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How 4 Women Encouraged Each Other to Lose 422 Pounds Combined

With research to back up the idea that having a support system can help you lose weight, it’s time to find a gym buddy or two, or even four! Is that the secret to losing weight?

For one Connecticut quartet, it has been. Brooke Steneck, Amy-Jo Reid, Arleen Crespo, and Quasheena Young met at a Zumba class, and together they’ve lost 422 pounds combined. Way to go, ladies!

At first, the four women were intimidated by each other, said Steneck, who has lost 120 pounds. But when they realized they were all there with the same goal of losing weight, that’s when they started bonding.

weight loss success story Brooke Steneck

Brooke Steneck lost 120 pounds.

Reid, who has lost 104 pounds told “We would send motivational quotes, food, workouts, alarm clocks to wake people up in the morning, to motivate each other. If one person was feeling down or in a rut, we would motivate each other to get their butt to the gym.”

weight loss success story Amy-Jo Reid

Amy-Jo Reid lost 104 pounds.

When the four enrolled in a “Tough Mudder” race, which is an endurance event that takes participants through a 10- to 12-mile obstacle course, they stuck together. Young, who has lost 108 pounds, seriously considered backing out, but her girlfriends wouldn’t let her.

weight loss success story Quasheena Young

Quasheena Young lost 108 pounds.

Crespo, who has lost 90 pounds, was nervous about the swimming event, but Young was able to lend a hand.

“If it wasn’t for her, I probably wouldn’t have been able to do it,” Crespo said. “She ended up making sure she was there to help me get out of the water. The best part was just all of us doing it together.”

Arleen Crespo lost 90 pounds.

But don’t worry — these ladies have fun outside of the gym, too. As a group, they celebrate with pizza and margaritas sometimes, and each woman is there to push her friends to go to the gym the very next day.

“That’s helped me a lot,” said Steneck. “I would be good and on track for a long time and I might fall off on myself and wouldn’t have the motivation to get back on, but to have everyone as a team — we go out and celebrate together and come in and work hard too — I think that was a really good balance for me.”

Losing weight isn’t easy, but it’s a heck of a lot more fun with friends by your side.

“You’re going to cry,” said Crespo. “But if you have three friends who are there to hold you and support you, you’re blessed.”

Watch their transformations below:


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