Monday, September 1, 2008

How I've lost 55 pounds in 4 months

Here is the promised post from New Me. Thank you Annette for doing this and thank you for the encouragment this post is to all of us. And congratulations on your incredible weight loss!!

First of all, thank you Mrs. Darling for asking me to do a guest post on your blog. It really is an honor because so many bloggers just like you have inspired me on my journey. I get so much from each post and I draw valuable information and motivation from everyone who leaves comments on mine. I started my journey on April 25th of this year.

I have struggled with weight my entire life. Even as a child, I had a pot belly. My mom cooked healthy and I was pretty active. It just so happens our family in general tends to have a slow metabolism. My mom was always pretty thin, but she had to eat in moderation to stay that way. It's hard to explain to a teenager that you can't eat like your friends because you have a slow metabolism. I went on my first diet the fall I was a junior in high school. When I graduated, I had went from the high 170s to about 125-130. I gained it all back and then some.

This became my pattern. Since about 2000 (age 30), I fluctuated in the range of 260-280. I would be inspired to lose after each baby but after about 30 lbs lost, I would lose interest and gain it back. I was doing it for all the wrong reasons. I never thought of doing it for health.

This past Spring, I started feeling just miserable. Everyday housework left me winded and out of breath. Picking toys up off the ground was a real challenge. My clothes were tight. I didn't like what I saw in the mirror. Even though hubby still chased me around I didn't like feeling "close" to him because I was so ashamed of my body. One day something just clicked. I told myself this was no way to live anymore. I wanted to feel healthy and have the energy to keep up with my kids. They are 7, 3, and 23 month old twins. I wanted to feel beautiful again. I wanted to live a long and productive life.

That's what hit me........I just wanted to LIVE!

First, I had to face my weight. I hadn't weighed in over a year but I figured I was on the higher end of my normal range. Wrong! The scale showed me 307! I cried myself to sleep that night, shocked at how high I let my weight get, mad at myself for keeping my eyes shut for this long. The next morning I dried my tears and got serious. For the first month, I followed Atkins induction. It is keeping your carbs to 20g a day.....very low! After 2 weeks, I started walking 30 min. almost every day. While on induction, I lost 3-4 lbs a week. I realized I wouldn't be able to continue that way of eating for the long term and slowly started adding back healthy carbs IN MODERATION.......brown rice, whole wheat products, fruit, etc. I kept an eye on my bad fat intake and tried to get healthy fats in my diet like flax, nuts, olive oil. I stay away from alcohol.

I am still losing anywhere from 1-3lbs every week except one where I just maintained. Since, April 25th, I have lost 55 lbs. My goal is to weigh around 160 lbs. I think this is a realistic weight for me. I am 5'5. I would love to be a healthy weight by my 39th birthday...next year in May. When I weighed in last week I was 252.

I believe you don't have to go on a "diet" to lose weight. I think of food more now as fuel. I don't want to put anything in my body now that isn't going to be good quality fuel. My body deserves the good, high-quality stuff. I stay away from heavy carbs in the evenings most of the time and I really try not to eat after 6 or 7pm. I eat 5-6 mini-meals most days. I have learned that keeping something in me about every three hours really helps so that I never get to that starving point. I am more in control of what I eat when I'm not starving. We don't keep unhealthy foods in the house. I figure that nobody needs it, thin or fat! There's a time and a place for treats and it makes them more special when we do have them. I will eat what everyone else is eating when we get together with family.....I just do it in moderation. I may split a cupcake with one of my kids instead of eating it all. I cook healthy alternatives to old unhealthy favorites.......like pizza.

A typical day looks like this for me:7am: coffee with milk, small handful of nuts or 1 or 2 boiled eggs10am (after morning workout)......1/2 cup oatmeal cooked with water and 1-2 tbs. natural peanut butter, 4 tbs. ground flax, tsp. cinnamon, and a splash of milk1pm BIG salad with tuna or chicken, olive oil and vinegar (tons of veggies.....3-5 servings of anything I have like mushrooms, cucumbers, lettuce, peppers etc)4pm apple, slice of cheese5:30 0r 6;00 : dinner.......anything, I just watch my portions.......like tonight I am making chicken and brown rice with sweet potatoes on the side I use small plates and rarely take more than what was on my plate. I drink one gallon of water a day. I take a mulivitamin and 161 mg of baby aspirin every day. I don't drink diet soda except on a rare occasion. I drink decaf green tea in the afternoons. If I am feeling the munchies coming on in the evening I make myself a cup of coffee with milk and a little Splenda.

I use the Walk Away the Pounds dvd series. I started with the 18 min 1 mile and have worked up to the 47 min 3 mile. These workouts also use upper body and weighted balls. I do a core strength training video "You on a Diet" workout 3x a week. I joined the push up challenge and am on week 6. I do that 3x a week. After completing the program, I will continue to do pushups at least 3x a week. I am trying to challenge myself more. This weekend I did a 6 mile walk outdoors to my parents' house. It WAS a challenge but so worth it.

I have read Dr. Oz's "You on a Diet" and have found it to be very valuable on the journey. If I could leave you with the short version I would say: get some exercise in everyday, eat healthy foods that are good for you, eat in moderation, stay hydrated, don't EVER let yourself get to the starving point, and think of weight loss as a journey. Share this journey with others....blogging is great inspiration and motivation....and it keeps you accountable! Adopt this healthy lifestyle for the rest of your life and encourage your loved ones to do the same. Have FUN and live in the present. Let go of the past. The future is yours!

16 comments:

  1. Congratulations on your weight loss! That's awesome!

    Mel
    Dietnakedblog.com

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  2. Awesome!! My thoughts exactly ;) (well except i do indulge in one glass of wine a week :)
    Wonderful job as a guest poster.

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  3. Thank you Mrs. Darling for asking me to do the guest post. It was an honor ;) Happy Labor Day to all!

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  4. great post...keep up the good work! The hardest part is getting into the "groove" and you definitely found it!
    Candee

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  5. **uproar of super-enthusiastic applause**

    Thank you for sharing that. We are much alike - more than I would have guessed! I am renewed having read your info.

    Linda

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  6. **cue confetti shaped like annette the amazing Mrs Darling & protein shakes**

    loved it and really appreciated you taking the time to LAY IT ALL OUT.

    Miz.

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  7. What a great post! Thanks for sharing, Annette. And it is GREAT that you did all this with a houseful of young children. Bravo!!

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  8. I was kinda jealous when I saw how much she had lost, esp. since I've been at it since the end of Feb. and have lost 30 lbs. However, now that I see the way she is eating, I have to say I'm no longer envious. I admire her for having the discipline to stick to it, but for me that would be a completely unrealistic diet. I just hope she is able to maintain her momentum with such a restrictive diet.
    ~Bethany

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  9. You've done a great job Annette! I especially agree with the fact that you don't need to "diet" to lose weight. I think it's all about eating healthy, and in moderation.

    You're a great example of what hard work and dedication to yourself and your body can do for your health. And that's what it's all about - living a healthy life!

    Keep it up, you're doing awesome!!

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  10. Thank you for this post! It's so encouraging to hear Atkins success stories. I am inspired to get back to basics with it! Keep it up!

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  11. What an awesome post! Thanks, Mrs Darling, for inviting Annette to share her story with all of us! :)

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  12. Mrs. Darling,

    I am down a total of 9 pounds now

    Rachelle

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  13. Wow, Annette. Congrats on making a life altering decision. One that will enable you to enjoy your life and your kid's life for yrs to come. I think you are doing a great job of putting all the right peices together that work for you and it shows. Thank you so much for letting us glimpse into your diet life. It gives me a better perspective.
    Mrs. D. thanks for letting Annette give this post it was great.
    Vanessa

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  14. Thanks for mentioning "You on a diet" - I googled it and they have free workout videos online. How cool is that?!
    I also enjoyed your positive testimony.

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  15. thanks for all of the great comments everyone. Bethany, I have actually never felt restricted except that month on induction. I eat when I'm hungry and never feel deprived. I know I will continue the momentum because I view it as a healthy way to eat and feed the family. Thanks for your comment though. Everyone should find what will work for them :)....losing weight is so different for each of us.
    Good luck with your continued loss as well!

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Thank you for taking the time to encourage me on my journey! Your comment is appreciated!