Super motivated bride documented her weight loss journey on Instagram

Haley Smith’s Instagram is a masterclass in motivation.

She spent the year leading up to her wedding working on getting healthy, and she ultimately lost over 100 pounds before her big day. She did so by eating healthy, exercising and discovering some A+ motivation techniques.

“My journey really started after my husband proposed to me back in July of 2015. I had always been trying to lose weight, but when I saw the photos of the proposal, I freaked out,” Smith wrote to Mashable.

“I didn’t recognize myself at all, and it really made me worry that I would feel that way about my wedding day, too. So I vowed to make a change so that I could be not only a happy bride, but happy with myself.

Smith, who is from Amarillo, Texas, documented the whole process on Instagram.

A photo posted by Haley Smith (@haley_j_smith) on Aug 16, 2016 at 9:05am PDT

“When Matt proposed last year, I saw my pictures and didn’t even recognize myself. My whole adult life, I have struggled with my weight, but this was my highest. I had let myself go and didn’t even realize how far I had gotten,” Smith wrote on Instagram.

“On that day, I made up my mind to make a change. I was tired of hiding in pictures, getting winded walking across a parking lot, skipping out on activities, feeling lazy and most of all being embarrassed of myself.”

On her Instagram, Smith emphasizes that there isn’t just one weight loss technique that worked for her.

“No ONE thing made me how I am today,” she wrote. “It was a combination of about every health and fitness option I could find. So don’t think there’s some magic pill, wrap, gym membership, meal, vitamin, app, surgery, diet, workout, waist trainer, book, hypnosis, shake, powder or anything else that will just do it for you.”

“It’s finding your own way and using the tools that work for you,” Smith continued. “It’s making the right healthy choices for your body. In the last year, I’ve made some big life choices and huge lifestyle changes, and I couldn’t be more happy with myself. I still have a long way to go on this journey, and I’m not giving up.”

Smith told Mashable more about the techniques she found successful.

My biggest “technique” would be starting small and slow. I have tried all sorts of hard and fast diets, fads and workouts, but I always would get burnt out after a few weeks or so. This time, I decided I needed to make manageable, realistic goals. I started with two habits – not eating after 8pm and only eating out twice a week – and once I got those down, I started with two more. I began tracking every meal in MyFitnessPal and logging my water intake. I did the same on my exercise. I started with Couch-to-5k, running about 30 second intervals for a half hour, three times a week. Then I started to add some strength exercises, like push-up or crunch challenges. Eventually, I was alternating run days with actually hitting the gym.

Some more of Smith’s lifestyle changes and motivation tips include:

Eating healthy

Investing in a fitness watch

A photo posted by Haley Smith (@haley_j_smith) on Sep 12, 2016 at 7:42am PDT

Rewarding herself for each weight loss goal

Setting monthly goals

A photo posted by Haley Smith (@haley_j_smith) on Oct 15, 2016 at 12:53am PDT

Making an inspiration board

Laying out workout clothes

Sharing her journey on Instagram

To Smith, documenting her process on Instagram was the most motivating thing she did, she told Mashable.

Motivation has been tough, but my biggest help has been switching my Instagram over to a strictly fitness account. Once I had a few dozen (to eventually a few hundred) followers that were supporting and encouraging me, I felt like I couldn’t let them down either. Having that accountability along with thinking about different posts each day really made fitness and health stay at the forefront of my mind. When that didn’t do it though, I’d decorate my scale or hang up motivational quotes around the house. Any little thing that could keep that fire burning was worth a try.

Smith and her husband Matt had their wedding this month.

A photo posted by Haley Smith (@haley_j_smith) on Oct 11, 2016 at 9:34am PDT

Even though her weight loss journey is over, Smith is already keeping up her new healthy lifestyle even on their New Zealand honeymoon.

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Read more: http://mashable.com/2016/10/18/motivated-bride-weight-loss/