Nacogdoches woman wins national weight loss competition

? Source: Facebook
? Source: Facebook
? Source: Facebook
? Source: Facebook

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - A Nacogdoches woman is proving that anyone can obtain their goal if they work hard. Crystal McCarthy was crowned Active Female Champion by the national weight loss company ViSalus ten days ago.

McCarthy's goal was to lose 46 pounds and run a 5K without stopping.

"It's been huge, just accomplishment and journey and lasting. I know it's going to last because I feel so good," said McCarthy.

McCarthy says a year ago, she could barely even run a mile on the treadmill.

"If you had told me a year ago that I would be a role model for health and fitness, I would have never believed it, absolutely not," said McCarthy.

The Nacogdoches mom dropped her weight from 179 pounds to 133 pounds all because of Body by Vi.

"The challenge is designed to break up your weight loss and fitness goals. 90-day more attainable goals," said McCarthy.

McCarthy says she first focused on getting her eating under control substituting two meals a day with protein shakes and learning how to portion control at dinner.

"Then with my second 90-day challenge my goal was to incorporate exercise and I just started my goal, something I thought I would never be able to do and run a 5k, which is 3.1 miles," said McCarthy.

The busy mom was first selected as a monthly finalist in the Active Woman Category and then ten days ago she got the opportunity of a lifetime.

"We went to L.A. and the champion was crowned and I was chosen," said McCarthy.

She says 25 percent of the vote was because of the Nacogdoches community.

"I'm confident that's what set me apart was that so many people supported me and voted for me, and I'm thankful for that," said McCarthy.

As the winner, McCarthy will now be a new face in the Visalus marketing campaign, and has won a $25,000 personal branding project. She also won a $5,000 Beverly Hills shopping spree and will be featured in fitness magazines all over the country.

"I felt like I had become a spectator in my own life and I'm now an active participant thanks to the 90-day challenge," said McCarthy.

Anyone can join the 90-day challenge, but this diet and workout plan might not work for everyone. The dietician and nutrionist director of the HC Polk Education Center and Clinical Nutrition says it's best to gradually lose weight through lifestyle changes.

"The concern that I have is that we don't regain that weight. So, my emphasis is not so much on a short term program to reach a goal. It's important to set goals, but I'm more interested in a long term progress. When I set a goal and I take a longer term to reach that goal that means I'm actually making changes in what caused me to get overweight in the first place," said Tim Scallon.

He says lifestyle changes includes limiting soft drink consumption, eating fresh fruit every day, working out at least 30 minute s day, and eating whole grains like cereal, whole wheat bread, quinoa, tabouli and brown rice.

"Lifestyle changes are different than going on a diet. A diet has a beginning and an end. And what happens when it ends? We gain what we lost plus a little bit more. We've all seen this weight loss rollercoaser and in fact, people who go on this roller coaster over and over have unhealthy outcomes as they age. It's better to make gradual changes," said Scallon.

For more information on the Body by Vi Challenge, visit their website:

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