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Success Story: Kicking couch potato habit brings pride, joy for mom

What were you like before you lost weight?

I was a bookworm and couch potato. A typical meal might be a Whopper, large fries, a big cup of soda and piece of apple pie. I ate lots of doughnuts, cheesecake and sweet things. I became a miserable, overweight, self-loathing mother of two and a horrible role model for my daughters.

What was the moment that motivated you to get in shape?

When we moved here from Kansas in 2006, we were crossing the Courtney Campbell causeway and I had an emotional meltdown. Here were all these women in bikinis in the land of sunshine, and I was far from having a beach body. I didn't want to keep growing bigger, so I started exercising and eating better. Once I started, it became an addiction.

So how did you go about it?

I joined the YMCA and started cardio training on bikes and elliptical machines. Then I moved into weights, running and cycling. My first race was last year's Iron Girl. This year I shaved almost four minutes off my time and didn't quite make my goal, but I was tickled to place 58 out of the 849 women who ran the 5K. I was 12th out of 143 in my division. I've done about a dozen races, plus two duathlons. I hope to do a triathlon in August and a half-marathon at Christmas. I bike 20 miles on Sunday and run 4 or 5 miles three times a week. The one thing I am dreading in the triathlon is the swim. I am a self-taught swimmer and afraid of looking foolish.

Do you use any special gear?

A Polar heart rate monitor, iPod, $120 running shoes and an $800 race bike.

What do you eat now?

Breakfast may be whole-wheat toast with peanut butter and a DanActive yogurt. I may have tuna with tomatoes, onions and jalapeno for lunch. Dinner could be chicken and vegetables. I drink a lot of water. I keep frozen fudge pops on hand to conquer chocolate cravings.

What is your personal fitness goal?

To be in a figure competition (a contest where ultra-toned women in skimpy bikinis strut their stuff onstage). I'd like to show off my hard work.

You knew you lost a lot of weight when . . .

My kids gave me a hug and they could put their arms all the way around.

ADINA RINCON, 38, of Largo

Starting weight: 230 pounds

Current weight: 140 pounds

Lost: 90 pounds

Quote: "For me, it's all about pushing myself to see how far I can go."


If you've lost weight, shaped up, or overcome some other health obstacle you'd like to share with the readers of Personal Best, please send us your story. We need to know your name, age, hometown, what you achieved, how you did it and how it has changed your life. "Before'' and "after'' photos are helpful, too. Please e-mail your information to Personal Best editor Charlotte Sutton at
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Success Story: Kicking couch potato habit brings pride, joy for mom 04/10/09 [Last modified: Friday, April 10, 2009 4:30am]
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