‘My grandkids can’t keep up’: Grand Strand woman loses over 100 lbs. mostly by walking

A Grand Strand woman talks about her health journey and how she has lost over 100 lbs.
Published: Apr. 3, 2023 at 11:24 AM EDT
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HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) - As Gina Buck neared retirement, she said she was determined not to let the scale hit 300 pounds, so she turned to her doctor and a Facebook group community with nearly 200,000 people for help.

“At one point I was 287 pounds. When I moved down here, I was like I’ve got to do something. That’s when I decided to start because I was not going to get to 300 no matter what,” said Buck.

In August 2021, Buck said she went to her doctor for help and was given diet pills to start the process.

“I took them until the end of the year, and then I was on my own. I was doing good, so I stopped taking them,” Buck said.

That’s when she decided to join the “Start TODAY” Facebook group which focuses on fitness and health and challenges you to walk at least 20 minutes a day.

Buck set out on the beach with a goal of 10,000 steps a day, but she said she would turn on her “Jesus Jams” and found herself walking farther and farther each day eventually exceeding 10,000 steps.

“When I got to 10,000 I craved to go walking. I missed it. I wanted to get out there and go walking the next day. I was doing 15 to 20,000 steps and that’s where my goal was at that point,” said Buck.

Now, Buck has lost 107 pounds by walking, drinking half her weight in water and staying on a calorie-deficit diet, and she said she feels better than ever.

“I love it. I haven’t been this size probably since I was 20. I don’t have the back pain I use to have. I sleep better. I’ve got so much energy that my grandkids can’t even keep up with me sometimes,” said Buck.

She said her grandkids are the reason behind it all.

“I want to be healthy so I can be around for my grandkids to play and have a good time with my family because we go camping, we do all kinds of stuff together. So, I just want to be around for my grandkids,” said Buck.

Buck said if she can do it, you can do it too!

“You get used to it and you’re like, ‘Oh I can’t wait to walk again.’ I try to tell them if you just do it and get to that point. You’ll be good. You just gotta get going,” said Buck.

Buck said she couldn’t have done it without the encouragement from her family, what she calls her “beach family,” Dirty Laundry Band, who helps her stay moving every week and the support from the Start TODAY group.

TODAY Show fitness and health expert, Stephanie Mansour, said Buck is an inspiration.

“She really views drinking more water, eating healthier and getting her steps in as a part of her everyday life and things she looks forward to doing. She’s really passionate about it,” Mansour said.

Mansour added that walking can make you feel better physically and mentally.

“Simply just walking for 20 minutes a day really does have tremendous physical benefits as well as mental benefits like reducing feelings of anxiety stress and even depression,” said Mansour.

Start TODAY kicks off a new workout challenge each month in addition to their challenge of walking 20 minutes a day.

They are kicking off the April workout challenge with resistance bands. No workout is longer than 20 minutes and all you need is a resistance band with handles and a smaller one to wrap around your legs.

Mansour said the resistance band workout is a full-body toning workout focusing on shoulders, arms, upper back, core and legs. She said there are even modifications so you can go at your own pace.

You can learn more about the Start Today April challenge and how to get involved with the group by clicking here.