In early 2013, Jessica McDowell, 27, a teacher and graduate student stepped on the scale and saw the number 299 blinking up at her. “My heart was heavy because I didn’t know how I had let this happen, or what I could do to fix it,” says Jessica. She resolved to lose the weight that had slowly appeared, and looked to a fad diet to do the trick. “But once I went back to my usual eating routine, what little weight I managed to lose on the restrictive plan quickly came back,” she says. “I was upset and frustrated, and I didn’t know what to do.”
Happily, a friend told Jessica about MyFitnessPal. “I started logging my meals and water intake, whether I was at work or on the go, and I kept up with other members,” she says. “MyFitnessPal has changed my life.” Since joining Jessica has lost 42 pounds—and has kept it off! “I’m more conscious of what, and how much, I eat now, and I’ve learned that I am not on this journey alone.”
Her life is still hectic, but Jessica is finding balance. “There are days when I get off work and have to drive over an hour to class,” she says. “I rely on logging to help me make healthier choices, and now I plan meals that I can make at home and bring with me to eat in the car.”
When MyFitnessPal caught up with Jessica in January of this year she was adding exercise into the mix. “I started using MyFitnessPal to log my workouts at home, the gym, and at my aerobics class,” she says. “Keeping track of my workouts and eating healthy is really helping me see how attainable my goal is—I’m getting closer every day!”
Still, slip-ups happen, and when they do, Jessica is ready with a MyFitnessPal trick: “Now that I’m logging my meals and keeping track of my calories, I can plan for splurges,” she says. “Before going to a restaurant, I can plan for the meal ahead and no longer worry about it diverting me away from my goal.”
“Having the nutritional content of foods in the palm of my hand when I go out to eat with friends and family is one of my greatest assets,” says Jessica. “MyFitness Pal is helping me reach my weight loss goal and I feel healthier than ever!”
Congratulations, Jessica! For sharing her story, Jawbone partnered with MyFitnessPal to give Jessica a Jawbone UP, a wearable wristband that captures data on how Jessica sleeps, moves, eats, and feels—and how each of those activities affects the others. Jawbone will upload all of her UP activity data—and the associated caloric burn—directly to Jessica’s MyFitnessPal account, for a complete view of her personal health.
We’re looking for group success stories to feature in May. Did you team up with a group of friends, family, or officemates to nail your health or weight loss goal? Click here and tell us about it!