Friday, February 8, 2013

The post I've been waiting to write ....

I did it, yeppers, I did! It took 7 1/2 months of discipline or 7 years depending on how you look at it.
I finally reached my goal weight.

BK - Before Kids - I was so tiny and I totally took that 120 pound body for granted. I didn't have to work that hard to keep trim, I was always active, riding horses, mucking stalls, lifting hay bales, that it wasn't much of a thought that I would ever struggle with weight.

Then I got married moved across the country and my body freaked out from all the stress. I was over the scale in stress - new state, husband, job, wedding, etc. My TMJ flared up and I dropped to 105 pounds. My jaw literally locked and I was unable to open it. I actually struggled with keeping on weight and got very use to drinking all my calories, I was still very active and busy with my new husband and horse so I actually struggled to drink enough calories. The thought never occurred to me that I would struggle with being over-weight.

I had a hard time finding pictures with me in it!
So two years later - still 105 pounds I became pregnant and all those hormones unlocked my jaw and landed me flat on my back in preterm labor. I literally sat on my butt or laid on my back for 4 months. I had horrid reflux and drank a lot of whole milk and hospital food was far from my organic high protein diet I consumed the first half of my pregnancy. I became depressed and bored and developed high blood pressure. I gained 80 pounds (some water from pre-eclampsia) with my first child. That was a lot of weight! After I delivered I struggled with back pain for years. It is actually in the last 5 months that I'm back pain free for the first time since my first pregnancy.

Spring 2007
After child #1, precious Drew, was born I lost a lot of water and weight and within a year was at 130 pounds. Then when Drew was two I became pregnant again and once again added some weight. I only gained 40 pounds this pregnancy but still developed high blood pressure. After our precious Gabe was  born I became really depressed. I did not have any issues adjusting to one child, but two was a totally different ball game! I had very little energy and it felt like I was always in the kitchen cooking. I plateaued at 145 pounds in 2008. I wanted to loose the weight but really struggled with having energy and working out. I played the guilt game all the time and gave up on the whole idea. Finally one morning when Gabe was 1 1/2, I decided that was enough. We wanted to have another baby soon and there was no way I could afford to gain and not loose 10 pounds per kid! So I began working out and really got into spin biking. I lost about 5 pounds and then we became pregnant - way quicker than I anticipated.

Spring 2010
My third pregnancy was a whirl wind - two kids and a high risk pregnancy. This time I was pregnant with a girl - those hormones kept me sick for 26 weeks - I only gained 20 pounds and that was near the end of the pregnancy. Sweet Abby was only 4 pounds 6 oz and within 6 weeks I was back in my per-pregnancy size 10's and at 142 pounds. The stress from her delivery and hospital stays dropped that baby weight really fast!

There was something about that 140 mark that I just couldn't cross over. I would loose a few and then gain it back. I worked out, consumed more calories and then worked out some more. I learned a lot that first year with three kids - mainly to be a good mother I needed to give myself a break from thinking about weight and just enjoy being a mom. That was good thinking and I know it was in that period of life that I softened and just learned to wait for the right timing and not stress about it.

So when Abby turned one, I decided it might be time to look into changing up what we were eating and consider a new form of "dieting." We had switched a lot of our foods to raw and organic, they were pricey so consuming less calories made sense to me. Then I waited a year - the kids and I were busy and it just didn't seem right. I hoped the organic life would shed some poundage, but alas it didn't.That year I dabbled in a few diets, tried a few classes, researched vitamins, considered weight watchers, then I just sat back and waited.

In January 2012 I looked into breast reduction because my back hurt so much, but that is pricey and I decided to try and loose some weight, after all I was smaller before kids when I weighed less?

So, a in July 2012 I made a flexible plan, I had learned many times that telling myself I couldn't have something only made me want more. So, I downloaded an app on my phone and recorded everything I ate for a whole week. I took the Dave Ramsey approach to budgeting, only  applied it to food. I learned I was consuming too much sugar (double!) and averaged about 2000 calories/day. After review my goal weight and my body type I saw that to loose weight at the speed I wanted, I needed to eat 1200 calories/day and to maintain weight I could consume 1500/day.

I added in some vitamins and tried to work out as much as I could. I noticed a pattern that the days I worked out I consumed more calories than I burned. I was unable to resist cravings and most of them were carbs! When my body was less anxious my cravings went away. I did a 20 day eating out fast and removed all cravings from my taste buds. I did a body cleanse twice to get rid of toxins in my gut and consumed a lot of probiotics.
September 2012

So, in July John took the boys to Oregon and I was home with my daughter for two weeks. I had dabbled in watching my weight and had lost about 5 pounds. My goal while they were gone was to eat small and not spend much time in the kitchen. I found when I was busy and not in the kitchen I didn't think at all about food.  It worked, I lost 5 pounds those two weeks. Abby ate a lot of finger foods and I became a fan of Coconut Luna bars. I had 100 calories in the AM in coffee and organic creamer, a 120 calorie Luna bar for lunch and sipped tea when hungry. Then I ate a moderate dinner that filled me up all night.

Over the next 5 months I continued tracking my calories, if I went over I'd take the dog on a walk or run to the park with the kids. My goal was to get to 125 by Christmas. I almost made it but decided to enjoy the holidays and not stress about it. I was traveling and wanted to not be a slave to food - for me that meant eating relatively healthy but enjoying my travels and meals not cooked at home. I gained back 3 pounds but didn't stress about it, I knew I'd get to it in January.

So, I finally made it - I lost the final 5 pounds in January and the first week in February. I finally fit into a size 4 and feel better than I have in 7 years! I am sitting at 125 pounds, which was my goal weight. I honestly felt like that was an impossible goal. I learned a lot about my body in the process, I learned that for me breakfast needed to  be skipped, my metabolism would kick in and I'd have more cravings, coffee is a must in the morning, protein needs to be eaten at 11 am and lots of tea helps curb my evening cravings. I love  Zevia because it has zero calories and is all natural. I love not being a slave to food and being able to eat in moderation whatever I wanted - as long as I was under my calorie count. I would eat 1200/day for a week, then the next week bump it up to 1500/week. My body responded and I lost over 7 inches.  I found out that I must stay away from breads/pasta and instead eat a protein bar or chicken. We switched to raw milk and I feel a lot better, I'm also religious about taking my vitamins now too! I learned a lot about myself and how God designed my body - no wonder no one diet works for all people, we're all created different. I appreciate that God allowed me to take this weight loss journey. it was only through a lot of prayer that I was able to gain the wisdom to see how best to serve this body I've been given. The lifestyle I've adopted will follow me - it wasn't a diet, it was a change in lifestyle and a lesson on choices and timing. I needed to give grace when needed, act when time slowed down, appreciate the small victories and buy new clothes with the old ones looked dumpy! I didn't talk about loosing weight, I tried to keep quiet about it and not allow it to consume who I was, after all its a change in lifestyle not a diet.
November 2012 - still a few more pounds until my goal weight.


Now its time to celebrate, with a glass of tea and a new bathing suite and new bras (yep, no surgery needed)!!

Melissa

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