Kimberly Floyd, 43, Fairburn, GA
Pounds lost: 85 Height: 5’4″ Weight Now: 155 Weight Then: 240
Kimberly Floyd knew how to lose weight: She studied nutrition and worked as a registered nurse for almost a decade. Floyd had a reason, too: High blood pressure and stroke runs in her family. Yet when on break at the hospital, she would often down a burger and fries, and she grew to 240 pounds.
Then one evening in December 2003, when she was only 38, Floyd had severe chest pain. “I realized then this was not how I was supposed to live,” she says. Though she first became a Christian in her mid-20s, that moment redefined her faith. “I felt like God has a purpose for my life, and I had to find strength to fulfill it.” She started reading the Bible and praying daily. Instead of focusing on shedding excess fat, she told herself: My body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, and I’ll do what it takes to stay healthy. With that, making healthful choices became much easier. She swapped fast food for whole foods and added a daily walk to her routine. In a year and a half, she lost 85 pounds.
Floyd was so inspired that she began her own Christian weight loss-coaching program called Take Back Your Temple. “My message is about taking responsibility and making the most of all the gifts God has given you,” she says. “When you see your body as sacred, your desire to care for it intensifies.”
My Faith Helps Me… See the big picture “Praying and being grateful every day gives me emotional stability and a greater perspective on life. Daily challenges don’t throw me off the way they once did, and that helps me make wiser choices.”
Expert Tips “Mindset is huge in terms of weight loss,” says Keecha Harris, DrPH, RD, president of a health consulting firm in Birmingham, AL. “You have to stay positive, and that’s why faith is so powerful. It’s based in something good and hopeful.” To stay in that frame of mind:
Set small goals Aim to lose 1 pound this week, run 1/2 mile longer next week, or switch to fat-free milk in your coffee. Attainable mini-goals keep you focused and give you a sense of progress.
Think total-body health When you eat right or work out, you have more energy and feel happier. Noticing–and appreciating- -those benefits, too, will help you stay even more motivated.