By Aimee Braniff Cree
THIS WOMAN has revealed how she lost 14 stone after she was ordered to buy two seats in an aeroplane.
Content Creator Kayla LaVende (38) from Las Vegas Nevada, USA once weighed over 24 stone but knew she had to change her lifestyle when she needed to buy two seats on an aeroplane and she suffered panic attacks when she had to fly – as she knew the ordeal would embarrass her.
She was travelling from Las Vegas to Los Angeles to renew her Australian passport with Southwest Airline. Luckily, the flight was less than one hour, but it felt like a lifetime.
It was the first time flying by herself in over 10 years. Usually she always flew with somebody else spilling into their seat.
This time she knew in advance that she would need a second seat, so pre-purchased it.
Flying this route with Southwest currently costs around £198 ($240) so it was not a cheap decision for Kayla.
“Luckily I did because I did not realise just how much of that second seat I would take up. I actually took up two full seats,” said Kayla.
“The employees at Southwest airlines let me board first and pick my seat so I chose the very last row of the aeroplane so nobody would walk past me and stare.
“The entire time I tried to make myself as small as possible wishing I was invisible. There was a very small lady in the third seat of that row. She didn’t mention anything but I could see her looking.”
Since the upsetting incident with the airline Southwest, Kayla has taken control of her life and is now a healthy 10 stone and wears a size six to eight as opposed to the size 26 she used to shop for.
Kayla succeeded in her weight loss in under two years by consuming 120g of protein, under 30g of carbs under 20g of sugar daily and lots of water to keep her bodyhealthy as part of the Keto Diet
She breaks up her weight training into sections, chest and back – back rows/chest press, for arms and shoulders- bicep curls, lat pull downs and ropes, for legs and butt- leg press, squats and sled and for core mostly planks and sit ups.
Her cardio workouts include jogging, incline moderate pace, walks and the stairmaster
Although Kayla avoided bullying by others for her weight as a child, she did reach a low period and for the only time in her life felt depressed by her size.
“I got very lucky as I was never bullied for my weight,” she said.
“The turning point that motivated me to make a change once and for all was when I needed two seats on an aeroplane and a seatbelt extender that was the one and only time in my life I felt depressed and actually had a panic attack,” she said.
“I knew this was no way to continue living. I wanted to be free, and I was feeling very restricted. not to mention my body started to hurt.
“My weight before was a combination of things, genetics, thyroid disease, and lipedema all since childhood, I also had a poor diet and low activity level.
“Before my diet was terrible, all the carbs and sweets, pasta, bread, rice, pizza, chips, ice cream. Very little workout regime. I would yo-yo diet and exercise. But never stick to anything.
“Now I have structure in my eating habits and workout routine. Breakfast is a protein shake, lunch will be either chicken or turkey, dinner, usually the same.
“It all started with changing my mindset. Then I had the gastric sleeve surgery which helped me change my lifestyle and stay on track. I learned all about nutrition and how to eat to fuel my body versus eating for enjoyment.
“I also became heavily invested in fitness and working out every day.”
Since Kayla was a young girls she was inspired by her idol,Barbie and she is now overjoyed she can emulate her idol down to the sparkly spandex as her new body has increased her confidence.
“As a child, I was obese, much larger than my sisters. Some of my earliest childhood memories were of doctors, dietitians and nutritionists trying to figure out why what was the cause,” said Kayla.
“I have always been obsessed with Barbie and her style. I lived vicariously through her as a child Barbie inspired me to be creative, fun, vibrant and colourful at any size.
“Fun clothing was never an option for me so I started to get crafty and make my own clothes. That led me into costume designing and moving to Las Vegas working for a show as a costume designer for many years. I have Barbie to thank.
“Throughout the day I will have snacks, usually protein bars, shakes or nuts.
“Now I do daily workouts, an hour and a half of weight training and thirty-minute cardio six or seven days a week.
“I cut out carbs, sugar, fast food, processed food and ate a whole food diet.
“I started off slow with just walking for twenty-minutes a day and now I train for two hours daily.
“I am currently training to build muscle as I am competing in a bodybuilding competition this year. I love to challenge and push myself to the next level.”
Kayla is very proud of her weight loss and it has turned her life around to having absolutely no limitations on her joy.
“I no longer have any physical limitations. I can go anywhere I want and not worry if I am going to fit into the seats, I can go shopping anywhere I want, I can do all the physical activities I was never able to do.
“I also enjoy theme park rides, previously I never went on any rides. Not to mention my career has since changed, and I am in the weight loss industry, helping and guiding others along the journey.
“I feel extremely proud, disciplined, motivated, and accomplished and determined. I know now I can achieve any goal I set my mind to.
“The hardest thing, but the most important thing is consistency. Motivation comes and goes but you have to be disciplined to become consistent. Discipline will take over on the days where you want to stop.
“People are shocked when they see the difference I have made to my look,and they are proud of me all at the same time. When my friends and family look back at my old pictures, they say they don’t remember me being that big.
“The biggest compliment is when people say I have inspired them to also change their life.
“And when people say I resemble Barbie, I guess that is a childhood dream come true. Although I have always dressed in the Barbie style, people only recognise it now.”
Kayla is always willing to help others on this journey and she has this advice to share.
“Love your “before self” don’t go into this journey, hating yourself, love yourself enough to want to change. Your before self is who is going to get you to your goal” said Kayla
“Don’t focus on the scale as it can deter you, focus on being consistent and changing your lifestyle. Enjoy the journey and keep a positive mindset.
“Do what works for you and don’t compare your journey to somebody else’s.”
If you would like to follow Kaylas incredible journey she continues to share her incredible story on her Instagram wls_barbie.