A woman has lost half of her body weight by walking, curbing her carb consumption, and developing a new gym schedule.
Emily Puglielli, of Meriden, Connecticut, once weighed 300 pounds. The mother, 38, who gained weight during pregnancy and struggled with emotional eating, once decided to overhaul her lifestyle after seeing a picture of herself at a wedding in 2012 and not enjoying it.
What would become an impressive weight loss journey began with two simple steps: walking and tweaking her diet.
Transformation: Emily Puglielli, 38, once weighed 300 pounds. She decided to overhaul her lifestyle after seeing this picture of herself at a wedding in 2012 and not enjoying it
Getting results: The mother (pictured with her husband) has now reached 150 pounds, meaning she has lost half of her original body weight
‘I have a lot of problems with sugars and bread,’ Puglielli told Today. ‘I cut all of that out of my diet: sugar, bread, chips, most carbs—and that worked for me.’
In addition to her low-carb approach, Puglielli started walking. That was enough to make her lose 102 pounds over the course of a year.
Then, in 2014, the mother wanted to intensify her fitness routine and tried spin classes while following a couch-to-5K plan.
But as she kept building up her new, more active lifestyle, Puglielli began having strange, tingling sensations in her legs, which turned out to be the result of a broken vertebra pinching her nerves.
She had surgery to resolve the issues, and the recovery turned out to be more challenging—and more painful—than she had expected.
Progress: Puglielli (pictured left in 2009, center in 2013, and right this year) first lost 102 pounds in a year by walking and tweaking her diet to reduce her carb consumption
Carrying on: Despite a serious injury, the mom managed to start moving again thanks to a personal trainer and reached 150 pounds in July this year
Puglielli, weighing 195 pounds, could barely walk for six months. The mother worried she would remain in pain for the rest of her life and didn’t know how to start being active again.
It was a conversation with staff members at a fitness club in Meriden that got her out of her difficult situation and helped her starting to move again.
‘I had never been to a gym,’ she added. ‘It wasn’t about losing weight… It was about walking, going up the stairs, tying my shoes, and going back to work.’
By working with a trainer, Puglielli regained her mobility thanks to simple exercises, such as walking up and down stairs and working on her balance.
In July this year, the mother reached 150 pounds. She now incorporates all types of food into her diet, and has achieved a long-term goal by taking on running.
Activity: Now, Puglielli (pictured in a before photo) can go on runs, which used to be a dream for her back when she weighed 300 pounds
Grit: The mother is thrilled both with the physical results of her transformation, but also with the mental benefits, having realized she is much stronger than she thought
Advice: ‘You are going to get to a point in a workout where you are like “I can’t, I can’t” but you can,’ Puglielli said. ‘You are capable of so much more than you think you are.’
‘When I was 300 pounds, I used to have dreams that I could run,’ she said. ‘I don’t like running that much, but now I can do it. I never thought I would be squatting 100 pounds or running a 5K.’
She has found that she loves running 5Ks, and recently ran two in just one weekend.
‘I’m not the fastest, but it’s a great challenge and it makes me feel great,’ she told Popsugar.
Puglielli is thrilled both with the physical results of her transformation, but also with the mental benefits.
‘I’m a lot stronger that I thought I was,’ she said.
To others looking to lose weight, the mother recommends persevering and trusting their own abilities.
‘You are going to get to a point in a workout where you are like “I can’t, I can’t” but you can,’ she said. ‘You are capable of so much more than you think you are.’