I was always the heavy girl – I was always told being heavy was just my build. Then one day, things changed. I woke up one late summer morning and decided… enough was enough.
I come from a long line of family who suffer from obesity related illnesses, and I decided that wasn’t going to be me. I work hard on my mind in graduate school, why can’t I put the same amount of passion into transforming myself? They say just like that, things can change – and for me, they did. I tried all of the “fad” diets out there – grapefruit diet? I’ll try it. Cranberry juice cleanse? Sure, why not. But nothing was working or giving me the results I wanted, if I wanted to lose weight, it was time to be serious.
It was time for a total overhaul and I knew it. I had to rework the way I thought about food, my entire relationship with food needed to change. I needed to view food for what it is – nutrition. Important nutrition for not only my body, but my mind too. I spent an entire day purging my house of everything that I no longer felt was good for my body. I became a strict label reader, I read literally every label before I put something in my cart. If I go out to eat, I research the restaurant’s nutrition online and go in knowing what I’m going to order.
But I didn’t do all of this alone, I enlisted the help of my best friend and biggest supporter – my mom. Together we’ve lost over 250 pounds, we keep each other honest, and we keep each other motivated. I’m not sure if I could have done it without her, but I know I wouldn’t have been as inspired if it wasn’t for her. She’s suffered from diabetes for over a decade, I watched her prick her finger and check her blood sugar – I watched her suffer. When she lost the weight – she lost her diabetes too. She also lost her sleep apnea and high blood pressure medication. In my eyes, she’s a rockstar.
As for my health, I was suffering from high blood pressure since I was a teen – today, I’m off all my medication. My blood pressure is normal – and so is my BMI. I also suffered from debilitating migraines from a condition called Pseudotumor cerebri – I haven’t had to take my migraine medicine for months because I lost the migraines when I lost the weight.
With everything I’ve lost, I’ve gained so much. I didn’t know how sick I felt until I lost the weight. I have so much more energy, which is good considering I’ve adopted a strict workout schedule. Most days I workout twice a day, I find that besides my morning coffee – there’s nothing better than a morning run. Most days I’m in awe that my body can do that – I’ll never take it for granted.
When I was pushing 300 pounds I couldn’t walk up a flight of steps without getting winded, now I complete obstacle races. The first time I completed an obstacle race I looked up the mountain I was expected to run up and thought there’s no way. That way of thinking got in my way for too long. When I ran up that mountain for the first time, I did it for the girl who was obese and sick, the girl who always thought she couldn’t – but she could and she did.
When I jumped over the fire at the finish – I was completely hooked. I went home that night and signed up for the next race and I got up the next morning and started training for the next one. Next year my goal is to finish the Spartan Trifecta and complete my first marathon.
I can now say that I push myself in every aspect of my life – both mentally and physically. I’m proud to say that this is truly a quest – a journey that has no definitive destination. I’m on a mission every single day to better myself. To improve my health and my life. I don’t hate the old, heavy, me – I love her, she would be so proud of what I’ve become – because of that I must keep pushing myself.
Here are a few tips for weight loss success:
- Be honest. Be honest with yourself and hold yourself accountable! If you cheat, the only person you’re cheating is yourself.
- Drink. No, not alcohol – drink water! I always have a hydration bottle with me wherever I go.
- Remember progress is a process. You didn’t gain weight overnight, it’s not going to melt off over night either – stick with it and the results will follow.
- Even a “bad” workout is better than no workout! There will be times you don’t feel like working out, get out there and do it – you’ll be glad you did. There are many mornings I want to lay in bed cuddled up with my cat, but I force myself to go get that workout in – I haven’t regretted one yet!
- Quest Bars! I always have one in my bag, you never know when you’ll be in a pinch and they’re the perfect alternative to poor food choices! Oh, and they’re delicious too!