ThankStories: Tanya’s Motivated Life

Tanya embraces her Motivated Life

I do not want to cloud over the facts in this writing. I believe this post doesn’t need a big long series of introductions of interruptions  Tanya’s story is moving. I wan’t to keep it simple. To keep it clear. If you want some tips on how to workout, check out THESE BLOGS and THESE BLOGS. Other than that- Get Motivated by Tanya’s Story.

Tanya's Dramatic Weight Loss

Tanya Achieved a complete life transformation


AA: In your weight journey, when did you decide to change?

TT: I realized that my weight was a problem when I was a freshman in college. All through high school, I was very athletic and active and did not have a problem with weight. Once I started college, I gained 35-40 pounds that first year, and it was a continual gain from that point forward until I finally made the commitment to lose the weight. It took me literally 25 years to get to that point!

AA: WOW! 25 years later, what was the trigger?

TT: The death of my oldest son made me realize how much I had missed with him because of the weight. It was important to me to not let the weight affect my youngest son in the same manner.

AA: I’m very sorry for your loss, I can only imagine the pain you felt. How did his passing inspire you?

I was standing by his bedside in the hospital, and I made a promise to him that I would be a better mom for his little brother

TT: When my oldest son passed away unexpectedly in 2008, I was standing by his bedside in the hospital, and I made a promise to him that I would be a better mom for his little brother and do all the things that him and I couldn’t because of my weight. 2 years later, in December of 2010, I had a dream about my oldest son, and he told me I wasn’t keeping my promise to him or my youngest son. On January 3, 2011 I started my journey and have never looked back. I knew with my son Kody watching me from heaven that I would and HAD to do it.

AA: I love how important family is to us in life change. May I ask, when you were a child, did anything happen that encouraged emotional eating that led to your weight gain? I know that for me I had moments of abuse from others that helped trigger a lot of my gain…

TT: I lived through some verbally abusive situations that I think contributed to my weight, but I don’t think they were the real reason for the gain. I think those situations made it easy not to “care” about how I felt and looked, and made it difficult for me to commit to losing the weight. It was always easy to hide behind the weight.

AA: Did you feel the weight protected you? Cause I know that I was dealing with weight being a source of protection for me…

TT: For sure it was protection. When people looked at me, I felt all they saw was a “fat person”, and they didn’t really see ME. It was almost like being invisible in a way.

AA: So, how did you figure out what was Healthy?

TT: I did TONS of research on the web on nutrition and how to eat properly. In the beginning I tried a “game” with friends called the Game On Diet Challenge. I worked out 20 minutes a day with the Wii game Just Dance. My path has changed NUMEROUS times, and will continue to do so as I evolve.

AA: What are some of the ways your eating habits evolved?

TT: In the beginning I ate a lot of processed and EASY to grab foods. I would use deli meat and frozen low calorie entrees. Now I eat almost entirely fresh foods: tons of fresh fruits and veggies and mostly protein with very little carbs. I am not touting a low carb lifestyle, I have just found that is what works best for me.

AA: I really like the way you put that! I think American’s get stuck on a weight loss pattern that they think will work for everyone when in reality, each person, like a car engine, needs special fine-tuning! We are in November, and obviously this month has some great moments of thankfulness- What parts of this journey are you thankful for?

TT: There are hundreds of things I have to be thankful for. First thing that comes to mind is all the things I can now do with my youngest son. Kyle and I ran 3 different 5k races together this past summer. Recently we went to an amusement park and we were able to ride all of the rides. I am also lucky that this journey led me to the love of my life… Who has also lost 160 pounds!

AA: What is the number one thing you would encourage someone to do in starting their journey?

TT: This is my favorite question Austin! The number one thing to do in starting their journey??? START NOW! Don’t wait until Monday, or next week, or whatever has been holding you back! My “I’ll wait until Monday” turned into 25 years! Start at 100% or start with baby steps…….

AA: When you get discouraged where do you turn for support?

I enlisted EVERYONE as support in my journey.

TT: Accountability was a huge motivating factor for me, so I enlisted EVERYONE as support in my journey. My dad encouraged me at every single turn! I would email him that I wanted to give up, and he would talk me into doing “just one more day”, which would then turn into weeks and then finally into months! I told ALL my co-workers that I was on this journey, and they monitored every single thing that went in my mouth. I followed dozens of weight loss pages on Facebook. I still have all that support in place. I still slip up, I think everyone does, but the MOST important piece of advice I ever got was DON’T EVER GIVE UP!!! I would love to give hope to just ONE single person that it truly can be done the old fashioned way- with diet and exercise!! There are no magic pills or potions; it is a matter of putting in the time and dedication.

TT: May I add one more thing? I wanted to add that finding a good local gym and a personal trainer who believed in me, was and still is an integral part of my journey! Again, it is the accountability! Knowing I have to see my trainer 3 times a week keeps me on the straight and narrow!! I know that I would not have maintained my weight loss for going on a year now without him!!!

AA: Do you feel the journey ever ends?

There are no magic pills or potions; it is a matter of putting in the time and dedication! 

TT: The journey is NEVER over. It has never been just about the weight for me. It has always been about becoming a better person, a better mom and building a better future for myself and my youngest son.



Tanya is a total inspiration, and for her to have accomplished this dream is amazing! SHe has done so much, and I have been truly Honored to be able to tell her story! If you are looking for some of the basics of Working out, checkout the latest Workouts:101 Post! Otherwise, Check back on Monday for a NEW ThankStories Featured person! 


Workouts:101 The basics of getting moving

Ken and Austin from the Biggest Loser have decided its time to give the knowledge they learned away, one blog at a time!