WHO: Teresa Misty Mozejko, CEO and personal trainer of Whitby Fit Body Boot Camp
CITY: Whitby, Ont.
By The Numbers: 305 at my heaviest, and currently 185, total weight loss of 120 pounds
The Weight Gain: I was always fairly skinny as a kid, but when I hit puberty things began to change. I gained weight and grew to 6' pretty quickly. I was always the 'bigger' kid and was teased mercilessly as I grew into my late teens.
When I moved from the U.K. to New York, the weight gain continued. I was homesick for a while and food was always a comfort option. I remember when I moved again to Ohio, I ate Dairy Queen every night on the front stoop. I tried every diet under the sun from Atkins to South Beach to Weight Watchers. I even tried the Cabbage Soup Diet, yuck.
The Final Straw: I moved to Canada in 2002 and a couple of years after that (and after gaining even more weight) I went to an outdoor restaurant. I tried to sit down in a plastic chair that had built-in arm rests and my hips wouldn't fit. I was mortified and had to spend the rest of the time standing!
But the final straw was realizing that I needed to go and visit my family in the U.K. and I was so scared of being a passenger of my size. I thought if my hips didn’t fit into a plastic lawn chair, they sure as heck wouldn't fit into a plane seat.
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The Plan Of Attack: I really wanted control back into my life and I really wanted to shop in regular clothing stores. I really wanted to feel comfortable in my own skin but I knew I had to regain my lost confidence.
First, I joined a boot camp. Every single cell in my body screamed 'NOOOOOO.' As I finished my first set of very wobbly lunges I knew I had a long road ahead of me. Hauling 300 pounds off the couch was hard work, let alone making each and every one of those pounds hold a plank.
I lost about 50 pounds in the first year and another 70 one and a half years later. I had some struggles with food and lifestyle but the weight came off slowly and steadily. It was gratifying to see some before and after pictures of my body shape change that year.
The Food Element: During the course of my weight loss journey I went to school to become a holistic nutritionist. I learned about fueling my body with complex carbs, lean proteins and the medicinal properties contained within our fruits and vegetables.
I cut out anything in boxes. Prepackaged food was a thing of the past. I called it lazy food because no thought went into preparing and eating these items. Weight loss is a side effect of eating a clean diet and being active. Eating healthy fats, high-nutrient content foods and as many natural choices had been (and still is) my focus.
The Exercise Factor: Shortly after joining a boot camp I also went on to become a fitness instructor, personal trainer and owner of a Running Club, personal training and nutrition facility and also a boot camp studio here in Whitby.
When I first joined the boot camp, the questionnaire I filled in asked me on a scale of 1-10, where I would rate my fitness level. I answered -11. When I started out I was a mess. It felt like nothing worked. My muscles were tight, I was winded easily and I was highly self-conscious.
These days, I work out six days a week: Three days a week of weights and three days of running. I will be completing my third half-marathon in May, so I'm in training for this as well.
The Current Day-To-Day:
My days are very busy as I'm a single mom, a multiple business owner and manage a team of eight amazing and passionate women! I get up around 6 a.m. and fall back into bed around 9 pm.. I LOVE my job and my team and working is not something I dread.
My food prep and meal plans are still important to me and my workouts are a priority. I travel every few months as well, so maintaining a good diet and finding good gyms are critical too.
My advice? Don’t ever stop — even if you ate too much cheesecake or blew off your workouts, just get back on the horse and keep going.
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