I weighed nearly 300 lbs. Within a year, I naturally lost over 120 lbs. following my own clean diet and exercise plan. I AM Roberta Tabb, I was born in Pittsburgh, PA but I now I flourish in New York City! Young enough to not be old, I have overcome some of life’s biggest challenges already.
I was unhappy with myself. I was depressed. I was lonely, and I was sad. As a teen my life revolved around my appetite. Food became my best friend andI ate with no regard. If I saw it and wanted it – I ate it. Food was my happiness. By 11th grade I needed to buy men’s size forty jeans. I dressed in baggy jeans and oversized shirts because I was ashamed of the obsessive weight gain and the rolls of fat I had obtained in such a short time. At age 17 I weighed 275 lbs.
High school changed my opinion of myself drastically and I was manic depressive by the end. Nonetheless I was determined to invest in my future. I went to college – not a traditional one, I enrolled at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh at 17.
That became one of the best decisions of my life. I was able to be myself and I was thrown into a pool of other outcasts. No one judged me, and I didn’t feel a need to judge anyone else. I was able to focus on myself, work and my art. With all the depressing self-esteem issues I still had, I was able to appreciate myself a little more; I felt like I was accomplishing something. I didn’t need to pretend I was someone I wasn’t anymore, and I didn’t need to act angry anymore.
I can’t exactly pinpoint when, but between 19 and 20 I began to lose weight. Whether it was from depression or something deeper within, it became a good thing, the negative became positive. Focusing on myself, I began to make miraculous strides. I began eating the things I thought to be healthy and cut out all the things I knew to be unhealthy. I eliminated all fast foods and drank water constantly. By the time I was 21 I almost had my bachelor’s degree and I had lost over 100 pounds through my own diet and exercise plan.
After the weight loss and the gain of confidence there came a point when I decided to take things a step further. Where my body was concerned I was still perplexed; with clothes on I was a size 8 and a 36DD. With clothes off, I had stretch marks and saggy skin everywhere. I now had life-long traces of who I had been and what I had let myself become. The next step was to do something it. I decided my most disturbing body parts were my breasts; going from a 44F to a 36DD had lasting effects, I wanted a reduction and maybe a lift. This was around the time that I began routinely working out. I thought that going to the gym daily would give me more tone and I worked hard to reduce the flab. This was to no avail; I once again felt my attempts to change were in vain. I thought this until I saw the plastic surgeon who helped to complete my transformation.
Another new me
When I went for my initial consultation about a breast reduction the doctor looked over my whole body and saw what I’d become. Two years after the weight loss this was the first time I had realized what I had done to myself and the effect it would have on the rest of my life. The doctor explained the issues of the skin and why the gym wasn’t working. He suggested my surgery go beyond the breast reduction. He offered the body lift; this procedure would put me closer to where a 22-year old’s body should be. After much depression and thought I decided this one-time opportunity would effect the rest of my life. I made my decision; I went through with the surgery. The entire 10-hour procedure was filmed for a documentary show on the Discovery Health Channel.
I have spent a great deal of time recovering all that I had lost—all the confidence and missed opportunities. The entire experience has made me a much stronger person and has skyrocketed the goals I set for myself, personally and within my career. After the successful surgery, the Discovery Health Channel offered me media time.
I was given the opportunity to film a few commercials and appeared in a plethora of magazine ads promoting the show and my weight loss success. This was only the beginning, the buzz led to my first People Magazine “Half Their Size” and even a few talk show spots including The View. I moved to New York City at 24 to begin my professional career (as a Web & Multimedia Designer), that same year I obtained a Masters Degree in Writing.
That’s not all
Weight loss has not consumed my life entirely. My career has flourished here in NYC. I put as much into it as I did losing weight and now maintaining it. I’ve designed for some of the biggest media companies in the world and had many opportunities to brand small startup companies. Currently I work as an eCommerce Art Director in the fashion industry. Just AS important I have also begun to pursue what I call my “Life’s Work” – Inspiring Health & Mental change to youth and women through mentoring and writing.
And of course – I’ve started this blog…The Roberta Show
In 2014 I was honored with the opportunity of a lifetime for a second time, I was asked again to be featured in People Magazine. The 1st time was in 2005 (see above). I was featured as an ALL STAR in PEOPLE MAGAZINE’s “HALF THEIR SIZE” ULTIMATE DIET GUIDE. The edition lived on newsstands for 4 months, another accomplishment under my belt and also a tangible reminder of the work I still need to do and the people I have obligated myself to reach. See the full post here.
I continue to work hard in all my endeavors, each day I wake up ready to take on whatever challenge awaits me. I am excited about the person I am becoming and incorporate my refined way of life into everything I do… and… hopefully every person I meet.
2017 brought another People Magazine “Half Their Size” – ALL STAR EDITION feature, officially making me a three-peater. See full post here. I also got the social media opportunity to create a meal prep video for PEOPLE NOW shared and viewed on Facebook here. These humbling experiences only motivated me to take things a step further. I decided to create a tangible source of information for all those inquiring about life change and motivation. I wrote, designed and published Simply Tabbtastic – A MEAL PREP guide, because I was inspired by the many people still finding the way along the self-help – weight loss path. It is my labor of love and I’m so happy and proud to be able to share it with you all. Get more info here
In 2018 I published my first Meal Prep Guide: Simply Tabbtastic – Recipes, tips, and shopping lists. It contains 40 clean meal prep recipes and tips to create and maintain a whole new healthy life. Available on Amazon, Kindle, and BN. com2019 was another groundbreaking year filled with great projects and lots of inspiration. In the Spring I published Tabbalicious – Indulgent Meal Prep Recipes. Yet another meal prep guide, containing more clean recipes, the 60-minute meal prep, and 3X the shopping lists.
Also in the spring I was once again featured in People Magazines Half Their Size All-Star edition for the 3rd time, my fourth People magazine feature overall. My first book, Simply Tabbtastic was given real estate in the special edition.