Growing up in a family that loves to cook and eat and has a lot of health problems I thought I did pretty good to try and keep my weight under control. I went through a few phases where I would get chunky then I would have a growth spurt and and be smaller again. I was also always outside playing or riding horses, which was my passion. During high school I ran track and continued to ride so I stayed pretty much in shape but I did start to notice myself putting on a little weight my senior year. I am 5’10.5″ and weighed about 165 in highschool (BMI 23.7) that would be like being 5’2″ and weighing 129 (same BMI). After highschool in the first year I put on about 15-20 pounds. I was always kind of self consious about my weight, i guesss because the scale always said i weighed so much when in reality since I am taller I will never be 120 pounds, and if I did I would look seriously sick. Well over the course of the next 4 to 5 years I would gain about 5-10 pounds a year. I would try fad diets (lose 7 pounds in 2 weeks!) or drink this shake for 48 hours and you will lose 10 pounds! Yeah they never worked. Or I would lose 5 pounds and be so hungry from not eating for 48 hours that I would gain the 5 pounds back plus 5 more over night. I am sure everyone around me was tired of me complaining about my weight and doing nothing about it.
Well on November 10th, 2010 (one day after Navy Ball) I was living in Japan. I started to see all of the pictures that were being posted of me in my dress and how I looked. On the inside I still felt like “me” but on the outside I didn’t look like the “Me” i wanted to be at all. I stepped on to my Wii Fit and cried as the little Wii’s belly started to get bigger and the arrow pointed toward the obese box. 218 pounds. 218 pounds. I couldnt believe it. Now I am not sure exactly how much weight I had put on becasue at this point I was already exercising a few days a week for about an hour. I knew then and there that I had to do something.
After a personal issue that happened I had labwork drawn and was told that I had hypothyroidism. If no one has ever heard of this it is a disease on the thyroid gland in your neck. Hypothyroidism is when you do not produce enough hormones and so your metabolism is slowed way down and it is very hard to lose weight and you can be rather cranky. After being told this I was bound and determined to get my health in order and if it took me 1 month to lose a pound then so be it but I was not going to give up.
I started with walking at a fast past and at an incline. I would walk for about an hour or so and would be drinched in sweat. After a week or two I would try to run at least 5 minutes out of the hour then 10 then 15 then 20 and so on until I was running for an entire hour. I had never really used weights before so I was clueless when I walked into the weight room. I only felt comfortable on the cardio machines so that is what i used. I would sometimes use a few machines here and there if i caught a glimpse of someone using them and could see how they worked and I would do crunches and sit ups. I was to embarrased to ask ppl so I just did the same things everyday but It was working. I was able to lose 10 pounds the first month.
I knew that I would not be able to stick to a healthy eating plan if I tried to cut all the foods I love out of my diet all at once so I started by giving up one thing a week until I had cut most of the bad stuff out. First was sodas, then fried foods, then desserts and so on. After sticking to this diet for about a month i realized that I needed dessert in my life. I bought the Mayo clinic book and started to read it. It talked a lot about counting calories so i decided to give it a try. THAT WAS THE WAY TO GO! I could still eat some of the things that I love as long as it was in moderation and if i wanted dessert I had it but I had to remember that later on I couldn’t have something else so I made sure what I wanted was worth it. By Feb I had lost about 20 pounds. So on average I lost 5 pounds a month. Over the last two years I have lost a total of around 66-70 pounds. I have never felt better about myself than i do now. After losing a lot of weight I noticed a lot of “tiger stripes” on my abdominal area, butt, and thighs but I am ok with that as long as I know I am healthy now. I have gone from not knowing what to do in the gym to owning it. Reading books/magazines and using google a TON I learned a lot about new workouts and equipment. And now when I don’t know I just ask. You will be amazed at how quick ppl are to help you, especailly if they can see you want to learn and that you are dedicated. I am down to 152 pounds and a size 6! I went from a size 16 to a 6. I would like to continue to become stronger and better everyday. I still have to think to myself everyday to make healthy choices but it gets easier. I am also still dealing with hypothyroidism but that will be for the long run. I feel like I have so much more confidence in myself and apparently other people notice too! 🙂 I have started a Facebook page called Be Inspired to give people the recipes I do and the workouts and let people see my progress. I workout 6 days a week and do cardio and a lot of weights. I feel like when I get done I own the gym instead of being scared of it. Being healthy is the best decision I have ever made in my life, so get motivated. It will be worth it. Remember this is not a fad its a lifestyle change. 26 months healthy and going strong!