ELAB Success Story: Melinda

Melinda joined the Eat Like A Bear! community on February 10, 2019 and delighted us with her progress pictures from the very beginning, and so we have watched her progress down to 145 pounds, a weight she has not seen as an adult. Melinda recaps her story for us here:

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From Melinda Troxel:

I have struggled with my weight for most of my adult life. I began to put on weight after college and lost quite a bit right before my wedding. I kept it off for almost three years. During my first pregnancy, in 1989, I gained 65 pounds. I had high blood sugar during my pregnancy but luckily never developed pre-eclampsia. I lost some weight after, but not much. Five years later I had my second pregnancy. I gained 80 pounds!!! Once again, luckily, I had no complications with that pregnancy.

Other Diets

Over the years I tried diet after diet with only minimal success. I did Weight Watchers several times, Nuti-System twice, Jenny Craig, took phentermine, and even got injections of HCG! I never could stick to anything for more than a few months. The most I ever lost was 45 pounds and I always put back on more weight than when I started.

Forward to 2018: I was at my highest weight of 235 pounds. My blood sugar was high, although I had not been officially diagnosed as diabetic, my blood sugar was definitely in that range. I got out of breath with pretty much everything I did. I was tired all the time and was usually asleep by 7:30 every evening. My friend and now fellow Bear, Joann Craft, told me about the Ketogenic way of eating. She helped me with the basics and I began to research on my own.

The Game-Changer

By the grace of God, I stumbled across Amanda’s videos on YouTube. I had been eating keto for a few months and was happy with my progress, but ready to go all in. I was really intrigued with intermittent fasting. I was already fasting 16 hours without even knowing anything about it and immediately went to 18 hours and then to 20. I followed Eat Like a Bear and continued to eat keto with lots of salads and 20 hour fasts. I was sure I could not fast for 23 hours. After seeing all the success stories, I jumped! I was so surprised at how easy it was and how satisfied I was with all the big salads! I ate RBSs (Ridiculously Big Salads) almost everyday. The only days that I did not was when I went out with the family and could not get a salad big enough! My eating time was from 5-6 pm so that I could have dinner with my husband.

I think that the time that realized that this approach was working for me and that I was actually going to make it to my goal this time was when I made it to 175 pounds. Nothing I had ever tried had gotten me down to that weight.

On November 1, 2019 I hit my one year Ketoversary. I was down 85 pounds and 5 pounds away from my goal of 90 pounds down! I hit that goal a month later.

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Pair a denim vest with a skirt for a more casual look!

A post shared by MelindasFashionover55 (@melindasfashionover55) on

New Life

My life has changed so much now that I am not carrying around nearly a whole extra person. On January 12, 2021, I will celebrate 1 year of maintenance. I have lost an additional 10 pounds for a total of 100 pounds.I can walk without becoming winded and can even chase my grandchildren!

My blood sugar continues to be great and although I still have hereditary high blood pressure, it is no longer medication resistant.

Achieving Fashion Goals

Even at my heaviest, I have always loved clothes, shoes and jewelry. I am an avid thrifter. It is a hobby I share with my mom. But because of my weight, there were certain things that I couldn’t or wouldn’t wear. I needed wide calf boots, and they were very hard to find. I never tucked anything in and sleeves had to be at least elbow length. Now, I have boots, boots and more boots. I am enjoying wearing shirts tucked in with belts and vintage buckles, and hopefully I will even be sporting sleeveless things soon!

I am now sharing my love of fashion with others. I moderate the Bear Threads ELAB subgroup where we share about outgrowing our old clothes, victories of new clothes, and dreaming about our goal clothes. I am learning about Instagram and have started a page called MelindasFashionover55. Even though clothes may not be the best thing about my new life (the health benefits certainly are the most important), the fashion is definitely fun!

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Upcycled denim jacket

A post shared by MelindasFashionover55 (@melindasfashionover55) on

The Power of Community

I have wondered for a long time what made the difference this time. Why was I able to accomplish what I had failed at for so many years. It finally hit me when I was asked to share my story here. IT IS THE SUPPORT OF AMANDA AND THE PEOPLE IN THIS GROUP!!!! Never in all the things that I had tried before have I had the support and encouragement of so many people. People I had never met and may never get to meet in person were giving me advice, complimenting me and cheering me on. I firmly believe that community is the most important piece in all of this. Amanda and all my fellow bears have been the difference in my life and I will forever be thankful for all of you!

I love you Bears, Melinda Troxel


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