Fitness Transformation Tuesday with Mary Maxwell

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So many amazing stories land in my inbox on a weekly basis. This one brought tears to my eyes. After such a tragic childhood Mary has found her happiness and a reason to smile. Here's a totally inspirational story to end Transformation Tuesday in 2013.
Let me introduce you to beautiful Mary Maxwell.
Mary loses over 68kgs - 148lbs
How old are you and please can you share your health and fitness journey to dates?
 
My name is Mary and I am 22 years old. My life has been filled with many memorable dates but none as memorable as September 10, 2012. Let me start from the beginning. After struggling with my weight my whole life I decided a year ago it was time to change my ways. After both of my parents dying when I was an infant; my father from terminal cancer and my mother from a heart attack, I was adopted. At age 12 my adopted father died and I fell into a huge depression. Food was my best friend and also my worst enemy. At the age of 19 I weighed in at 315lbs - 140kgs! I decided after being on diets my whole life and trying to lose weight naturally, I knew I needed to get some help. On September 10, 2012 I underwent Gastric Bypass surgery. It was a very tough decision but after realising that I was not able to do it with diet and exercise alone, I needed a tool to help. The first year of my journey was very tough. I was in and out of the hospital 3 times in 9 months due to serious health complications from the surgery. In 9 months I had 3 major surgeries to fix my stomach from complications. It was a hard road but I would do it all over again in a heart beat. I knew at the beginning that I could lose my life from the surgery but I knew I could lose my life from obesity also. I knew I would much rather risk my life trying to save it that to do nothing at all. Today, 15 months after I stated my journey, I now weigh 160lbs - 72kgs. I went from a size 26 pants to an 8. 4x shirts to a medium! I have now been able to live my life to the fullest and have no regrets whatsoever!
 
What types of foods did you used to eat as a kid and young adult? What's changed since then? 
 
As a child I was very depressed due to my father passing away. Food became my only friend. I would always be sneaking food and eating the worst way possible. I was never a sweets eater, but if you put a medium pizza in front of me, I could finish it in a half hour! Now, I have come to realize that food is not a replacement for other stress-relieving activities such as reading, exercising, or journaling.
 
Do you play any sports or what sports do you like watching? 

 
I played sports all through middle school and high school. I was on the swim team for 3 years and played softball for 8 years, including varsity. 
 
What are your interests, passion and what makes you smile?
 
My interests are spending time with friends and family. I also enjoy listening to music and dancing. My passion in life is children. I am in school to be a teacher and am planning to move to Thailand within the next year to teach over there. Many things make me smile, but the thing that makes me smile most of all is life! I am so happy to be alive and to be able to experience new adventures I could never do before, when my weight was holding me back!
 
What was the catalyst that sparked your lifestyle change? 

 
I was getting older and realising how much passion I had for living. I knew that my mother had died young from a heart attack and my aunt who was 26 died from a heart attack due to her obesity. I did not want to end up like my family.
 
What are some of your dreams/goals you hope to achieve over the next 12 months? 

 
I hope to hit my fitness goal which is to run a 10k. I also would like to reach the proper BMI for my height.
 
What tips would you like to share with my readers about your transformation? 

 
No matter what life throws at you, keep pushing. Do not fall into the traps of society. It is not about your weight, it is about your health. Do it for YOU and no one else. Stick to it because your future self will thank you!!
 
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Thank you so much Mary for sharing your journey with us. Keep up the amazing work and keep inspiring others! 
 
You can follow Mary's amazing journey on her social media sites;
 
 
Wishing you all an amazing 2013 and look forward to sharing many more transformations in 2014!
 
Much love & friendship,
XxDani