Dropping Lbs.: Brooke Koenig, 26

Brooke Koening, 26, of Franklin Square, turned to Brooke Koening, 26, of Franklin Square, turned to a nutritionist and the gym to lose more than 50 pounds. She went from more than 200 pounds to 148 in less than a year. Photo Credit: Handout ; Ed Betz

advertisement | advertise on newsday

BROOKE KOENIG, 26, Franklin Square

OCCUPATION: Works in sales for Stark Carpet

HEIGHT: 5-foot-7

WEIGHT BEFORE: 205 (April 2011)

WEIGHT AFTER: 148 (May 2012)

advertisement | advertise on newsday

HER STORY Being unable to fit into her clothing or shop at her favorite places was the wake-up call for Koenig.

"I was with my husband on a trip to Florida to visit his dad," says Koenig, who lost 57 pounds with the help of a nutritionist. "It killed me. I wouldn't even take off my cover-up on the beach."

The embarrassment was the least of her problems. She had high cholesterol and feared other medical problems would creep up on her as the weight had.

@Newsday

She turned to a nutritionist who tailored a dietary plan to her specific needs and tastes. "I'm a picky eater," says Koenig, who first tried Weight Watchers. "The packaged diet foods are horrible because of all the salt. My nutritionist asked me what I liked and had me keep a food journal."

With this research in hand, she and the nutritionist crafted a program for Koenig. For example, she loves pizza, so the nutritionist suggested the grandma-style pizza that has less crust and cheese and more vegetables.

"She taught me to make healthier choices. I feel so healthy and beautiful," says Koenig. "I feel like the old me again."

DIET While she was losing weight, Koenig ate five to six small meals a day. "I'd start with a protein shake with fruit and yogurt," says Koenig, who ate healthful snacks such as nuts and grapes between meals.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

She also ate tuna and lots of turkey, vegetables and fruit. "At least half my plate was vegetables," Koenig says. "While I was losing, I had to keep eating to keep my metabolism working." Koenig says portion control also was key to her success.

EXERCISE She goes to the gym three to four times a week. She also does yoga and bikes with her husband. "I completed a 75-mile bike tour last summer," Koenig says. "I hope to ride the century [100 miles] this summer and am training for a triathlon."

ADVICE "Even if you have one bad day, each day is a new start," says Koenig, who added that by eating right and balancing carbs and proteins, the weight came off at a steady pace.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

"As long as you're doing the right thing and sticking to a plan, you will be successful and lose weight," Koenig says. "Find the healthiest diet for you and stick to it."

You also may be interested in: