My journey actually has been a lifelong one; genetic insulin resistance runs in my family, and two out three women on my mother's side of the family have PCOS and have developed either diabetes or other conditions (endometrial hyperplasia). I will probably have to take a minor level of Metformin for the rest of my life but I am willing to negotiate that concept once I reach a healthy fat-to-muscle ratio. Regardless, knowing I am genetically predisposed only means that I must be more vigilant than someone who is not.
That being said I have never been truly sedentary; I've hiked, biked, jogged, been in marching band, earned seven belts in TaeKwonDo, been a rapier fencer, etc. But the truth is, I NEED to move; I am someone who cannot hold still. I would go through times of increased activity and see slow weight loss and then I would become less active and watch it creep back. I have ramped up my activity to 3-4 hours of exercise a day, cardio and weigh training, and my eating habits are gluten-free and 90-95% whole foods. Between the two I have steadily lost weight, and my moods/mental altitude (and I do mean altitude) are much improved.
I am active for life at this or a higher level, and the eating habits are lifelong as well; the only time I had problems with uncontrollable cravings is when I tried a gluten food just to see if I could get away with it once (I felt so lousy that I will NOT be repeating that experiment). I went gluten-free because of symptoms I had and completely normal test for celiac/allergies. In my case it fixed all of the health issues I was experiencing.
I would love to talk more but I have to get back to ther things, I will be around again soon!