Real life weight loss: "I lost 215lbs and changed my life after a suicide attempt"

Summer Stultz changed her life after losing 215lbs, feeling fitter and stronger than ever – but left with loose skin

Summer Stultz' dramatic transformation
(Image credit: Getty Images)

AFTER a suicide attempt a 25-year-old woman has turned her life around by losing half of her body weight. Summer Stultz, from Virginia, has lost over 200lbs weighing from 410lbs to 195lbs. Summer had been suffering from weight issues since her childhood and believed she was "born to be fat". 

She told our sibling YouTube channel Truly: “What actually sparked my weight loss journey was getting to the lowest point of my life – feeling like no one understood me, no one understood what I was going through, no one could help me and I just felt completely alone. 

"I realised I can't go back to living the same life that I was or this might happen again and seeing the look on my parents face in the hospital waking up it was just like an automatic switch.” 

Summer started a healthy diet and exercising which led her to lose over 200lbs. She saw physical improvements she could track as a motivator to get to the next milestone – which tracks with current weight loss science. Setting small achievable goals and monitoring your progress with some kind of diary or journal can double your weight loss progress, according to research. 

You can do this online with some of the best online fitness apps and best fitness trackers. Between them, you can track calories in, calories out, how efficient your workout was that day, your quality of sleep and loads of other metrics, which can provide a complete picture of your health.  

Watch Summer's inspiring weight loss journey here:

Summer's drastic weight loss left her with a huge amount of loose skin which, according to her, was “very debilitating mentally.”

The 25-year-old decided to go under the knife to get rid of the excess skin caused by the weight loss. Today Summer says she can finally feel her true self and has never felt more confident and proud of herself. Describing her life after the surgery, she said: 

“Every time that I walk outside and when I am in a public I just feel comfortable, I feel normal.” Summer added: “Starting out as the caterpillar at the very beginning of my journey, moving to the cocoon and finally breaking free, I feel like I'm finally the butterfly. I feel like I am finally Summer.”

Woman running on a treadmill with coach

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Summer can be seen doing some of the best exercises for weight loss, such as treadmill sprints and burpees. These are very efficient for torching calories because they take so much effort to complete, making them ideal for high-intensity interval training, or HIIT.

HIIT is so effective because it has you working at your maximum effort for a very short burst of time, taking a few moments to recover and then going again. The end result an exercise session that taxes your whole body, drastically increasing your oxygen consumption and firing up your metabolism. 

You burn calories much faster than you otherwise might while doing low-intensity, steady-state cardio (LISS) such as running. This makes HIIT much more time-efficient than LISS according to research, although both practises have their merits. 

Matt Evans

Matt Evans is an experienced health and fitness journalist and is currently Fitness and Wellbeing Editor at TechRadar, covering all things exercise and nutrition on Fit&Well's tech-focused sister site. Matt originally discovered exercise through martial arts: he holds a black belt in Karate and remains a keen runner, gym-goer, and infrequent yogi. His top fitness tip? Stretch.