Now, the outcome of this story is that I will lose 40 lbs in roughly 4 months. It has not been an easy journey by any means. I have had struggles, I have hit plateaus, I have gorged on Oreo cookies, I have sweat my booty off and been so sore I could barely move the next day! But first, I'm going to tell you about the way I was feeling before I dropped 40 lbs, and you decide whether or not you can relate to this person:
"I didn't know exactly how miserable I was. What I did know was that there was CONSTANTLY a little voice inside my head that hated the person that I was. I was embarrassed to take pictures. I barely fit into any of my size 12 clothes. I definitely didn't feel attractive to my new husband (although he never stopped telling me how beautiful I was and lifting me up). The only time I felt happy was when I was eating, and when I ate, I ate a LOT. I ate to the point of feeling sick. I wanted to change myself. I wanted to lose weight, but I wanted this to happen by the snap of my fingers and not by changing my eating habits. I didn't feel like I had the willpower to stop gorging myself on food." -Me
It was at this point that I had had enough. Thankfully the motivational quotes, pictures, and blogs on Pinterest got the best of me, and I decided to make a change. At that moment, I made a plan. I started printing off motivational pictures of women in bikinis and taping them all over my house. Call me crazy, but it worked! I printed off motivational phrases and hung them on the fridge, on my mirror, in my closet! I signed a weightloss contract with myself. I printed off the 10 weightloss commandments. I typed up my goals, printed them off, and hung them up in my room where I am forced to look at them every day. Last but not least, I got off my butt! One of Allen's coworkers had given us a Gazelle and an Ab Rocker a few weeks prior to this. I had yet to use it up to this point, but I pulled that Gazelle out of storage and set up shop right there in the living room on a Saturday night. I got my booty on that thing and Gazelled for 45 minutes straight! Allen came home in the midst of this craziness and was shocked to say the least. He was impressed, but I really don't think he realized how serious I was.
From this point on is all kind of a blur. I started going to the gym with friends as a guest any chance I could get. After about a week of this I got my own membership. I downloaded the MyFitnessPal app on my phone and started logging every morsel of food that went into my mouth religiously, rarely exceeding 1200 calories in a day. I hope that I'm not making this sound like an easy process, because it wasn't. To this day it is still REALLY hard to resist some of the most fattening foods like hamburgers, french fries, cakes, pizza, ice cream, etc. I'm also not saying that you can't have these things if you want to lose weight. You can, just not often. I make substitutions for these things like frozen yogurt instead of ice cream (in moderation), baked sweet potato fries, if we have hamburgers I just nix the bun, and, if I allow myself a piece of cake, it's more like a "taste" than a piece. The number one thing I had to do to my eating habits was severely decrease my portion sizes and cut out all of the simple carbs like mashed potatoes, white pasta, white bread, and fried food. A typical day for me looks like this: carbs (whole grain cereal, waffles, or oatmeal) and fruit for breakfast, a microwavable Healthy Choice Steamer or salad for lunch, and protein (chicken, fish, or the occasional pork or beef) and veggies for dinner! Snacks can be anything from fruit to yogurt to granola bars, or maybe even a weight watchers 45 calorie fudgesicle ;) Another key to eating healthier is buying everything low calorie, low sugar, reduced/fat free and whole grain. This helps tremendously with decreasing calorie intake.
|"Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out." -R. Collier|
On top of changing my eating habits, I also changed my lifestyle from sedentary to active. My goal included going to the gym 5 days a week for 1 hour/day. Most weeks I either reached or exceeded this goal. (It's really hard to spend less than an hour in the gym if you're doing cardio and lifting weights) Usually I'm in the gym between 1.5 - 2 hours. Some obstacles I've overcome in the past 4 months are: Couch25K (built up to running 24 mins. straight on the treadmill), an intense, outdoor bootcamp with my fierce mother-in-law (one of the most difficult things I've yet to attempt), a trial Spin class (ouch!), a 3-mile outdoor jog with a dear friend (while on vacation I might add), and several outdoor jogs on my own or with friends. My attitude on exercising has changed dramatically. It's gotten to the point where I crave it on a daily basis. I have 1,000 times more energy than my old self ever dreamt of having, and I love it! Four months ago, I was a couch potato who never did any kind of walking, jogging, or exercising whatsoever.
Today, I C25K'd this:
|Ocean Springs Front Beach, 2 miles|
Then I walked this:
|Biloxi Bay Bridge, 3.4 miles|
Then I did this:
|Abs and Legs workout with a friend at Planet Fitness!|
So here I am, 4 months later, 40 lbs lighter, and happier than ever! I have set a new goal with some awesome friends to lose 12 lbs in 6 weeks. We're having a competition, and the first one to drop 12 gets a new article of clothing. I'm down 5.5 lbs since we started this endeavor. Once I reach this next goal, I think I will actually be happy with the number on the scale. At that point, I will strive to maintain that weight and continue to build and tone muscle. I am completely happy with my lifestyle change and intend on being fit and happy for the rest of my life. I love not having that derogatory voice in my head. The fattening foods I used to overeat are simply not worth the confidence, happiness, and energy I have gained. Not to mention I will probably live longer now. :)
- Set your goals. Right now. Get a pen and paper and write down what you want to accomplish. 10 lbs? 20 lbs? 40 lbs?
- Take "Before" pictures and measurements. Weight yourself. You're not going to like what you see, but it will be great motivation. Squeeze into that bikini you want oh so badly to look good in and take pictures of yourself. You will be glad you have these once you reach your goal ;)
- Decide how many days a week you want to exercise. This could be as simple as a 30 minute walk around the block or you could go get yourself a gym membership right now!
- Make a plan to drink at least 64 oz. of water per day. Cut out everything other than water, unless it's a nonnegotiable. My nonnegotiables are: Sushi, ketchup, and frozen yogurt ;) But I have all of these as a TREAT! Everything in moderation truly is the key!
- Sign a weightloss contract with yourself.
- Download the app and make an account on MyFitnessPal or SparkPeople. Start logging every morsel you eat, religiously. This takes time and discipline at first, but it will become second nature in no time. I can honestly say this is the #1 thing that kept me on track towards my weight loss goals throughout this process. You must be accountable for what you eat!
- Go to the grocery store. Get lots of low-calorie snacks like: light/Greek yogurt, fruit, lower sugar oatmeal, Quaker rice cakes, unsweetened applesauce, Kashi granola bars, etc. Make sure you are checking your serving sizes when you consume food and LOG YOUR CALORIES!!
- Start a "Healthy Recipes" board on Pinterest. View mine here.
- Start eating all of your home-cooked meals on smaller plates.
|This vs. this|
- Make "Pounds Lost" & "Pounds to Go" jars. Transfer a marble (or three) every time you get on the scale!