HER STORY

Tracey Bogush. 45, of East Setauket, says that she never had a weight problem until she had children and started bad habits like eating any food her kids left on their plates and not taking care of herself. “I got lazy and wasn’t putting myself first,” she said. Things changed in January 2015. “I was tired of being tired. I was unhealthy and always felt exhausted.” She had been emailing with a personal trainer at Real Deal Fitness in East Setauket for months and was good at coming up with excuses. But one night she told a friend, “Let’s just do it!” They headed to the gym, where Bogush says she couldn’t do more than two or three pushups, but trainer Oneil Pryce told her, “If you do one, it’s one more than you were doing.” She says she was so sore the next day she couldn’t stand up from a sitting position, but has come to love the gym and her new lifestyle. “When you feel better, you want to keep going. You don’t want to stop feeling good,” Bogush said. She changed her eating habits but didn’t totally eliminate any one food item. “It’s portion control and better choices. Plus, I lose more weight when I eat every three to four hours.”

Down 52 pounds and wanting to lose another 20, Bogush says she smiles more in pictures now and doesn’t hide behind others.

HER DIET

Breakfast at 8:45 a.m. is a protein shake that keeps her full until about 11:30 a.m., when she has a handful of almonds or an apple with almond butter or honey. At 1:30 p.m. she has either chicken salad or a turkey burger and half a sweet potato. She has another shake as an afternoon snack after the gym. Dinner is either fish or shrimp or steak and always a vegetable and a simple carbohydrate like half a sweet potato or black beans.

HER EXERCISE

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Bogush does an hourlong class at the gym four to five times a week. It’s a full-body workout through weights, cardio activity and core strengthening. She has a one-on-one personal training session once a week.

HER ADVICE

“Don’t be hard on yourself. You can do it. The only regret you’ll have is that you didn’t start sooner. I love when I get back from the gym and my son tells me I smell like dedication.”