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My

Weightloss

Story

After my weight loss, people around me saw that I lost weight and applauded my acheivement. They wanted to know how did I do it. I was once ashamed to even acknowledge what I once looked like, but I felt a push within myself (thank you Lord) to share that part of me. The not so fabulous parts. So, here's my story...

Let me first start off by saying that before I lost the weight, I had to make up my mind that it was going to happen. This first step is HUGE. This is what keeps a lot of people from accomplishing this whole weight loss thing. It's not an overnight ordeal. You have to be mentally committed to the journey. Have a made up mind, when you wake up and when you go to bed. Once I was finally fed up of being sick and tired of being sick and tired... I prayed (a lot) and finally made up mind that this was happening... NOW.

 

While pregnant with my first child I gained about 70lbs. I honestly made no effort in preventing weight gain. I ate what I wanted, when I wanted in the quantity that I wanted so no surprise to my weight gain. After having my daughter it took me about a year to lose 60lbs of what I gained. My mom told me that losing the weight after baby number 1 is usually the easiest to lose. The first 20lbs fell off because that was basically water. The rest just came off without putting forth huge effort. Ten pounds from my weight loss goal I find out I'm pregnant with my 2nd child. I decided that I would watch my weight this time around and do better with my diet and exercise. I was doing so well until around 22 weeks in, when I started having contractions (waaaay too early) and my doctor put me on bed rest. I could no longer do the walking that I was so diligent about doing. The weight slowly jumped on me. I didn't gain as much but I still gained a total of about 50lbs or so.

 

Losing the weight this time around was nothing like after my first child. It was like the weight wasn't going anywhere. A year after my 2nd baby was born I was only able to lose about 25-30lbs which was better than nothing but nowhere near where I wanted to be. I was tired of wearing large size clothing and always had my pre-pregnancy clothes staring back at me on a regular. The extra weight was weighing me down, mentally and physically. So much so, I would cry in the shower about it. One day, enough was enough. I prayed to the Lord for strength and to lead and direct my way. He answered my prayer and one day I woke up with a made up mind.

 

I started brainstorming... I had to come up with a game plan that included a proper diet and proper exercise because what I was doing was not cutting it. So, I called up a medical weight loss facility because I really had to be honest with myself... I was going to need some outside help. I met with a nutritionist there which was a real eye opener because I realized there were many things I was doing that hindered my weight loss. My main road block? Too many carbs...WAY too many. I also found that I was not eating the amount of protein that I should nor was I drinking the amount of water that I needed.

 

THE PLAN:

 

Just so you know my plan was catered to me, at my specific height, weight and overall health at the time. So it's best to consult a doctor and/or nutritionist/dietician before you start any diet and exercise plan. What worked for me may not work for you. I am merely sharing my story. Anyhow, to start out, I took Phentermine which is an appetite suppressant. That's all it does. It doesn't burn fat or provide you with extra energy or anything like that... it just takes your appetite away. It worked beyond what I anticipated and I would only take half a pill a day. This was perfect, because I was able to make good food choices without the cravings blurrying my decision making process. I was also able to manage my portion sizes perfectly. The nutritionist gave me clear instructions on my diet:

 

  1. I needed to get in at least 30 minutes of (heart pumping) exercise 3-4 days a week. I basically walked (treadmill and outdoors) and did my Black Girls Work Out dvd. (or try their newest video release or a workout video of your choice) I was so out of shape I would only do about 20-25 minutes of it.

  2. Each day, I had to drink half my weight in water(oz) which for me was 100 oz. (I carried THIS inexpensive bottle around with me everywhere I went)

  3. Each day, eat half my weight in protein (grams) and half my weight in carbs (grams), for me was 100 grams of each.

  4. I was also limited to eating 1400 calories a day

  5. I had to eat 5 meals per day... breakfast, snack, lunch, snack and dinner and nothing thereafter except for something small if I really wanted it.

  6. No sweets, no sodas... basically no junk food related stuff which I knew.

 

When I received these instructions I thought this lady was crazy. I'm thinking, there's no way I'll be able to do all of this... but there was that negative thinking. I had to tell myself, no more negative thinking. It's all about what's going to happen. I was able to motivate myself and was ready to do this.

 

Thankfully, my husband gave me a FitBit device to wear that would track my steps along with FitBit's Aria scale. I also use their website and iPhone app to keep up with what I ate everyday. I can't tell you enough how important it is to track what you're eating. If you don't have a FitBit try myfitnesspal. This is the easiest way to keep up with your calorie intake and keep track of everything else (including fat, sodium, sugar, etc). You'd be amazed at how you adjust your eating when you see that one item contains 10grams of fat or has 35grams of carbs.

 

MY CHALLENGES

 

1.  In the beginning, it was super tough to stay below 100grams of carbs because like most people, I love carbs. While tracking my food I found that A LOT of what I ate contained carbs, even in small amounts. You have your obvious things like bread, pasta, cereal etc. but you also have the carbs you don't think about like what's in your vegetables. So let's just say, I bought 100% whole grain wheat bread...I rarely had any. I also didn't eat bananas while I was trying to lose the weight. A banana can contain 25g of carbs and with a limitation of 100g per day, that's a huge chunk. A slice of bread is over 30g of carbs so you can see how this can spiral out of control before dinner.

 

2.  It was super tough to eat 100 grams of protein each day. Total opposite to my carb issue. For the most part, a bulk of your protein will come from meat. A piece of meat on average may supply you with 30g of protein. So even if I ate 3 chicken breasts containing 30g of protein I still wouldn't reach my goal.

 

SOLUTION:

Supplement with protein powders, shakes and bars. I really like EAS Myoplex Ready-To-Drink shakes(in chocolate). They taste pretty good and provides 20g of protein. (I now drink their larger 40g protein version now that my goals have changed and I'm trying to gain a little more muscle.) You may have to shop around for protein bars because many of them are loaded with sugar. Now, I found my go-to protein bar with Pure Protein which usually has 20g of protein and only 1 gram of sugar AND they tastes great! This is coming from someone who LOOOOVES sweets (cookies, cakes, pies, candy, etc). Pure Protein has other low sugar options. I also currently use EAS' Complete Protein powder which I mix in my homemade smoothies.

 

3. My last challenge... Consuming 100 ounces of water in a day. I literally had to schedule my water drinking. I had to say to myself that I need to consume so much by lunch and so much before I left work and so much before I went to bed. Even if I wanted to drink something else besides water, I couldn't if I planned to accomplish drinking this 100 oz. In the beginning it was really tough but after a while it became a habit and I was even thirsty for water. I found myself having to travel with a container of water. Otherwise my mouth would feel like the Sahara desert.

 

MY RESULTS:

 

The first week after I got serious about my weight loss, I lost 8lbs! I thought this was insane but it was real. Although, I do know that this happens. After this 8lb weight loss I consistently loss 1-2lbs every week. With every pound I lost I gained more momentum, more drive, more confidence that I was going to do this. It was an amazing feeling. I weighed myself once a week to keep myself accountable. After a while it was no longer a struggle to meet my required 100g of protein or staying under 100g of carbs. I also lost many of my cravings. It took me 6 months to lose 45lbs. After more than a year and half later I lost a total of 80lbs. I now have new habits. I make better food choices. I no longer log my food because I learned over time what foods to stay away from and what foods to include. I still drink lots of water. I have now set new fitness goals for myself to tone up and gain more muscle. Working out is a habit also. I was able to go from walking to running 3 miles without stopping.

 

I am so proud of myself!!! If you're struggling with the same thing please know it's all in the mind. When you're sick and tired of being sick and tired... get your game plan together because it's time to do something about it. If I can do it, a mother of 2 who works a full time job coming off of dealing with postpartum depression, I KNOW you can do it too!

I hope I've been able to motivate you. Please feel free to comment or message me if I can help in any way. Here's another before and after...

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