The Greatest Success Stories of 2011
2011 was a great year for many of our clients, and we look forward to hearing more success in the year 2012.
Here are some of the greatest success stories from the past year that motivated and inspired us all.
Lisette Davila, Guest on The Doctors, Darling on the Red Carpet
Lisette Davila will tell you herself that life hasn’t dealt her a really fair hand lately. After being unemployed for six months, and losing her hair at a young age, it’s easy to see how this mom’s stress levels caused her to tip the scales at over 175 pounds.
As a teenage girl, Lisette constantly struggled with weight issues, and always sought out the “quick” dieting fixes for her problems. This desperation for rapid weight loss got so bad that Lisette eventually resorted to starving herself.
“I was so desperate to lose weight that I struggled with anorexia for years,” says Lisette. “I hated my body, and I was just looking for a quick way to fix the problem.”
With support from her family, and with help from her daughter, Lisette decided to turn her life around, and entered a contest that would bring her the much-needed boost she needed. One day, Lisette and her daughter came across a contest hosted by The Doctors television show to win a red carpet makeover. Out of thousands of applicants, Lisette was selected by the producers to receive a red carpet makeover, complete with a trip to the Daytime Emmy awards, six months of meals from bistroMD, and a luscious new head of hair.
Her favorite meals from bistroMD?
“I love the chicken and mushroom crepes,” says Lisette. “I love crepes. Period. I like the chocolate fudge graham protein bar too. Give me chocolate, and I’m happy!”
Despite all of her hardships, Lisette’s life is starting to look brighter: with new hair, a new lifestyle, and a trip to the Daytime Emmys, Lisette has achieved her goals, and then some, and is looking forward to a happy and bright 2012. She even managed to achieve a long-time goal of hers.
“I wanted to weigh 130 pounds for my 40th birthday. I was able to do that, and I've never felt better.” says Lisette.
The Woman Who is Moving Mountains…
It’s not every day you meet someone who is willing to climb one of the tallest mountains in the world—let alone Kara Richardson Whitely, who is best known as, “The Fat Woman on the Mountain.”
For many years, though, Kara was the fat woman who happened to climb mountains. It’s an identity she knew all too well for the majority of her adult life, until her goal to reach the top of one of the world's tallest mountains gave her the inspiration to climb those first steps toward a better life.
On her website, fatwomanonthemountain.com, Kara talks about her journey to conquer her own personal mountain: losing weight.
“At age 30, I was lost within my own body. I dreamed of climbing mountains, but the only thing that went up was my weight—to about 360 pounds.”
For a month, bistroMD provided Kara with meals and snacks to prepare her for her journey. Inspired by Kara's remarkable determination and generosity to inspire others to change, bistroMD wanted to be there with Kara and her team as they made their incredible trek up Mount Kilimanjaro.
bistroMD provided healthy meals and snacks to Kara and her team a week prior to their climb.
“Along with my personal determination to help other’s lead a more fulfilling life, I hope that the journey to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro inspired others to take steps beyond the obstacles in their lives,” says Kara. “If this former fat woman can climb some of the tallest peaks in the world, then you can too. The first, and most difficult step, taking the initiative to get healthy.”
Climbing to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro is how Kara chooses health, and she wants all of you to see why.
To learn more about Kara and to see more highlights from her incredible story of successful weight loss, visit her blog by clicking here.
The Busy Life of Erinn Murray
Erinn Murray may not be an artist, but she has managed to turn her life into a very colorful and unique mosaic.
Even though she grew up in the small state of Rhode Island, Erinn has always had big goals and aspirations.
Erinn grew up in the city of Barrington, and had a relatively normal upbringing. She was raised in a household with two loving parents, and an older brother.
Even though Erinn's family life seems normal, her brother's health has always been a major concern for Erinn and her parents.
“At birth, my brother was born with a congenital heart defect. It’s scary, because someone living with this condition doesn’t really get a sure answer on their life expectancy. Fortunately for him, and for my family, he has been able to live a very fulfilling life.”
Even in her years as a high school student, Erinn always knew what she wanted to do.
“Right out of high school, I got accepted to Boston College. I knew I wanted to be an education major. Like many college students, however, my plans changed once I got more involved in the curriculum. I switched my major to English, and I happened to stumble upon a very unique field of study.”
This field of study was Anglo-American Literary Relations. If you’ve never heard of this before, neither had Erinn until she learned more of what it was about.
“This particular field of study focuses on the linguistic and cultural divides in writing between Great Britain and America. It was a fantastic learning opportunity, and I even had the privilege of studying at the University College of London—I did my thesis there.”
Studying across the pond was a wonderful experience for Erinn, but she knew she wanted more. Like her brother, she attended Georgetown, but not to study law. Erinn needed to fulfill a language requirement to achieve her Ph.D., and she ended up discovering her true passion.
“My professor assigned me the random task of working with children with learning disabilities. I can honestly say it is one of the best things that has ever happened to me. From the moment I worked with those kids, I knew it was what I wanted to do. I just wanted to help these kids.”
This life-changing experience inspired Erinn to attend Columbia University. There, she got her Master of Education in Reading, and a Master of Arts in Learning Disabilities. Afterward, she got hired as a teacher at Winston Preparatory School in New York City—a school for students with learning disabilities.
For years, Erinn was fulfilled by a joy she couldn’t express in words. She was doing something she loved, but another happy event would soon leave Erinn facing a difficult decision.
“While I was working at Winston, my husband and I discovered we were expecting our first child together. I honestly had to make one of the toughest decisions of my life. I loved my career, but I wanted to be able to spend quality time with my unborn child and my stepdaughter. I then made the decision to be a stay-at-home mom. It wasn’t an easy decision, but I knew it would be best for my growing family.”
Pregnancy and raising four beautiful children brought Erinn and her husband a lot of joy, but for Erinn, each pregnancy did take its toll, both mentally and physically.
“After the birth of my third child, my real struggles with weight began,” says Erinn. “I developed postpartum depression. I was prescribed antidepressants, and I just couldn’t get the baby weight off. I even got my thyroid checked. I fought this battle for about three years, until I decided to do something about it.”
Even though she was a busy mom juggling four kids, Erinn knew that she wanted to get back to her old self. She discovered that one of the best ways to do this was to compete in a marathon.
For months, Erinn trained to compete in the 114th Annual Boston Marathon. Erinn completed the race on April 19, 2010, and she was able to represent a cause that was very dear to her heart.
“Because of my brother’s condition, I raced for the Children’s Hospital of Boston. The whole experience was absolutely wonderful, and I was able to raise over $8,000 for their team.”
Even though she has four kids, and just started her own educational consulting business, she is still making the time to train for the event.
“Running makes me very happy. It’s a great escape, and it makes me feel good about myself. Right now, I try to go to the gym at least three to four times during the week. If I can’t make it one day, I always try to make up for the time lost the next day. Time management is the most difficult part.”
Even though time management can be difficult, Erinn has all of the motivation she needs. Not only does she have complete support from her husband and family, but she has managed to get back a part of her life she has missed so much.
Her job at Winston Prep may be over, but that hasn’t stopped Erinn from pursuing the thing she loves most: helping kids with learning disabilities.
Despite her hectic schedule, Erinn has just opened her very own educational consulting business where she helps parents of learning-disabled children get the resources they need for a brighter education.
“For me, it’s all about helping the kids. I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.”
BistroMD was also there to help Erinn compete in the New York City Marathon. Erinn ate bistroMD meals to help her prepare for the race.
The most exciting thing about eating bistroMD?
“Not having to cook. That has been a much-needed break from the ordinary.”