The Little Things

Sometimes making big changes can seem like a daunting task. The best way to take on a challenge is starting with the little things. I was a slug of a human being. If I wasn’t  laying down watching tv I was in the kitchen making food to eat while watching tv, and I needed to change that. So, I started small. Instead of leaving my clothes on the floor I would pick them up and put them away.If I had the option of elevator or stairs, I would take the stairs. I would do squats and crunches while I watched tv. If I dirtied a dish I washed it right after. Cutting out laziness was definitely the first step I had to take to get myself into the right mindset. For me there were no shortcuts anymore I tried to be as “active” as possible, and it slowly started working.

I started to feel less and less of a struggle while I did things and it slowly became a habit to not be a sloth. Laziness is a very easy habit to get back into, even to this day I have to remind myself that I need to work a little harder and go that extra mile and make sure I don’t get back into old habits. The little things not only work for activity and exercise but they work with eating habits too. Changing little things in your diet can make quite a big difference in your outcome.Get your dressing on the side, dip the fork and not the bite. It carries the flavor and drops 3/4 of the calories.  Try drinking your coffee with half the amount of sugar or maybe try some agave. I completely skip the cream sugar and just add a little whipped it had some of both to mellow the coffee without being overabundant.

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When you go somewhere to eat your first choice might not always be the healthiest choice, it is just what you’re used to. Try something new instead of the creamy ranch with croutons and cheese go for the spinach salad with the beets and goat cheese. Your palate can change quite a bit when you change your diet due to your body craving the things it needs more than what your brain wants. You may find yourself wanting to try things that you never liked before. Personally I would not eat beets for years and years, then when I was dieting I decided to try them. I found them to be completely delicious; sweet, tangy, and satisfying. Changing little things may help you learn more about yourself than you would think. I just always saw myself always living that lazy POS lifestyle because it was easy and that was the way that I was. What I came to find out is that I didn’t have to be. I changed little things in my lifestyle that helped me change little things about myself as well.

You Raise Me Up

Josh Grobin really showed his appreciation for whoever was raising him up to more than he could be. I myself don’t have the pipes to show my appreciation that way so I’ll just have to put it into a blog post. When going through such a big change of lifestyle it is very important to have stability in other areas of your life. To me the most important area is friends and family. Having friends and family that will go the extra mile to support and accommodate your needs is the most wonderful feeling. I am in my 20s and that means that myself and my friends love us some In-n-Out. Unfortunately that is not really a nutritionally sound meal, thus it brings my friends and myself to a crossroad. Do we eat In-N-Out and make our dieting friend suffer or do we hit up the salad bar at whole foods for some fresh greens and veggies and maybe a cup of soup? Luckily for me I have really awesome friends that were always down to get their veggie on. My friends would even go as far as stocking their houses with healthy snacks so that we had something to share when we were hanging out together. That is a true support system there and it really made me feel the love.

Having a major lifestyle change can be very straining on a friendship and I myself just happened to be very lucky. Not everyone will want to change their habits and ways to support and accommodate you. That doesn’t necessarily make them a bad friend, why should they be expected to change because you want to? There is definitely a happy medium to everything and often these problems can be solved with a little conversation, and the best place to have a conversation is on a walk! It’s a way to kill two birds with one stone; having alone time to talk with your friends and getting in that exercise that you need to keep pushing through. I would walk with my friends 4 or 5 times a week and we would spend 1-2 hours just talking about stuff that was going on in our lives. When you are changing so much everything is new and exciting and you want to tell those close to you. I felt like I could sometimes get annoying and repetitive, so I asked and made sly apologies for all of this ME talk. Make sure you listen to your friends too, don’t forget to support them in whatever they’re doing in their lives and thank them for being so supportive in yours.

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I am going to do it now. I want to thank all of my friends and family for being so supportive of me and helping me change my life. Thank you for putting up with my weird nit picky eating habits and my hanger. Thank you for listening to me complain about my sore muscles and blistered. Thank you for being happy for me every time I sent a text saying I lost another pound, even the 70th time! Just thank you for being kind, supportive, and helpful with everything that I needed you guys are the greatest and I love you all!

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Dining Out

Going out to eat, something everyone does all the time can be daunting to dieters. Most people go for a salad thinking it is safe when in reality you might as well have a cheeseburger. Anything with they words crispy or creamy need to be steered clear of. I always go for salads that say grilled, broiled, and vinaigrette. They tend to be pretty safe most of the time, but not everyone always wants to get a salad when they go out. Screen Shot 2016-08-22 at 10.44.27 PM.png

Don’t be afraid to deconstruct things and ask for something special. There is a local restaurant that has a killer pesto chicken sandwich but with all that bread and fries it is very hard on dietary restrictions. I order it with no bun, pesto on the side, with a green salad instead of fries. To me it is a treat, I love it and it feels like a reward without any repercussions. Sushi is always a great option for going out fresh ingredients and clean healthy choices automatically come with the cuisine without having to alter anything. When it comes to Chinese go steamed, veggies, dumplings, or soup. There are plenty of good and yummy choices other than the favorited orange chicken. On taco Tuesdays I go with a taco salad in a bowl with whole pinto or black beans. Often the restaurant will give you more in a bowl than you would get in a shell which is perfect for saving half for dinner tomorrow! Leftovers are a godsend when you get home from the gym and are too tired to cook. They save you from making unhealthy choices.

One of the most important things to remember when dining out is portion control. The majority of restaurants serve portions big enough to feed at least 2 sometimes even 3 people. When you are done eating a healthy sized portion have it boxed up so that you don’t over eat, delicious food can be much too tempting sometimes! Just remember don’t hold yourself back from going places because you feel that there won’t be anything for you there you will find something. I always try to check out the menu before I go somewhere and plan what I am going to have ahead of time. If I really cannot find anything then I will eat a little something beforehand and get a side salad or something very small. I learned that it is more important to worry about the company that you are with rather than the food that you are eating.

Gaining and Losing: Self Confidence

Self confidence is really a fickle bitch, one day you are full of it and another you feel like the troll under a bridge who doesn’t want to be bothered by anyone. Sometimes self confidence isn’t real, it is just a protective outer shell holding together the pieces of someone who is really falling apart inside. I wouldn’t go as far as saying that I have struggled with self confidence more than I have the reigns of it slipping away from me tim and time again. My self confidence levels yo-yo from sometimes and there is nothing you can really do but talk yourself through it and deal.

Since age 12 I have dieted on and off losing 10-20 here and there trying to be the thinner person that I could be. I never felt like I was a normal or average sized person until this year, mostly because I wasn’t. Technically I am still overweight but I don’t feel that I look as overweight as I used to, and neither do my peers around me. Growing up I considered myself a pretty girl but I did not feel that way about my body. I would do my makeup and get done up and inside I felt like a goddess so beautiful, radiant, and charismatic. My inside feelings did show through to my exterior, I put off a confident air with this IDGAF what you think about me attitude. I also had a deeper layer where I secretly watched the way people reacted to me and heard the rude comments that they said and just buried them deep within myself. It wears down on you, makes you feel like you won’t be good enough and pushes you away from putting yourself out there so that you can meet new people. I always stayed around the people I was comfortable with, people I didn’t have to worry whether they cared if I was too fat or not. They always liked me for me. I am not exaggerating either, I have had the same friends since elementary school and jr. high adding on another few here and there. There’s about 9 or 10 of us, we are really tight and will hang out as trolls under the bridge together when we don’t feel like being beauty queens….I think friends like this are something that every person needs. IMG_5259 (2)

But a person can’t rely on others to keep their self confidence levels intact. I have learned to use mantras and sayings to deal when I am feeling a little low. My favorite is from The Help:

“You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”

While the grammar is not proper it really gets the point across. A person cannot rely on beauty to give them all of their self confidence, so when I am being that troll under the bridge I rely on my intelligence and kindheartedness to remember my importance in this world. I may be as thin as I have ever been before but we all feel like little ugly trolls sometimes and looking at the positive parts of yourself can really help with that. When it comes to self confidence and dating that is a whole other ballgame which I will get to on a future post…I am still working on that myself.

Making Changes

So it all started in Jan. 2016 when I finally decided I wanted to change my entire lifestyle. There was no one pressuring me to do it or even hinting at me that it needed to happen, I just woke up and decided it was time to change. My first step in the process was to join weight watchers online. I had to literally put down the pizza and sign up. For the first three months the only change in my life was diet. I cut out all fast food, fats, and carbs. I did not exercise or become active at all. However I still managed to drop 30 pounds by April without any kind of exercise. For me I feel that was the best way to go, weighing in at 268 on a 5’4″ made it difficult for me to be active and often was off putting towards the whole lifestyle change idea. Once I had gotten past the 30 lb hump I started going for walks. I did 2 miles with ease, then 3, then 4. I started hiking and getting my mileage up to 5 or 6 miles without killing myself. Once my initial blisters healed walking was a piece of cake. I dropped another 20-25lbs before I decided to get a gym membership and a personal trainer.

Making those healthy changes seems like its easy for people who are naturally slim and active with a metabolism of a cheetah but it can be pretty difficult for some. I wouldn’t say that I had a food addiction or eating disorder that got me to the size that I was, I think it came more from laziness, gluttony, and convenience. Why eat something healthy and go for a run when you can stay home and watch tv and order a pizza? It was much easier to take the lazy route rather that go to the store, buy fresh food and veggies, and throw in some exercise as well. I had just taken the easy way for so long that I really had to work on retraining my thought process and cravings to choose the healthier option. I was constantly debating with myself are actually hungry or just bored? Get up off your butt and burn off those pretzels you ate! I would mentally tell myself that I do not need to eat my body is just used to having all of the food it wanted and craved not actually what it needed. I never starved myself and I always made sure that it had the proper nutrient and calorie intake that it needed to run properly. Starving yourself will actually hold you back in the end causing you to regain all of the weight and then some most commonly. Fruits and veggies are your best friend. I eat a ton of them every day! A bowl of berries is just as satisfying as your favorite sweet treat. IMG_5645 (2)

With me slow and steady wins the race and staying healthy is the most important. I have found that there is a lot of self discovery when going through the weight loss process  you feel things that you have never felt before emotionally and physically. One of the hardest changes that I made was giving up alcohol. I just don’t drink anymore, there were too many wasted calories that hang around on the scale for far longer than I am comfortable with. Followed by binging on snack food and pizza at 2am with very little thought and conscience behind it. At first I would just be a little hermit and say since I can’t drink I can’t have fun. I have gotten past that now. I let my personality shine through instead of having to hide behind drunken courage to be myself and have fun. My plan is not to give it up forever, just until I have reached my body goal and can maintain the weight loss more stably. For me it was just to hard to maintain consistent weight loss and diet while keeping alcohol in the mix.

A little about ME

I have always been overweight, well at least as long as I can remember. My mom always said you were never overweight until you could get into the fridge by yourself. Well sorry as sugar and carb hungry child I did not know the repercussions of binging on my favorite snacks. My weight gain was a slow and steady slope upward my entire life. I would say that I was just chubby throughout elementary and junior high school and into my early years of high school. Pretty much when P.E was not a requirement anymore is when I really started to go south. I was not a mover and never had been. I hated sports and being active, I preferred staying inside and reading books or watching animal planet and discovery channel for a solid 8 hours straight. I loved learning new things and was very intellectual for my age in all grades. I was all about my homework and school and could not be bothered with sports or social activities. To me that is just who I was and at the time it wasn’t something that was changeable to me.

When it comes to blame, I blame no one. I do not even blame myself, that does not mean that I don’t have regrets. Yes I regret that I didn’t want to better myself sooner, however I am a firm believer in everything happening for a reason and that timing is everything. For me 2016 was my time to change and that is why I am doing it. Major weight loss is a very new and uncomfortable process so I thought that I should share it. It is hard finding answers to questions that many of your peers around you cannot answer. I plan on going over everything in this blog in hopes that I can help others while I help myself.

I started this process on Jan 1st with a single thought as my friend and myself sat on her couch hung over after a new years party eating entire medium pizzas to ourselves. I thought, you know what? I am tired of this body and the restrictions it gives me. I want to be healthy , attractive, active, and strong. It was then I decided I would change. Weighing in at a whopping 268 I began to change myself. Today 8 months later and 70 pounds down I feel great. I am the thinnest I have ever been and wearing pants smaller than I did in Jr. high. The first set of pictures on the left are some that I would never have posted, but they were taken in Dec. 2015 . The second set is myself at 70 lbs down taken Aug. 2016 feeling much happier and much more confident with my body.