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About three years ago, Sara Johnson gave birth to her second child—and faced the fact that she weighed 200 pounds. Sara had put on 20 pounds following a miscarriage in 2005 and retained 35 pounds after delivering her second child. With two little ones, Sara, now 35, realized she had to take better care of herself. “I knew I needed to get in shape so I could be a great mom for my children,” she says.



Setting her goal weight at 140 pounds, Sara began with a simple plan to walk an hour a day, four days a week. Foodwise, Sara simply cut out “anything that comes in a box,” including TV dinners, cookies, and crackers. She filled up on baked chicken, grilled fish, vegetables, and couscous.

Just nine months later, Sara exceeded her goal—she now weighs 135 pounds. Today, the 5-foot-5-inch-tall mom loves running; she recently took first place in a 10K race. "I want people to know there's no magic," Sara says. "Just believe in yourself."

Best Diet Ever.
Sara found smart-eating advice she could stick with in You: On a Diet (amazon.com). Sara's favorite trick? She trades salad dressing for a pinch of garlic salt.








Total lost:

65 lbs.

Her gift: Marathon goodies!
Sara's training for the Walt Disney World marathon in January. To outfit her, New Balance gave her a pair of NBx 2-inch Cocona split shorts, and the NBx Cocona sleeveless tank, a pair of NB 758 training shoes, and the 2009 Nduro Mini athletic watch; NewBalance.com for retailers.

Go Sara!