When Emma Baldwin looked at the beach photo she was tagged in on Facebook, she was horrified. Weighing 322 pounds and wearing a size 32, she could no longer deny how her weight gain had negatively affected her.
"I immediately untagged myself," Baldwin said. "Now there was evidence online of how big I’d become."
So starting right then in 2010, Baldwin decided to make a change based on what she saw on social media. And interestingly enough, she used social media to make that change.
She logged onto Facebook and began sharing her weight loss journey with her friends on the network, including photos of the dreaded gym scale.
"I expected people to tell me I was fat and disgusting, because that’s what I thought about myself," she said. "But the comments were so supportive. Friends and family assured me I could lose weight with their support."
And she used that support to motivate her as she cut out fatty food from her diet like pancakes and giant chocolate bars and replaced them with healthy meals, like chicken or salmon with avocado.
After 132 pounds melted away and she had a tummy tuck to remove excess skin, Baldwin was ecstatic to be size 16 in 2015. So ecstatic that she couldn't wait to share her exciting news. But through all the excitement, she hasn't forgotten what it took to get her there.
"I still carry around the picture of me on the beach in Cuba," she said. "It’s a reminder of how far I’ve come."
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