Saturday, February 18, 2012

How I Lost It

I figured it was time for me to explain in depth how I went from 225lbs to 147 lbs (so far). Yes I have lost 78 lbs so far in less than a year. It was NOT easy, I worked HARD for this!!! I will tell you how I ate, how I thought, how I exercised... I will tell all, but I have to say that while this worked for me, it might not work for you but I sure as fuck hope it does!
This picture represents 100 lbs of fat... so take just 22lbs away from that and you see what I lost! OMG!!!
 (picture used from http://gastricallychanged.blogspot.com/2010_07_01_archive.html)

OK, so April of 2011 I decided that I HAVE to lose weight. I was tired of being ashamed and embarrassed of how I looked and wanted to be thin and healthy again. So I decided to diet...
I looked online to find out my ideal weight. I found Web.MD and eventually Sparkpeople.com. Both sites are awesome to help you find where you are, where you should be and how to get where you need to be. You log food eaten (calories, fat, etc), calories burned, weight, inches, etc. It is an awesome tool and I highly recommend either sites.  




 






At first I combined the Slim-Fast Special K diet. I had a shake or meal bar for breakfast and lunch, a 100 calorie snack in between, and I ate a "sensible dinner" which for me consisted of something less than 500 calories from the frozen food aisle. I had my own foods, my children had their own foods... we ate separately. I do have to say that I did take medication, I was (and still am) on Metformin for my blood sugar, and I started taking Alli to help with whatever fat I was eating. Alli is NOT a diet pill, it is an aid. You must still eat healthy and low fat, Alli is not a "free pass".



**Taking Alli does NOT mean that you can pop a pill and go eat at McDonald's and you are OK... it means you can pop a pill, go to McDonald's and have a salad and maybe a few nuggets unless you want greasy farts**

Slowly I started changing the way I ate. Replacing the Slim-Fast or Special K snacks for fresh fruit or veggies and then finally finding new recipes and learning how to cook healthy. I made EVERYONE eat healthy in my house. You cannot eat healthy while everyone in your house is eating junk and processed food. Once in a while I would get them a treat, but I made sure I got my own treat... something low-fat or sugar free. I started eating like a diabetic. I stopped frying foods. I started using wheat bread, whole grain pasta... I learned to READ FOOD LABELS!!!! In the beginning I would use measuring cups to measure out portion sizes... it helped me to learn what a portion was and how much I should be eating; it also helped me to log my food better when I knew exactly how much I was eating.

I stopped drinking soda and started drinking water. Soda is sooo bad for you! Diet soda or not, no matter... it is bad. Just look at the amount of sodium in one soda! So take that and multiply it by how many you have in a day... think you might be retaining a bit of water? I allowed myself one diet soda a day, and today I don't even want soda anymore!

I had lost about 38 lbs before I plateaued. I had lost almost 40 lbs on diet alone, but my body stopped losing... I realized it was time for me to start exercising. Now anyone who knows me knows that I HATED to exercise, it was a 4 letter dirty word for me. I would make all kinds of excuses why I could not do it... but because of the plateau I had to do something! I started going to the gym and working out for at LEAST 30 minutes a day. Eventually I started to actually LIKE exercising and gradually built up the time I spent at the gym. I actually got crabby if I did not exercise for 3 days or more! We have an XBOX 360, so I bought the Kinect and purchased Zumba. I had a Wii and started using the Wii Fit. I admit I did not use the Zumba for a while because it was hard and within a few minutes I was winded, but after I had built up my endurance at the gym on the treadmill and bike Zumba was bearable. I started taking Zumba classes twice a week as well... all by myself... and that was scary at first, but there is one thing I learned throughout this experience is that I could not rely on others to motivate me, I had to motivate MYSELF! If I had a gym buddy that pussed out on me I had to go anyway...

Here are a few more tips:
  • Weight loss buddies are good to have, but it does not always work out... you need to make yourself responsible for your weight loss
  • Buy a good digital scale. I got one that is accurate within .2 lbs... so even when I only lost .4 lbs I could see it and it motivated me to do more
  • Make mini goals- I had my main goal, my goal weight, but I also had mini goals in between. My first was to hit below 200 lbs, 2nd was to reach 175 and weight less than my husband, and I also had goals to not be obese, not be overweight... be a HEALTHY weight! Going from 225 to 142 lbs seems a long way off, but mini goals in between make it a bit easier. 
  • Do NOT set yourself up for failure. Don't do more than you can handle. If you fall off the wagon get right back on it! Don't over exert yourself at the gym, you will only hurt yourself and then you won't want to go back!
  • Take a full length before pic. No matter how ashamed and embarrassed you are of how you look you will want to look back and see where you started. I regret not having that...
  • Measure yourself from the beginning! I started measuring myself halfway through and I still wonder "How many inches have I REALLY lost?" Take measurements once a month.
  • You should not weigh yourself daily... some say once a week is good. I am obsessive, so I weighed myself daily... it kept me on track.
  • Don't deny yourself. If you want ice cream, have some! I would have ice cream every now and again, but I would spoon some into a teacup. It kept me in check. I still have my coffee with flavored creamers... I NEED that! 
  • NO EXCUSES! Never say I can't or I do not have the time. You can always find the time to exercise. That time you use on Facebook cut it down by 30 min and work out! Think you are too fat or out of shape? No money for a gym? NO EXCUSE! Walking on the treadmill, or just WALKING ANYWHERE is still exercise, burns calories, and IT COUNTS!!!
You are your only reason for failure, you are the only one holding yourself back. You have no right to complain about being fat if you are doing nothing about it! You cannot say "I want to lose weight" while stuffing your face with fatty, salty, fried foods! I have PCOS, and for a while I used it as an excuse for why I was fat and why I could not lose weight, but I proved that it can be done... you just have to really want to... and I mean REALLY want to!

April 2011 I was 225 pounds and SQUEEZING into size 16 jeans. Now (February 2012) I am 147 pounds and wearing between a 4 and a 7 (depending on brand). Seriously, if I can do it, so can you... the biggest challenge is retraining your mind. 

5 comments:

Alejandro said...

Very well done Basil..

Keep it up or down, whichever. :)

A

Jessica Brant said...

Laura,

Holy Smacks you look hot, hot hot......

I am so amazed at how great you look and you must feel great... Now the hubby really needs to mind his p's and q's lol

great story so proud of you

Jessica

tmac2271 said...

Yup thats how you do it. I remember when I first started it felt like hell. Everyone else at my gym seemed in great shape and I was a fat tub of lard, but I kept going. I stopped drinking soda long ago but I was (and still) a sucker for nesquick, cookies and cake.

I think when I joined the martial arts club and started moving up the ranks I had to get more serious about having a active lifestyle just so I can keep up with the training. I'm happy and proud of you for your success. =)

Joyce of I Take Off The Mask said...

That's a really great accomplishment! Keep it up ;)

Aly said...

OMG LAURA!!! You inspired me. I'm losing weight oh so slowly. I'm quitting pop slowly (As in I'm down to maybe two or three per WEEK), and so on, portion control. And gym. And ZUMBA which I adore. Thank God you got me started on that. Now I want a Kinect and the ZUMBA game too, so I can have a full workout at home. But anyway, thank you for this post. I needed these tips of yours!! You rock woman!!! <3 XoXOxOOXO