Going from Obese to Bikini Body — Briana Case Study (Plus: New Tools, 4-Hour Body Group)

Briana Christine- 100 POUND transformation_FRONT

All tactics, no excuses.

This post will explain exactly how Briana, a mother of three and reader of this blog, lost 100 pounds. It’s a lot simpler than you might think.

For additional real-world examples and the fundamentals, I suggest reading “How to Lose 100 Pounds on The Slow-Carb Diet.” There are several men and women profiled.

Sidenote: Many of you have been asking for a free 4-Hour Body support group… so I created it here. It’s designed to improve success rates by 50%+.  In a recent four-week test, 86% of people who finished lost an average of 8.6 pounds.  Many lost more than 20 pounds.  If you’re serious about progress, take a look.

Now, onto our post, which was written by Briana herself. I’ve avoided any major edits to preserve her voice.

Please add any questions or tips of your own to the comment. Both Briana and I will jump in to help…

Enter Briana

If you’re meeting me for the first time today, you’d never guess that a little over 1 year ago, I was 100 pounds heavier and the furthest thing from being proud in a bikini.

And if you’d met “the FAT me” a year ago, you probably never would have guessed that the over-weight mother of three was actually an accomplished personal trainer who’d lost 73 pounds years earlier… and gained it all back.

That is really where my introduction to the Slow-Carb Diet (SCD) began.

Five years ago, I was a stay-at-home mom.

I had a husband, two kids, a house in the suburbs with a white picket fence, and a great dane. I was a young mom in my early 20’s, trying to balance everything and be everything to everyone BUT neglecting myself. I made my family the priority, which was great for them, but I lost myself somewhere along the way. Despite numerous failed attempts to lose weight and get in shape, the scale just kept creeping up.

Fat, depressed, and frustrated, I ended up surfing the internet one day for some new nutrition and training inspiration, when I stumbled across Tim’s blog and the post he wrote on How to Lose 20 lbs of Fat in 30 Days… Without Doing Any Exercise. Four paragraphs in, I was HOOKED! I read it, I applied it day-in and day-out, and within 6 months I had not only lost the 73 POUNDS I had gained after having my first two kids, but I had completely transformed my body!

Needless to say, the experience was life-changing. After it, I felt compelled to pursue a career as a certified personal trainer and nutrition specialist. I wanted to empower, educate, and inspire other women to transform their bodies and regain a renewed sense of self — just as I had.

Shortly after I became certified, I went through a devastating divorce. As a newly single-mom, I set out to “4-Hour Workweek” my life, started my own multi-faceted health and wellness company, and spent the last 5 years helping to transform the bodies and lives of hundreds of women around the world in ways they never thought were possible.

Along the way, Tim wrote and released The 4-Hour Body, and my story was featured on national television and throughout numerous editorials, spreads, and fitness publications — the biggest of which was an appearance with Tim on the Dr. Oz show.

Briana on Dr. Oz

And then? I got pregnant with baby #3.

Long story short: despite being a personal trainer and all my previous hard work to be a “weight-loss success story,” I ended up being one of those Mego-Prego women who really went for it! By “went for it” I mean – if my weight gain had been an accurate barometer of my son’s birth weight, I should have given birth to a kindergartner!

From the moment I first found out that I was pregnant I decided to use the “eating for two” excuse. I indulged my cravings, and I packed on the pounds by way of ice-cream, Mexican food, lasagna, and a total break from the adapted SCD nutrition principles I worked so hard to establish in my own life and subsequently teach others.

Needless to say, I exploded over nine months, and by the time I actually gave birth to my 8 lb. 6 oz. bundle of joy, I found myself weighing the heaviest of my life–100 pounds heavier than normal.

So my baby is born… and I find myself asking, “Now what, fatty?”

TRANSFORMATION: ROUND 2

Faced with the depressing reality that the new weight wasn’t “baby weight” and was really ALL ME, I made it my mission to swiftly re-apply the SCD principles to shed the post-partum pounds in record time.

It began with a commitment to change, and a real look in the mirror.

So many of us are miserable over the current condition of our bodies, we get motivated and inspired by reading stories such as mine, but that’s not enough. We need something lasting. Something that will motivate us to walk away from the bread basket, or in my case — back away from the sour cream twice-baked potato!

For me, that motivation came in the form of photos.

Before I began, I committed to document the entire process via a weekly pictorial where I would stand raw, real, and exposed in front of a camera wearing nothing but the same tiny black bikini. When I felt discouraged, or was having a internal struggle over something I shouldn’t eat, I would look at the photos of where indulging got me — FAT.

I took it one day and one meal at a time.

Beginning the day after I gave birth, I followed every slow-carb principle that is outlined — except for the cheat day.

The reason? I was breast-feeding, and through trial and error, it turned out that keeping my diet consistent by eating the same thing (more or less) everyday was much better for my baby (and my sanity), than trying to sooth a horrific colicky newborn 12-24 hours after binge eating on a “cheat day.”

The biggest SCD keys behind my latest post-pregnancy transformation were:

– Structuring every meal around a lean protein

– Meal frequency (eating every three hours)

– Totally avoiding refined, processed, starchy carbohydrates, and wheat (I came up with some wicked slow-carb recipe option substitutes)

– Eliminating dairy

– Completely cutting out fruit, which was my biggest craving during my pregnancy

– Drinking a gallon of water a day

– Upping my daily fish oil to 1 gram per 1% body fat — liquid form. Obviously, that’d otherwise be quite a few pills.

Just with the slow-carb diet ALONE and ZERO exercise (due to some postpartum recovery issues between week 1 and week 8), I lost 36 POUNDS.

Briana 2 - WEEK1-8_SIDE

(Click here for larger image)

And 12 months after giving birth, I hit my goal and lost 100 pounds (23 pounds of which were pre-pregnancy), and completely transformed my body.

Briana Before:After

Briana Christine- 100 POUND transformation_BACK

Consistency is key. A typical day on the SCD might look like this:

Breakfast @ 7am

Egg white frittatas (made with veggies like mushrooms, bell pepper, and onion)

Snack @ 10

Veggies with hummus

Lunch @ 11:30

Usually dinner leftovers from the night before (i.e. Bison marinara sauce over zucchini spaghetti; Tuna stuffed avocados; etc.)

Snack @ 2

Small mixed green salad with chicken, cucumbers, green peppers, and tomatoes with a homemade lemon/garlic vinaigrette

Dinner @ 6

Tilapia fillet served over broiled garlic carrots, and coconut “rice” (cauliflower)

Biggest tip: If you fail to plan, you’re planning to fail

As a mom, life can be hectic, and it rarely goes according to plan.

I always prepare ahead of time for those moments with some quick-grab protein snacks. Turkey wrap “roll-ups” with a little hummus and a sliver of bell pepper or cucumber inside is my fave! Or little snack-sized baggies of almonds sprinkled with cinnamon. Hard-boiled “hummus deviled eggs” is another.

Prepare or fail, the choice is yours.

Conclusion

Putting on a bikini 7 days after you give birth is uncomfortable. Some might argue it’s insane.

Standing in front of the bright lights of a professional photographer week-after-week (often times without seeing much change), especially when you’re a personal trainer who is 100 pounds over weight, is humiliating, humbling, and painful.

But transforming my body, documenting the journey, inspiring other mothers, and ultimately founding BikiniBodyMommy.com has been the most empowering 12-month process I’ve ever undergone.

The journey isn’t always easy, but nothing worthwhile ever is.

My name is Briana. I am a 31-year old mother of three, I’ve lost more than 100 pounds on the Slow-Carb Diet, and I work every day to be a success story.

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Odds and Ends: New 4-Hour Body Support Group

I always wanted to guarantee that people could achieve rapid fat loss, and now I have the data to prove it.
Last Fall, 3,500 people joined a four-week 4-Hour Body challenge and measured their progress on Lift (a goal tracking and support community that I invested in). The results: 86% of people who finished lost an average of 8.6 pounds.  Some people lost more than 20 pounds.
Today I’m launching a second, even bigger challenge on Lift. Think of it as one part training group and one part research experiment.
First, join The 4-Hour Body group on Lift. Joining the group will sign you up for five habits from of The 4-Hour Body:
– Slow-Carb Diet meals
– 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes of waking up
– Moderate exercise
– Cold showers
– Measuring your weight, bodyfat %, and total inches
Next, just follow the habits and ‘check in’ each time you have completed one.
Talk to other group members! When you set goals alongside other people, it keeps you accountable and leads to better results.  The 4-Hour Body community on Lift is there for this reason — use it!
Finally, track your results.  Lift gives you numbers and graphs that show your progress.  Add pictures along the way (don’t forget to take the “before” picture) so that you can really see the changes.
And as a final note, the last time I ran this challenge, Lift only had an iPhone version. But they just launched a web app that you can use from your computer or mobile phone.
Have fun 🙂

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with over 500 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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306 Replies to “Going from Obese to Bikini Body — Briana Case Study (Plus: New Tools, 4-Hour Body Group)”

  1. Hi , that’s an amazing transformation. I am a vegetation and i am not quute sure how to get my peotiens on the SCD , can anyone suggest alternatives

  2. Should i be watching what I’m eating now although I am 7 weeks pregnant i was about 30lbs over weight when I found out about my pregnancy. I was constantly struggling to lose the last little bit. Bit I don’t want to throw all my hard work away. I wanna have a baby belly not a fat belly if that makes sense.

  3. I am 32 and a mother to 3 kids also. I have a 2month old, 6 year old and 10 year old. I am 100 lbs overweight not from pregnancy. I am also breastfeeding. What is the best way to get started? Thank you. You are a inspiration.

  4. Hi Briana! Thank you for posting your pictures. I’m about three weeks into the program and was having some concerns that while some parts of my body were getting smaller, my biceps and shoulders were getting larger. As I’m looking at your transformation though, I can clearly see how your shoulders built up while your waist whittled down. I know it could not have been easy to look at (much less post) those early pictures, so I just wanted to say thanks.

  5. I read Tools of Titans 1st, listened to the 1st two podcasts with Dom D’Agostino then purchased Four Hour body. I plan to start the slow carb diet tomorrow. I have about 100 lbs to lose.

    Questions:

    1. If you are doing the slow carb diet can you still drink the Coffee with MCT oil powder? Or is this only if you are on the keto diet?

    2. If you are doing the slow carb diet can you eat Dom’s Keto Ice Cream at night? Or is this only if you are on the keto diet?

    Should the above be avoided on slow carb diet because it is too much fat?

    Thanks.

  6. Hiiii!! Thanks for tell your experience!! I am in the day 1!! I really really need to lose 60 pounds!!! 🙂 i feel so strong to do it!!! Kisses from Argentina

  7. I thought with the slow carb diet you need beans at every meal. That has always been my biggest barrier to sticking to this diet. Your meal plan above doesn’t mention beans at all. Do you not follow this part of the diet?

  8. What I’m realizing as I read through these testimonies is, the hardest thing I will have to do is take the photo. I have hated the way I look, the shape that I’m in, for so many years, I would never include myself in photos. To do this now, it’s actually causing anxiety. The diet, I can do, the photo, god help me. Congratulations, you look beautiful and happy & at peace.

  9. the issue of cutting our an entire food group almost is still the issue and feeds into the gimmicky diet mentality that is not sustainable – nor healthy longterm.

    fruit has been modified yes, to contain somewhat mroe sugar than in its original state, but it still is not a no-go in any way. we need the glucose naturally occurring from plants to keep serotonin balanced, healthy estrogen levels (for females this is key, why females do not fare well in the long run on too low carb diets) and even to optimize bioavailability of nutrients.

    glucose is coupled to nutrients in fruit in order for it to be easier absorbed INTO the cells. our cells like to eat glucose and that is why avoiding the natural smart sources of how food is created in perfect synergy and then eating the nutrients in pill form is a super bad idea — even research indicates that fruit can be part of an anti-cancer plan exactly due to this fact: that the anti-cancer nutrients get transported into cells only when coupled to glucose molecules. remove the glucose and you remove the intelligence of nature. several online studies on this on pubmed – but again just to take one reference of fruit in its unaltered state loaded with glucose is also effective in an anti-cancer program (and immune boosting etc. – cancer just being the example): https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5567468/

    it is unbelievable to me, that humans continue to think that we can outsmart nature. we are designed by nature – we cannot design or manipulate nature “to be better”.

    it is like committing hubris over and over again every time we mess with nature’s laws – by thinking we need to remove entire food groups and what not.

  10. Wow, congratulations! I have a general question – not sure if this is the right forum: is it feasible to do this “diet” while being vegan? For the past couple of days I have been consuming a ton of tofu, nuts, and legumes for protein – is that overdoing it? I normally get a lot of my protein from grains. Also, when you mention white foods…I’m assuming that white beans and other legumes don’t fall in that category? Thanks!

  11. I am breastfeeding a 9 month old and just started a low carb diet. My husband is doing it with me so I feel that’s helping our success. My problem is I feel like my milk is tanking. Any tips?

  12. So Tim, Briana’s given us a great n=1 success story. I’m on my way back to fitness and optimal weight after a rough couple of years derailed it all (I lost 22kg in under 9wks in 2011 using your book, so thanks!) but I’m curious about a couple of things in Briana’s post:

    (1) Meal frequency. She says every 3hrs. That seems counter intuitive. Where’s the recovery? If we’re always dealing with new calories, how are we going to burn the fat we have?

    (2) Fish oil. The science has changed (and you, Robb Wolf et al have spoken about this) so would you recommend the amounts Brianna’s taking these days?

    Thanks for your time (and thanks to Briana for her story)

  13. Hey there!

    Would love to sign up with the 4 hour body community…have the book, but the only app I see on i phone is Lift…for posture. Can you please clarify or shoot a pic of the app label itself.

    Thanks…love everything else…thanks for your honesty in your books!!!

    Lindsey

  14. Tim,

    Was wondering if you have seen ‘game changer’ available on netflix and if so does that change your thoughts on slow carb diet? If you haven’t I highly recommend it.

    Eric

  15. Heartfelt congratulations Briana!!! I’m a mother of 3 with a set of twins that I gained over 75 pounds with during my pregnancy. I’d lost most of the weight through intermittent fasting and hot yoga but my stress level went through the roof with some personal stuff and the wine mixed with whatever sweet I could get my hands on packed the pounds right back on. I recently discovered Tim Ferriss and his research mixed with honest self realization of human capabilities and excuse mechanisms brought me to his book The 4 Hour Body. I went straight to the slow carb chapter. I am armed with my scale, measurement tape and I refuse to negotiate on my goal of losing 20 pounds by March. Thank you both for sharing your knowledge and experience!

  16. I am a 54 year old woman that went from extremely active to walking with a Walker due to an accident. I use to be a size 7 in junior’s and now I am a size 16 in womans. I weigh more now than I did when I was pregnant. I truly know that I must lose weight for myself esteem, and for my health. Would this diet work for me? Could you let me know I am at my wits end and becoming more depressed each and everyday.

    Thank you
    Allison Lightner