In high school I started putting on an average of 10 lbs a year, but I didn’t get any taller. This tripled while I was in college. I believe I had really low self esteem and a lot of anger in my earlier years that developed into a full-fledged food addiction. I used to eat my feelings and when my family tried to intervene I took it very personally and started to hide my binge eating.
I would be lying to myself if I said I wasn’t self-conscious. But I used to lie to myself a lot back then. I used to hide behind the body positivity movement. I think it is an amazing and necessary message, but I didn’t understand what it meant to love myself and do what was right for my mental health and body.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED? I broke up with my ex-fiance and a week or 2 later I came home and threw away almost everything in my fridge and cupboards. I was just like I’m done with everything toxic in my life. I went to Aldi’s and immediately bought fruits and veggies and meat. I didn’t really think to much about the how at that point I just decided to take the plunge. I spent a few weeks adjusting to the diet change and then began to incorporate working out.
HOW LONG AFTER YOU STARTED DID YOU BEGIN TO SEE RESULTS OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS EFFORTS? I saw signs of progress in my workouts around one month. I saw significant changes in my body around 2 months, having lost around 40 lbs.
WHAT WAS THE HARDEST PART? Well for one, I began to see signs in my body that I was two heavy. I was loosing the arches in my feet and my left knee had begun to get sore and swell on occasion. I was broke, but I decided that fitness was a necessity instead of a luxury and I built up my finances to incorporate it. Lastly, really just my mentality really needed to change. That was by far the hardest thing, but I found my mind healing as I lost weight. I have grown more confident, developed self-worth, and have been learning who I am as a person.
DID YOU EVER WANT TO GIVE UP? WHAT KEPT YOU GOING? Yeah, my plateau hit me really hard, but I created a motivation station. A big part of my weight-loss has been my desire to enlist in the Army. To enlist I have to meet specific physical requirements, and my motivation station has all sorts of quotes, progress pictures and my goals on it. It consists of a dry erase board and a mirror so that I see myself and my goals at the time everyday. I also started a blog which has been particularly motivating!
DID YOU HIT ANY WEIGHT LOSS PLATEAUS? HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THEM? I had recently pushed through my first big weight loss plateau and I realized that I had become complacent and comfortable. I re-adjusted my goals, increased the difficulty in my workouts and tightened down on my eating habits. My portions were in control, but my food choices were slipping.
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO LOSE MOST OF THE WEIGHT? I lost a majority of my weight in the first 6 months.
DID YOU HAVE ANY NON-SCALE VICTORIES? Being able to walk into any store and buy a bra. Throwing away all of my old clothes. Running my first mile was a big one. Being able to do a push-up, then push ups. Now my goals are more work-out-oriented than scale-oriented. My next big goals are to Run 5 miles and be able to do a pull up.
WHAT DOES YOUR DAILY DIET LOOK LIKE COMPARED TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER? I ate for every single emotion. Specifically, I felt so empty and I think I tried to fill that void with food. I ate veggies and fruits, but I honestly don’t think I knew what a portion looked like. I remember sitting home alone and just crying the day my ex left. All I wanted was something sweet to eat and I didn’t have anything in the house. I remember taking a bag of lemons and cutting them up. I poured straight up sugar in a bowl and just dipped them in and ate them. After I had calmed down I just looked at myself and couldn’t believe how bad my eating habits had gotten. I knew i needed a change.
HOW DOES YOUR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY COMPARE TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER? I absolutely hated working out, I did not feel comfortable at the gym. Luckily I go to Planet Fitness and was met by people who went out of their way to make the gym a regular part of my life. I enrolled in the free fitness classes and I began to take them almost daily. Now, I am a gym regular and do my own thing, but the classes helped me to develop a gym family, a routine, and get comfortable with the equipment.
MY WEIGHT LOSS TIPS & TRICKS
- Don’t get caught up on being perfect: counting calories isn’t everything as long as you are eating healthy and balanced and know your portions.
- Take progress pictures, they will motivate you through your toughest times.
- Drink water: and add fruit to make it fun if needed.
- Create a family around your new life, people that want to see you succeed and keep you motivated.
- Stare your goals in the face every single morning, it will get you motivated to never waste a day.