Sonia Smith-Kang Weight Loss Success Story

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Sonia Smith-Kang before and after photos

Courtesy of Sonia Smith-Kang

My story started like so many other women’s: I couldn’t lose the weight after I had my first baby…and then I had more. Three more, to be exact. Oh, and I gained some extra pounds with each one.

It was hard to prioritize my health—after all, I had multiple small children and was busy running the company I’d founded, Mixed Up Clothing. I would eat on the run and just down my meals as quickly as possible so I could stay on schedule, pick up my kids on time, and take them to all of their extracurricular activities.

Whenever I had any free time, I would use that to do more work—exercising wasn’t even on my radar.

The heavier I got, the bigger a toll it took on my self-esteem

I found myself making more and more self-deprecating remarks and talking incessantly about my weight. On family vacations, I didn’t want to be in photos because I was ashamed by how much weight I had gained.

I was unhealthy, and I certainly wasn’t being the example I wanted to be for my children.

In 2017, my weight crept up to 213 pounds. Even during my pregnancies, the scale had never climbed to that number. Something had to change.

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I’d seen Jenny Craig commercials and thought the plan might work for me

It seemed like it fit with my busy schedule, so I joined March of last year. Jenny Craig essentially boils down to calorie counting: You eat fewer cals than you had previously—while burning more through exercise. There are prepared meals that are already portioned out, which was super-convenient.

In addition to those meals, you get a shopping list of fresh fruits and vegetables to make sure you’re getting enough produce. A typical day of eating for me might be:

*Breakfast: Apple-cinnamon oatmeal and a half cup of fruit
*Mid-morning snack: Protein bar
*Lunch: Chicken tortilla soup and garden salad with a light dressing
*Mid-afternoon snack: Fruit
*Dinner: Turkey burger with fresh veggies

If I was still hungry after all of that, I’d have a small serving of popcorn.The plan was easy to stick to.

I lost three pounds the first week and continued losing about one to three pounds per week after that.

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I had to get creative to squeeze in workouts

Around the same time I joined Jenny Craig, I began working out regularly. I made it a goal to exercise three to five days per week, for an hour each time. I’m lucky to own an elliptical and treadmill, so I’d get on one of those and put on Netflix or HBO Go and just start moving as much as I could for an hour.

I planned out my exercise the same way I’d plan meetings or play dates, and I started multi-tasking by hopping on the treadmill during conference calls or scheduling meetings with my publicist over workouts.

Around September of 2017, six months after making a serious effort to get healthy, I hit the 50-pound weight-loss mark.

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Maintaining a healthy weight will always require effort for me

I have been trying to get to a healthy weight for more than half my life, and I’ve come to terms with the fact that it will always be a challenge I face. But this time around has been different because I’ve been patient with myself and I’ve learned to take each day one at a time.

If I slip up, I forgive myself and know that I am doing the best that I can—and that’s half the battle. The biggest reward for me is having my children say they are proud of me for accomplishing something I have talked about doing for so long.

My number one tip is to know yourself. I had to really take stock of who I am as a person and what the habits were that led to my becoming overweight and unhappy—but once I did, I got so much better at correcting my missteps.

Exploring the reasons I ate what I ate and why I didn’t exercise was key to my success.

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