How a 27 Year Old Learnt to Feel Comfortable in Her Own Skin

Krystal lost more than 60 pounds through adopting these healthy behaviours, but she also saw her confidence increase.
How a 27 Year Old Learnt to Feel Comfortable in Her Own Skin

Krystal Sanders

Before: 185 lbs
After: 120 lbs

Although she stands only five feet tall, 27-year-old Krystal Sanders was never petite. Growing up, she subsisted on fast food and "anything you could microwave." A size 14 when she moved to Austin, Texas, in 2005 to work as a revenue services specialist, she continued to hit the drive-through five nights a week. When she began planning her wedding in early 2008, the added stress drove her to eat even more. "I was in denial and avoided scales, cameras, and mirrors," she says. But she couldn't avoid the size-18 tag on her wedding gown.

The Change
When Krystal's wedding photos arrived in October 2008, she didn't want anyone to see them. "I looked at the pictures alone and I cried," she says. "It was a reality punch in the face. I was embarrassed that I'd let myself get that large." She knew something had to be done.

The Lifestyle
Krystal emptied her pantry and fridge, tossing all chips, frozen pizza, and other junk. Instead of eating out, she started cooking healthier versions of her favorite restaurant foods, boosted her veggie intake, and measured portions. "It was an eye-opener to see the difference between what I would normally eat and what the serving size was," she says. When she worked up the courage to step onto a scale, it read 185 pounds. She began jogging on her treadmill for 30 minutes six times a week. Over the next year, she added DVD strength workouts, cut out soda and processed foods...and reached her goal of 130 pounds. But she wasn't finished. She began lifting heavier weights, and in December 2009, the scale flashed 120. "I couldn't believe it. I thought maybe the scale was broken," says Krystal.

The Reward
Now Krystal has the energy to log nine-mile runs and go biking and hiking with her husband. And she is anything but camera shy. "I used to run from cameras, but now I like what I see in photos," she says. "I'm finally at peace with the way I look."

Krystal's Tips

Add iron. "Don't be all cardio all the time—lift weights! Replacing fat with muscle means you can burn more calories without even trying."

Greek out. "I use low-fat Greek yogurt in place of mayo in recipes, and it tastes great. It can also be used as a sour cream substitute."

Be prepared. "Set everything out the night before: clothes, weights, water bottle. Then nothing can get in the way of your workout."


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