Scott Leopold attempted his first diet at 19, when he weighed 438 lbs. He was in college and often drank alcohol and finished the night off with fatty foods such as chicken wings or sweets and chips. “I wouldn’t think twice about eating two whole pizzas,” he tells PEOPLE. After he lost his first 100 lbs., he and his friends “celebrated” at a buffet.
I wasn't athletic at all, but I knew I was able to walk, so I thought I'd try that for two weeks to see if I liked it. I went walking for three miles around my office building with friends on my lunch break and enjoyed it, so I kept at it. My legs got stronger and over time, I could keep up with the group. All of my blood work is now normal, and I have more energy for my 12-year-old daughter. The personality that I had inside has finally come out. I used to feel invisible, but now, when I put on my suit and heels, I think, I can command this room.
Weight loss doesn’t always mean cutting down on things. In fact, adding in more fruits and vegetables helps you stay fuller, longer, with less calories and more nutrition. To lose weight without feeling hungry, eat at least one serving of fruit or vegetables with every snack and two with meals, recommends Rachel Begun, a registered dietitian and food industry consultant in Rye Brook, N.Y.
“Instead of the hours each day I would spend reading news feeds, journal articles, and book chapters for work and pleasure, I switched to listening to audio books, podcasts, and spoken news while briskly walking the paved trails in the large park behind my house. I relied heavily on a great smartphone app called Umano that professionally narrated long form news stories that I would have read at my desk anyway. (Sadly, it was recently acquired and shut down.) Using a Fitbit and the MapMyWalk app, I pushed myself to walk farther and more often. By August 2014, I was walking 10,000 to 12,000 steps a day.”