34.5 Pounds Lost: The Final Maintain!
NAME : Paris
BEFORE WEIGHT : 144.5
AFTER WEIGHT : 110
POUNDS LOST : 34.5
WHEN DID YOU START DEVELOPING A WEIGHT PROBLEM?
Oh my goodness, a very long time ago. I think I started noticing that I was “bigger” than the other girls in about 8th grade. My body was developing early and I was getting made fun of by some other girls for being “busty”. I started eating because I felt insecure. I would go home and grab anything and everything I could find to eat. I also joined a cheer team this year. You may think that it would’ve helped, but realistically it just added on more sleepovers and more junk food. I couldn’t get control of my eating.
HOW DID YOUR WEIGHT AFFECT ANY ASPECT(S) OF YOUR LIFE?
It affected EVERYTHING in my life. I wouldn’t go hang out with friends because I was always trying to be “good”. Then I would just end up eating alone. I tried to lose weight for about 7 years with no success. I would be on track and then fall right off and gain weight back. I was extremely sell-conscious and missed a lot of school because I didn’t like the way I looked in clothes. My grades dropped too. I wanted to look like my other friends. I never liked going shopping or looking at myself in the mirror. My entire wardrobe consisted of jeans and sweatshirts. Oh, and summer time was my nightmare every year. I would get invited to the beach and pool parties, but never went. My entire life revolved around my weight.
WHAT WAS THE “TURNING POINT” THAT GOT YOU STARTED ON YOUR WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY?
You know, I never really had a “turning point”. I lost weight several times and thought “this is it! I finally did it”. Then somehow I would turn right back to overeating. One day it just happened, I changed my mindset and got a grip on my life.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED?
So it took me 7 years to finally lose a significant amount of weight. I counted my calories religiously and didn’t do anything- no exercise. Just locked myself up and weighed every day. After I lost the weight, it took me about a week to get off track again. I gained all my weight back and then some. I went through this cycle probably 4 times in 5 years. It was exhausting and I was close to giving up.
So then here I was, 5’2 and 144.5 pounds (gained back from being 107lbs). I was embarrassed of myself. I started trying to pinpoint WHY I was overeating. Whenever I felt the need to binge I sat down and asked myself why. Was I bored? Was I emotional? Was I stressed? This helped me realize that I wasn’t hungry, I was just trying to take my mind off of things. So I stopped. I only ate when I was hungry and counted my calories. I ate healthy and started adding in cardio. I started feeling mentally healthier as well. I came to the realization that eating when I was bored, emotional, or stressed was just going to make me feel worse in the end.
HOW LONG AFTER YOU STARTED DID YOU BEGIN TO SEE RESULTS OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS EFFORTS?
Always in about a week to two weeks. I’ve done this so many times that I know after two weeks of doing well that I will feel much better. Plus, after two weeks everything becomes easier! You are in so much more of a routine. I love it. I don’t weight myself anymore every day, but I would in the beginning. After two weeks I always saw significant results.
WHAT WAS THE HARDEST PART?
My biggest challenge was myself. I was constantly battling myself in my mind everyday. Part of me was always on the “you can eat this today and start tomorrow” while the other side of me thought “you will totally regret it if you eat it”. It was always a mental mind game and it was exhausting.
Aside from that I was very fortunate to always have my loved ones supporting me!
DID YOU EVER WANT TO GIVE UP? WHAT KEPT YOU GOING?
I wanted to give up so many times. I once had a friend tell me that our bodies are meant go back to the way they want to be, and maybe mine was just supposed to be the way it was. She wasn’t meaning to be offensive, but to me it was motivation. I have a small frame and I know that. I refused to stay the way I was, her telling me this gave me a burst of motivation to get down to my main issue (my mindset).
DID YOU HIT ANY WEIGHT LOSS PLATEAUS? HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THEM?
Not often. I hit a couple small ones and figured out how to shake them. I would switch around my exercise and food intake. I would exercise a little less, and eat more calories on day and less the next. It helped trick my body out of the plateau.
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO LOSE MOST OF THE WEIGHT?
A while, but this is my favorite thing to preach- time doesn’t matter! This is forever my best piece of advice! Like I mentioned earlier, it took me 7 years to lose a significant amount of weight, 7 years! This is because I always had “deadlines”, when I didn’t meet them (because they were unrealistic) I felt like a failure and would end up overeating. Once I started losing weight it would generally take 4-5 months to lose 34.5lbs.
The final time that I lost weight it took longer. I lived a more normal life. I went out with friends, started eating less, counted calories when I could, did cardio. I didn’t have timelines. I felt happier and like I had more control. I had an actual life. It took me about 8 months to lose it.. and now I’ve kept it off for 2 years!
DID YOU HAVE ANY NON-SCALE VICTORIES?
Of course! Some weeks I would lose .5lbs and would feel disappointed. I would shake up my routine and lose the next week. My opinion on scales is fluid. I like them, but I think you need to be strong minded to weigh yourself often. You can’t let the numbers on the scale affect you. Just remember you are making changes to better yourself! That’s all the matters, scales don’t tell you everything.
WHAT DOES YOUR DAILY DIET LOOK LIKE COMPARED TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER?
SO MUCH FAST FOOD. I would eat and eat until I was physically sick. There was Taco Bell, Jack in the Box, ice cream, chocolate, basically anything I could get my hands on. This was seriously every single day. It was awful. I started hiding the food I was eating so no one could see. I knew I was a binge eater and I just couldn’t stop.
HOW DOES YOUR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY COMPARE TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER?
I love cardio! I know it sounds crazy but it really helps me. It’s mindless and gets my endorphins going. I like the elliptical and treadmill. Generally I try to do them 4 times a week for about 30 minutes a session. I also like doing arm workouts! I am still a work in progress for toning and I know that. The best part of the journey is getting to where you want to be and keep improving from there!
MY WEIGHT LOSS TIPS & TRICKS
- Apple cider vinegar! I have a tablespoon every morning. There’s something about it that makes me feel like I am starting my day off right. It does NOT taste good but it’s worth it! It also has a lot of health benefits.
- A pack of m&m’s a day! Wait, what?! Ok not everyday, but I had a stash of them when I was craving. It helped me feel like I was getting a treat. Halo Top ice cream too! If you haven’t tried it, do yourself a favor and go do it now. It’s low in calories and fulfills little cravings!
- Smaller plates! I forget where I read this, but it’s such a great tip. If you use bigger plates you are more likely to eat more. Smaller plates trick your mind into thinking you’re eating a lot. This can keep you from overeating!
- I am a psycho when it comes to measuring things. I still do it. I measure everything just so I can count. This really helps me stay on track. I stay within my calories and at the end of the day, I know exactly where I am at. With that said, I can’t always count- especially if I go out. In those cases I just watch my intake and listen to my body.
- Water, water, water! Before meals, during, and after. This is the oldest trick in the book. It helps you know when you’re feel and you get your daily water intake in!
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