(Uptown Magazine) — It was a visit from her mother several years ago that inspired Valencia Hamilton to lose 50 pounds. “I was newly married, working on my M.B.A., and had a full-time job. I gained the weight and didn’t realize it,” explains Hamilton. When her mom came to town to visit, they had a mother-daughter bonding day of shopping. It was there in the dressing room that reality hit. “I tried on an outfit and my mom made me look at myself in the mirror. She told me she wasn’t used to me looking this way,” she recalls. Her mother’s words were enough to encourage Hamilton. She started working out five to six days a week and changed her eating habits. Within a year, she had lost the weight.