66-Year-Old Woman Loses 80 pounds
Terry Reuer, a 66-year-old from Farmington Hills, Michigan, is a testament to the saying, “Age is nothing but a number.” At 65, she began a weight-loss journey that would result in 80 pounds shed and one Tough Mudder race conquered.
According to TODAY, Reuer spent most of her 40s traveling and stuck to a lifestyle of restaurant and airport food. At her heaviest, she weighted 198 pounds.
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Reuer decided to make a change after her five siblings experienced health problems — she didn’t want that for herself. She told TODAY, “I woke up and said, ‘That’s it.'” She devoted herself to cutting out processed carbs and sugar from her diet, sticking to lean proteins and vegetables instead.
Though difficult at first, Reuer managed to lose 50 pounds with healthy eating alone. She next focused on getting fit, hitting the gym, a place she was previously “too self-conscious” for. Thanks to the help of a personal trainer, she slowly she built up her stamina and strength, and a month later met her next match: a Tough Mudder race.
Although these 10-mile races aren’t timed, they’re meant to challenge you both mentally and physically with an array of over 20 obstacles through mud and pools of water.
An employee at Reuer’s company had asked her to join him in the race. Though Reuer “laughed” at the idea, the man was participating to raise money for Children’s Burn Foundation, a nonprofit supporting child burn survivors, and this sparked something in her.
For the next nine months Reuer trained for six days a week, twice a day.
“Much of the motivation at the beginning of the journey was to stay healthy and energetic in my job,” Reuer told GoodHousekeeping.com. “As I got started and the fundraising piece for the Children’s Burn Foundation launched, that is what kept me moving forward in a very aggressive training schedule.”
When race day came along, Reuer says someone advised her to skip an obstacle that looked too difficult (which, according to the Tough Mudder site, you can do). But she surprised everyone and persisted, grabbing onto the rope and climbing up that wall.
Reuer’s favorite part about the experience was “the sense of camaraderie and team spirit” during each obstacle. “Some of [them] really can’t be finished without help, and part of the joy of participating is offering and receiving that help,” she explained.
“When I crossed the finish line and saw my husband and daughter waiting for me, the tears came,” Reuer continued. “I was so happy, proud and relieved that I had accomplished what I set out to do.”
Throughout Reuer’s weight-loss journey, she had a mantra. “I would look at myself in the mirror and tell myself, ‘You are strong, you are beautiful, you can do this for 24 hours.’ Then the next day I would expect it again.”
Now Reuer is 80 pounds slimmer and, perhaps, tougher than ever before.