Amy Barnes Lost An Amazing 340 Pounds And Learned How To Live A Healthy Lifestyle!

Amy always struggled with her weight, trying diet after diet without any luck. Finally, she decided that it was time to shed the fat the healthiest way possible. Learn how she shed 340 pounds right here!

I have been overweight all my life, or for as long as I can remember. I used food to celebrate, to mourn, out of boredom and for comfort. My story begins like so many do for women in this country. I found myself in an abusive relationship that threatened my life, and ultimately my children's lives.

I found my only solace in the food I ate. I felt the only thing I had control over in my life was the food I put in my mouth. I found salvation through overeating and subsequently developed an addiction to food. Food was my addiction, just as alcohol is to an alcoholic. I lost control over myself physically and was pretending to be happy.

I woke up 5 years ago, homeless in a battered women's shelter with nothing but the clothes on my back. My two children needed me to be healthy, both inside and out. I'm no expert, but I think the majority of addicts have to hit rock bottom in order to make a change.

I tried every "fad" diet on the market. I bought into every quick fix and every infomercial that told me I was guaranteed to lose weight "or my money back." I tried every diet pill, both over-the-counter and prescription.

Out of desperation, I was willing to try anything. If I concentrate, I cannot remember a time in my life that I was not trying the new diet or pill on the market. I was on a quest to change my life. I knew I had to make a revolutionary life change.

Before /// 490 lbs
After /// 150 lbs
AGE 31 / Pant Size 60 / BODY FAT 52%
AGE 36 / Pant Size 8 / BODY FAT 14.9%
Post To Fitboard

How I Did It

I never liked to call it a diet because I guess in the past, all of the other "fad diets" never worked for me. After going on a "diet," I gained all the weight back I lost, and usually more. I am sure so many others out there can relate to that. So, I needed to make it a complete 360-degree revolutionary lifestyle change.

I Traded My Addiction To An Old, Unhealthy Lifestyle, For One Centered On Fitness.
I Traded My Addiction To An Old, Unhealthy Lifestyle, For One Centered On Fitness.

I found out through changing how I ate, when I ate and how often I ate, that I could still eat the foods I liked without feeling deprived. I incorporated nutrition management as part of my mission to help others. I believe this is a crucial step to success. Without changing how you eat and how you think about food, you will never lose the weight.

When I finally stopped letting food control me and my life, and I was able to take control over food and how I felt about it; the weight dropped off - and all without calling it a diet. I lost the first 100 pounds in my living room. The second 100 pounds was lost by joining a gym in which I included some resistance training.

The third 100 pounds is when I started incorporating free weights and I was hooked! Once I started my transformation, I never fell back into bad habits. I traded one addiction for another. I traded my addiction to an old, unhealthy lifestyle, for one centered on fitness.

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Meal 1
Meal 2
Meal 3
Meal 4
Meal 5
Meal 6


In the beginning all I could do is walk. I would walk around the block 1 time, which took me an hour. I set small weekly goals and each week I challenged myself to do better than I did the week before. Now I lift:

Day 1: Heavy Legs and Abs

Day 2: Chest and Abs

Day 3: Back and Abs

Day 4: Shoulders and Abs

Day 5: Light Legs

Day 6: Biceps

Day 7: Cardio

Suggestions For Others

First, make the commitment to finally do something for yourself - no excuses. Everyday, you have to find a time that you will put yourself first; this keeps people fully committed. Once you feel that conviction, you can take the next steps to moving forward toward a healthy lifestyle. Second, set and identify reasonable goals and expectations for yourself.

Set weekly, monthly and sometimes yearly goals. I always say that every journey needs a map, and setting out to change your lifestyle is no exception! Despite what marketers tell you, there are no quick fixes when it comes to adopting a healthy lifestyle. Life may force detours, but with a sound strategy, you can stay on course.

It's for this very reason we cared the Inside & O.U.T Fitness's 21 choices program. Follow it and it's a great roadmap to help you stay on track and navigate around those "detours." Third, the key to maintaining successful habits is to keep monitoring your progress and not to lose accountability to yourself.

Remember, we live in a world full of temptations and it's easy to slip back into bad habits if you don't stay focused on why you made the changes in the first place. The biggest goal here is to be the best you can be for yourself. I can reflect back on many changes I made in my life and they all required striving to be something better than I was at that moment.

A personal thank you to Allen and my boys. Without you I would be nothing!

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