Retired Teacher Drops Over 40 Pounds

by Caitlin H,

Oct 16, 2023


Name: Lara

Age: 55

Occupation: Retired teacher

Meal Plan: Balance 1,200

Favorite Meal: Bistro Chicken Salad

Start Date: May 2023

Starting Weight: 200

Height: 5’9”

Pounds Lost: 42

Activity Level: Daily walks; easing back into running

When I get a craving, my go-to trick is: I have a little taste of a sweet, like the Diet-to-Go brownie that comes with the Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup meal, while keeping my goals in mind.

My favorite app for tracking weight loss is: I record my weigh-in results on my calendar.

When 55-year-old Lara recently fit comfortably into a pair of size 10 pants she’d held onto for years, it was a powerful moment for her.

“I tried on all my clothes again and thought, ‘Ok, you’re almost there. Keep going!’”

While the moment was impactful for Lara, she also used it as a reminder that she was fewer than 10 pounds away from her goal weight. Her resolve to keep going was even more solidified after she saw a full-length photo of herself after three months of hard work and diligence.

“Taking the photo, I was like, ‘Whoa!’ I don’t have a full-length mirror, so seeing that was amazing!” she said. “I’m almost here, but not here yet. I just have to keep going. I do enjoy feeling I’m getting close.”

And a few weeks later, in mid-September, she did indeed reach her goal weight.

Lara recently retired from a 28-year career working for the Dept. of Corrections, where she worked as a teacher with both youth and adult men. In 2019, she also became the legal guardian of her 7-year-old granddaughter.

“I have to push to have energy with her around,” Lara said. “We do swimming and tae-kwon-do. She’s so fun.”

Lara also used to spend a lot of time running, and every year, she races in a January half-marathon.

“This past January, I was so slow, but I finished it,” she said, adding that she weighed about 200 pounds at the time. “I also took my retirement trip to Kauai. I loved it, but because I felt so big, I was self-conscious. I was mad at myself for being so big during this special thing.”

Those were the catalysts that pushed Lara to make a change. She’d tried dieting in the past but ultimately decided to try Diet-to-Go after reading a Sports Illustrated article about the program’s many benefits.

“My first week, I thought, ‘This can’t be 1,200 calories; it’s too much food,’” Lara said. “I didn’t think I’d lose weight, but I did think, ‘This is heaven!’ I loved the taste. There were so many meals that at the end, I thought, ‘Wow, that was really good!’”

Lara set her mind to stick with it and focus on her three nutritious, portion-controlled daily meals, a far cry from the previous diet she’d tried that gave her six small meals and snacks all day — something she said was never sustainable for her because unhealthy snacking has always been one of her most challenging struggles.

“Diet-to-Go helped me with my snacking problem,” she said. “The meals are bigger, so I don’t have the urge to snack. I’m able to focus on my meals and really concentrate on how I feel.”

The portion sizes and nutritional content also aided Lara when she traveled, such as during a recent trip with her granddaughter to Legoland.

“I was able to navigate the food better because I’m learning about what a meal should be and how to keep this sustainable,” she said. “It’s helped me avoid splurging and going crazy.”

Lara said her weight loss has significantly impacted her confidence and energy levels, too.

“I do feel more like myself. When I have the extra weight, I don’t want to do anything, feel anything,” she said. “For me, I have to be a certain weight…I have improved confidence. There is very little I feel super strongly about, but this is one thing.”

The weight loss has also given her the boost she needs to turn her daily walks into daily runs again, something she really wanted to do.

“It’s become a comfort, something that’s doable,” Lara said. “It just helps me feel stronger and happier.”

Asked what has been the most crucial factor contributing to her weight loss, Lara said it’s Diet-to-Go.

“Diet-to-Go brings meals to your home, gives you the structure, and takes away the prep work,” she said. “It limits your focus, and once you get in the habit, it’s super easy.”

Lara advises others to try it, hang in there, and keep moving forward one day at a time.

“I always tell my granddaughter, ‘You can do hard things,” she said. “I say the same to others. You are important enough to do it. You do so much for everybody else; you can do this for you, and it’s worth it.”




Author: Caitlin H

Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.


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