I started developing a weight problem when I was around 7 years old and my father had a heart attack. I ate for comfort.
HOW DID YOUR WEIGHT AFFECT ANY ASPECT(S) OF YOUR LIFE? Weight affected EVERY aspect of my life. I was very depressed and also wound up bedridden and in a wheel chair because of it. I spent much time in my room, unable to move about the world feeling like I was just waiting to die.
WHAT WAS THE “TURNING POINT” THAT GOT YOU STARTED ON YOUR WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY? The turning point was when my best friend had weight loss surgery and got her life back. I knew weight loss surgery was not for me, but I still wanted my life back. I started tracking my food online and using an arm bike since I could not use my legs. I developed the attitude that it was about the things you CAN do and to let go of the things you can’t.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED? I fired my old medical team and got one that gave me in home physical therapy and a walker to help me get up out of that wheel chair. I lifted shampoo bottles as weights in bed and used an arm bike for cardio. I was very weak. I started drinking organic milk and eating organic meat and eating less processed food. I ate some, just not as much, concentrating on whole foods.
HOW LONG AFTER YOU STARTED DID YOU BEGIN TO SEE RESULTS OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS EFFORTS? In two weeks, I had lost 10 pounds.
WHAT WAS THE HARDEST PART? I was totally incapacitated from my disabilities and could not really get out of the house to get help. I was on my own.
DID YOU EVER WANT TO GIVE UP? WHAT KEPT YOU GOING? Yes. What kept me going was support I received from online friends on a weight loss site.
DID YOU HIT ANY WEIGHT LOSS PLATEAUS? HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THEM? A YEAR LONG plateau after 100 pounds but I kept telling myself that gaining back the weight will not bring future results. After a year I lost over 100 more pounds. Then I hit a 2 year plateau that is just now breaking.
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO LOSE MOST OF THE WEIGHT? It has taken me 10 years with plateaus and all to lose and maintain the weight. I chose purposely to lose it very slowly so I could eat more. I hate starvation diets and I love eating out. I wanted a change I could live with forever, not a quick fix.
DID YOU HAVE ANY NON-SCALE VICTORIES? I can fit in booths, wear seat belts in airplanes, WALK!!!
WHAT DOES YOUR DAILY DIET LOOK LIKE COMPARED TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER? It encompasses much more whole food than it used to with a few processed foods, like frozen light entrees and such. When I was heavier, I was constantly eating diet things, but I was also eating tons of fast food and processed food.
HOW DOES YOUR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY COMPARE TO WHEN YOU WERE HEAVIER? I still arm bike and I do yoga. I can walk, but I get pain and numbness that deters me from getting very far, so I go as far as I can for the day. I do chair exercises and recumbent cross training.
MY WEIGHT LOSS TIPS & TRICKS
- Dress the part, act the part, and suck it up. Think like you are the person you want to become, dress the part if you can and suck up the whining. Whining doesn’t get you anywhere.
- Forgive yourself like you would forgive a child who made a mistake and move on.
- Go slowly. It’s a metamorphosis, not a time crunch. Give your mind time to adjust to what your body is doing so that your habits stay in place and you can keep them up for the long haul.
- Don’t select any habits to add to your lifestyle that you can’t keep up for the long haul. You’re only asking to gain your weight back.
- Get involved online or in person with a support group.