Real Life Weight Loss: "I shed 217lbs after a toddler called me fat"

A chance encounter sparked Laura Calbert’s weight loss journey, who now has her own fitness coaching business

Real life weight loss
(Image credit: Future)

“Look Daddy, she’s fat” were the words that launched Laura Calbert’s weight loss journey. 

After years of binge eating, Laura, 33, of Georgia, weighed 407lbs at her heaviest. Laura was depressed and being overweight caused her other health issues including high blood pressure and at the age of just 26, Laura had a heart attack. 

Laura told Truly: “When I had my heart attack, I definitely was in shock. You never're always like, oh, no, that's not going to happen to me, or that can’t happen to me, but it definitely does happen and it can happen.”

But it was the words of a little girl who spotted Laura at a shop that made her change her ways. Being called ‘fat’ by the toddler was the straw that broke the camel’s back. After that encounter, Laura focused on a healthy, protein packed diet and hit the gym.

Laura said: “If I knew that toddler today, I would definitely tell her thank you. And the reason why I would tell her thank you is because she was that catalyst that kind of pushed me to be Laura I am today. And she doesn't know it, but it definitely was a blessing.” 

Laura lost an amazing 217lbs in under three years. She even worked out in a back brace following a car accident! Last year, Laura started her coaching business - Gettinfit2live - to help other women achieve their weight loss goals. 

Laura said: “I create a space for them to be successful because what I did is not a superpower; what I did, anybody can do as well.”


(Image credit: Matteo Di Iorio (Unsplash))

Our takeaway? Laura said: "Losing weight is more mental than physical. if you're not willing to transform your mind, then it's a continuous uphill battle. When I transformed my mind, it became a true lifestyle change. Everything fell into place".

This is extremely important, as good habits are everything when it comes to losing weight. A study from the University of Halifax, Canada found there was inadequate support for mental well-being issues in most obesity management programmes.

One way to develop resilience and clarity is through meditation. Mindfulness training has a positive impact on weight loss in obese people, according to another study published in the Journal of Medicine and Life. Our beginner's guide to meditation is a good starting point.

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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.