Today we are so happy to share with you an inspiring keto success story from Kendra Houston. Kendra has always had problem with her weight and tried to lose weight many times but didn’t succeed until she committed to keto for 90 days straight and lost over 20.5 pounds while toning her body. In this article, you will learn her story and super helpful tips.
If you have a success story to share with our community, please get in touch and let us know about it. We’d love to read your success story!
Without further ado, here’s Kendra’s story:
Please tell us your story and how you discovered Keto:
I am a 27 years old, almost 28, female standing barely 5’1’’and I have always had a huge problem with my weight. I used to be a very active person in both my job and personal life, living on a farm and helping with everything from catching animals to bucking hay. I have always been chubby and a bit heavy but I wasn’t horribly overweight or anything the majority of my life. I had normally maintained about 140lbs…
Then I left home to be on my own the first time at 18 and came back at just shy of 21, then back on my own again at 23. During that time, I let myself go… I am ashamed to admit I became very inactive and would order pizza or take out instead of cooking a meal myself, or I would make something quick and easy rather than healthy…
It was inevitable that I ended up close to 200lbs with heart and back problems. I cut out soda and cut back a little on taking out and I dropped back down to 165lbs but I was still so heavy and felt awful all the time.
My self-confidence took the biggest blow though… After then it was practically nonexistent. I stopped going out to meet people because I was too ashamed and thought nobody would want to even talk to me. I didn’t FEEL attractive at all anymore.
When I was 25, I came across some information about the Keto Diet while looking up different effective diet plans, looking to change my lifestyle completely. I failed pretty epically sticking to it the first time and did it so wrong, but I still managed to drop down to about 145lbs.
I was feeling better physically and mentally, getting a little self-confidence back and was even going to the gym 3 days a week, but yet again, I failed and gave up on both and fell right back into it, and before I knew it, none of my clothes fit.
I was so embarrassed about my belly showing through even a size Large in Men’s shirts, that I wore sweaters even in Summer to cover up and I wouldn’t let anyone take a photo of me… I weighed myself just before Christmas of 2017 and I was over 170lbs!!
I was devastated and cried many times and felt sickened by my complacency… Even still it really didn’t hit home until I asked a good friend, one that I hold very high respect and admiration for when it comes to fitness, in very early January 2018 to rate my body… And MY FRIEND said I was a 5/10… I was done. No more…
The next day I studied up on the Keto diet again, very thoroughly this time, and spent the next week clearing out my pantry and fridge of ALL carb-heavy foods, giving them away and throwing away only what I couldn’t give away. Then the next pay-day I signed up for a gym, went shopping and my Keto journey began…
I lost a total of 20.5 pounds of straight fat during these 90 days (Jan- April 2018)! After that, I have been doing weight training and gaining muscle too so my body is toning out with the fat loss.
My goal: in six months be fit and confident in myself enough to rock a bikini!
How has your life changed since going keto?
Since then, 90 days have passed. There has been such a difference, even just in the first 30 days it was a night and day change! I have felt so amazing. Never better physically. I have unlimited stores of energy and plowed through the “Keto Flu” like a juggernaut! Every inch of my body feels better! I sleep better, have more focus and am in an all-around better mood.
I have noticed though that I can experience moments of “DERP- MODE” as I call it, where I forget simple information briefly, but I think that is kind of normal for my body adjusting.
I also noticed my posture improving, probably from the weight loss. I used to hunch over pretty badly but now I stand pretty straight!
My self-confidence still needs a lot of work, but looking and feeling better and getting the compliments that I do are helping. It will be a long road to repair that patch, but this is giving me a good start.
What did you personally do in your first 10 days of keto?
My first ten days weren’t rough at all. I had at most two days of the “Keto-Flu” because I did what I like to call a “power through.” Basically, I did no carb for three days and poof, I was in Ketosis.
Do you count and track macros strictly?
At first, I did very, very strictly. I used the My Fitness Pal app, setting my macros up at a 5/70/25 (carb/fat/protein) ratio of 1,300 calories, which factored into 16g/101g/81g based off of what I did at the gym too. I still use it to make sure I don’t go over 20 net carbs in a day, but otherwise, I am able to closely eyeball within 5% of my targets without using the app.
Do you exercise? If yes, what’s your workout routine like?
I do a full body circuit at the gym with weight machines. My routine looked more or less like this: ARMS- 2 set of 10 second reps at high weight, then LEGS – 3 set of 10 second reps at high weight, CORE AND BACK – 2 set of 10 second reps at high weight, then I rotated between the 3 for at the least an hour.
I started out with going to the gym every other day for the first two weeks, taking just a Thermogenic, multivitamin supplements and a protein shake when necessary, then for the next two and a half months I went 6 days a week for between 1 and 2 hours a day, used a Thermogenic, took Creatine while still in the locker room after my work-out, a Multi-vitamin, added electrolytes in all my water, and a protein shake when necessary.
Now I am back to about 3-4 days a week at the gym with an added 20 minutes on the stair stepper and/or doing medicine ball cardio workouts.
Have you ever encountered a plateau? If so, how did you get over it?
I did plateau out to a small point in the second month. What I ended up doing was up to my carb intake by 10g for two or three days then dropped it back down and it seemed to kick me out of the plateau without dropping out of ketosis.
I had plateaued as I closed in on day 90. It was depressing to see, but it was so close to my carb up day after my 90-day mark, I pushed through it. I had my only carb up day on day 92, enjoying some sushi with a friend, a sandwich and enjoying some fruit and a little personal bag of chips. Not too bad but enough to do a proper reset…
What is your WHY (your drive/motivation) to keep on track and stay focused?
This may sound vain but while I mostly wanted to feel better physically and mentally, in a small way. I also want to be that girl who walks into the room and draws all of the guy’s attention. I have NEVER been the girl to draw attention in a room… I wanted to be considered “sexy” for once, not just by others, but myself as well..
What are your favorite ingredients to prepare keto meals?
I love using Chicken Thighs, thick cut bacon, and red pepper flakes! I have come up with my own recipes using the three and they are amazing… I have even converted a few of my co-workers and friends to use some recipes because they liked them so much. My basic meal is chicken thigh fried up with a couple pieces of diced bacon, some green beans and a hefty dose of pepper (I like it spicy!)
Simple yet delicious.
What are your favorite keto meals/recipes?
For the most part, I keep things simple, veggies and meat cooked with spices and butter, but occasionally I will treat myself to something more decadent like a creamy keto tuna casserole with zucchini noodles or a keto friendly zucchini noodle spaghetti with ground beef and cheese.
Is there any book that you would recommend to our readers?
RuledMe.com has been a save-all, one-stop resource for me since day 1. The only thing is that they no longer offer individual advice but they have a huge amount of information, recipes and guides for the Keto Diet. I don’t need it anymore, but if you want to start or to even just learn in detail about the Keto Diet, I highly recommend it!
In one or two sentences, why do you think you are successful in this keto way of eating?
Set a REACHABLE Goal, Consistency, Determination, and Discipline… See in your mind what you want to be and commit to it!! Stick to your macros, measure your foods and stay on track and you WILL succeed!!
Finally, What advice would you give someone who is just starting out on keto?
The hardest thing, especially at the start, was people bringing in snacks and goodies and eating them around me. At work it’s hard, but at least with family and friends, telling them about what you’re doing and asking them to please keep those foods to a minimum when around you really helps when it comes to building up the discipline to not just give in to cravings. That is by far the hardest part… For at least the first two weeks, STAY AWAY FROM THINGS YOU CRAVE!!!
Once you get past the first two weeks of being in ketosis, it is smooth sailing. After the first month, you won’t want to eat any other way on a regular basis again! After month #2, it will set in and your lifestyle and mindset about food completely change.