iOS app Android app More

Weight Loss Success: Ed Cooper Made Over His Relationship To Food And Lost 96 Pounds

Weight Loss Success Ed Cooper

Posted: 03/ 2/2012 8:18 am

Got a success story of your own? Send it to us at success.stories@huffingtonpost.com and you could be featured on the site!

Name: Edward Cooper
Age: 44
Height: 5'10"
Before Weight: 260 pounds

How I Gained It: Since I was eight years old, I have been overweight. I have always had a difficult relationship with food. Unhealthy eating habits were created during my childhood. My family enjoyed eating out often, and I was always expected to finish my plate. This created a very bad relationship with food early on. Food was definitely a pacifier for me. As I got older, in my teens, I started experimenting with different diets. I tried to improve myself and increase my self-esteem. This included several diets with the same end result: always gaining the weight back and eventually gaining more. This pattern followed me through adulthood. I've done it all -- prepackaged foods, liquid diets, no-carb diets, cabbage diets, grapefruit diets -- almost every diet under the sun, which always resulted with substantial weight loss and later substantial weight gain. I did not understand why this kept on happening, and I became increasingly frustrated.

Breaking Point: I was done with yo-yo dieting. This finally led me to the realization -- "If you find yourself stuck in a hole, stop digging." I started to question myself on why I had such a bad relationship with food. After tremendous research, I decided to approach the problem from a different perspective. First, I needed to admit that I had an addiction and a compulsion towards food. Second, I needed to take full responsibility for the good and the bad.

How I Lost It: I changed my lifestyle, focusing on three stages -- the past, the present and the future. From my childhood, I needed to understand how I formed these bad habits. From the present, I needed to find a lifestyle that fit into my daily routine. Finally, I needed to find out how to continue maintaining a healthy life in the future. I did extensive research on restaurant menus to find healthy choices that allow me to live the lifestyle that I enjoy. My eating habits have drastically changed. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day to me. I typically have eggs, oatmeal and an English muffin with jam. Lunch is usually low-fat peanut butter with low-calorie bread. For dinner, a large salad with fat-free dressing, lean protein, like fish or chicken, and steamed or grilled vegetables. As an after dinner snack, I have fresh watermelon, berries or peaches.

I used to never work out. Watching TV and eating were my strenuous exercises. But I started walking two miles each day and gradually increased it by half a mile at a time until I could walk 13.1 -- I just finished the Palm Beach half-marathon and have never felt better. After pushing myself to strenuously walk such a great distance, eating was the last thing on my mind. Walking was a tool to keep me motivated to reach my goal.

Finding a balance between increasing my calories so I don't lose more weight or gain weight is a constant battle that I am conscious of to this day. It's important to weigh myself every week to gauge my weight so I can make adjustments to the amount of food I am consuming as needed. But, with the help of my ten basic commandments of dieting, I've maintained my weight loss. They are:

1. Be real and honest with yourself (i.e., for me, it was admitting I have an addiction and compulsion)
2. Understand how you gained the weight and why.
3. Find a diet and a lifestyle that works for you.
4. Plan in advance your daily eating plan.
5. Set a realistic goal.
6. Variety is the spice of life.
7. The scale is not your friend or your enemy, it is just a number.
8. Take baby steps when exercising.
9. Get a support system.
10. Envision how wonderful it will be to achieve your goal throughout the journey and when you get there. In addition, plan how you want to keep the weight off.

I discovered a way of losing weight after years of struggling and yo-yo dieting and now, I would like to help others do the same through my website Edthewellnesscoach.com.

After Weight: 164 pounds
2012-02-27-ed2.jpg

Check out more of our inspiring weight loss stories below:

Loading Slideshow...
  • Linda BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/24/i-lost-weight-linda-herman_n_5534389.html" target="_blank">Read Linda's story here.</a>

  • Linda AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/24/i-lost-weight-linda-herman_n_5534389.html" target="_blank">Read Linda's story here.</a>

  • Kelly BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/21/i-lost-weight-kelly-hallock_n_5531333.html" target="_blank">Read Kelly's story here.</a>

  • Kelly AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/21/i-lost-weight-kelly-hallock_n_5531333.html" target="_blank">Read Kelly's story here.</a>

  • John BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/17/i-lost-weight-john-henderson_n_5515251.html" target="_blank">Read John's story here.</a>

  • John AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/17/i-lost-weight-john-henderson_n_5515251.html" target="_blank">Read John's story here.</a>

  • Christina BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/14/i-lost-weight-christina-liendro_n_5485541.html" target="_blank">Read Christina's story here.</a>

  • Christina AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/14/i-lost-weight-christina-liendro_n_5485541.html" target="_blank">Read Christina's story here.</a>

  • DeAnna BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/07/i-lost-weight-deanna-taylor_n_5379433.html" target="_blank">Read DeAnna's story here.</a>

  • DeAnna AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/07/i-lost-weight-deanna-taylor_n_5379433.html" target="_blank">Read DeAnna's story here.</a>

  • Paul BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/10/i-lost-weight-paul-jay-birch_n_5474633.html" target="_blank">Read Paul's story here.</a>

  • Paul AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/10/i-lost-weight-paul-jay-birch_n_5474633.html" target="_blank">Read Paul's story here.</a>

  • Kourtney BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/03/i-lost-weight-kourtney-luster_n_5406288.html" target="_blank">Read Kourtney's story here.</a>

  • Kourtney AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/03/i-lost-weight-kourtney-luster_n_5406288.html" target="_blank">Read Kourtney's story here.</a>

  • Danielle BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/30/i-lost-weight-danielle-gilmore_n_5379289.html" target="_blank">Read Danielle's story here.</a>

  • Danielle AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/30/i-lost-weight-danielle-gilmore_n_5379289.html" target="_blank">Read Danielle's story here.</a>

  • Pamela BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/26/i-lost-weight-pamela-arias_n_5405713.html" target="_blank">Read Pamela's story here.</a>

  • Pamela AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/26/i-lost-weight-pamela-arias_n_5405713.html" target="_blank">Read Pamela's story here.</a>

  • Sherlonda BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/23/i-lost-weight-sherlonda-tyrus_n_5310512.html" target="_blank">Read Sherlonda's story here.</a>

  • Sherlonda AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/23/i-lost-weight-sherlonda-tyrus_n_5310512.html" target="_blank">Read Sherlonda's story here.</a>

  • Justin BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/16/i-lost-weight-justin-willoughby_n_5310166.html" target="_blank">Read Justin's story here.</a>

  • Justin AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/16/i-lost-weight-justin-willoughby_n_5310166.html" target="_blank">Read Justin's story here.</a>

  • Kerry BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/19/i-lost-weight-kerry-hoffman_n_5310330.html" target="_blank">Read Kerry's story here.</a>

  • Kerry AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/19/i-lost-weight-kerry-hoffman_n_5310330.html" target="_blank">Read Kerry's story here.</a>

  • Lacy BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/12/i-lost-weight-lacy-lane_n_5276296.html" target="_blank">Read Lacy's story here.</a>

  • Lacy AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/12/i-lost-weight-lacy-lane_n_5276296.html" target="_blank">Read Lacy's story here.</a>

  • Marqkria BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/09/i-lost-weight-marqkria-mcmiller_n_5226557.html" target="_blank">Read Marqkria's story here.</a>

  • Marqkria AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/09/i-lost-weight-marqkria-mcmiller_n_5226557.html" target="_blank">Read Marqkria's story here.</a>

  • Gina BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/02/i-lost-weight-gina-digregorio_n_5153436.html" target="_blank">Read Gina's story here.</a>

  • Gina AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/02/i-lost-weight-gina-digregorio_n_5153436.html" target="_blank">Read Gina's story here.</a>

  • Sarah BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/26/i-lost-weight-sarah-swagler_n_5119632.html" target="_blank">Read Sarah's story here.</a>

  • Sarah AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/26/i-lost-weight-sarah-swagler_n_5119632.html" target="_blank">Read Sarah's story here.</a>

  • Emil BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/29/i-lost-weight-emil-oprisa_n_5113935.html" target="_blank">Read Emil's story here.</a>

  • Emil AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/29/i-lost-weight-emil-oprisa_n_5113935.html" target="_blank">Read Emil's story here.</a>

  • Nikki BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/05/i-lost-weight-nikki-hauck_n_5160077.html" target="_blank">Read Nikki's story here.</a>

  • Nikki AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/05/i-lost-weight-nikki-hauck_n_5160077.html" target="_blank">Read Nikki's story here.</a>

  • Lauren BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/22/i-lost-weight-lauren-richmond_n_5111063.html" target="_blank">Read Lauren's story here.</a>

  • Lauren AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/22/i-lost-weight-lauren-richmond_n_5111063.html" target="_blank">Read Lauren's story here.</a>

  • Darrell BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/19/i-lost-weight-darrell-mctague_n_5104908.html" target="_blank">Read Darrell's story here.</a>

  • Darrell AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/19/i-lost-weight-darrell-mctague_n_5104908.html" target="_blank">Read Darrell's story here.</a>

  • Jessica BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/12/i-lost-weight-jessica-johnson_n_5002531.html" target="_blank">Read Jessica's story here.</a>

  • Jessica AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/12/i-lost-weight-jessica-johnson_n_5002531.html" target="_blank">Read Jessica's story here.</a>

  • After BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/15/i-lost-weight-amanda-clay_n_5070828.html" target="_blank">Read Amanda's story here.</a>

  • Amanda AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/15/i-lost-weight-amanda-clay_n_5070828.html" target="_blank">Read Amanda's story here.</a>

  • Miesha BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/05/i-lost-weight-miesha-avery_n_4988688.html" target="_blank">Read Miesha's story here.</a>

  • Miesha AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/05/i-lost-weight-miesha-avery_n_4988688.html" target="_blank">Read Miesha's story here.</a>

  • Rachel BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/08/i-lost-weight-rachel-reso_n_4913990.html" target="_blank">Read Rachel's story here.</a>

  • Rachel AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/08/i-lost-weight-rachel-reso_n_4913990.html" target="_blank">Read Rachel's story here.</a>

  • Shelly BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/28/i-lost-weight-shelly-matthias_n_4980658.html" target="_blank">Read Shelly's story here.</a>

  • Shelly AFTER

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/28/i-lost-weight-shelly-matthias_n_4980658.html" target="_blank">Read Shelly's story here.</a>

  • Ernie BEFORE

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/01/i-lost-weight-ernie-lauro_n_4904095.html" target="_blank">Read Ernie's story here.</a>

For more on weight loss, click here.

FOLLOW HUFFPOST HEALTHY LIVING

Filed by Sarah Klein  |