BY: KIM HASTY
Alicia Banks’ weight-loss journey may have started with a broken heart, but she’s not crying anymore.
Banks, Fayetteville Technical Community College’s digital content and social media specialist, lost 55 pounds in nine months, looks great and, more importantly, feels great. After suffering a breakup and subsequently sad holiday season a little over a year ago, she began to take baby steps toward changing her lifestyle and eating habits. She changed her diet and became a serious fitness buff.
Midway through her journey, a healthy body became less about proving herself to someone else and more about taking care of herself.
“I truly started to find myself outside of someone else,” she said. “It’s what has kept me consistent for more than a year - and will for the rest of my life. Now working out is like brushing my teeth. I plan everything else around working out.”
Her experience is serving as an inspiration for others. Longtime friend Tiara Bebbs, who owns The Honestly Honest Podcast, will feature Banks on the fifth episode of season three. The podcast is available on multiple platforms by clicking this link: https://linktr.ee/honestlyhonestpodcast
“I’ve done crash diets before, and I can’t do it,” Banks, 32, said. “So I broke it down into pieces. If the goal was to go to the gym five to six days a week, I started with ‘Let’s go one day.’”
Once she had established a regular fitness routine that included weights mixed with cardio, she began focusing on her diet. Her friend Rachel Farrington, who teaches weightlifting classes set to music, helped Banks correct her eating habits.
“At first I changed just my breakfast,” she said. “I said, let’s eat a healthy breakfast. I gave my body time to adjust so I wouldn’t have those cravings.”
Banks hasn’t quite reached her goal weight, but she’s certainly learned valuable life lessons.
“Live in the body you want because it’s for you and you want it,” she said. “That is the only way it works. It took heartbreak for me, personally, to make this realization.”