pressure medications and pills to control her cholesterol and depression, Erica Buteau wasn't motivated to lose weight. It wasn't until she stepped on the scale and found out that she weighed over 300 pounds that she felt she needed make a change. Today, she has lost half her weight with diet and exercise alone, and weighs a healthy 145 pounds.

    Her best piece of advice: "It’s possible to take control of your life; the key is finding your why and always remembering it along the way. Once you know what you're fighting for -- whether it's a smaller size, better health, or setting a positive example for you children -- write it down. Post a reminder of your goal and your motivation on the fridge or your scale, and go back to it when you feel weak."


  • Jacqueline Adan

    Four years ago, while on a trip to Disneyland, Jacqueline Adan got stuck in a turnstile and had to claw herself out to make it to the other side. The 30-year-old teacher was humiliated beyond belief and decided to take control of her life. After following a strict Jenny Craig diet and working out, she lost 350 pounds and weighs 160 pounds today—impressively losing two-thirds of her body weight.

    Her best piece of advice: "Take it one day at a time. Focus on that day and make sure you do the best you can with your food choices and moving your body. At the end of the day, when all of the healthy choices are made, you won. Focus on winning the day and not on how long it will take."



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    Casey Gemmell

    Cosplayer Casey Gemmell knew she needed to take control when she couldn't fit into a 5XL Batman costume for her son's birthday. After changing her diet entirely and finding a passion in running, the 37-year-old mom has lost more than 154 pounds, shrinking to a size 12. 

    Her best piece of advice: "Set yourself small goals. Don't rush in thinking you are going to lose 100 pounds; focus on losing five, and then five more. The more attainable the goal, the more likely you are to reach it. Tough times don't last, but tough people do."

  • Laura Micetich

    After realizing she weighed 304 pounds, Laura Micetich's parents told her she should consider weight-loss surgery. Instead, Micetich, a teacher, decided to create an Instagram account to hold herself accountable while trying to lose weight naturally. Since then, she's lost 114 pounds and now weighs 190. 

    Her best piece of advice: "The doubt that creeps into your mind, the hesitation to put your foot on the starting line, the lack of faith that you can do it -- it's just junk," she wrote in an Instagram post. "Your thoughts make your reality. Replace those thoughts with positivity, with conviction, with belief in self, and see where it takes you."


Faith Brar

Faith is an Associate Digital Editor at Meredith Corporation in Boston. Her work has appeared in Fitness, Shape, Better Homes & Gardens, More and others.  More →

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