A common question I get asked is “what are you doing to lose the weight.”
I’d like to answer that question here. On my blawwwg.
The first thing I did was get proper medical care. I didn’t give up when Doctors told me to “work out harder” or “eat less.” I knew that there was something wrong with my body and I fought until I got the tests that I needed to get a diagnoses and treatment. It’s important to know that I was unable to lose any weight before I was on the proper medications.
When I first found out I was insulin resistant and that I’d have to take Metf*rmin, I pretty much stopped eating sugar and All Things White (bread, pastries, etc) I was terrified of developing diabetes (insulin resistance= pre-diabetic.) If the only option for breakfast was a muffin, I’d skip breakfast. That is no longer the case. I’ve learned to cut most sugar/White stuff out of my diet, but I will allow myself a dessert (CHEESECAKE!) or a scone every once in a while now.
Here’s the thing– I am not on a diet. In fact! I will not go on another diet for as long as I live. And here’s why– I never want to gain the weight back. I want to be able to maintain this loss, I want it to be forever. The reality is that simple sugars aren’t something I should eat and for the most part, I don’t. If I want a burrito, I use a whole wheat tortilla. If I want a piece of toast- it’s whole grain/wheat. I no longer choose sourdough bread for sandwiches, nor do I have a sugared up latte every morning. However, if I want a piece of cheesecake while out to dinner with friends, I’ll have a piece of cheesecake.
So, while I’m not “on a diet.” I most definitely have made some changes, but these changes are for the rest of my life. I am not going to go off of a diet and binge. It won’t happen. I may have a piece of sourdough bread sometime in the future, but I won’t be writing a blog post about what a failure I am for going “over my points” or “blowing it” ever again.
The most drastic change for me has been in the form of physical activity.
The first few months were difficult. Workouts had become complicated due to my thyroid condition going untreated for so long. Irregular heartbeats. Chest pains. Difficulty breathing. Nothing like a ride to the ER in the back of an ambulance and 2 shots of Nitro to make you live in fear of dying of a heart attack on the treadmill. The first few months of working out after that incident were rough. I was scared to push myself. Even after I was medicated properly and my heart was working as it should (according to two doctors)– I was terrified. I would stop and check my pulse every other minute. And if it got too high, I would stop.
That is why I said that I never imagined I’d be able to run 3 miles. I didn’t think I was capable. I was operating from a place of fear.
I’ve since conquered that fear. While I am still mindful of my heart rate and how my body feels, I no longer fear to control me. I push my body a little bit more each time. And I am constantly amazed at what it can do.
I try to work out at least 5 days a week. 30 minutes or more of cardio (usually running, sometimes elliptical and sometimes step, jump rope.) and alternating upper/lower body workouts with weights, squats, push ups each night. For instance: Last night I worked my arms with free weights and some machines. Tonight, I will do legs.)
The night before last night, I ran another 5k on the treadmill. I need to prove to myself that the first time wasn’t a fluke. That my body is truly capable of such things.
I not only did it again, but I improved my time by 2 minutes.
I don’t write about that to brag- there are millions of people who can run farther and faster than I can. I write about them because I am in awe of how far I have come on this journey towards a healthier, more efficient body.
The truth is I’m stuck in the weight loss department. I’m still holding steady at 186 pounds. (180’s are the new 200’s, apparently!) But that isn’t stressing me out because my body IS changing for the better. It’s stronger, faster, healthier and that is what this journey is all about for me.
(Although, I really do need to drop another 36 pounds so I can get off of this metf*rmin, which is still wreaking havoc on my body– more specifically, my digestive system. I’ll spare you the details, but HOLY NOT POOPING FOR 5 DAYS AND THEN FOR 4 HOURS STRAIGHT ON THE 6TH DAY.)
So that right there is what I’m doing to lose weight. Eating as healthy as possible for my body and exercising at least 4-5 days a week.
And because I’ve not posted photos in a while- here is a before and a current (taken today) photo of my progress. There is a very good reason my hand is covering my belly button and that is because my belly button is JACKED THE EFF UP. No one needs to see that. Gaining 100 pounds and losing 50 of that 100 can do that to a belly button, I guess. I cover it up because I care about you, is what I’m trying to tell you.
Here’s to losing another 50.
Today was a bad day that involved bad news that led to more bad news that led to me hyperventilating into the phone asking me husband to talk me down from a panic attack.
Today had the potential to break me.
But it didn’t.
Because today I took all of the fear, frustration, negativity and used it as fuel to do something I’ve not yet been able to do.
Run 3.11 miles.
I ran 5k.
When I was 237 pounds I couldn’t walk for 5 minutes on the treadmill. Everything hurt. I couldn’t breathe. I felt so pathetic. I would cry, right there on the treadmill. Tears of frustration, of shame, of anger. I’d leave the gym feeling like a failure. I wanted to give up many times.
I’ve kept with it, even though the weight loss results have been painfully slow. I’ve kept going because with each workout, I felt a little stronger. With each new milestone, I felt more confident. I felt more energetic. I felt more… capable.
Of anything and everything.
I want to say this to anyone reading who is where I was a year ago.
You are capable. Capable of running. Capable of losing the weight. Capable of pushing your body to do amazing things.
I know from experience that when you’re overweight, people love to tell you how “you’re doing it wrong.” And most times, they are demeaning in their tone and cruel with their words.
I know what it feels like to be severely overweight. I understand how hard it is to get up and move. I understand why you want to give up. But please, don’t give up on yourself.
Start small. Start slow. Five minutes on the treadmill. And if you can go another five, then do it. Don’t beat yourself up for not doing more than you think you should be doing. Do what you can, but push yourself a little bit more each time. When you think you want to quit, push yourself for 15 more seconds.
When you’ve done what you can do, be proud of yourself for doing it. Don’t worry about what you *should* have or *could* have done. Revel in what you did. And promise yourself to do it again tomorrow.
One year ago, I would have never believed that I could run 3.1 miles. Hell, I wouldn’t have believed that I could run.
I can and I did.
And it feels better than I ever imagined.
At the beginning of the week I made the decision to give up my lattes.
Let me be more specific. I made the decision to give up my every! single! morning! Starbucks, grande, non fat, upside down, caramel macchiatos.
I made this decision for several reasons.
I seem to have hit a plateau with my weight loss. I’ve been stuck at 49 pounds lost (188) for a while. I felt like I needed to switch things up diet wise as well as kick things up workout wise. The lattes are full of carbs and sugar and I’m not supposed to be putting either of those things into my body. (Well, some carbs, yes. Those kind of carbs? Absolutely not.)
I love caramel macchiatos. I’m addicted to caramel macchiatos.
When Monday morning came around, I knew that it was going to be hard to NOT DRIVE TO STARBUCKS after I dropped G off at school. I knew it would be a struggle to turn the opposite way and drive home.
So, I decided to go for a run in place of a drive to Starbucks.
The distraction worked. After my run (I ran a mile! At the park! The park I could barely walk at without wheezing. RAN! IT! ALL! THE! WAY! WITHOUT! STOPPING!) I had no desire to drive to Starbucks. So, I did it again the next morning. And the next. But the morning after that, I decided I should get dressed so I didn’t take my daughter to school while wearing sweats again and so I COULDN’T go for a run because I was wearing strappy sandals and if I couldn’t go for a run, I had to go to Starbucks because that is how LIFE WORKS AND THIS IS WHY I DON’T GET DRESSED UP IN THE MORNINGS. Also? I’m weak.
But, that was just one day and I’m over it. Slip ups happen. You learn from them and move on.
In addition to running in the morning, I’ve also been going to the gym in the evenings to do weight training. Two workouts in one day! I don’t even know who I am anymore!
I tell you all of this to day, I finally broke the plateau because last night when I stepped on the scale it said 187, which means I’ve officially lost 50 pounds.
I can now say that MORE THAN halfway to my goal. And that is amazing to me.
What my ass looks like 50 pounds lighter.
The last time that I posted about my weight loss progress was on February 3rd.
I had lost 42 pounds and weighed 195 pounds.
Today, almost 2 months later, I weigh 188 pounds.
49 pounds, gone.
1 pound away from 50.
If you’ve followed my story, you know why it’s a B.F.D (thank you for that, Joe Biden!) that I’ve been able to lose almost 50 pounds.
The best part of losing 49 pounds has been how much better I feel every minute of every day. Physically. Mentally. Emotionally. In The Sack-ually.
The worst part about losing 49 pounds has been The Sag.
Everything is sagging. My skin. My face. MY BOOBS.
The other day, my daughter caught a glimpse of Naked Me as I was getting ready to get in the shower.
“Eww.” She said. “Your boobs. Why are the pointing *down*?”
I try not to dwell on The Sag. I try to dwell on the fact I’m decreasing my chances of getting diabetes, that my blood pressure is now normal, that my knees no longer hurt when I walk, that I don’t get winded doing the simplest things.
I am 1 pound away from a HUGE weight loss milestone. That means so much more to me than perky tits.
What 188 pounds looks like.
(before and progress photos here)
This is Me and My Dress Having Fun in Houston
I am totally impressed with myself, balancing in heels like that.
Also? Totally proud of myself for putting aside my insecurities about my body to wear something pretty and to have a good time.
Embrace the body you have now, ladies. If you’re not happy with the way you look and you want to lose weight, then do it. BUT! DO NOT STOP LIVING in the mean time. You deserve to enjoy your life whether you’re 110 pounds or 300 pounds.
Life is good. And life is short. Don’t waste a minute of it.
This weekend I had to do some shopping.
More specifically, for a dress.
Here’s the thing. I hate shopping for clothes. Mostly because of my size. But also the shape of my body.
Everything is large and sags and the roll of fat on the right size of my waist is much bigger than the one on my left and it annoys the ever living piss out of me.
When I am forced to buy new clothes, I really try to focus on the progress I’ve made. I focus on the fact that I can now buy size 16 jeans instead of size 22 jeans. I focus on the fact that I can buy Regular ol’ Large instead of X-large in shirts. I try NOT to focus on the extra 50 pounds still clinging to my body. I try not to focus on the lumps and rolls.
But dress shopping is different.
I can’t cover the (uneven) belly rolls. I can’t hide my Shelf Ass. I can’t hide the back of my leg, just above the knee area, that is so lumpy and unattractive.
That is why I don’t buy dresses. No matter how cute. No matter how much I want to wear them. I just don’t.
Except this weekend, I bought a dress.
A fitted dress. That shows my arms. And my (uneven) belly rolls. And my Shelf Ass. And the back of my leg, just above my knee area. It shows it all.
And then some.
And by “some” I mean “my boobs.”
I almost didn’t buy it. But I posted it on twitter and everyone was like “you look great! Buy it!” And I chose to believe them because my friends are honest and I don’t think they’d want me going to a party looking like a Lumpy Asshole.
Speaking of assholes… my boobs. I will be wearing a cami, so, fear not! There will be no wardrobe malfunctions! (Unless, I drink too much wine. Then I’ll probably want to go to the bathroom and take the cami off because “I just want to be freeeee!” What I’m trying to say is DON’T LET ME DRINK TOO MUCH WINE, HOUSTON.)
I’m feeling insecure about wearing the dress. I can’t lie.
But here’s the thing (that I just decided.)
Life is too short to NOT wear pretty dresses.
So, I’m going to squeeze all 194 pounds of me into that dress, put on a pair of hot shoes (that I bought at Target. For less than $25) and enjoy the hell out of that party.
Oh, yes I am.
This morning me and my (still unemployed, hold me) husband were watching yesterday’s Oprah show. It was about diabetes.
Having been diagnosed with “insulin resistance” (pre-diabetes) I thought I had educated myself on the disease sufficiently.
Turns out, I didn’t know as much as I thought I did. There was so much valuable information on that show. And the information scared both me and my husband straight.
Did you know that having 1 12 oz can of soda a day increases your risk of type2 diabetes by 83%?
One of the biggest risk factors for diabetes is belly fat.
Before I had thyroid disease and all of the health problems that have followed, I never had a problem with belly fat. When I’d gain weight, it would mostly be in my thighs and ass. I was always small waisted. That all changed with the thyroid disease. Suddenly, weight started piling on my mid section. I had no idea how dangerous all of that weight piling up in my belly was.
I am not sure how big my waist was at it’s largest as I was always too afraid to take my measurements. What I do know is that last January, my waist was a whopping 43 inches.
According to Dr.Oz, if your waist size (measured at your belly button) is more than half of your height, you have too much belly and you are at risk for diabetes.
This fact caught my husband’s attention. You see, my husband is by all accounts “thin.” Not an ounce of fat on his arms or his legs. But– he has a belly. This bit of information made him pause and think.
“I wonder how big my waist is.” He said. “I should know that.”
I ran to get the measuring tape, more than happy to measure his beer gut. I was relieved to find out that his belly is MORE INCHES THAN MY BELLY. It’s been a while since I could say that.
I threw down a challenge to my husband. .
“let’s see who can lose the most belly inches in one month.”
He accepted the challenge.
We both used Dr.Oz’s formula to set our goals.
I am 5’4″ = 64 inches. Half of 64 is 32.
My waist size is now 36 inches. I need to lose at least 4 inches.
My husband is 5’9″= 69. Half of 69 is 34.5
His waist is 38 inches. He needs to lose at least 3.5 inches.
What makes this challenge so great to me is that my husband has never once had to watch what he eats. He’s been blessed with a kick ass metabolism. It’ll be fun to watch him TRY to say no to a muffin or a piece of pie. It will also be fun watching him do sit-ups. I can’t say that I ever have seen him do any in our 19 years of marriage.
I am confident I will win this challenge. I am also confident that this is going to be so great for both of us.
We’ll take measurements on March 5 and I will record it live and post the results here.
Losing weight when your body is fighting itself isn’t easy. In fact, it’s been harder than words could ever express.
I finally have managed to get under 200 pounds– that was a huge victory. But the battle is not over. I still have at least another 40-50 pounds to lose. (And I do mean “have to.” Not “want to” or “would like to.” H-A-V-E to.) I know that it’s going to be even harder still. I know I’ll have to continue to make adjustments to my diets. I know I’ll have to be even more disciplined. I know I’ll have to workout harder than I’ve been doing. I know there are a lot of challenges that lie ahead.
I’m ready for them. I am excited to see what this year holds for me physically. I’m hoping this is the year I can stop taking Metf*ormin. I’m hoping this is the year I can run a 5K or a 10K or A HALF MARATHON. I *feel* like anything is possible if I put my mind to it, but the reality is that this body of mine is kind of an asshole. If I don’t eat correctly, if I don’t continue to work out regularly, things could take a turn for the worse in the blink of an eye. I know that whore prostitute, Diabetes, is lurking around the corner, waiting for me to give up on myself so she can have her way with me. This is what keeps me motivated to do the right things for my body.
I’m not going to let that whore win.
It’s taken me 2 years to lose 38 pounds.
If I dwell on that, I would cry. I would give up. I can not dwell on that.
I have to believe in myself and my ability to Beat This Shit. Because I’m tired of This Shit.
(I know. I sound like a broken record. Trust me, I FEEL like a broken record. I try to keep my posting about this stuff to a minimum. The thing is– this is my life. This is what I live every single day and writing it out helps. Especially because I know that the people who read here will be here, cheering me on, offering me advice and that has been INVALUABLE to me. I hope you understand.)
(I feel like I need to point out the fact that the most recent picture is a bit misleading. The mirror at the gym makes me look much thinner than I am. I definitely am not as thin as it looks. I almost hesitated in posting, but I wanted to show the difference in my body’s shape.)
These are the numbers that have flashed on the scale for the past month. It’s been mentally frustrating to not be able to break the 200 pounds mark. To be honest, it’s been so discouraging that I started to give up. I wasn’t going to the gym regularly. I wasn’t watching my sugar intake like I should. It just felt like it was never going to happen, so why am I killing myself trying?
Then, I came across a video on YouTube about insulin resistance. I was reminded yet again of what could happen to my body if I don’t take care of it properly. I had become so focused on “the numbers” that I temporarily lost sight of what is really important.
Not getting diabetes.
I was slipping back into my old way of thinking regarding weight and body image. And that is UNACCEPTABLE. If I allow myself to think and behave in that manner, my health will deteriorate. That’s the reality of my life now.
Luckily, I saw the errors of my way and snapped out of the funk.
I started working out regularly again.
My body has responded in a way I was beginning to think it never would.
I spent my lunch break at the gym today.
I ran. I did the elliptical.
I did free weights. Squats. Push ups. Crunches. Leg lifts.
I was drenched in Sweet, Glorious Sweat.
As I left the gym, I was PUMPED UP.
I had burned a ton of calories. I felt strong. I felt healthy. I felt like I could kick your ass and then her ass and his ass. I think I could have kicked the ass of the entire world.
I got in my car, Jay-Z blasting in my ear. I was like IN YOUR FACE, DISEASES THAT TRY TO KEEP ME DOWN.
And then, I drove by McDonalds.
“The McRib is back!” It said.
Next thing you know, I’m sitting in my car, BBQ sauce dripping in between my fingers as I stuff my face with FAKE RIB MEAT.
As I was cleaning up the mess on my face with a wet wipe, I began to feel pretty disgusted with myself. I felt like crying, puking and kicking my own ass all at the same time.
I didn’t have to tell anyone about this. I could have thrown the evidence away and went about my day as if it never happened. However, I need to be accountable for the way I treat my body, what with all of the diseases and disorders I’m trying to keep under control. I realize it’s okay to occasionally indulge in Not So Good For You Food. But honestly, with the amount of weight I have to lose and the fact that I’m pre-diabetic, doesn’t give me much license to EAT A MCRIB IN MY CAR AFTER A WORKOUT.
This can’t ever happen again, self. YOU HEAR ME?