UPDATED: SparkPeople Member in People--and on the Today Show!

By , SparkPeople Blogger
UPDATED: Did you miss Christina's Today Show appearance? Watch now!

Great news! SparkPeople member Christina Cores is featured on the cover of People magazine's annual "Half Their Size" issue (on newsstands tomorrow, Dec. 31)--and she'll be on the Today Show on Monday, Jan. 3 at 8:18 a.m. The story was also picked up by the syndicated shows ET, Inside Edition, and Extra. (Check local listings for times.) WooHoo!

Christina (she's the woman on the right on the cover) lost 122 pounds and became the person she always knew she wanted to be. You can read her weight-loss story in People, but here it is in her own poignant and touching words:

People are always amazed… They can't believe it's me or that I [lost] it all without surgery or diet pills. I was not heavy as a young child. However around the age of 7, I began gaining weight. My parents got divorced and then the weight began showing more and more.

I hit 240 pounds when my father unexpectedly died. I was 15 years old at the time. My mom decided that we should move, and by that time I had given up on life. I lost my dad, and I was about to move and begin high school. Three major life changes all in one year. I ate when I was bored, happy, and sad; I didn't find comfort unless I was eating.

I got teased all throughout my life. I was always the big girl. I never got involved in sports of activities because I knew my weight was too much of issue. I felt trapped in my own body. I had such a great personality, but no one could ever see past how I looked. I remember walking up a flight of stairs in high school and literally being out of breath for the first 10 minutes of class. I always looked at the beautiful girls and how happy they seemed. I began wondering "Why can't that be me?" I was so young and I had already let my body go.

Shopping was always the worst experience for me. It always led to tears and really put a damper on my self esteem. I started thinking more and more about changing my lifestyle. I knew it would take more than a diet to change my life around. I was afraid no one would take me seriously or believe in me. It was time for a change. I became so intrigued by my idea to change myself that I learned as much as I could about reading labels, reading different diet books, talking to people that have lost weight and I took all that I learned and began my journey.

I'll never forget when I first stepped on the scale and saw that I was losing weight. That moment I knew: "I'm not looking back I can only go forward." My first goal was to lose 50 pounds, which at the time I wasn't sure was possible. I kept working out and paying attention to what I was putting into my body, and the clothes got bigger and bigger. I hit my goal of 50 pounds, looked in the mirror and decided "Well I'm still overweight but WOW I lost 50 pounds!"

I continued with my routine, and I did hit some plateaus along the way--and those are very frustrating. I never gave up. I continued to play with my workout routine and adjust my eating according to my body. One memory that I still hold dear to my heart is when I went shopping for the first time for a brand new pair of jeans. I always felt awkward going into Express when I was big but now I wasn't as big. I immediately grabbed the biggest pair of jeans I could find because that's what I was used to doing. The sales clerk reassured me that was not my size. I left that day feeling on top of the world. I was wearing jeans I once couldn't even slide my leg into.

Once I lost all the weight I was concerned because losing the weight is one battle and keeping it off is another. I still, of course, allowed myself to eat sweets from time to time.

Recently I decided to enter a beauty contest. I was extremely nervous about the whole thing because from time to time the "fat girl mentality" kicks in. Once the pageant began, I was up on stage and the feeling was indescribable. I felt so accomplished and proud of myself. I did what I would've considered impossible a few years back. During my biography at the pageant I did include my weight loss the audience clapped and numerous women came up to me after the show congratulating me for making top 10 but also telling me I was now their inspiration. Hearing that means so much to me. The choreographer suggested to me that I get my story out there because, it's so moving and I could really make a difference in the world.

The number one thing I realized during this whole process is that you truly can accomplish what may seem impossible. That it's never too late to turn your life around and I can guarantee you will not regret making better choices for your health, body, and your spirit!

Congratulations, Christina (tinybubbles4)!

Want more inspiration? Lessie (FLABBYASIAN), Brandy (BBANGEL1214), and Birdie (MOM5INFL) have also shared their stories in People.

Will you tune in or pick up a copy of the magazine?

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Wow, you look great and thanks for sharing your story. You are trully going to help a lot of people who are on the verge of giving up and it is great that you are sharing your story. Congrats on the weight loss and have a wonderful year. God bless Report
Congratulations! I bought the magazine yesterday and just watched the video. The magazine did a much better job of covering. Very inspiring. Report
Congratulations on all you've accomplished! What a great success story to start the year. Report
I believe that you can go to the Today show website to watch the days telecast.

I know I'll be giving it a try. Report
I'm sorry I missed you! I'll look for you on the internet on the Today Show segment. Congratulations!! You look fantastic!! Report
Caught the tv appearance, now will have to pickup an issue - Congrats!! Report
Darn I missed it! CONGRATULATIONS Christine! Report
Saw you on the Today show and I also left a comment on your page. I added you as a sparkbuddy so waiting to hear back from you. Too bad Matt cut you off. Report
What an inspiring story. Thanks so much for sharing and congratulations on making a change in your life. Report
congrats! you look great! thanks for the inspiration! Report
Congratulations to Christina! - But I was disappointed that the "support system" was not mentioned. While I appreciate the sentiments applied to the piece on Princess Boy (acceptance and embracing the uniqueness of each one of us), I think that America's obesity problem is in far greater demand for our attention. And the success through the struggles that Christina experienced - as each of us here can attest to - could have been so inspirational on a national level! But the time allotted to this segment was so minimal, that had you "taken a potty break," you'd have missed it!!

So, Christina, pleased be assured that those of us here on SparkPeople, your fellow-Sparkers are extremely proud of your efforts and accomplishments!!! I'm hoping that we all here have given you a hearty round of extremely-well-deserved applause!!!!

Maybe we should have a SparkPeople website goal for 15 of us to be on the TODAY SHOW!! Would they give us more "on-air time then"?? LOL

~~Jocelyn Newton~~ Report
Just watched the segment on the Today show and was impressed by the before and after pictures but I really thought they would get to share more than they did so was a little let down by that. Hopefully "People" magazine did a better job, so I'll have to check it out. Report
I woke up early to watch the segment and was very disappointed that they cut Christina off before she could disclose where and how she was able to lose so much weight. It was kind of a kick in the teeth to the website if you ask me. Report
Just watched the Today segment, and Christina didn't get a chance to talk much. She didn't even get an opportunity to mention SparkPeople. I think she started to, and then Matt interupted her to introduce the twins. No one really got a chance to talk about what programs they used, what support system Christina was talking about, or how long it took them.
I guess they spent too much time with the 'princess boy' and his mommy's book. Report
I switched to NBC which I normally don't watch and all three girls looked fantastic. I was disappointed that she got cut off before plugging sparkpeople. Report
Just saw the TODAY segment....Wow!! You look awesome! Such an inspiration! Report
nbc is not my normal channel but i have it on right now waiting for your story. It will be so much better than the video from the Enterprise. Report
An inspirational story! Your childhood sounds way too similar to mine.........now to just follow in your future footsteps as well!!! : ) Report
Congratulations and I was logging into Spark and watching NBC4 when I heard on the TV and saw the banner..so I know it's my sign that I can do this too. Thanks again for sharing your story. Report
I needed some inspiration to start the journey again... and you gave it! Can't wait to turn on the telly and see you later this morning! Report
So inspiring. Congratulations and Happy-Healthy New Year to you! Report
Really great article. Report
I will be watching this morning!! Report
Wow! congrats, keep it up! Thanks for the motivation. Report
You look fabulous. Were you with SPARK during this time of weight loss? Report
I cant believe its the same gal!! I am amazed to the core!!

Thnxx for inspiring me and a lot of people like me!! Report
I bought People mag. to read about Christina's success...so motivating! Congratulations to you, Christina, and to all other Sparkmates who are becoming healthier and more vibrant in 2011. It's nice to have great company on a weight-loss journey, and Sparkpeople provides the best support anywhere. Thanks! (The magazine issue has some wonderful looking, healthy recipes, too.) Report
I hope she will actually get to TALK about SPARKPEOPLE since most of the people who are on TV who have been Sparkers just barely get to mention it. She has done FANTASTIC!!! I'm thrilled for her. Report
DVR is programmed and ready! And I agree with Jibbie, I hope she does get to talk about SparkPeople, I have been disappointed in the past by how little time members get to tell their story on TV. Report
This is such an inspirational story. I can't wait to watch The Today Show to hear more.

Having just watched, I was disappointed that SparkPeople wasn't mentioned at all. Report
Congratulations! I remember looking at the cover and then I signed on here and saw this post. That's so wonderful! Report
You are a great inspiration to all of us- well done. and never , never look back Report
Congrats -- I'm recording this for sure! Report
What an inspiration! I will record the Today show tomorrow for sure! Report
Congratulations!!! You have totally helped inspire me to keep going!!! Report
Good luck on the Today Show, Christina! You will do great. You look beautiful!! Report
Christna, I am so amazed with your results. Your figure is amazing and congrats on being
On the cover of people and now will share your story on national tv. You

Story Report
I will be tuning in the TV tomorrow morning. Great job! Report
What an amazing story!! Its great to see the successes of so many people on this site. Best of luck in NY!! Report
Christina, you are a real inspiration. Congratulations on your weight loss. I am going to go out tomorrow and find me a People's magazine and I already have the Today show taped to watch. Report
Very inspiring story and you proved you could do it with common sense and committment (no dangerous drugs, fad diets or risky surgery) Good for you! Report
Hey everyone! I figured I'd drop one more comment before my big moment! I've never been to New York so this has been a double bonus for me. I'm only here for the day but I did manage to sneak in some time at Times Square and WOW! The butterflies are starting to kick in! I'd be lying if I said I wasn't nervous. I am definitely nervous but I'm bursting with happiness. I'd really love some feedback after the show!! Thanks! :) Report
Congratulations on your success Christina! I'm climbing back on the Healthy Horse first thing in the morning. I fell off about a month ago and am looking forward to moving in the right direction. You've sparked me :D Report
Awesome! Congrats! Report
AWESOME! How inspiring! SparkPeople rocks! Report
Wow, that is amazing. Congrats and you are definitely an inspiration to anyone who reads this. :) Report
Congratulations!! Report
This is amazing... am not a "people" person but going to get this one! Thanks for inspiring all of us. Report
The reason I'm a "Sparker" is because I read this story and found you had been mentioned. I bought the magazine and am reading all the stories. I need the inspiration - I find I do better reading stories like this rather than being yelled at by a super thin personal trainer. Report
When I picked up this People, and saw a Spark Buddy was on the cover, I hollered! Is there a better way to get back in the fitness groove than this!

Congratulations! Report