From Overweight Teen to Beauty Queen

Miss America contestant Bree Boyce’s 112-pound weight loss has inspired her to spread the message about the real meaning of beauty—and how to get fit the healthy way.

Amy Spencer
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To that end, Bree wants to work with First Lady Michelle Obama on the “Let’s Move” program, an initiative to fight childhood obesity. “You don’t have to be a size 00 or weigh 100 pounds to be happy and feel good about yourself,” she says. “It’s all about being healthy.” Read on to find out how Bree dropped the pounds.

Bree’s road to weight loss
Cut out one thing. Ease into a new eating plan by eliminating one problem food. For Bree, it was soda. “I was drinking maybe 10 cans a day,” she says. “Once I stopped, I felt a huge difference in my body.”

Screen-save your old self. Instead of motivating yourself with photos of how you want to look, remind yourself of how you don’t. “I have pictures of how I used to look on my phone,” says Bree. “So if I’m tempted to skip a workout, I’ll look at my picture and tell myself, You’ve come this far; you need to go to the gym.”

Chart a route to health—literally. Bree mapped out a one-mile route through her neighborhood. “The first week I couldn’t walk the mile, but I made it about 10 minutes,” she says. Today, she walks five miles every day, which takes her about an hour. “It’s the best stress reliever.”

Put your sneakers in your path. If you trip over your sneakers, you’ll be more likely to put them on. “I keep my sneakers by my door,” says Bree.

Fill your iPod with new music and podcasts. Getting excited about a new song or podcast might motivate you to head outside for a workout, so download something new every week.

Billboard a “You can do it” attitude. Remind yourself that your goal is within your reach. “I write motivational quotes on sticky notes and put them on my steering wheel,” says Bree. “I read the quotes to myself all day long, and they stick.”

Eat like your great-grandma. Bree cut processed foods out of her diet and focused on whole foods: protein, grains, beans, vegetables and fruit.

January 2012