Years into her weight loss journey, Oscar-winning actress and comedian, Mo’Nique continues to inspire us with her fitness and healthy lifestyle. Back in 2018 she made headlines after hitting a major weight loss milestone at age 50. In an Instagram post in 2018, Mo’Nique celebrated weighing under 200lbs for the first time since age 17. She made it clear that she achieved her weight loss without surgery, fad diets or gimmicks. She did it naturally the old-fashioned way through diet and exercise.

Today, at age 56, Mo’Nique radiates health and is still going strong and a source of inspiration to her social media audience.


It’s quite impressive because it’s one thing losing a huge amount of weight and it’s another thing keeping it off. Monique who once weighed 300 pounds, has successfully maintained a weight loss of more than 80 pounds for many years now. Her results led me to evaluate what she’s doing that would work for anyone who adopted her approach.

In this article I’ll be sharing the 5 major keys that have contributed to Mo’Nique’s incredible weight loss and helped her keep the weight off!

1 She enlisted the help of a professional

Monique and Dwight Holt Jr., creator of Dance Your Pounds Off have been riding together for the most part of her weight loss journey. Their playful energy is a perfect match and its perhaps why, with his help, Monique has remained consistent with her fitness over the years. Dwight puts Monique through her paces with a variety of challenging and fun workouts that mostly incorporate elements of dance; from aqua aerobics, rebound fitness, strength, and resistance training to name a few.

Have you been doing it all by yourself and feel like you haven’t made much progress?
Do you struggle to motivate yourself?

If you answered ‘yes’ to either of these questions, a personal trainer may be the missing piece on your weight loss journey.

“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!” ~ Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

We budget for hair and beauty treatments, travel and coffee without thinking twice.

But you know what?

Your health is a worthy investment in your current and future self. What good are we to ourselves if we aren’t healthy and strong?

Weight loss is not easy, and you don’t have to do it alone. one of the key roles of a personal trainer is to help clients stay accountable on their fitness journeys. A personal trainer can help offset some of the burden of DIYing, by helping you navigate your journey so that you stay on track and achieve your goals.

If the cost for personal training is a barrier, you can treat yourself to a months’ worth of sessions to jump-start your fitness journey and as a springboard to building consistency.
The initial outlay for personal training may actually motivate you to hit the gym and make healthier choices overall.

2. She has fun with fitness

Monique doesn’t shy away from trying a variety of fitness activities. A quick scroll through her Instagram feed and you’ll see that no two workouts are the same.

For Monique, clearly, variety is the spice of life. You’ll see her lifting weights, dancing, playing tennis, doing yoga, jumping rope, swimming, hiking, boxing and even hula-hooping.

Her decision to pick up fitness was personal to her and the same is true for how she approaches exercise. It’s personal to her specific needs, preferences, and goals.

“It’s not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives. It’s what we do consistently.” ~ Tony Robbins

Have you ever lost track of time doing something you enjoy?  You’re more likely sustain your fitness lifestyle in the long term if you find it fun and engaging. There’s no slower death than forcing yourself to do something you loathe. The beautiful thing about fitness is that it’s not a one-size-fits-all. There’s something for everyone at every fitness level; you’ve just got be open to trying different activities until you find what suits you.


3. She has a strong ‘why’

As a guest on The Preachers, Monique stated that the inspiration to get in shape came from her husband and she has him to thank for getting started on her weight loss journey after ‘tipping’ 300 pounds. She has shared with several media outlets that her decision to get healthy and in shape was so she could enjoy growing old with her husband, children and to see her children’s children.

Mo'Nique Hicks with husband

Throwback picture of Monique with her husband Sidney Hicks

In a conversation with HipHollywood, she stated:

“I couldn’t do it for myself I had to do it for my husband and my children, and I had to get out of my own way. So I say to those people that are desperately trying to get healthy and in those moments when you feel like you can’t go any further and you can’t but then I look at my husband and I look at my babies and that gives me that extra push for me to say I want a lifetime with my man and I want to meet my children’s children so that’s what makes me keep going and doing it the natural way, so I know in five years or ten years my body’s not affected by something.”

“Strong reasons make strong actions.” ~ William Shakespeare

What’s your strong reason for wanting to lose weight? It helps to sit with your thoughts without judgement – doing this can also help you discover your values. You’ll need to get very clear on your ‘why’ because you won’t always feel like exercising or eating right so it helps to have a comeback when the voices in your head challenge your newfound lifestyle.

Some questions to consider:

Do you desire clothing and style freedom?

Do your children deserve parents that model healthy living?

Do you want to unlock your potential?

Do you want to break generational illnesses?

Do you want to be healthy and strong for your ageing parents?

Do you want to age beautifully without having to deal with illnesses related to obesity?

4. Monique shares her fitness journey publicly

Mo’Nique’s commitment to bringing her audience along on her weight loss journey over the years has seen her consistently sharing her workouts along with encouraging messages for her audience.

While it’s likely that her followers benefit through her influence, it’s also true that engaged followers actively participate in influencing the creator. At surface level it may not seem like it, but the creator-follower relationship is symbiotic.

It might seem bizarre that sharing your workout routine and pictures of what you eat can help you stay consistent on your weight loss journey, but it actually works. Sharing your weight loss or fitness journey on social media can hold you accountable and be a powerful tool for improving your health.  Here’s how:

“I made the decision. I’m accountable.” ~ Janet Reno

Accountability: Lets be honest, without accountability, most of us would struggle to make progress with our goals. Making your goals public can create a sense of accountability. Knowing that friends and family (possibly even your ex and new girlfriend) are aware of your weight loss journey may motivate you to stay on track. You’d want to prove to yourself and them, that you’re really about the lifestyle change and that you honour commitments to yourself!

Support: Sharing your journey with your circle of friends and family is an invitation into this aspect of your life. You’ll find that when people feel included, they tend to feel a sense of responsibility or commitment to you. Their input can look like offering of advice and encouragement which can be crucial during times of low motivation.

Motivation for Others: Your journey may inspire others who are struggling with weight loss or trying to adopt a healthier lifestyle. Your progressive transformation can serve as motivation for others to embark on their own journeys. The act of contributing to someone else’s well-being becomes a source of motivation in itself.

Guidance: One thing with social media is, you never know who’s watching. While it may be toxic in some ways its’s not all bad. By putting yourself out there you create your own luck by attracting people who want to contribute to your success. You might receive beneficial advice from people who have experienced similar challenges on their weight loss journey.

5. She adopted healthy eating habits

When we’re talking about weight loss, diet is important. Although exercise is beneficial in many ways, cleaning up your diet will fast-track your weight loss and keep it off in the long run.

In addition to her weekly exercises, Mo’Nique is also committed to healthy eating. She shares videos and photos of her nutritious meals with fans on Instagram. Her homecooked meals are loaded with a variety of vegetables, and plated in healthy portions.

“When diet Is wrong, medicine Is of no use. When diet is correct, medicine is of no need.” ~ Ayurvedic Proverb

To clean up your diet, you’ll need to be intentional about making healthy food choices and adopting better eating habits. Here are some ways to get started:

Portion control: Look at how much you’re eating and how often to avoid overeating (read this blog post for some guidance on meal prepping and portion control)– use apps like MyFitnessPal to help you track your calorie intake.

Increase whole foods: Minimally processed food. Fruits, vegetables, wholegrains, healthy fats, complex carbs, nuts and seeds.

Limit processed foods: Fried, dried and crucified foods (basically junk/fast food), sugary drinks and foods, unhealthy fats and excess salt.

When you make the decision to get healthy, its not a case of one or the other. It’s both. Diet AND exercise. Make your weight loss about improving your health and your life.

Key takeaways from Mo’Nique’s incredible weight loss journey:

  • You can pick up fitness at any age.
  • You can decide at any point to reinvent yourself.
  • The best time to have picked up fitness was 5 years ago, and the second-best time is today.
  • An emotionally strong “why” will motivate and drive you on your journey.
  • Fitness is not a one size fits all; find what works for you.
  • It’s okay to ask for help. Having a support system you can lean on is beneficial to your success.
  • Weight loss is an outcome of a lifestyle change that involves eating healthy.
  • Weight loss is a marathon not a sprint. A slow and steady approach pays off.

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