I spent New Year's Eve (2010-2011) in the Philly area with my husband, kids and even the dogs. We went out there to visit one of my brothers and his family. Since I'm from Philly and lot of my friends and family are there, it was great to see them all. It was definitely a great time!
The last night I was there which was January 1, 2011, we were all playing the Michael Jackson game on the Wii. I can't remember the actual name of it, but I am sure most of you know what I'm talking about. Anyway, my daughter was snapping pics of my sister in law and I dancing to Thriller! Too funny! Woo! We worked up a serious sweat! I asked my daughter to let me see the pics and that's when I saw myself and thought, "Who the heck is that chubby girl?" Ugh! I think for the first time in a really long time, I realized that I had put on a lot of weight and needed to fix that ASAP!!
Just to give you a point of reference, I was always too thin growing up. I was barely 110 lbs when I became pregnant with my 1st child (at the age of 22) and I am 5'5". My weight at that time was just due to a fast metabolism I guess. Of course after that, I did gain weight, but it would fluctuate between 120 and 135 lbs. I was happy with that range, although I preferred to be on the lower end of that range. HA!
As of January 1, 2011, I weighed 150.8 lbs. That is by far the heaviest I have ever been (minus pregnancies). I couldn't believe it!
On January 2, 2011, my family and I had a long drive back to Michigan from Pennsylvania and that was the perfect time for me to reflect on my weight situation. I was not feeling good about myself; I felt sluggish all the time; my cholesterol/triglycerides were out of control; my family has a history of diabetes. What if I get it?, etc. It was from that point forward that I changed and began my weight loss journey.
I gave up drinking regular Coca Cola. Oh my! That was super painful for me. You don't understand! Coca Cola was like my crack. LOL! I could drink anywhere between three and five 12 ounce cans PER DAY! Each one of those cans is about 140 calories. You can do the math to figure out how many empty calories I was consuming. UGH!! The alternative was water and Cherry Coke Zero.
Drinking regular Coca Cola wasn't the only thing I gave up. I also cut out Fast Food and started eating healthier. I ate a lot of salads, chicken, turkey, whole grain breads, vegetables, fruits, etc. Don't get me wrong! I did allow myself several treats throughout this process. I did not want to deprive myself of everything I enjoy because that would have been unrealistic and this whole journey would have failed. I still enjoyed pizza from time to time; pastas, ice cream, etc. BUT all in moderation.
Aside from my diet, I started working out 6 days a week! Yup! 6 DAYS of working out. I would run on the treadmill 4 days a week and then do workout videos for the other 2 days. It was really difficult at first. I could barely run a half mile without feeling like I was going to die. I could barely get through Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred Level 1 DVD, without feeling like I needed to be carried to my bed in a stretcher. Oh the PAIN!!!
Fast forward to five months later and I feel absolutely great! I've lost 23.2 lbs and still can't believe it!
This healthier lifestyle has now become an important part of my life. I cheat from time to time, but overall, I eat pretty healthy. I run 3 miles outside about 3-4 times a week and I still do workout videos from time to time. I've even had the opportunity to run two 5K's with my husband. Bottom line: This was a LIFESTYLE CHANGE for me; not a crazy fad diet.
I know that weight loss can be frustrating, challenging, etc., but it can be done with hard work, determination and probably the most important piece of all.... patience. You didn't gain weight overnight, so it's not going to come off overnight! I'm no expert, but I say...Forget about those fad diets. They only work temporarily!
I wanted to share my story with you all hoping that perhaps it could be a source of inspiration to anyone who may be want to lose weight. If it reaches just one person and helps them with their weight loss goals; I'll be a happy camper!!