How I Did It
My name is Dara Garza, and I was always a chubby kid, but after looking at some pictures from Mother's Day at my mother-in-law's house, I decided I had to do something. I looked huge; it was no wonder since I weighed around 175 pounds at 5-feet-1/2-inch. Plus I was getting married and wanted to look pretty in my wedding dress.
I started out doing Body for Life for a while in 2001, and I lost approximately 15-20 pounds before I got married in January of 2002.
Then I leveled off and took a break until I saw one of the girls at work was having success with Weight Watchers. I decided to try it. So, in November of 2003 I began my journey. I weighed in my first day at weight watchers at 156.6 pounds.
It took me almost a year, but by September of 2004 I was down to 115 pounds. From there I have fluctuated some up and down, and in the past year I came to realize that it wasn't just the number on the scale that mattered, I wanted to be leaner and have a healthier body. I no longer strictly follow the weight watchers plan, but I track my calories, fat and carbs.
I took a little break at Christmas when my sister had her new baby, but since then I have been lifting hard and doing more cardio again. I am now at around 114 pounds and 20.2% body fat. My goal is to get down to 18%, and I think I'll get there but it's going to be hard work.
I currently lift weights 4 days a week and do cardio 5 days per week. I have come to realize that what you eat is basically 90% of the battle. If I'm not eating well I can tell by the way my clothes fit and my body looks, even if I am still working out the same. I am eating 7 meals per day starting at 4:30 a.m.
I am a now a changed person. I will never go back to eating the way I did before. The biggest thing people have to realize when it comes to weight loss and having a healthier body, is that you have to take it slow and change your life, your thinking and your habits. It can't just be a diet, it has to be a lifestyle change or it won't be a long-term change for the better.
- 4:30 am - 4 scrambled egg whites, 4 oz. yogurt
- 5:30 am - weight lifting 45-60 minutes
- 6:30 am - Cell Mass then 30-45 minutes cardio
- 7:30 am - 1 scoop protein powder, small banana
- 9:30 am - 1/2 cup whole grain oatmeal, 1 scoop protein powder
- 12:30 pm - 4 oz. chicken breast, small salad with spray dressing, 1/2 cup brown rice, 1/2 cup steamed vegetable
- 3:30 pm - 1 scoop protein powder, small apple, orange or other fruit
- 6:30 pm - 6 oz. salmon, small salad with spray dressing, 1/2 cup vegetable
- 8:30 pm - 1 scoop casein protein shake w/1 cup fat free milk or 1/2 cup fat free cottage cheese
Sample Workout Plan
I have been doing supersets to get lean for the summer.
- Incline bench press 4x8
- Incline dumbbell flye 4x8
- Flat-Bench Dumbbell Press 3x10
- Flat-Bench Dumbbell Flye 3x10
- Decline Bench Press 2x12
- Cable Crossover 2x12
- Bench dip 3x8
- Lying tricep extension 3x8
- Close-grip bench press 3x10
- Tricep pressdown 3x10
- Overhead dumbbell extension 2x12
- Close-grip push-up 2x12
- Overhead dumbbell press 4x8
- Dumbbell lateral raise 4x8
- Upright row 3x10
- Barbell front raise 3x10
- Arnold press 2x12
- Bent over lateral raise 2x12
- Deadlift 4x8
- Pull up 4x8
- Wide grip bent over row 3x10
- Seated row 3x10
- T-bar row 2x12
- Lat pulldown 2x12
- Barbell curl 3x8
- Incline dumbbell curl 3x8
- Preacher curl 3x10
- Seated dumbbell curl 3x10
- High-cable curl 2x12
- Hammer curl 2x12