After the birth of my second son in 2009, my weight ballooned to a high of 268 lbs and it wasn't until I saw a picture of myself at my sisters baby shower in August 2010 that I took the bull by the horns and decided I needed to change.
The problem I had was that I was never in pictures. I was always the one that took them. And when I looked at myself in the mirror, I saw who I wanted to see, not who I was.
When I saw the pictures from the baby shower, it was like a huge slap in the face. I looked just as pregnant as my sister and my cousin and my son (by then) was almost a year old.
I didnt have a single excuse anymore. I needed to do something and I needed a change. I had two children and a fabulous husband that I wanted to make sure I was around for.
I had kept hearing about a supplement on the radio (Channel 955 in Detroit) that Mojo (one of the DJ's) was taking. He had successful weight loss from it and they had a 30 day money back guarantee so I figured "what the heck". The name of the supplement is called HealtheTrim. I did my research on it. I wanted to make sure it was nothing that would harm me. (I went on to endorse this product and provide a testimonial for them. You can still see my picture on their website.)
I also knew that this was not a magic pill. I had to change my habits.
My mother in law had mentioned to me in the past about zumba. She had taken classes and loved it. I had reservations. I didn't want to look like a fat fool in front of a bunch of strangers. She mentioned how she saw the infomercial for zumba with Beto on tv and surprise surprise, I saw it on tv that weekend too. It looked like so much fun and it stayed on my mind all weekend.
I figured if I thought about it all weekend, I had to give it a try- and that folks was the start of my exercise routine.
The weight loss wasn't an overnight thing. I changed my eating. With the supplements, they helped me feel fuller faster and curb my appetite but I couldn't have artificial sweeteners or caffeine while on them. I also cut out alcohol. There were too many empty calories in the drinks to make it worth while to me.
I also found two really cool apps for my Android that I started to use. The first one is called MyFitnessPal. You can track all your calories you consume in a day PLUS your exercise. It was fantastic. I started eating more protein and less fat, calories, and sodium. Hard boiled eggs and Emeralds Cocoa covered Almonds became regular food in my diet. I drank Celestial Honey Vanilla Chamomile tea with Honey instead of coffee.
The FitnessPal app also made me plan ahead with what I was going to eat to make sure I didnt go over my calories for the day. I highly recommend it!
The second app I found when I started to walk with my boys every morning. It is called CardioTrainer. It uses GPS to track where I walk, how far I walk, what my MPH is, and how many calories I burn. I still use it to this day when I go for a run.
After I started losing weight doing zumba EVERY night and watching what I eat, I started to incorporate our elliptical into the routine. My husband had bought it for me a couple years prior, but then I got pregnant, had complications, and couldn't use it- though he did on occasion.
Soon more weight came off. Did I have my days? Yes. Did I fall off the wagon? Occasionally. But I was determined this time. This time I was losing the weight for me and not for someone else. I was DETERMINED to better myself and to make myself better for my family.
Soon 9 months passes (August to April) and I was able to lose 100 lbs! I never thought it would happen.
I also started to run. I entered my first 5k race when I lived in Oakland County. It was July 2nd, 2011. I didnt reach my goal of getting under 30 minutes (I finished it in 33 minutes and some odd seconds), but it got me hooked.
So I decided to do it the old fashioned way- with hard work. This is the path I am on now. I am working my butt off (literally) trying to reduce my stomach. My goal is to see how flat I can get it by the start of swimsuit season (June).
I also joined a gym that offers free fitness classes. I work out there at least 4 days a week. I also recently started doing P90X at home while keeping up my gym schedule. It is a lot, but I know this goal in itself is extreme. I am here to push the limits and then exceed them!
I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. And there must be a reason I am successful this time around. I feel like I am meant to share my story- to show others it is possible to achieve WITHOUT surgery (bariatric or otherwise) and am now contemplating on becoming a Personal Trainer/Fitness Instructor or Nutritionist. I am SURE that will be mentioned in future blogs!
So if you have read this far, and have any questions, PLEASE feel free to ask. I am an open book when it comes to this. I know what it feels like to lose weight then gain it back. I want to help if I can.
*The picture above is before my first 5k race that I mentioned in Clawson, MI. I am in the middle and on my left is my BFF Colleen and on my right is my Cousin Danielle. Danielle was a GREAT support to me during this race and kept me going as she is a seasoned pro at races.
**Edited July 16th, 2012**
March 15th, 2012 changed my life when the unexpected happened.
A tornado hit our home at approx 5:30 in the evening and nearly destroyed it. While we were lucky (we were not there when it hit) and the home only had to be taken down to the wood framing, neighbors across from us and thru the sub lost everything.
We were evacuated from our home for two months during construction. During that time, my husband left for out of state for work, I commuted an hour each way each day to take my boys to school, and the boys and I lived off of any food that was fast and convenient. Exercise was put on the back burner. The gym was definitely out because of the commute and because my husband was away, I couldnt go for runs in the evenings. I became a temporary single parent.
We moved back in just before Memorial Day and it was then that I weighed myself and realized that I had gained literally 22 pounds back in those two months we were out of the house.
This is now a journal about healthy living, finding myself again, and getting back into the groove.
Surgery is always a last resort for accomplishing the me I want to be, but the tornado changed my views and made me realize that perfection isnt always the answer. What matters most is HEALTH!!