This is a weight loss motivation story that is uniquely mine. How to lose 100 pounds: My before and after weight loss story tells how I lost 100 lbs and have been maintaining that loss for the last 10 years.

Weight Loss Motivation for How to Lose 100 Pounds: My Before and After Story

Are you looking for weight loss motivation? Here’s the story of how I lost 100 pounds with before and after photos of my progress. I know that at times weight loss can feel overwhelming and even impossible, but I’m here to tell you it is possible. I know you can lose weight, get to your goal weight, and stay there for a lifetime.

Weight Loss Motivation - How I Lost 100 Pounds Sara Borgstede before after photo

My 100 Pound Weight Loss Story

Today I was at the post office. Handing my I.D. to the clerk, she examined it, looked at me, and looked at the photo again.

“Wow, you look really different!”

I get that response often so wasn’t too surprised. 

“Thanks! I’ve lost a lot of weight,” I responded.

Sara Borgstede before photo - 100 pounds heavier driver's license

“Before” Driver’s License


before picture, 100 pound weight loss

“Before” photo of 100 pound weight loss

Sara Driver's License before and after

Driver’s license before and after 100 pound weight loss comparison pictures.

Sara Borgstede Bike - after photo of 100 pound weight loss

“After” photo of 100 pound weight loss

Sara Borgstede - After photo of 100 pound weight loss

“After” photo of 100 pound weight loss

Losing 100 Pounds: How Did You Do It?

The weight loss question people ask me most often is, “How did you do it?!”

I see the longing in the eyes of people who ask me this question. I know the desire I felt when I asked that question of other people when I was at my heaviest. Sharing weight loss motivation is my goal and I hope that my honesty will help you not feel so alone.

What was the secret that would get me out of the prison of food and weight obsession in which I was trapped? My struggle with my weight was the heaviest of coats I wore no matter the weather, the burden I carried and from which I never got a vacation.

While there is no one simple answer to how I lost weight, these were the factors that impacted my weight loss journey the most:

  • Therapy – I had to learn to change my thoughts in order to change my behavior.
  • Accountability – Weight loss only happens one way and that’s eating fewer calories than you burn. I needed a helpful system to change my eating and Weight Watchers is what worked for me. I’m still a fan of WW but using an app like My Fitness Pal works, too. If you need accountability to get started, check out this 7 day Jump Start Your Weight Loss challenge.
  • Prayer – Learning to trust God’s grace and forgiveness for me was key to lasting weight loss. I had to learn to treat myself with compassion instead of beating myself up.
  • Support – I learned to rely on others instead of keeping my weight issues secret and private. Weight issues are so public yet so private. We wear our addiction for the whole world to see in the form of unwanted pounds, so it makes us hesitant to reach out for help when we need it most.
  • Exercise – While exercise doesn’t have a huge impact on calorie burn like we often think (sadly), exercise was important for my overall outlook on life and positive self-image.

Keep reading below where I explain each of these weight loss strategies in more detail.

My “Before” Weight Loss Story

From looking at pictures, I was overweight from the time I was 3-4 years old. Weight loss struggles have been part of my story for as long as I can remember.

Sara eating ice cream

Jeff (my cousin) and Sara eating ice cream – we started young.

For most of my adult life, I was overweight. I would go on diets and lose weight, sometimes as much as 40-50 pounds. But, I couldn’t keep the weight off. I always regained the weight and when the pounds came back, they brought friends.

So, I ended up heavier than before.

I finally reached a point where I knew I had to make a change. I didn’t have one rock bottom moment but rather a series of rock-bottom moments. When clothes from the regular store (even the plus size) barely fit me, I knew I needed to get serious about my weight problem.

While driving, my stomach hit the steering wheel – and I wasn’t pregnant.

I felt sick and miserable most of the time. When I hit an all-time high weight of over 250 lbs, I knew I had to do something drastic in order to conquer my overeating and binge eating behaviors.

Jeff and Sara, high school graduation

I weighed over 200 pounds in high school. I remember the humiliation of the Presidential Fitness tests when I couldn’t even complete 1 rep of many of the exercises.

My “After” Weight Loss Story

Today, I’ve been maintaining a 100-pound weight loss for over 15 years.

These days, I continue to be blown away by all the incredible changes weight loss has created in my life. I stand humbled and in awe of God’s goodness to me. While my eating certainly is not perfect, I am able to maintain a healthy weight.

I went from total couch potato to walking to running to eventually competing in 50+ triathlons, including a Half Ironman.

Sara first triathlon swim

Exercise has been a huge part of my 100 pound weight loss journey, but it’s not actually necessary for weight loss.

I regularly practice Tae Kwon Do and am a black belt. I also lift weights, walk, run, hike, and bike.

Tae Kwon do - Sara Borgstede black belt

Together with my partner, Becky (who has also lost 100 pounds – check out Becky’s weight loss story here), we run a Christian weight loss program for women called Faithful Finish Lines.

Thousands of people visit The Holy Mess every month to seek information and support. I do my best to share weight loss motivation with everyone I meet so they too know they can succeed with God’s help.

Maintaining a 100 Pound Weight Loss

I want to point out that nothing magical happens when you reach your goal weight. The same things you did to lose weight are the things you need to do to maintain your weight.

Sara Borgstede Before after 100 pound weight loss

Before and After 100+ pound weight loss.

Sometimes I hear people talk about what will happen when they are “done” losing weight but for me there hasn’t been a time of “done”. I still track what I eat, counting points or calories. I still exercise. I still work to maintain what I’ve accomplished.

Getting to a maintenance weight and staying there is a life-long journey.

Weight Loss Tips

Check out my weight loss tips and strategies videos at my You Tube channel. Be sure to subscribe while you are there visiting. Thanks!

What is the Best Diet Plan for Weight Loss?

I can (and will) tell you the outside tools I used to lose weight — what’s the best diet plan, which exercise methods lead to weight loss and which foods are best for weight loss.

But, none of those really matter as much as you might think. I had tried and used those methods at least 50 times before when I lost the weight and then regained every pound.

Nothing on the outside will fix what is broken on the inside. Changing my thinking, my core beliefs about who I am, and my deepest realizations about the way God loves and accepts me, are what turned my life around

What is the best diet plan for you? The best diet plan for weight loss for you is one you can stick with long-term and improves your health. 

The 5 Keys for How to Lose Weight and Create Your Own Before and After Weight Loss Success Story

Here are the main keys to how I lost 100 pounds and have my own “Before and After Weight Loss” success story.

  1. Therapy for weight loss. Not just with any therapist, but with one who knew about eating issues. All the diets and programs in the world didn’t work for me until I got my head on straight.
  2. An accountability program for weight loss. For me that was Weight Watchers. For you, it might be something different, but I had to have something to keep me on the rails. I started Weight Watchers online program about 6 months after I was going to therapy regularly. Now, I run an online weight loss program for women called Faithful Finish Lines. Please come to check us out at Faithful Finish Lines.
  3. Faith for weight loss. I’ve been a Christian all my life, believing in Jesus as my Savior. Through this journey, I needed to rely on God in new ways. I also had to have faith that losing weight and overcoming my eating issues was really possible. At times it was just a tiny speck of light, but I held on to it.
  4. Support for weight loss. Binge eating tends to be a solitary activity. Losing weight needs to be done with support. I couldn’t do it alone. If you feel alone, I am here for you. Other people in your life will be too when you reach out for support.
  5. Exercise for weight loss. Eventually, exercise became a huge component to my weight loss journey, but I didn’t start with it.

Let’s dig into each of these areas and explore them further to find out what will best help you lose weight and keep it off for life.

Therapy for Weight Loss

Therapy was an important part of my weight loss success. I had lost weight many times before, but I wasn’t able to keep the weight off. In therapy, I was able to learn to overcome emotional eating and I learn specific strategies to stop binge eating.

Therapy was not an easy process and at times I really hated going. But I kept at it and the hard work was the most important I have ever done. As much as there were days I wanted to quit, knowing therapy was important was a huge weight loss motivation tool for me. I kept going even when I didn’t feel like it.

If you are seeking therapy for weight loss, consider contacting your insurance provider or use the website

Here are a few other helpful weight loss resources:

When You Have a Lot of Weight to Lose

Why It’s So Hard For You to Lose Weight (and It’s Not What You Think)

Why You Can’t Guilt Yourself Thin

Find Accountability for Weight Loss Success

Weight loss requires eating fewer calories than you burn. Most of us understand that this is how weight loss works, but following through in day-to-day life can be a huge challenge.

After I started therapy, I used the Weight Watchers program. I’m a big fan of Weight Watchers because it gave me the structure I needed but also allowed flexibility so I could continue to enjoy foods I loved.

Here are some helpful posts about the WW program:

10 Things I Learned During My First Week at Weight Watchers

30 Weight Watchers Freestyle Zero Point Meals and Snacks

Why I’m Going Back to WW

If you aren’t using Weight Watchers, use an online weight loss calculator to find how many calories you need to eat in a day. Apps like My Fitness Pal and Lose It are great for daily tracking of calories.

Fitness trackers like a Fit Bit are also useful. I used a fitness tracker for a number of years and learned so much from wearing it. 


Faith for Weight Loss

My faith is an integral part of my weight loss journey.

Christian Weight Loss is keeping Christ at the center of your weight loss efforts. One of the most drastic changes I made was to offer myself compassion and let go of guilt. This stopped the binge eating cycle and allowed me to gradually create new, healthier habits by making small, realistic changes over a period of time.

Learn more Christian Weight Loss here:

Christian Weight Loss: 7 Truths for How to Lose Weight with God’s Guidance

Free Christian Weight Loss Challenge: Grow Your Faith, Lose the Weight

20 Bible Verses for Weight Loss

Support for Weight Loss

Support is absolutely critical to any successful weight loss journey and is a big part of my before and after weight loss success.

My husband was very supportive of my weight loss. He allowed me to spend money on healthier foods even though we were on a tight grocery budget. He supported me in my triathlons and running events, watching the kids so I could exercise. I couldn’t have done it without him!

Finding friends who also worked toward a healthy life was also important. While it can be intimidating, the truth is that you need to surround yourself with some people who are more successful than you. You will learn so much from them.

Check out our Christian Weight Loss for Women with Faithful Finish Lines Facebook group which is a free group and full of supportive, encouraging women.

Be sure to check out Faithful Finish Lines online Christian weight loss program for women to get the support and accountability you need for lasting weight loss success.

Is Exercise Necessary for Weight Loss?

Exercise is not absolutely necessary for weight loss, which is a huge relief for many people to learn. I lost the first 40 pounds of my 100-pound weight loss with no exercise at all.

However, exercise is important for long-term health and wellness and the calorie burn is helpful.

The biggest benefit exercise gave me was a new outlook on life. I met people who were dedicated to wellness. I realized I could do so much more than I ever thought possible.

The best exercise for weight loss is the one you will keep doing. For many people, that’s walking because it’s cheap (free), easy, and you can do it anywhere. Walking is by no means the only good exercise for weight loss though. I started with walking and gradually built up to running, then triathlons, martial arts, and more. Check out my couch potato to triathlete story here.

finish line medal

Sara at the finish line of a 200+ bike ride through the Colorado mountains for charity.

In conclusion, if you are wondering how to lose 100 pounds, I hope my before and after weight loss story fills you with hope. Success with weight loss is absolutely possible.

Sara's 70.3 Half Ironman Finish Line

My Half Ironman Finish line moment.

The answer to how to lose weight might include therapy for weight loss, especially if you have a lot of weight to lose and struggle with emotional eating. Find an accountability program to help you reduce calories for safe, healthy weight loss while still enjoying foods you love. I hope that these tips will be the weight loss motivation that you need.

My faith was a key part of my Christian weight loss, and today I run a Christian women’s weight loss program called Faithful Finish Lines. Accepting God’s grace and compassion for me helped me stop binge eating.

Find support from family in friends in order to achieve long-term weight loss success.

Finally, what is the best exercise for weight loss? It’s the one you will stick with long term and helps you feel amazing.

Allow my before and after 100 pound weight loss success story to encourage you – you can do it!

If you’ve lost weight, I would love to hear about your experience. If you struggle to lose weight, tell us about your weight loss journey. You can also email me anytime [email protected]

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Weight Loss Motivation to Lose 100 Pounds

Updated November, 2020. No information on this website is meant as medical advice.

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