After giving birth to four kids, Rachel Maser hardly recognized herself — and decided she needed to make a big change to get her health back on track.

So the 35-year-old started doing research on weight loss programs online and started following a diet and fitness plan. After only a few months, the 5-foot-5 mom lost 30 pounds!

“My entire family’s health has benefited from this change in my eating habits — and they have a much happier mother!” the Salt Lake City resident, who previously weighed 156 pounds, exclusively told Closer Weekly.

Read on to find out how Rachel successfully lost 30 pounds!

rachel weight loss before
Rachel Maser

Rachel before her weight loss.

What was your life like before the weight loss?

After giving birth to four babies within five years, I hardly recognized myself — my body had been though a lot! I used to think I was being a good mom by baking cookies almost every day, but my family and I were eating too many refined sugars and pre-packaged foods. I started to feel progressively worse, and worse — so I decided it was time for a change! In September 2012 I came across Natalie Jill‘s Clean Eating meal plan. I saw her photos and read her story and realized she’s a mom, just like me. I thought if she can do it, so can I!

RELATED: Weight Loss Wednesday — Jennifer Lost 107 Pounds by Following a Portion-Controlled Diet!

How did you get started with your weight loss journey?

I immediately ordered the weight loss plan’s jumpstart program and began following the meal plan and working out with the fitness videos. One of the hardest parts of abiding by this new diet was eating a larger quantity of food. I feel so full after eating vegetables and lean protein! When I dieted in the past I would practically starve myself — I thought losing weight meant you felt constantly hungry. After a few weeks I felt my energy skyrocket and my sugar cravings vanish. I slowly started adding more physical activity to my routine each day, but my weight loss was primarily due to adjusting my diet and focusing on nutrition. My friends started noticing my body was changing within weeks. By Christmas 2012, I had lost 30 pounds and started to feel like myself again. I found confidence, energy, happiness and a love for life that I hadn’t experienced before.

rachel after weight loss

Rachel after her weight loss.

How does it feel now that you’ve lost the weight?

The lessons I’ve learned by following this diet plan have not only sparked my weight loss, but they’ve also given me the courage to begin blogging about clean eating and healthy recipes! My entire family’s health has benefited from this change in my eating habits — and they have a much happier mother! My life is taking an entirely better and healthier path.

What advice would you give to others looking to lose weight?

Take the time to focus on yourself! Plan 30-60 minutes into your day to be active, even if that means an hour without your children. I promise you’ll be a better parent when you are with them! Prepping and planning your meals ahead of time is really helpful. The most fascinating aspect of my weight loss was the mental strength I gained by eating better. I’ve gained so much clarity and this lifestyle change has helped me accomplish other goals, too!