I’ve been overweight ever since I can remember. Growing up I was always bigger than all of the other kids and as I got older I realized I was the “fat friend”.
NAME : Bailey
BEFORE WEIGHT : 293
AFTER WEIGHT : 193
POUNDS LOST : 100
HOW DID YOUR WEIGHT AFFECT ANY ASPECT(S) OF YOUR LIFE? My weight, and consequently my poor self-image, affected so many aspects of my life. I didn’t allow myself to participate in things like going swimming or amusement parks and physically my body didn’t allow me to do things like hike or use a kayak. I felt tired and worn out after short periods of time and I constantly felt like I was missing out.
WHAT WAS THE “TURNING POINT” THAT GOT YOU STARTED ON YOUR WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY? There was no one event that caused me to take action. I finally realized I was just done feeling like this and I knew I deserved more.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED? I first started out by researching and learning as much as I could about nutrition, paleo and the Whole30 program. I then did a Whole30 and stick to paleo after that.
HOW LONG AFTER YOU STARTED DID YOU BEGIN TO SEE RESULTS OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS EFFORTS? I lost 20ish lbs that first 30 days and then had lost 50 in the first 5 months. I didn’t tell anyone about what I was doing, so it was really encouraging when people in my life started to notice and comment!
WHAT WAS THE HARDEST PART? The biggest challenge was trying to understand and fix my relationship with food. Since I’ve been overweight from a young age, I never learned, developed or practiced a healthy relationship with food. I would binge often and in private and it took a lot of self-exploration, patience and learning to work past those habits.
DID YOU EVER WANT TO GIVE UP? WHAT KEPT YOU GOING? Motivation comes and goes. Sometimes I have it for weeks and sometimes it’s gone in minutes. What keeps me going is knowing how genuinely good I feel eating whole foods and moving my body. I love my new life and my ability to live it too much to give up on myself. I also love taking progress pictures which keeps me motivated when the scale isn’t moving!
DID YOU HIT ANY WEIGHT LOSS PLATEAUS? HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THEM? Every once in a while I’ll hit a plateau. We all know these will happen and I try to not let them get me too worked up. I simply just switch up my exercise. Encorporate more swimming, outside cycling, yoga or weights for a few weeks in place of something else and try eating a little more. I usually add a few more sweet potatoes to my normal diet. This typically will do the trick and the scale will start to move again shortly! Be patient, be consistent and the results will come!
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO LOSE MOST OF THE WEIGHT? I’ve been at this since late March of last year. 15 months. I gained about 20 back around Christmas time (whoops) but that’s all just part of the journey!
DID YOU HAVE ANY NON-SCALE VICTORIES? I have had so many non-scale victories! I’ve gotten to hike in the Rocky Mountains, purchase a kayak now that I’m below the weight limit, I can shop in any store and went from a size XL scrub pants to a size M. Most recently and the best NSV yet- I ran a half marathon in Seattle!
WHAT DOES YOUR DAILY DIET LOOK LIKE COMPARED TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER? My diet has done a 180. I used to never even have any fresh veggies in the house. My fridge and cupboards were full of heavily processed food and take out/leftover containers. I went out to eat or got fast food for a majority of meals. Now, I eat almost all unprocessed foods and actually crave veggies! My friends joke that “I eat more roughage than a rabbit!”
HOW DOES YOUR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY COMPARE TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER? When I was almost 300lbs, I would claim I was “busy” when anything social came up that involved being active. I hated even walking because I couldn’t keep up, my ankles hurt and I would get sweaty. When I first started I was so embarrassed to go to the gym that I would go at 3am when there wouldn’t be anyone there. Now I LOVE being active and spend a majority of my time outdoors. It’s second nature now. Finding time to move my body isn’t a chore anymore, I look forward to it.
MY WEIGHT LOSS TIPS & TRICKS
- Be patient with yourself. First and foremost, know that every day will not be perfect but that doesn’t mean you aren’t closer to your goals than you were yesterday.
- Have healthy go-to snacks in the car, in your purse, or in a desk drawer at work that you can fall back on when there’s unhealthy food around you or you want to run through the drive-thru!
- Take progress pictures! Sometimes even slight changes can be enough motivation to keep going!
- Find an exercise that you LOVE. Don’t settle for running or kickboxing or whatever if you don’t like doing it. Try everything! A year later and I’m STILL trying and experimenting with new exercises simply because I enjoy it all!
- A lot of people say to have an accountability partner when you first start. Don’t feel like you HAVE TO if you’re a private person. I first started out without publicizing any of this because I wanted to prove to myself I could do it AND not feel pressured or embarrassed. And I did. Just know the kind of person you are and what will work for you! Now I can even look back and see how I’ve transformed in that way too – going from not telling anyone to having a whole Instagram! Learning about yourself is one of the biggest rewards!