- Diet & Weight Loss
Weight Loss of over 50 Pounds
Yes, I've done it. It wasn't "baby weight" either. In fact, after I had my third child, I weighed less than I had before I ever started having kids! Still, I had over 67 pounds to lose and I realized then and there that I had to do something about my weight. Though my husband had met me when I was much heavier and loved me for my "great personality" and my "pretty face", I wasn't comfortable with my body. I didn't feel healthy and I wanted to be able to keep up with my kids. I had each one year after the other, so you can imagine, I did have a lot of "keeping up" to do!
I didn't take it off in a few weeks and I didn't do it without being hungry. Let's just get that out of the way right now. Weight loss diets are NOT fun, no matter what people tell you and NO, there are no diets that leave a person who is used to eating plenty, feeling FULL . It may be different for those who are used to being thin and have put on ten or fifteen pounds, but when your body is used to lots of food and being overweight, the task is much more challenging. This hub is for those of you who have either never been thin or have 50 or more pounds to lose.
How I Managed a Weight Loss of 67 Pounds
I did it! I really did!
I started the day I got home from the hospital after having my third child. Instead of eating a full meal, I split my plate in half with my two year old. It worked perfectly for her. From then on, I would make up a plate, then put half of the food on another one for my daughter until I got used to the portions.
I started eating five times a day. I ate 1200 to 1500 calories a day in this manner. I ate closer to 1,500 calories on the days I worked out the most.
Weight Loss: Expect a Challenge
Dieting and getting fit is HARD. Don't expect it to be easy because that belief will set you up for failure. Know that you are embarking on a difficult journey, but also know that with hard work, you CAN succeed.
I am not a doctor or a certified nutritionist. What I am is a person just like you who knows what it is to be overweight and who has successfully taken off the weight. I didn't just take off the weight. I got firm -- abs and buns of steel and all of that... and all without buying into a weight loss service or taking magic pills.
My Typical Day ( a bit tedious but you'll get the idea)
- Up at 6 am, feed the baby and put her back to sleep.
- Eat half of a banana and half of a low-fat yogurt.
- Do cardio for half an hour to 45 minutes.
- Get my one and two year old up and feed them breakfast.
- Do the dishes.
- Eat the other half of the banana and the rest of my yogurt.
- Feed my baby again and get the kids all dressed.
- Strap baby to me and put the kids in the stroller and take a 2 mile walk.
- Play with my kids on the playground and watch some Kid TV.
- Eat 1/2 of a sandwich and a small bowl of vegetable soup- low-fat turkey on whole grain bread with a dab of mayo or light blue cheese dressing. Feed my kids lunch at the same time.
- Do laundry and vacuum (usually with my two year old standing on the top while I pushed).
- Put the kids down for a nap.
- Do a combined cardio and strengthening workout (usually with a step and free weights).
- Eat the other half of my sandwich and an apple.
- Gather up the kids and go visiting or take another stroll.
- Come home, feed my kids and husband dinner - I'd eat half a portion of each item on the menu.
- Do the dishes.
- Spend quality time with my family.
- Give children a bath and put them to bed.
- Eat the other half of my supper.
- If I had a 1500 calorie day, I would go for a half hour walk or walk on the treadmill while watching television.
- Go to bed.
- I drank a LOT of water and consumed Diet Pepsi like it was going out of style (not recommending all that caffeine).
By the time I was done, my youngest daughter was trying to work out with me. No kidding! She would grab 1 lb weights and "step" beside me while I stepped.
It took 15 months to lose 67 pounds. Yes - all that work for an average of 4 to 4.5 pounds of weight loss a month.
High Intensity Interval Workouts Burn the Fat
My Weight Loss Motivators
I bought jeans that were a full size smaller than I was and lost into them, then bought another pair, and so on...
When I had ten pounds left to go, I bought my first EVER bikini.
I challenged myself when working out. Every time, I would do more reps or make the workout last a little longer, attach ankle weights when leg lifts became "easy" (yes, they really DO get easier), try out a new workout that included exercises I hadn't done or combinations I hadn't tried...
My favorite all-time exercise videos (this is going to date me):
- Kathy Smith Body Basics
- The Firm (the original)
- Abs of Steel
- Buns of Steel
- Buns of Steel Step Workouts and the ultimate...
- Richard Simmon's Sweatin' to the Oldies 1 and 2. Okay, I started with those, but they were good and hey, I actually LIKED Richard Simmons.
Sometimes I would just turn on the music and do my own thing. I became good at it. I swear I could have taught an exercise class.
The Response to my Weight Loss
At 130 pounds, I was firm and healthy, and I can't begin to tell you how it felt when I realized that bikini looked fantastic on my body.
People complimented me all the time -- probably more so than they would someone who hadn't had the pounds to lose.
My favorite comments were from those who just wanted to know how I did it. One of them actually tried my method and lost weight, too.
Rebounding: How to Screw Up Weight Loss
Stop exercising and then stop paying attention to calories. It works! It really does! I know, because I did it!
An injury was the initial reason for not working out. It was an honest excuse, but I lost my momentum and I allowed myself to wallow in my misery. Then, I was depressed. Depression = Food. At least that was how it worked for me.
I gained most of it back.
A New Chapter
Sixteen years later, I am working on losing weight again (ten pounds so far). I'm not the energetic person that I was and I'm not as healthy as I used to be, either, but I do have motivation: grandkids.
Grandkids and my health.
I don't want to be a fat granny. I want to be one HOT looking grandma!
I'm going to use the "fit in my skinny jeans" idea.
But I'm not going to use the bikini. I promise.
My husband? He barely took notice of my weight loss or regain. He has always called me "beautiful" and just today he commented on my "shapely" and "ample" behind. *Sigh* Such a sweet talker.
The point I'm really making with all my digression is this:
When you have a lot of weight to lose, weight loss is hard, but it isn't impossible, and the only way you will gain the weight back is if you let yourself.
I know! I've done it!
Epilogue on Weight Loss and Staying Fit
My youngest still works out. She's a dancer :) -- and my kids are all physically fit. I taught them how to eat healthy and I encouraged them to stay active. I think it helps that my husband is naturally thin and they got a mix of our metabolisms.
Yes, genetics do come into play. I took part in an obesity study with my mom and sisters several years ago. I was the thinnest of us, but that was because I worked out and dieted ALL the time. It wasn't about moderation for me. I won't tell anyone that I wasn't hungry. I was ALWAYS hungry. It wasn't a pleasant journey. I wish more people would realize just what obese people go through in order to lose and stay at a healthy weight. I was by no means too thin, but to be as thin as I was, I had to work it -- all the time. I'm giving it another shot, but am thinking that I'll be happy with an extra ten pounds if it means I don't feel tortured!