96 Pounds Lost: I Refuse to Sink – 96 Pounds Lost!
NAME : Emily
BEFORE WEIGHT : 288
AFTER WEIGHT : 192 (still losing!)
POUNDS LOST : 96
WHEN DID YOU START DEVELOPING A WEIGHT PROBLEM?
I have always been the “fat” friend. I never really saw myself as obese, just the chubby one of the bunch my whole life. I never really though about food as a person should, a source of energy/fuel. Because of this, I never learned to properly eat. I ate whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. My weight hit an all time high after the birth of my second child in 2010.
HOW DID YOUR WEIGHT AFFECT ANY ASPECT(S) OF YOUR LIFE?
My weight has always been an issue in my life. Whether it was clothes shopping, being active with friends, or dating, I never felt like I belonged or if I was good enough. I backed out on many plans because I felt like an outcast. I would cringe at the thought that people would talk about me and how I looked. It created an overwhelming feeling on anxiety I didn’t know how to deal with.
WHAT WAS THE “TURNING POINT” THAT GOT YOU STARTED ON YOUR WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY?
My turning point was December 2010. I had given birth to my son of February that year. That December I had my annual physical at the doctor’s office. He told me I was morbidly obese. He said the only option for a person like me was Gastric Bypass surgery. I was stunned. I went home and cried and cried. He made me believe him. I spoke with my husband, who convinced me that was NOT my only option and that I could do it on my own. So I enjoyed that holiday season and on January 1, 2011 I began my journey.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED?
I started by joining Weight Watchers online. I tracked my points each day and I began to lose weight. I was learning how to eat and portion control. I slowly began adding activity such as an elliptical or walking. In three months, I had lost almost 30 lbs.
HOW LONG AFTER YOU STARTED DID YOU BEGIN TO SEE RESULTS OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS EFFORTS?
In the first three months, I had lost 30 lbs. I wanted to reward myself for my loss so I joined a 24/hr gym. I went to the gym after I put the kids to bed. It was not an ideal time to workout, but I had to make it work. After the summer, I continued to lose more weight and rewarded myself with a Personal Trainer. I was beginning to see real changes! I started off a size 22, by the end of the summer I was a happy 18!
WHAT WAS THE HARDEST PART?
The hardest part was fitting it in my life. All these changes were just meant for me, not my family. They did not have the same battles as I did, so I had to be strong and talk to myself throughout many times of struggle. The meals I made were not always something they would eat, many times I had to make separate meals. The time at the gym was time away from my children. I have now learned that they can eat my healthy meals and that the time away from them to workout makes me a better mom.
DID YOU EVER WANT TO GIVE UP? WHAT KEPT YOU GOING?
I can honestly say I have never wanted to give up. I refuse to sink. When I made this commitment, it was forever. I knew how much time, effort, and dedication it required so I was never willing to wave the white flag. I often look at my before pictures and make comparisons to my pictures now. It keeps me motivated. I also enjoy reading and posting inspirational quotes.
DID YOU HIT ANY WEIGHT LOSS PLATEAUS? HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THEM?
The weight loss plateaus have haunted me throughout my journey. I recently broke one that I have been in for almost a year!! I recommend a close look at what you can change in your lifestyle in order to break the plateau. I have added activity, added calories, taken away calories, etc…The key for me was eating more whole natural foods and less processed foods.
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO LOSE MOST OF THE WEIGHT?
It has been three years however, almost a year of it in a plateau! I would say most of the weight in the first 20 months and toning small losses over the rest of the time.
DID YOU HAVE ANY NON-SCALE VICTORIES?
I began wearing a size 22 and currently wear a 12/14. I have lost many inches all over my body. Sometime in the first year of my journey, I became a runner! In 2013, I completed the challenge of 13 races in ’13. Of my 13 races, I participated in 2 hard-core mud obstacle course races and my first 10k. Also in 2013, I ran PR’d my 5K in the time of 30:13. My first 5k was 45:14. What wonderful successes!
WHAT DOES YOUR DAILY DIET LOOK LIKE COMPARED TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER?
My daily diet now includes much more vegetables and fruits and a lot less processed foods. I lived on breads, pastas, chips, and sugars. I drank alcohol, coffee, and soda on a daily basis. I now live on foods that fuel my body and my workouts. I include vegetables for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I don’t drink anything but water all day long. I enjoy alcohol on the weekends only. I changed the sugar filled cocktails and wine to vodka and seltzer.
HOW DOES YOUR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY COMPARE TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER?
I was not active at all. I had trouble even playing with my kids. As a teacher, I spent much of my day sitting, having my students bring papers to me. It was hard to even sit on the floor to play with my kids.
I currently wake up each day at 4:50am to attend a boot camp for women. I exercise 6 days a week and plan at least one rest day for recovery. Each weekend, I fit in a long run. I am in the process of training for my first half-marathon this summer. I never in my life would have ever guessed I’d be running a 13.1 mile race!
MY WEIGHT LOSS TIPS & TRICKS
- Take pictures and measurements. The scale is not always a true measure of your weight loss achievements. Celebrate each loss, no matter how small.
- You are not a dog, do not reward yourself with food. I highly encourage you to reward yourself for each milestone you hit in your journey. I did a gym membership, a personal trainer, a tattoo, pedicures, massages, new clothes. You deserve to treat yourself to fun and exciting things after working so hard and staying dedicated.
- Read motivational quotes/messages. Post them everywhere! Read them each day and remind yourself that you are worth it and that you can do whatever you set your mind to!
- Set some goals and tell others about them. There is something to be said for that accountability. Put it out there, post it on Facebook. Yes, it will be scary and others may talk but you have to set the bar high and keep pushing for it. Make a realistic/attainable goal. Perhaps its your first 5k race or to take a Crossfit class. You may just inspire someone else to jump on board with you.
- Drink all the water!!! Water is the perfect beverage. Your body needs more than you think. You should be drinking half of your body weight in ounces. So if you weigh 200 lbs, you should be drinking at least 100oz a day. Additionally, if you exercise you should be adding a bit more. Take small sips throughout the day versus sitting down to chug it all down. Adding a lemon wedge to your ice water has excellent benefits too.
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