[picture for representation]Reuters

The motivation to lose weight may dawn on you in many ways. And this 22-year-old California woman had it after an encounter with death -- she almost drowned in the ocean because of her 298 lbs (135 kg) weight.

Also read: World's most obese man's life-saving treatment starts in Mexico

Dominique Montgomery, 22, went for swimming with her friends in 2015, but little did she know the day will become a life-changer for her. She said she was having a great time swimming with her folks, but suddenly the tides got high trapping them.

"Everyone managed to push themselves out of the water onto some rocks, but I was stuck because I wasn't physically able to lift myself out. Everyone tried to help, but I was too heavy. I thought I was going to die and had no idea what to do. I was terrified,' Dominique was quoted as saying by Daily Mail.

Fortunately, the sea got calm soon so that Dominique was able to pull herself to the shore.

After that day, Dominique was determined to shed her extra kilos. She said that she was extremely disappointed with herself. "If I couldn't even help myself out the water, then what was I doing with my life?" she thought. 

Since then, the determined kinesiology student lost nearly 140 lbs (63kgs). She, at last, ditched her 5,000 calorie-a-day diets.

Yes, you read that right. She used to live on junk food and sugary drinks. She said she was struggling with an eating disorder and that she had no control over how much she ate.

"I would eat at least 5,000 calories a day. Sometimes, I would eat large shakes for dessert that were about 1,000 calories by themselves," Dominique added.

The woman had even started eating inside her car to avoid staring eyes.

"People stared wherever I went. I felt like a zoo animal. Someone once even threw a burrito at me at a football game," she remembered.

Her daily food would consist of things like fried chicken with double chips and two biscuits or burrito with two large tacos.

Losing all that weight was not easy at all. She had to continuously struggle against her craving for food and always needed to keep herself focused.

However, she has still not achieved her goal. The massive weight reduction has left her with excess skin hanging from her stomach, back, arms, thighs, and buttocks which is, no doubt, not desirable. "If I do jumping jacks, my stomach flaps. It can be a nuisance, but also painful," she said.

For removing the skin, she has to go under the knife and the operation will cost her around $15,000 (£10,548). She has set up a crowdfunding page and believes that people will get to understand her hard work and help her raise the amount.

Check out her video here: 

World's most obese man's life-saving treatment starts in Mexico