About midway through January of 2014, I made an important and life-changing decision to get healthy. I realized that I was tired. Tired of feeling uncomfortable in my clothes. Tired of feeling like the biggest person in the room, and most of all, tired of feeling like my weight was holding me back from reaching my life goals. Losing weight requires that one must be emotionally and physically ready to do what it takes to achieve their weight loss goal. At the beginning of my journey, I topped the scales at 222.7 pounds. Seeing the numbers on the scale made me realize that it was time for a change. As of today, I am down to 163.6 pounds with a total weight loss of 59.1 pounds. I have gone from a size 18 pants to a size 8/10 and a size XXL to a size medium/large shirt.
In the first few weeks of my journey, I worked out by doing cardio about 4 times a week and introduced healthier foods into my diet losing a total of 11 pounds. I then experienced a plateau and wasn’t sure that I could maintain my resolve to lose weight. One of the things I struggled with was feeling awkward. I lacked the confidence to be in the weight room and was afraid of what others might think of me. Realizing I needed someone to coach me, I decided to work with a personal trainer.
That was a game changer for me. My trainer challenged me and gave me the support I needed by meeting with me twice a month. He helped me with meal planning and taught me how to have proper form while lifting weights. We developed an individualized plan that included weight lifting 3-4 times a week with low intensity cardio afterwards, two days of high intensity cardio workouts and 1 rest day each week.
My meal plan was completely different from what I was used to. I began eating things I had never eaten before such as quinoa, hummus, pumpkin seeds, etc… With this new meal plan I was able to get all the nutrients I needed to help my body shed fat and build muscle while still being able to have one “cheat” meal a week. As a result of the new exercise and meal plan, I was able to lose an additional 48 pounds over the next ten months.
Throughout my journey, I have experienced many plateaus, and even a physical setback that made me feel like giving up. I have gone weeks without losing a single pound, but through all of this I have kept going. I’m blessed to say that I have an amazing support system that has helped me and pushed me on days when I didn’t think I could push myself. Weight loss is a very emotional process and there are many obstacles just wanting to slow you down.
Although I have accomplished more than I ever thought I could, my goals have grown bigger. I feel that my weight loss has empowered me and taught me that I am capable of anything. I still push myself to work out and eat healthy every day because I know that is what is best for me. I hope in the coming year I can continue to become stronger and healthier, both physically and mentally. If I could give anyone advice I would say this – you can do anything you put your mind too! Don’t give up no matter how hard it is because getting healthy is worth the effort.
There are some tips that I would like to share in hopes that it helps others with their weight loss and motivates them to live healthier.
Identify your support team to help you make it through the tough times!
Eat lean proteins such as chicken, turkey, salmon, etc.
Add weight lifting to your routine and don’t be afraid to lift heavy!
Get enough sleep.
Drink enough water for your body weight.
Watch your intake of sugar and sodium to reduce bloating and extra “fluff”.
To push through plateaus, change up your routine, meal plan, etc.
Don’t be afraid to try something new!
And most of all, believe in yourself and realize that you are worth it!
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