09/11/2013 08:18 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

I Lost Weight: Ashley Rivers Followed A Controlled Eating Plan And Lost 100 Pounds

Ashley Rivers

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Name: Ashley Rivers
Age: 28
Height: 5'2"
Before Weight: 249 pounds

How I Gained It: As far back as I can remember, even as a child, I was the chubby girl. My weight always fluctuated up and down. After college, I started working a desk job and eating out of the vending machine. Every time I stepped on the scales I was larger and larger. Soon, I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism, which can make it difficult to lose weight. I had given up. I thought I was destined to be overweight forever.

Breaking Point: I was wearing the largest size in the plus-size store. Something had to change. One day, a coworker decided to go to a weight-loss clinic with her cousin. I thought if she got results I might consider giving it a try. She showed results. I was impressed, and it gave me the drive I needed to try.

How I Lost It: When I started going to the weight-loss clinic, I weighed 249 pounds, the biggest I had ever been. My problem was never eating "bad" things, it was how much I ate. It didn't matter if it was steamed broccoli or fries, I would eat until I was sick. I made my mind up, and the journey began.

The staff there was so encouraging and supportive. I started a controlled diet. I watched what I ate and how much I ate. I stayed away from fast food and junk, treating myself only once in a blue moon. When you want something badly enough, you're more determined to do it -- it wasn't as difficult as I had expected. The longer I watched what I ate, the less I craved the junky foods, and it all became second nature.

I cried the first couple of days I exercised. It was so difficult because I was so out of shape. I would get tired so fast, but I was determined. The longer I worked out, the longer I could go without getting exhausted. Now, I work out three to four days a week. I do a mixture of Zumba, light weight lifting, Pilates and outdoor activities.

Almost a year later, I had met my goal to lose 100 pounds. I couldn't have been happier. I never realized how difficult it was to do simple things like tying my shoes or cutting the grass, until it wasn't difficult anymore. Now I enjoy shopping! I'm more confident and outgoing. I stress about gaining it back, but I just take it one day at a time. I feel a lot better, and it makes all the difference in the world.

After Weight: 149 pounds
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