(CNN) — Misty and Larry Shaffer have been together since high school. She went to his senior prom; he went to her junior and senior proms. They got married in October 2008.
He never said anything about her being overweight.
When Larry, an Army specialist, was deployed to Afghanistan for a year in 2012, Misty decided she wanted to get in shape.
She weighed about 260 pounds when he left, and less than 155 pounds when he returned.
“I just sat in bed one night and was like, ‘I can do this,’” she said. “‘I need to do this.’”
Shaffer, now 25 and living in Leland, North Carolina, has struggled with her weight her whole life, even as a child.
“I would eat when I was bored. I’d eat three huge meals a day, and then snack in between. Sad or happy, I’d turn to food for everything.”
Shaffer felt tired all the time. People picked on her. She wanted to surprise her husband, and work toward a better life for herself and her family.
Her primary mission: Cut out all the junk. She stopped drinking soda, and tried to limit her liquids to water and coffee.
The first three to four months were the hardest, she said. Once she got past that, she started craving more healthy foods and water. It got to the point where, if she drank a diet soda, it made her so thirsty that she didn’t even want it.