By Scott Thompson
THIS WOMAN never dreamt that losing weight would mean losing friends, but cutting nine stone from her whopping TWENTY THREE STONE did just that – with one saying she was only friends with her because she was ‘ANOTHER FAT GIRL’.
Stay at home mum, Krystal Wall (33) from Toccoa, Georgia, USA, comes from a family that has always struggled with obesity. Even as a young child she would sneak food and overeat and even weighed a sizeable 14st 4lb when she was just 11.
As a teenager Krystal was called ‘thunder thighs’ but the most hurtful experiences have been since becoming an adult being told she’d never find a man while big then one person ditched their friendship because she was no longer ‘another fat girl’.
Krystal actually married her husband Grant Wall (36) when she was 19 and on their honeymoon her partner wanted to ride horses but she knew she was over the weight limit and didn’t want him to know how big she was so she pretended she was scared of horses.
In one day she was eating between 3,000 to 5,000 calories. For breakfast she would eat two big bowls of cereal, for lunch she would have a big plate of pasta with cheese and dinner would be something like a cheeseburger and fries and she would snack on cookies, brownies, ice cream and chocolate throughout the day.
Krystal was miserable and depressed and at her biggest weight she was 23st 11lb and a dress size 26 and she couldn’t stop comparing herself to everyone else around her.
Fed up of missing out on life, in 2016 Krystal’s doctor recommended bariatric surgery but she ultimately decided to lose the weight on her own.
Krystal starting counting calories and was exercising daily and then in December 2018 she started a keto diet. Now she fasts for breakfast and has a salad with chicken, tuna or beef for lunch, then for dinner she has meat and vegetables and snacks on nuts. She now eats just 1,300 to 1,600 calories.
She also goes to the gym every morning at 5am and does 60 to 80 minutes cardio. On top of this she sometimes hikes, cycles, walks or swims.
With a healthy diet and exercise regime she has managed to lose an amazing 8st 13lb and now weighs a much lighter 14st 12lb which brought her dress size down to a 12.
“I’ve been married for 13 years and have two children Ben (10) and Annalee (8). Everyone in my family has struggled with weight and we are genetically predispositioned to hold onto weight more easily,” Krystal said.
“I used to have a major issue with sneaking food out of the kitchen and overeating even when I was just a very young child. I never exercised and had a sedentary life. I remember jumping on the scales when I was just 11 and couldn’t believe I was 14st 4lb.
“When growing up I was called thunder thighs, but my real problems was from people being bitter when I was an adult. Including someone who said I’d never find a man even though I actually got married when I was 19.
“During my journey I saw one of my friends over summer and she told me that when we first met she wanted to be my friend because I was ‘another fat girl’. She said that now she didn’t know if she wanted to be friends since I was losing weight. It was hurtful when she said it, but I assumed she was being sarcastic; however, we haven’t really spoken since then.
“During my honeymoon I was too embarrassed to tell Grant my real weight and I was too heavy to ride the horses. He was really looking forward to this activity and I had to pretend I had a phobia of horses to save myself from embarrassment. I kept onto that for 13 years and just told him recently.
“Besides no exercise, for breakfast it was two big bowls of cereal. Lunch was a big plate of pasta with cheese. Dinner would be something like cheeseburger and fries and then snacks through the day would be cookies, brownies, ice cream and chocolate.
“I was 23st 11lb at my heaviest and I was miserable, depressed and really hated the way I looked. I was constantly preoccupied about the way other people must have thought about me. This was one of the hardest things. I’d sit in a room and look at everyone and wonder if I was the biggest one there.
“I was constantly trying to sit, walk or stand in a way that made me look as small as possible and this was a huge hindrance on just being able to enjoy life. The grace was knowing I was beautiful, smart and kind and a fantastic mum and these helped me love myself regardless of my weight.
“I realised I was missing out on life and missing so many experiences because of food. In 2016 my doctor suggested bariatric surgery. I couldn’t afford the price of the surgery in the USA, and it wasn’t available on my health insurance, so I decided I’d make the changed on my own.
“I started to reduce my calories but at first I wasn’t worrying about the quality of food sources and plateaued quickly. I then changed my diet to keto in December 2018 and I started going to the gym every day at 5am to do an hour or a little more cardio and I’ve now dropped down to 14st 12lb. Now I’m a dress size 12 and eat about 1,300 to 1,600 calories.”
Although most family and friends have been very supportive some of her friends said she wasn’t losing weight healthily due to losing it quite quickly.
“I’ve been accused of losing weight unhealthfully by a few friends but I’ve mostly had so much support. My brother Caleb didn’t even recognise me at first when I was at a wedding recently. Usually people are asking me what I’m doing to lose the weight and ask for some pointers,” Krystal continued.
“The weight loss has changed my life and even enhanced all the things that were already good about living. I have so much energy now for my children and I’m enthusiastic about being active. I’m far more productive. I’m comfortable in my own skin which is something I’ve never experienced before. I now love to go on adventures, meet new people and take on new physical challenges.
“I feel like I can trust myself. For so long I promised myself that day was the day I’d make the change. I made so many promises and failed completely. Now I finish what I say I will, and I go to bed each night feeling proud and thankful.”
Krystal offers advice on how others can lose weight too.
“Don’t be afraid to try something new or something that seems too challenging. I always thought it would be impossible to wake at 5am, but I do six days a week and go straight to the gym. I also claimed I’d never be able to give up carbs and sugar and now it feels completely natural to me,” she said.
“You are capable of so much more than you know, and you will never know what you can do until you give yourself space to do it. Research is your best friend. Remember that knowledge is power. Use what you learn and experiment with it and see how your body reacts. If something doesn’t work, try another way.
“Also setting up a weight loss Instagram account had been one of the best told for my journey. You can meet so many like-minded people who support and encourage one another. It is really life changing.”
Here is a link to Krystal’s Instagram.