How Stay-At-Home Mom Jennifer Layden Lost 75lbs! (You Can Do It, Too!)

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How Stay-At-Home Mom Jennifer Layden Lost 75lbs! (You Can Do It, Too!)

In August 2012, Jennifer Layden, 38, decided to get serious about losing weight. “I was tired of having to wear plus-sized clothes. In my town there aren’t a lot of choices for larger women, so I hated what I looked like in the clothes I had to wear,” says Jennifer. She also wanted to be a role model for her two young daughters, ages 8 and 11. “I didn’t want my children to be embarrassed to have an overweight mum, who wasn’t able to do things with them. My self-esteem was low and I felt invisible.”

Jennifer knew she needed a change, so she decided to try MyFitnessPal. “It’s so easy to keep track of the food I eat because of the huge food database and the scanner,” she says. “Before I started losing weight, I wasn’t exercising at all, unless we took the family to a zoo or something. I was eating way too many calories—a lot of sweets including chocolate, pastries, ice cream—and not enough real food. MyFitnessPal helped me watch my food and nutrition, because it showed me which macro levels and micronutrients to focus on. The forums were also very helpful whenever I had a question. In the end, the content of my diet hasn’t changed too drastically. I go by IIFYM—If It Fits Your Macros, so I don’t ban anything from my diet.”

A few weeks after kicking off her weight loss journey, the Canadian mom bought a Fitbit. “I wanted to start tracking my activity and calories. I quickly started using it 24/7 and became obsessed with my stat tracking and goal-setting. I started with the Fitbit Ultra, and now have a One, which is awesome. It’s so small and discreet! I love that I can see my calories burned throughout the day and know that I’m on track with my activity,” says Jennifer.

In less than two years of tracking her food and exercise, Jennifer achieved a huge milestone. “As of March 30, 2014, I have lost 75 lbs. It’s hard to believe I was that much overweight—that’s a lot of extra fat for anyone, let alone someone who is 5’2″!,” she says. “I went from size 18/20 jeans and 2XL shirts to size 10 jeans and small/medium shirts.”

Today Jennifer stays in shape by walking. “When I started using Fitbit, it definitely made me want to add more activity into my day. I started by walking 2 kilometers [about 1.2 miles] every time I went out, and now I walk at least 10 kilometers [about 6.2 miles] per session, with my max right now at 16 kilometers [about 10 miles]. I’ve also tried some at-home DVD workouts and using the treadmill for running intervals, but I prefer walking outside to anything else. About 95% of my daily exercise is walking.”

Jennifer acknowledges that getting serious about her health is the best thing she has ever done for herself and for her family. “I love MyFitnessPal and my Fitbit. I couldn’t have been this successful without them!”

Thanks for the love, Jennifer! We wish you continued health, happiness, and success! 

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  • Marissa

    Congratulations!!!!! You said “it showed me which macro levels and micronutrients to focus on.” Where in the site do I find this for myself?

    • Brandon Johnigan

      In the diary on MyFitnessPal, it will show you what goals you should be trying to achieve with your macros.

  • Rachael Goslan

    Fabulous job Jennifer, you look wonderful and I bet you feel full of energy now. I’m currently a size 12 to 14 and using my fitness pal to work towards my goal of getting back to a size 10 I too love it as I can easily track my calories and exercise 🙂 Keep up the great work

  • Congratulations! It’s amazing 🙂 I started with Myfitnesspal like 2 weeks ago and I can see the results, I lost 2 kg. It’s really hard, but the feeling of losing weight it’s really cool.

  • paula

    that is wonderful – how can we follow you and get motivated by you?

    • Jennilyn

      You can follow me on Instagram, username MFPJennilyn 🙂

    • Jennilyn

      You can follow me on Instagram, username MFPJennilyn 🙂

  • Danielle Gates Rush

    I use MyFitnessPal with a Fitbit Flex. I find using those together motivates me to eat less and get up and move more. My son has enjoyed it, because he goes with me on my walks. We walk about a mile together most evenings.

  • Tina Weaver

    I go by IIFYM—If It Fits Your Macros, so I don’t ban anything from my diet.” –
    what does this mean???

    • B_Reasonable

      Google it. It’s just a trendy name saying you eat a specific amount of things (carbs, protein, etc) but don’t worry about the source (ice cream, candy bars), just that you don’t go over your limits… your “macros”

  • jennifermarks365

    Keep it up

  • Congrats!

  • Flyfaith

    I am blessed to see your story. I am back at the beginning of my journey…again. After losing, then gaining back 60 pounds last year. I am brushing that off, starting fresh. I purchased an UP24 and synced it here. I am working out and am down about 7 pounds. I am excited to focus this time on fitness and fun. I thank you all for your stories. Keep up the amazing work! God bless you all!

  • Elizabeth Holt Stairs

    I started using MFP last year after my friend told me about it. Five of us from work all joined & started going to a Dr. for an appetite suppressant. I love using MFP & I’ve already told my husband to skip the Mother’s Day Present & combine it with my Birthday 7/1/14 & get me the FitBit One! 🙂 Thank you for letting us use your site for free! It helps me to realize before going over on my calories!

    • Joyce

      Would you mind sharing with me the appetite suppressant? I think I need it to get started.

      • Candace Miller

        Instead of Quisimia my dr prescribed a combo of topi max and phentramine
        Same thing
        Cheaper and less paperwork for our health insurance
        I’ve list 20 lbs
        I cannot do impact cardio due to 2 previous broken ankle injuries

      • emoses

        Please If I can offer any advice do NOT get on prescription appetite suppressant unless you are at a serious health risk. They are addictive, you will have depression and you will feel you cannot function without them. I know I’ve been on Phentramine for 3 years. If I get off I am so tired I literally cannot get off sofa or out of bed for at least 1 month. Very bad mood swings, you will go from feeling great while there working till that afternoon when they wear off and you cannot tolerate any type of noise, distractions etc. Im healthy and always been active, but wanted to loose the 15 lbs from baby weight, this was by far the worst decision I have ever made. Don’t think you will only use them for 2 or 3 months. (I did) Your body actually will crave it, just like any other form of drugs. It has also affected my memory. One of the many side effects.

      • Wendy L.

        I have never tried a prescription appetite suppressant, but I have found some over the counter ones that work really well for me. The one I am using now is Liporidex. It is pretty good and it’s all natural which is always a plus.

    • Susan

      I would like to know also!! Keep up the good work!

    • Susan

      I would like to know also!! Keep up the good work!

    • Susan

      I would like to know also!! Keep up the good work!

  • Jennipurr14

    Yes, i have synched my Fitbit with MyFitnessPal, and they are doing wonders for me! They help you to be really aware of what you are eating and how much you are moving. I’m excited that my daughter and son-in-law are giving my husband a Fitbit for Father’s Day. We’re really enjoying exercising together!

    • Jennipurr14

      Congrats on your success, Jennifer! I’m so happy for you! 🙂

  • Christine Crowley Magnan

    I am Mom to two teenagers. I bought my Fitbit One on May 28, 2013. After two weeks of using it, I was definitely adding more activity to my day but I hadn’t lost any weight. It really came together when I started MFP on June 13. Since then I have lost 42 pounds, mostly from walking. I would like to lose another 30 pounds. My story is so similar to Jennifer’s!

  • Steph

    I started using MFP 15 months ago – hit my goal just about at 12 months. My goal was to loose 55 pounds and did it – actually lost 56! I was thrilled. I think the key for me was the accountability from my friends on MFP, consistently logging (even if I knew I was going to be over in calories, and the encouragement of my husband and kids. I tell everyone I know about MFP these days! It really has changed my life and I am finally at a healthy weight for myself – I actually weigh what my driver’s license says I weigh! Fun at 42 to weigh what I did when I turned 16! 🙂 Thanks MFP!

  • wendy

    Im inspired. I’ve been struggling for yours and im a good 60lbs overweight. At 5’3 and 185. Im going to start this back today. Thank you for sharing your story !

  • Guest

    o/ <woo!) My turn next! I've just recently started using a Fitbit (One) as well, along with MFP. I hope my results are just as spectacular.

  • Liz

    Woo! My turn next! I’ve just started using a Fitbit (One) along with MFP as well. I hope my results are just as spectacular.

  • Lou

    Im getting a fitbit for mothers day!!! You look amazing! Well done on the hard work 🙂

  • dbroerse

    You are one of the most inspiring people I know! Thanks for setting such a great example!

  • TheWay ItIs

    Excellent job Jennifer, very happy for you, keep it going…..especially as a role model for you girls. Keep fit.

  • Lunaclare

    So good to know and congratulations. You look terrific and I admire all the hard work you put in to losing the 75 pounds!

  • Larry Spence

    Me and my wife both use MFP and we can both tell a big difference. We also use RunKeeper with it to keep track of the calories that we burn. We have also been doing Spartan Races and the workouts every month. I’ve lost about 35 lbs and she’s lost about 18 lbs. Her goal is to lose about 75 lbs total by December.

  • Barbara

    Congratulations….I like that you are 5’2″ and take a size 10…usually weight loss results report that the person is a size 0 or 2 now! you have kept this very real for us all…thanks…I am 5’1″ and have 40 lbs to lose…you’ve inspired me!

    • Janeen Thompson

      I also am 5’1 1/2 and have about forty pounds to lose. I was very excited in 2011-2012 to lose down to 138 but then had a knee injury that kept me from walking. I would like to get down to that again. It was quite nice to wear size tens again!

    • Janeen Thompson

      I also am 5’1 1/2 and have about forty pounds to lose. I was very excited in 2011-2012 to lose down to 138 but then had a knee injury that kept me from walking. I would like to get down to that again. It was quite nice to wear size tens again!

    • Janeen Thompson

      I also am 5’1 1/2 and have about forty pounds to lose. I was very excited in 2011-2012 to lose down to 138 but then had a knee injury that kept me from walking. I would like to get down to that again. It was quite nice to wear size tens again!

    • Janeen Thompson

      I also am 5’1 1/2 and have about forty pounds to lose. I was very excited in 2011-2012 to lose down to 138 but then had a knee injury that kept me from walking. I would like to get down to that again. It was quite nice to wear size tens again!

    • Janeen Thompson

      I also am 5’1 1/2 and have about forty pounds to lose. I was very excited in 2011-2012 to lose down to 138 but then had a knee injury that kept me from walking. I would like to get down to that again. It was quite nice to wear size tens again!

    • Janeen Thompson

      I also am 5’1 1/2 and have about forty pounds to lose. I was very excited in 2011-2012 to lose down to 138 but then had a knee injury that kept me from walking. I would like to get down to that again. It was quite nice to wear size tens again!

    • Janeen Thompson

      I also am 5’1 1/2 and have about forty pounds to lose. I was very excited in 2011-2012 to lose down to 138 but then had a knee injury that kept me from walking. I would like to get down to that again. It was quite nice to wear size tens again!

    • Janeen Thompson

      I also am 5’1 1/2 and have about forty pounds to lose. I was very excited in 2011-2012 to lose down to 138 but then had a knee injury that kept me from walking. I would like to get down to that again. It was quite nice to wear size tens again!

    • Janeen Thompson

      I also am 5’1 1/2 and have about forty pounds to lose. I was very excited in 2011-2012 to lose down to 138 but then had a knee injury that kept me from walking. I would like to get down to that again. It was quite nice to wear size tens again!

    • Janeen Thompson

      I also am 5’1 1/2 and have about forty pounds to lose. I was very excited in 2011-2012 to lose down to 138 but then had a knee injury that kept me from walking. I would like to get down to that again. It was quite nice to wear size tens again!

  • Barb Lee

    congratulations – great job! I have a fit bit flex – love it but didn’t know I could synch it to my fitness pal – I have been using my fitness pal for about a year now and not been real successful with the exercise part as of yet, but I am ready now and excited once reading this to see I can combine things – can you give me direction on how to do this synching thing? I love the fit bit but frustrated as tracking my food on it has not been working as I am in Canada and the database is American and foods to match up – so to hook this into my fitness pal would be a huge deal – if you can help me out – that would be hugely appreciated….thanks, Barb

    • Janeen Thompson

      I can’t remember how I synced them but it was easy. I think I just googled it and got easy answer.

  • kimberly

    Congrats on your success! I recently bought a Fitbit One as well and I’m crazy about it! Honestly, because they sync so well together I have been using Myfitnesspal even more faithfully than in the past.
    I hope to have the same great success in the coming months. Thanks for sharing!

  • Heather

    I have a Jawbone Up that I’ve synced to My Fitness Pal. I received it for my 30th birthday at the beginning of March and I have since lost 20 pounds!! It motivates me so much!! I love both the Up & My Fitness Pal!!

  • Heather

    I have a Jawbone Up that I’ve synced to My Fitness Pal. I received it for my 30th birthday at the beginning of March and I have since lost 20 pounds!! It motivates me so much!! I love both the Up & My Fitness Pal!!

  • Heather

    I have a Jawbone Up that I’ve synced to My Fitness Pal. I received it for my 30th birthday at the beginning of March and I have since lost 20 pounds!! It motivates me so much!! I love both the Up & My Fitness Pal!!

  • Rae

    What an inspiration I feel like I’m reading about my life!! Im 5’3 weigh 210 have 4 kids, all girls and feel terribly guilty for setting such a bad example. I just don’t know where to begin and I’m hungry all the time. I was never heavy before kids , in fact I was an athlete! I have lost 75 pounds after my 2nd daughter but have been heavy again since I had my 3rd. Your story has given me hope. Any suggestions to curb my crazy appetite? Thanks and Congrats!

    • robin7521

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  • Kris

    Thanks for the inspiration. I couldn’t agree more about the combination of MFP and fitbit working together. I have never been truly motivated to exercise until I got my fitbit. Actually seeing how inactive I was that first day with my fitbit really put things into perspective for me. I now strive to reach my step goal everyday and it has really made a difference. I’m only two months in but have lost 15lbs already. I can’t wait to see how far I can go with MFP and my fitbit.

  • meg

    What a great story!!! You are beautiful and inspiring!!!

  • Lydia

    Congrats! You look great and I’m sure you feel better, too!

  • Kristi Kobs

    Amazing!! I’m glad to see you still are using walking as your exercise! It does work! Thank you for your inspiring story!

  • Lawrence Jones

    Great job! I love myfitnespal.

  • Great body and smile appears!

  • Wendy L.

    What an amazing transformation! I have just started with MFP and Liporidex to help me get on track with my diet. After reading this I am thinking maybe I should invest in a Fitbit as well. I have read about a lot of different trackers and not sure which is the best one, but everyone seems to like Fitbit.