How Maria Jarosh Lost 105 Lbs. – and Kept It Off

08/11/2013 at 12:30 PM EDT

100-Lb. Weight Loss: Maria Jarosh shares her diet tips with PEOPLE
Lindsay Kimball (left) and Maria Jarosh
Growing up I was always the bigger girl.

I hated being the "clothes holder" for my friends when we went shopping because when I was 13, I was a size 28 and could never try on the same things.

In high school I'd get to class early so people wouldn't see me trying to squeeze into my desk. I was so embarrassed. But then I ate two bowls of cereal and two bowls of ice cream with chocolate sauce, peanuts, cookies and whole milk poured over it to make me feel better before bed.

My mom joined Weight Watchers when I was 15, and I decided to give it a try. I lost the weight by 2008 and have kept it off ever since.

I love my stomach now that it has tone to it. And I love buying bikinis. There is still that anxiety about putting one on, but when I find one that fits, I feel unstoppable!

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