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Indiana woman maintains 230-pound weight loss

September 12, 2016 GMT

Hobart, Indiana native Beth Donovan has kept off the 230 pounds she dropped from 2006 to 2015.


In her 40s, Donovan, of Fishers, found herself weighing more than 400 pounds, unable to get out of bed, her husband acting as her servant.

She considered bariatric surgery, but decided against it. Instead, she started out pedaling an arm bike while she lay in bed. She began tracking her food intake. She joined online weight-loss support groups.

She graduated to a wheelchair, then a walker, increasing her physical activity as she gained mobility. She began doing yoga, swimming and cross-training.

She got the junk food out of the house. She switched to a whole-food diet. She upped the amounts of fruits and vegetables she ate.

The pounds kept coming off — until she cut her body weight in half.

Eighteen months after telling her story to The Times, Donovan, 52, has maintained the drop in pounds. She is a certified weight-loss coach — her website is heartNsoulfit.com — and said her clients help hold her accountable.

“I feel like if I fail, they’re going to feel like they can fail,” she said. “That really motivates me to try to be a really good example so other people don’t decide that it’s hopeless.”

What’s next

Donovan hasn’t been as active as she would like lately, as she awaits possible knee replacement surgery. After that, she’ll be ready to exercise again.

“I’m looking forward to walking again, walking on the beach or through a park,” she said. “I’d like to go back to the dunes, back home. That would be really nice.”

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