FORMER LIFE: A typical day was usually a big biscuit in the morning because there was a gas station on my way to work. And then for lunch I would usually eat at school, a school lunch, so that would be like chicken nuggets and French fries. And then I would have a snack in the afternoon of chips or cookies. And then at night for dinner I would usually go out and have pizza or whatever, whatever I was going out for.
THE TURNING POINT: I decided to start losing weight because it just felt like it was my time. It was almost like the stars aligned for me. I just felt like everything was in place for me to actually make a huge change in my life. Faith played a large role. I never thought I could do it ever, but I knew it was time.
THE PLAN: I write everything down. That helps me track the grains and vegetables and fruits that I get and also helps me count my calories too. I journaled since day one, and my notebook now is like this thick because I haven’t stopped writing it down. I keep a journal just because it helps me stay on track. I write down everything I put in my mouth. So sometimes if I’m tempted by something, I think how’s it going to feel when I write down Snickers on a piece of paper? How’s it going to feel when I write down Doritos or pizza? So it helps keep me in line, too.
THE BIG REWARD: Some of my students that come back and visit me don’t recognize me. They ask where Ms. Wade’s room is and so I say to them, “You’re talking to her.” And it’s funny because the class that I had when I was going through the majority of my weight loss, they were with me 100 percent. Even at Christmas time and Valentine’s Day and stuff like that, they were like, “We didn’t get you any candy, Ms. Wade. We didn’t get you anything fattening. We got you this coffee mug or this lotion or whatever.”
WORDS OF WISDOM: It took me about four months before I actually started liking exercise. And I hate to say that but it’s true. I didn’t love it at the beginning, but now I can’t not do it. It’s such a huge stress reliever. The message that I will give to anybody that doesn’t like working out is just stick with it. You’re going to find something you’ll like somehow. I never thought that I would be a jogger. I mean that was just insane for me to even think about and now I love it. I love to jog. So there’s something out there for everybody, definitely.
TOOLS OF MY SUCCESS: Daily journaling to track calories. A pedometer to track steps. Faith. A friend and personal trainer to get started.