I grew up the third youngest of four children in your typical southern household, with traditional “southern” foods being served on a daily basis. The only physical activity I did through elementary and secondary school was participating in gym class. In high school I played basketball. My eating habits where all over the place, sweets, heavy starch, some vegetables and little protein. I didn’t really notice my weight until I hit middle school, when I started to receive remarks about my size here and there. In high school I got attention from some boys, but I was considered a “big” girl. I can’t say I had self-esteem issues, as I guess I was oblivious to my size at that time.
HOW DID YOUR WEIGHT AFFECT ANY ASPECT(S) OF YOUR LIFE? Later on, I started to develop some lower back issues and I hated to go shopping because I could not find clothes to fit in regular stores. I had to shop at the plus size stores. I love the beach, however I was never comfortable in bathing suits or shorts.
WHAT WAS THE “TURNING POINT” THAT GOT YOU STARTED ON YOUR WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY? In May of 2009, I really started to take notice of how big I had become and the fact that my husband was obese as well. He had tried to diet (unsuccessfully) however since I did the majority of the cooking, I didn’t always make the healthiest of choices.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED? My husband and I had a deep conversation and it started with one question – “Are you happy with yourself?” Both of us answered “no”. We prayed about it and our journey began.
HOW LONG AFTER YOU STARTED DID YOU BEGIN TO SEE RESULTS OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS EFFORTS? Within the first week, we noted immediate weight loss initially – though most of it was probably water, it was nice and served as motivation going forward.
WHAT WAS THE HARDEST PART? In all honesty, I can’t say it wasn’t hard once we got started. Once we prayed about it and committed it to God, the road was made straight before us to begin our journey. After I met my goal, the lifestyle change habits have stuck with me – so I’m used to eating correctly now.
DID YOU EVER WANT TO GIVE UP? WHAT KEPT YOU GOING? No, committing to it when both you and your spouse share the same goals made it even more inspiring to stick to it.
DID YOU HIT ANY WEIGHT LOSS PLATEAUS? HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THEM? Yes, but realizing that its part of the process and that a lifestyle change & weight loss is not a sprint, but a marathon made it better
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO LOSE MOST OF THE WEIGHT? 12 months. I went from a size 20 to wearing size 4’s and 5’s.
DID YOU HAVE ANY NON-SCALE VICTORIES? Our lives have changed for the better 100%. Our marriage bond has grown so much stronger because we did this together as a team, it helps so much to have your spouse on the same page as you. Our transformation has inspired some of our Facebook friends to make lifestyle changes as well. If we can inspire at least 1 person to “Get it right”, that will go a long way in helping to fight the growing obesity epidemic.
WHAT DOES YOUR DAILY DIET LOOK LIKE COMPARED TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER? A lot more water, veggies, complex carbs, protein and good fats.
HOW DOES YOUR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY COMPARE TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER? My husband and I built a small gym in our garage and we train together all the time. We Weight training: 2-4 days a week, Cardio: 2-5 days a week
MY WEIGHT LOSS TIPS & TRICKS
- You can’t out exercise a bad diet – plain and simple. I don’t care if you run, walk, take Zumba classes, lift weights, practice yoga, etc. If you eat bad foods, you will NOT see results. Diet trumps everything and until you can break down the amounts of protein, carbs and fats that you’re putting in your body, you will be spinning your wheels.
- Set aside 1 day a week to enjoy a couple of the foods that you might enjoy without guilt (for me, these include foods like pizza, ribs, fried foods, etc.). It allows you a break from your diet and will keep you from burning out. Go hard for 6 days and reward yourself on the seventh.
- View photos of other people’s transformations and be inspired.