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How I lost 80 pounds: Running before sunrise so no one would see

Angela Jonsson: ‘To say running a marathon changed my life would be an understatement. Today, with 10 marathons, a dozen or so half marathons and recently qualifying to run the Boston Marathon – running and eating healthy has just become a way of life.’

Angela Jonsson

28, Toronto

Pounds dropped: 80

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My turning point: I grew up the fat, funny, giggly girl. When I left small town Ontario for the big city of Toronto 10 years ago, I knew something needed to change, but didn't know what to do. A friend in university said we should "not eat carbs." At that time, I didn't even know what a carb was. I quickly learned and transformed "not eating carbs" into a healthy, well-balanced diet. So was there an exact turning point? No, but there was an exact feeling I had when I knew I was doing something right – when I realized I deserved to feel good and that I was worth it.

My method: I started running at 4 a.m. before the sun came out, because I was too embarrassed to go to the gym, to let people see I was 'trying.' As my comfort level increased, I started running more. Eventually, in 2008, I started training with the Running Room for my first full marathon. To say running a marathon changed my life would be an understatement. Today, with 10 marathons, a dozen or so half marathons and recently qualifying to run the Boston Marathon – running and eating healthily have just become a way of life. The hardest part? I've been involved in politics since I was a little girl – and anyone who has been in a campaign office knows about the pizza, chicken wings and desserts that lie around. For me, resisting the temptation of the greasy late-night food is almost as hard as resisting a good political debate. My strategy: Just keep running.

My kryptonite: Ice cream and dark chocolate. God, almost anything that is sweet! And cheeseburgers – it's my go-to meal after a marathon.

This interview has been condensed and edited.

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