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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.