Since sharing my "New Year, Same Me" blog post last year, I have lost 60 pounds, 18.5 inches all around my body, and much more strength and stamina than I thought I was capable of having. Today I'm sharing more details about my weight loss journey thus far, and how I took my first steps toward changing my life and battling my obesity.
Yup, I said it. The "O" word.
Opening up about my obesity and expressing my health goals has been something I've been weary of doing.
After reaching my heaviest weight, and inarguably the worst health I have been in, I finally decided to make some changes. To reclaim my health. In fact, I even shared a little bit about my health goals in my blog post "New Year, Same Me" last year. What I am sharing with you today is what I'd like to think of as an extension and an updated version of my older blog post--a version 2.0, if you will. So if you'd care to read more about my weight loss goals and my journey over the past year, I invite you to continue reading.
More people than I can count have come to me and asked why I haven't been sharing my weight loss journey on my blog. In fact, it has been my most-requested blog post topic to-date. So today, I'm here to talk a little bit about my journey, as well as address 5 of my most-asked questions.
"What made you start?"
For most of my life, I was completely comfortable and happy being overweight. Fad diets, wraps, magical shakes, and all of those ridiculous weight loss gimmicks I see all over Facebook and Instagram every day never phased me. That was until I reached a low point last year.
Seeing my weight begin with the number 3 was shocking, to say the least. To put it frankly, I could not stand weighing well over 300 lbs. But what honestly motivated me the most was the fact that I had difficulty with even the easiest of tasks such as tying my shoes, putting on a bathing suit, climbing a set of stairs, walking to the grocery store...honestly, I could go on and on but I think you get the point. Obesity, and all of the health concerns that come with it, have concerned me enough that I have been taking baby steps towards reversing any damage I have done to my body due to my lack of concern for my health in the past.
"Isn't it hard being a food blogger?"
"Isn't it hard being a food blogger?"
Perhaps the biggest white elephant in the room is the fact that I regularly blog about food.
And yeah, it can be hellish blogging about food on days when I am lacking the willpower to have just one bite or two of a new recipe. Some have suggested I share healthier recipes on my blog and perhaps I may do that, but in order to really make the long-lasting changes necessary to better my lifestyle and eating habits, I am focusing more on food portions rather than changing my diet entirely (to help increase my chance at succeeding).
Food is fuel, no doubt. I know that eating a well-balanced diet that includes vegetables, fruits, and the necessary nutrients our bodies need to survive are necessary. That said, my belief that food can bring people together and also bring one joy trumps the idea that food shouldn't taste good or taste comforting. So if you're sitting here wondering if I'll stop sharing cheesy, delicious comfort food--don't you worry, friend! The tasty recipes that make you drool aren't going anywhere. Honestly, I will always eat comfort food. But with my health in mind, I am making a focus to keep healthy portions and moderation my main priority. Moderation and portion control has done wonders for me. In fact, it has helped transform my mindset and brought change in the right direction with my health.
"How much have you lost?"
Since sharing my "New Year, Same Me" blog post last year, I have lost 60 pounds, 18.5 inches all around my body, and gained more strength and stamina than I ever thought I was capable of having.
Losing weight is great and it's addicting in the best kind of way. My favorite moments throughout my weight loss journey have been considered "non-scale victories," and are not directly related to losing weight but rather how my life has seen changes since becoming more active and eating smarter. To name a few, some of my favorite NSVs (or non-scale victories) have included:
- - waking up feeling alert, positive, and ready to crush my goals
- - being able to shop at "normal" stores for clothing (stores such as Target, Forever 21, etc)
- - "surviving" my cardio-heavy spin classes I attend every week with Adam
- - dancing at the bar without feeling winded
- - not wheezing after walking up a flight of stairs
- - feeling confident enough to have boudoir photos done
- - not feeling physical pain when I bend down to tie my shoes
I can sum up my successes thus far in 3 words: journaling, exercise, and honesty.
Journaling has been as easy as entering data into an app on my phone. I use MyFitnessPal and it's free!
Exercising has always been the easiest and most enjoyable part of my weight loss journey. Regular exercise alternating between Zumba, spin class, walking, and using the elliptical trainer has helped me regain strength and improve my cardio.
Remaining honest with myself was the hardest at first. When I began documenting everything I ate to get an idea of what I was getting myself into, I discovered I consumed 3 times more calories than the average person. Talk about a wake-up call! Guilt settled in quickly, but I tried my best to stay positive and just make goals to eat smaller portions and from there I began to make some smarter choices. Even today, I do feel a little guilt when I plug things like "Chic-Fil-A sandwich" into my food diary, but as long as I'm logging and being mindful of how much and how often I eat these kinds of indulgences I can keep myself accountable and remain on track.
Medically speaking, my ideal weight falls between 154-115 pounds; I am 5' 6", so my ideal BMI (Body Mass Index) falls under that category. If you're curious to find out what your ideal BMI is, you can Google "BMI calculator" to find yours.
My personal, ultimate weight loss goal right now is 199 pounds. I just want to get below 200 pounds again, and once I reach that goal, I can return to the drawing board to see where I want to go from there. I have quite a way to go before I reach that, but for now, I am just setting up micro-goals for myself to stay positive and focused in 20 pounds increments. When I reach a new 20 lbs loss goal, I try to do something nice for myself as a reward (e.g. a new pair of sneakers, a manicure & pedicure, etc).
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog post today. Writing and editing this blog post was an emotional process--I appreciate you allowing me to be open, honest, and vulnerable with you!
Thanks to Chrissy of Let Me See You Sparkle Photography for taking these photos!