Hers is a story that’s bound to inspire millions: Aimee Smith of Janesville, Wis., has managed to transform herself within a single year, becoming an athlete where she once was just an unhealthy, obese, inactive woman.
Smith has participated in triathlons and marathons and, she explains for ABC News, is now proud to consider herself an athlete.
More importantly though, she would like other people in her former situation to know that, if she did it, so can they.
Aimee says she never realized how heavy she’d become because she had long stopped weighing herself. The breaking point was when she got on the scales and saw she tipped 427 pounds (193.6 kg).
“My knees hurt, my back hurt. I had high blood pressure. I was pre-diabetic. I was going down a bad path. I’m sure carrying around 400 pounds [181.4 kg] wasn’t doing my health any favors,” she tells ABC, as the video below will confirm.
That was when she decided she needed to change everything in her life in order to get back to good health: she got gastric bypass surgery, overhauled her diet and, day by day, began incorporating workouts in her daily routine.
“You’ve got to change your relationship with food. Start thinking of it as fuel rather than a friend you can rush to whenever you’re having an emotional problem,” she tells ABC.
“It’s not always helpful to look at the big picture. Start small and if you can only do two steps at a time, do that and then do it again tomorrow. Progressively build on what you can,” she adds in the same interview.
Aimee admits that she still indulges in the occasional treat, though she did replace processed sweets with products from a local baker. The thought that she’s no longer “tied to food” is amazing, she gushes.