Age-grouper Glenda Evangelista was overweight and depressed, so she decided to lace up her shoes and get moving, eventually losing 67 pounds in the process

How much did you weigh before you started getting active? How was it affecting your life?

I weighed 207 pounds. I was grumpy and sick all the time. I didn’t go out much, I didn’t want to socialize, and I didn’t want to be seen.

How much do you weigh now?

140 pounds.

What was the plan you came up with to lose weight? Who did you turn to and who ended up helping you?

First, my plan was to go through a diet. That failed. The second plan was taking diet and slimming pills, but they barely had an effect on me. One day, I was watching the first episode of The Biggest Loser, and I saw the big change in them through exercise. From there, I realized it can be done.

The first thing I thought I could do was to enroll in a pole dancing class. However, I could not find the school to go to, so I ended up enrolling myself in a gym. From there, gym friends influenced me to get into running. Then my husband got me a mountain bike, which led me to joining my first duathlon. Then I told myself it would be nice to do triathlon only if I knew how to swim. So I enrolled myself at Fit+ Academy, which not only taught me how to swim, but how to become a triathlete as well. The rest is history.

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Prior to Glenda Evangelista’s transformation

Where do you train? Did the atmosphere help you in training regularly and achieving your goals?

During weekdays, I train at SM Mall of Asia (MOA) and during weekends I do out-of-town swims, bikes, and runs. The atmosphere in MOA, where almost all people are training for a race or just wanting to get fit, made me feel at home. It’s like I’m in an environment where we all have the same goal: to be better with what we do and to be more fit every day.

What other lifestyle changes did you have to make?

I restrained myself from eating ice cream cakes and fast food. I challenged myself to eat healthier and I quit smoking. I started to run, bike, and swim. I sleep early and wake up before the farmers do.

How did it feel to go through the process? Did you come close to giving up?

I pitied myself because I couldn’t do any exercises at first, but I challenged myself so hard to lose four to six pounds a month, which I eventually did. Slowly but surely I lost weight and felt good about myself.

What couldn’t you do at the beginning of your training that you could do now? 

At the beginning, I could hardly run on the treadmill. I spend one whole hour just walking, never knowing that I can finish a marathon in the future. In my earlier days of cycling, I could only do one loop in MOA whereas now I can bike for two hours straight. As a newbie swimmer, I had to stay beside the pool gutter so that I have something to hold on to since I could not cross a single lap without stopping. Now, my regular swim practice is at least 1.8 kilometers.

The atmosphere in MOA, where almost all people are training for a race or just wanting to get fit, made me feel at home. It’s like I’m in an environment where we all have the same goal: to be better with what we do and to be more fit every day

How do you feel now?

I feel more confident about myself. I feel healthy and happy.

What is your biggest race so far?

Biggest and hardest race for me was the Bataan International Triathlon and Defy 123 in Bohol.

What is your biggest goal now?

To race in an international 70.3 triathlon so I can beat my husband’s time!