How a Mom of Seven Got into the Best Shape of Her Life
Name: Julie Cazier
Height: 5 feet, 9 inches
Before Weight: 210 pounds
How I Gained It: For me, gaining weight had a lot to do with eating large portion sizes, going for second helpings and making poor food choices, all which led to most of my weight gain.
I was also fairly inactive. While I would take an occasional walk, overall I was basically sedentary. Overeating and inactivity were the major contributors to my weight gain, but there was also the pregnancy factor. I would gain weight with each pregnancy, but not lose any weight between them. By the time I was 38 years old, I had ballooned to 210 pounds.
Breaking Point: I was at a point where I was unhappy with how I looked and felt, but completely overwhelmed by the amount of weight I had to lose. I wanted to have energy to run around with my kids, but I would usually just sit and watch them play.
Then, one day I saw my reflection in a full length mirror and I hardly recognized the overweight, puffy woman I had become. It was at that moment that I pledged to myself I would lose the weight, get healthy and be the active wife and mom that I desired to be.
How I Lost It: Losing weight was hard work, but it was never complicated. I didn’t join a gym or buy fancy exercise equipment, and I didn’t use a special diet. Instead, I decided to get active as a habit of life, and I began exercising every day to workout videos in my living room. And, as it turns out — I loved it! I got an excellent workout at home, all while having my family nearby. I tried all kinds of workouts — I did things like kickboxing, walking, step, dance and stability ball exercises. Everything I tried was fun, and I loved the convenience of exercising at home.
Once I started working out, the weight started to come off and that’s when I began to pay more attention to what I was eating. Junk foods and highly processed foods no longer appealed to me — I started filling my plate with real, whole foods and I started sticking to normal-sized portions. I also kept a food journal, and I used it to keep track of calories. After a while, I was able to estimate the calories in the foods I was eating pretty well, so I didn’t worry about obsessively weighing and measuring my foods. I decided that as long as I took a reasonable portion, I could eat anything I wanted.
Eventually, my new, healthy habits became part of my life, and within about six months I had lost the weight. Once I was at my goal weight, I was happy to become pregnant with our seventh child. After our baby was born, the pregnancy weight I gained came off easily, thanks to my new lifestyle.
Daily exercise and healthy eating are a continual habit for me, and they seem to naturally allow me to maintain the weight I prefer. I am now fit and healthy, and I can truly say that — as a 41-year-old mom of seven — I’m in the best shape of my life. Losing weight, getting fit and taking care of my health have allowed me to achieve the most important goal of my life: To be the best wife and mom that I can be.
After Weight: 145 pounds
Julie has maintained her weight loss for over a year.
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