Michelle Falanga, 40, of Chelsea, Massachusetts, battled high cholesterol by controlling her sugar cravings and adding exerciseeven dancingto her lifestyle.

I knew I had made the mental shift to change my life and lose weight when my doctor hit me with the news: I had high cholesterol and would need to take drugs to lower my levels.

I decided to get serious about my weight and for me that included not taking drugs to lower my cholesterol, but rather taking the natural route. I am a firm believer that losing weight is entirely mental and that's what really kick started my weight loss journey.

I started to evaluate my diet and becoming serious about what I needed to change food wise. I began adding more whole grains, flaxseed, and omega's into my diet and cutting out all partially hydrogenated items and trans fat. My biggest roadblock was balancing portion sizes and controlling cravings for sweets (cupcakes in particular), but I came out triumphant, losing 80 pounds by October 2005.


BeforeFitness was always a big thing for me too and for the first year, I walked for one hour, six days a week no matter what the weather condition. I also started cross training and attending ballroom and Latin dance classes even going on to compete!

Despite taking a nasty fall while dancing that damaged multiple discs in my back, I healed and picked back up with my exercise routine by walking or doing the elliptical.

My life can be pretty crazy and I have had many challenges, but a healthy lifestyle is very important to me and now, after two years, I weigh 145 pounds!

From Size 28 to Slim Timeline:

  • 250 lbs: June 2004 Made the mental shift to lose weight.
  • 181 lbs: July 2005 Saw the results of portion control and healthy eating.
  • 165 lbs: Nov. 2006 Overcame fitness plateau to run first 5K and 10K.
  • 147 lbs: March 2007 Reached my goal weight!
  • 145 lbs: Now Has maintained healthy lifestyle and weight despite set backs.







Total lost: