Valley woman gets national recognition for weight loss

- Fitness is a way of life for Melissa Sledge.

"I lift weights about six days a week," she said.

Weight lifting, cardio, yoga and mostly proper nutrition are what Sledge says led to a 45-pound weight loss.

"Thanksgiving 2013, I went home to visit my family," she said. "I was in my room and dad came in and said 'I love you, but I don't know what's going on, this is not you.'" I was 45 pounds overweight, so I was 175 pounds."

She started by giving up two foods she at the most; pizza and French fries.

"I said I would do it for 90 days just to see what happens," she said.

In three months, Sledge lost 10 pounds and within a year, she shed all of the excess weight. Her hard work has gotten her nationally recognized in the March issue of Shape magazine.

"I read Shape magazine and I noticed their weight loss column and they had a request for submissions," she said.

Sledge calls the article humbling, but she's excited that 12 million readers will potentially be motivated by her story.

Her advice for those who want to live a healthy lifestyle is to not lose sight.

"It's not easy," she said. "It's so much easier to get something fast and probably not so healthy for you. Plan ahead, focus on the bigger picture on your end goal and embrace the discomfort.

Melissa says prepping meals ahead of time is also what has made her so successful. The March issue of Shape magazine is already available.

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