Danni lost 238 pounds | Black Weight Loss Success

Transformation of the Day: Danni shares how she lost 238 pounds by focusing on nutrition and exercise. Consistency and mindful eating were significant factors in her journey. She provided lots of detail, so you won’t want to miss her impressive story.

Social Media:
FB: Danni Matthews
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TikTok: missdannibabyyy

Growing up, I was raised by a single father of four. Needless to say, health and nutrition often escaped us as we ate fast and junk food while my dad worked two full-time jobs. I soon settled into the identity of being the “fat kid,” which seemed like a lifelong sentence and something that I was destined to be. In some sick way, I viewed this as normal.

Well into my adult years, I continued my unhealthy habits. Even though I knew about nutrition, I just could not seem to escape the lifelong conditioning of overeating and inactivity. By the time I was 25 years old, I weighed 420 pounds and was utterly miserable! It hurt to walk, it hurt to breathe, and it hurt to live. I watched life pass me by. My peers went on dating, forming lifelong bonds, and enjoying life while I wallowed in self-pity, addiction, and depression.

One day, I got fed up with being so discontent on a daily basis. I decided to apply for the gastric bypass surgery. After my insurance denied me several times, I once again decided to give up until I met someone who challenged me to just walk.

My task was to walk a block on day 1, two blocks the next day, and so on and so forth. It soon became a game for me, along with incorporating some minor (at first) changes to my diet. I started to see results and must I say they were phenomenal.

What was your motivation? What inspired you to keep going, even when you wanted to give up?
I was motivated by being sick and tired of being sick and tired. It was a completely demoralizing existence. My mental health literally could not stand to live another day in that state. Seeing the results week by week became my new addiction and motivated me to keep going even through the bad days. I finally felt like I could actually do this and gain a purpose for my life. I did not want to let go of that feeling, so I kept pushing.

How did you change your eating habits?
I have tried many fad diets: Atkins, Slimfast, Weight Watchers, Intermittent fastingyou name it, and I have tried it. Granted, I did manage to lose weight on these, but they were not sustaining because once I stopped, the weight piled rightback on and then some.

The only thing that has truly and consistently worked for me was creating a lifestyle around mindful eating. I worked with a dietician to calculate my macros and develop a comprehensive meal plan where I did not feel deprived. I cook most of my meals at home using whole ingredients and portion control. All of my meals include protein, complex carbs, and veggies.

Don’t get it twisted now because occasionally, I will enjoy a fatty ribeye or a super bomb burger. Still, I found it to be INTEGRAL to get right back to your routine immediately after treating yourself. Also water. I rarely drink anything but water. I average about a gallon to a gallon and a half a day!

What is your workout routine?
I started by just walking, and I saw immediate and long-lasting results. Today, I still walk about five miles daily in the mornings and alternate between swimming, HIIT, and strength training in the evening. I am by no means a beast in the gym but I do ensure to diversify my routine and remain consistent to keep seeing results.

How often did you work out?
Every single day. It is important to mention that just because I worked out every day, my “Best” varied from day to day. For example, on super high-energy days, I may walk 10 miles. On days when I do not feel so hot, I may walk a mile or two. It was and still remains important for me to incorporate some type of exercise into my daily routine.

What was your starting weight? What is your current weight? What is your height?
I am 5’5″
Starting weight: 420lbs
Current weight: 182lbs

When did you start your journey? How long did your transformation take?
I started my journey in 2013. I will say that my weight has gone up and down during the years, depending on the current events in my life. For example, during C*vid I gained about 60 lbs due to being lax in my routine. The weight quickly fell off again once I got back to it.

My transformation is ongoing and will be a lifelong process for me, but some markers are that my first 100 lbs were lost in 8 months, and losing the 60 lbs gained in COVID-19 took around 8-9 months. It is possible to see large jumps if you remain consistent!

Is weight loss surgery part of your journey?
No, unfortunately (or maybe fortunately). I was denied for the Gastric Bypass surgery. Now, getting rid of the loose skin after weight loss is a whole journey in itself. Feel free to ask me about it if you are curious. 

What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned so far?
I learned that the process is not linear, and if you are patient and consistent, your hard work will pay off!

What advice do you have for women who want to lose weight
I used to hate people who said all you have to do is eat right and exercise because, as easy as it sounds, it is not that easy! But once I put those words into action, the results spoke for themselves. I learned that consistency is the key to any sustainable weight loss journey. When you fall, don’t wait to get back up

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