As a child, I was always on the chunky side. This is not a surprise at all, considering I lived in a house where I ate what I wanted, when I wanted. When I finished a meal, I could go get something off the candy table, ask for seconds, or just about anything I wanted.
Anytime throughout the day when I wanted something, I just went and got it. Gravy and biscuits for breakfast, fried chicken, mashed potatoes and fried potatoes for lunch, grilled cheese sandwiches for dinner and a snack of a fried chicken patty sandwich with chips before bedtime. By the time I was in high school, I was pushing 230lbs and was wearing a size 18.
I knew I had a problem, I also knew I had to change. But how do you do that, how does someone change? Looking back on it all now, I wish I would have had some of the insight that I do now. At that point in my life, change for me was eating all the unhealthy, processed food out there that catered to dieters. If it said “low fat” or “fat free” I tried it. I won’t lie, I lost weight, I lost 40 lbs in a short time. But I also lost energy, I lost concentration, I gained health problems and in the end I didn’t feel any better about myself than I did when I was 40 lbs heavier. I never really liked myself or felt like I was making an improvement on myself, even though the number on the scale was going on.
I continued with this process through college, graduate school, and two kids. About a year after my 2nd child I had reached a point of desperation. I was eating at most 1200 calories a day, I was running 4+ miles a day, and I was just not losing the weight. I was desperate, and my husband knew it.
At that point he gave me the best gift he has ever given me, for my birthday he gave me a gym membership and a consultation with a personal trainer. I really do consider that point in my life to be when I turned a corner. With the help of my trainer, I started strength training 3 to 5 days a week and doing cardio on a regular basis.
I totally revamped my diet to include real food, as opposed to the over processed “fat free” junk I had been eating before. My diet now consists of lean meats, vegetables, and gluten free grains (as I am gluten free for medical reasons). While I do still allow myself to eat foods I enjoy, I look for healthier options. For example, instead of a candy bar I will have a Quest Bar, or instead of a normal fat and sugar filled brownie, I will have a homemade protein brownie. After making these diet and exercise changes I finally started seeing the changes in myself that I wanted to see. I had the opportunity to watch my body transform before my very eyes.
The most beautiful part of the transformation is when you reach a certain point, the changes that are taking place inside become just as important as the ones you are seeing on the outside. I gained confidence in myself and no longer placed my self worth on the number I saw on the scale or a reflection I saw in the mirror. I started to appreciate my body for the things it could do and what I could accomplish. Most importantly, I started to love myself and in the end, nothing is as important as that.
My tips for success –
1. Set goals! A lot of times when people decide to change their life, they work really hard at it. They will work and work but not really get anywhere in the end because they are not sure where they are going. Set goals and come up with a plan to help you get there.
2. Find a plan that works for you! Don’t settle on an action plan to change your life because someone says it will work. Do you research and find something that you will be able to carry out on a daily basis, because in the end, if you can’t work with the plan, the plan won’t work for you.
3. Get an expert opinion! If at all possible, find someone who can help guide you on your journey. I really don’t think my transformation would have been possible if I had not had my trainer to guide me along the way. Find someone who can give you advise and hold you accountable.
4. Do the work! I know as well as anybody how hard it is sometimes to make yourself go to the gym or complete a workout. There are so many excuses you can come up with in your head to justify not doing it. Don’t listen to them. Put in the work whether you feel up to it or not. You will not regret it in the end!
5. Eat for your goals! This is by far the hardest thing to do. Think about what you are eating and consider that maybe your current diet is the problem. Do your research and eat healthy, real food that is good for you. Clean up what you are putting inside your body and you will see that the outside of your body will flourish.
Team Quest – We are here for you! Share your transformations and triumphs with us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or email them to us at [email protected]. Remember that these transformations took hard work, discipline and a plan. Quest products are a delicious component of, and not a substitute for, an exercise regimen and effective diet. The Quest Community is always there for you if you need help, inspiration or motivation!