A previously obese woman claiming to be bullied for her 379lb (27 stone) frame drove her to a binge and heroin addict reveals how she overcame her demons and halved her body weight.
Lifestyle coach Michelle Bakal, 26, from New York, is now tipping 189 pounds (13 pounds) after removing 10 pounds of excess skin, and has discovered a new love for fitness after having previously made an effort for short distances to walk.
Michelle knew that she was taller than the one around her from an early age. She often felt that she didn't go to school, with bullies that made her & # 39; thick & # 39; and even shouted & # 39; beware & # 39; while she walked through the corridors.
& # 39; I have been overweight since I was a child and I remember going to the doctor at a young age and hearing that I was heavier than I should be, & # 39; admitted Michelle.
Lifestyle coach Michelle Bakal, 26, from New York, pictured left before and immediately after, has dropped from 379 pounds (27 stone 1 pound) to 189 pounds (13th 5 pounds) and found a new love for fitness
& # 39; I didn't think it was a problem until the school started and I felt that I didn't fit what everyone looked like. I became aware that I was not only heavier, but also considerably larger than all the other girls. I felt that my body was not normal.
& # 39; At school people would call me names and say big jokes. I walked down the corridor and the boys shouted "beware!" while I was busy with my own company.
& # 39; I didn't do any exercise at my greatest. The only thing I could do was walk a short distance, but even that was difficult. & # 39;
The cruel jibes gave Michelle the feeling that she was not normal and at the age of 16 she started experimenting with alcohol and class A drugs.
Michelle, pictured on the left for her weight loss and immediately after, claims to be bullied for her 379 pound frame drove her to become a binge and heroin addict
& # 39; I started taking drugs at the age of 16, starting with marijuana, & # 39; she said.
& # 39; That went on to what was offered to me. How I got heroin was a prescription for opiates by my doctor. I felt as great as it was, but heroin was just the next step – especially if I were without my prescription.
& # 39; Once that line was crossed, there was no turning back. & # 39;
During this difficult phase, Michelle turned to food and her weight increased to 379 pounds (27st 1lb), becoming a size 4XL on top and a UK size 32 in trousers.
When she was 21, Michelle decided to try and get clean because she knew she wanted to change her life.
& # 39; I became sober in 2014 with heroin and all mood-altering agents & # 39 ;, she said.
In July 2019, surgeons removed 10 pounds of skin, which contributed to Michelle's impressive transformation
& # 39; It was about a year after my soberness when I realized that I had been using food all my life to fill an emotional void. So if I could clean up drugs and alcohol, I could also lose weight. That was the turning point. & # 39;
Michelle was diagnosed with a binge in 2015, showing that she had turned to food as an emotional support.
She had become used to eating two pounds of spaghetti for a meal, or a whole pie for herself.
& # 39; My first step was to go to an eating disorder clinic, & # 39; she remembered. & # 39; I realized I couldn't eat for a long time and then stick to food until I felt physically sick.
& # 39; When I discovered this, I wanted to lose the weight for myself – it was not for someone else that I find important.
Michelle was diagnosed with a binge in 2015, showing that she had turned to food as an emotional support. Shown before and after weight loss
& # 39; When I noticed that the weight was falling, it felt surreal and I didn't expect it. But at the same time I felt that this time it would be different, because I didn't try to lose weight to impress someone else. It was for me and only for me. & # 39;
To trigger her dramatic weight loss, Michelle had a gastrectomy with vertical sleeves in October 2017.
Now Michelle goes to the gym five times a week to do strength training and bodybuilding and she walks up the mountains with her husband Zachary, 23.
"These are things I could never do when I weighed 379 pounds (27 stone) because my mobility was almost nothing," she said.
Michelle's weight has dropped to 189 pounds (13th 5 pounds) and she is wearing a medium size.
To start her dramatic weight loss (right), Michelle had a gastrectomy with vertical sleeves in October 2017 (photo left in the hospital)
Now Michelle goes to the gym five times a week to do strength training and bodybuilding
After she reached her goal weight and maintained for eight months, Michelle could undergo surgery to remove the excess skin she was left with.
In July 2019, surgeons removed 10 pounds of skin, which contributed to Michelle's impressive transformation.
Michelle also enjoys walking uphill with her husband Zachary, 23 (photo)
She had a belt lipectomy, reverse abdominal fold, breast lift and extended arm lift to remove excess skin from her abdomen, breasts and arms.
& # 39; My bariatric surgeon advised to wait until I reached my target weight and maintain that weight for at least eight months before considering skin removal surgery. So that's exactly what I did, & she said.
& # 39; The only difficult decision was to get it done before you had children. I had to tell myself that carrying and delivering a child would not give me the same amount of excess skin that I had by losing 196 pounds (14 stones).
& # 39; They eventually removed 10 pounds of skin that all depended on me since I lost weight!
& # 39; I'm still recovering from surgery, so I don't really recognize myself physically. I feel emotionally that I now have more control over life and how to deal with things, because I would just bury my emotions with medication and food for that.
& # 39; It will be a 12-week recovery period that has been going well so far. I concentrate on taking it easy, because that is exactly what the doctor said to do. It is difficult if I have been independent for so long and now I have to trust that others shower and dress myself. & # 39;
Michelle's weight has dropped to 189 pounds (13th 5 pounds) and she is wearing a medium size. She was able to undergo surgery to remove the excess skin that she was left with eight months after reaching her goal weight
Although she is still recovering from surgery, Michelle looks forward to the results.
After discovering a love of fitness since halving her body weight, Michelle likes to motivate others to change their lives by posting messages about her transformation on her Instagram page.
& # 39; Now I weigh everything I eat – which sounds more annoying than it is, but it's pretty easy once you get the hang of it & # 39 ;, she added.
& # 39; I have a better understanding of what kind of proteins, fats and carbohydrates I have to put into my body based on my energy consumption.
After discovering a love of fitness since halving her body weight, Michelle likes to motivate others to change their lives by posting messages about her transformation on her Instagram page
Now Michelle, pictured at an appointment before having her loose skin removed, weighs all her food
& # 39; I eat two protein bars every day for breakfast. Because I am a vegetarian, I get my proteins from yogurt, cottage cheese, eggs and protein powder.
& # 39; Lunch is usually a cranberry-walnut salad and dinner consists of vegan meatballs with some fresh vegetables.
& # 39; & # 39; Snacks at night are still a must, so I make a protein mug using flap-jacked protein pancake mix, along with peanut butter powder and sugar-free syrup.
& # 39; If I can do it, anyone can do it. Five years ago I was a 279-stone heroin user, but then I became sober, lost weight and learned to love myself again. & # 39;
Follow https://www.instagram.com/michelle_bakal/ for more information.
. (TagsToTranslate) Dailymail (t) femail