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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The when, why, & how

I'm really proud of my weightloss (40 lbs to date!) in the past 5+ months but recently I have really been thinking about the when, why, and how of my weight issues. I honestly cannot remember a time when I was skinny. I know I was...i've seen pictures, but that time was all from age 7 and before.

Age 3-4ish

I started getting heavy in the 3rd grade. I was 8 years old. My parents were splitting up. I (for reasons unknown to me) stopped attending gymnastics. Somewhere in the range of 4 ft tall, I weighed 72 lbs and I remember that being a LOT (or at least more than the other girls). I remember feeling badly about myself and thinking I was fat. I remember crying to my mom at bedtime that I was fat. And i remember being told that it was just baby fat and I would grow out of it. Wrong. And how could it be "baby fat" if I wasn't a fat baby, toddler, or young child?
Ages 8-10ish

Age 8-9

Fast forward to junior high. I was fat. I was heavier than the other girls (including my stepsister who is a mere 6 weeks older than me...and she is a twig). I had a chubby face, chubby arms, chubby legs, and was gaining belly fat. And I maybe grew 6 inches by then. I remember buying size 5 jean shorts at "5,7,9" one summer when I was in Dallas. I was 13. I went straight from size 16 in girls to 5 in juniors (and they didn't look good). They were really too small.

Moving on to high school... The "skinniest" I ever recall being was when I wore a size 9 from express (and they didn't look good). Again, they were really too small. I settled in to a size 11 and pretty much stayed there all the way through. Most fitted T's didn't fit, even in a large. I tried so hard to dress cute, but I was constantly sucking myself in to clothes that were too small for me. I weighed somewhere in the 145-150 range and I was 4'11".

The first time I recall making any effort to lose weight was senior year. In preparation for prom my mom (who did not have a weight problem) got us a membership to a local women's only gym and we started going. But, I don't think I ever really lost any weight. After that failed (and uneducated/unguided) attempt, I sought out a weight loss clinic and talked my mom into taking me for a consult. She went and we were both "sold" on the idea, but when I asked my dad to pay for it he said no.

When I started college I was in a toxic relationship that definetly did not boost my self esteem to say the least. He was abusive mentally, verbally, emotionally, and physically. But the words hurt the worst. He said things about my weight that I won't even repeat because they are that horrible. This is when I started looking for "quick fixes". I remember taking Xenadrine after we got into a fight and (temporarily) broke up and lost 20 lbs in a week or something crazy like that. Of course I didn't change my eating and I was not exercising regularly, we got back together, and I gained it back plus some. I continued on this weight loss/gain roller coaster (and ditched the toxic boyfriend in the process) over the next TEN YEARS. That is right, I gained, lost, dieted, exercised, and repeated over and over again for ten years. All in all, I was overweight for somewhere in the range of 20 years... from the time I was 8 until I was(am) 28. My highest weight was 209 in 2007/2008 and I think I got up there again in 2010. Sometime in 2010 I got desperate enough to try out some questionable diet pills. They were some type of Chinese "herbal" suppliment that I purchased at a local chiropracter's office... I lost a good amount of weight 20-25 lbs in just a few short months, but I also experienced strange side effects like worsening vision and soon after I quit taking them. And, almost immediately I gained all the weight and some back, again. At this point I sought out a physician's advice (which, I had done a few times before without getting any answers that I wanted). He suggested we check my thyroid function and sure enough, it was jacked. My thyroid stimulating horomone (TSH) level was insanely high, it was like >10 times the normal value. This translates to my metabolism literally being at a dead stop. Meaning I had no BMR (basal metabolic rate). Everything I ate, I gained. And that is exactly what the scale reflected. Now, this is not the root cause of my long-term weight struggles. I am a lab tech myself, and had ran my TSH at some point while in school and it was normal. I honestly think the diet pills in combination with my yo-yo dieting are what killed my metabolism. There is NO quick fix for weight loss and anything labeled as a quick fix is likely dangerous! I regret taking those pills everyday because now I have to take thryoid medication everyday. To make a long story shorter... I did get put on thyroid medication and did actually lose 20-25 lbs while in the process of getting my TSH level in the normal range. However, I took this "easy" weightloss for granted and did not do one thing to encourage it. I ate horribly and did not exercise. So, inevitably, I gained it back. Much slower this time. In about 18 months time, I gained back 20 lbs.

Which, is when I  started my last trip on the weight loss roller coaster, I weighed in at 205 lbs. That was August 20, 2012. Since then I have 100% committed myself to healthy eating and exercise. I have transitioned from not being able to run for 30 seconds to running 5 miles (69 miutes). My husband is naturally athletic and has recently regained interest in running, swimming, and cycling and is actually now training for a half-ironman. So, together, we have both changed our lifestyles to encourage healthy living. We eat much healthier than before (no fast food, etc) and exercise daily. His dedication and ability motivates me everyday to be better, to work harder, and to keep going. Today I sit at 164.8 lbs. I am hoping, praying, working, trying, sweating, crying, kicking, screaming, fighting to be at a healthy weight by the time I turn 29 (April 2013) or shortly thereafter.

Upper left 195ish, Upper right 200ish, Bottom left 205+, Bottom right 187ish

Left 205+, Right 183ish
Left 205+, Right 175ish
Left 205+, Right 165

Left 200+, Right 165

If I have learned anything in the experience, it has been to LOVE myself. I have completely fallen in love with myself in the past 5+ months. I care more about myself now than I ever have. I have a newfound love for clothes, fashion, makeup, skincare, haircare, & beauty all the way around, and not in a superficial way, but in a "I really care about myself" kind of way. I also love eating healthy and exercising, especially running! I NEVER thought I would/could be a runner, I couldn't even run a mile in junior high athletics. Today, I am a runner! It has been an amazing experience. Has it been easy? No. Has it been worth it? Absolutely.

My advice to anyone reading this is to just keep going. Everyday will not be great. Some, likely more than others, will be hard. But those days are the days that really make you stronger. And when stand at the finish line looking back, you will be overwhelmed with pride knowing that you did what you did regardless of how hard it was.

Love you all!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


A few months ago, my hubby and I watched a documentary on Netflix called "Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead" which inspired us to start juicing! So, we asked for a juicer for Christmas and Santa delivered! We got a Waring Pro juicer. I planned out a good weekend to try a juice cleanse/fast and googled for recipes. I went shopping on Thursday evening, spending around $75 for produce to last the next 3 days (I could have spent less but I wanted to try a lot of new things!). I started the 3 day juice cleanse/fast on Friday, January 18. My starting weight was 169.8 as of Friday morning. Final weight was 165.6 as of Monday morning. Here is a break down of what all I drank (& ate)!

Water with lemon
Strawberry, pear, tangelo juice (FAV!!)
Beet, carrot, apple, ginger juice
The "Mean Green" juice: kale, cucumber, celery, apple, lemon, ginger juice
Carrot, strawberry, tangelo juice
Large Raw Avocado
The "Antioxidant" juice: Blueberry, blackberry, strawberry, mango, pear juice

 The makings for the "Antioxidant" juice

Juicing! Strawberries and Mango!
Finished "Antioxidant" juice!

Water with lemon
Strawberry, pear, tangelo juice
Tomato, celery, cucumber, carrot, garlic juice (YUCK!)
"Mean Green"
1/2 Large Raw Avocado
Blueberry, blackberry, strawberry, mango, tangelo juice

The makings for the Mean Green juice! 
 Remaining Mean Green juice Friday at lunch!

Strawberry, pear, tangelo juice
Naked "Green Machine"(I was out shopping and didn't bring a juice with me)
"Mean Green"

The makings for the Strawberry, Pear, Tangelo juice!
  Finished Strawberry, Pear, & Tangelo juice!
Overall, I feel great! I really enjoyed this experience! I have never done anything like this before so it was all new to me. I experienced a dull headache everyday of the cleanse but I believe this was due to my body detoxing. I also took baths nightly and had a massage and facial on Saturday. I read baths and massage would help the detoxing process. I will definetly do this again, possibly every 3 months or so!


Friday, January 18, 2013

Ready. Set. Go.


I created this blog a few months ago but have yet to actually write a post. I originally wanted to use this as a way to diary my weight loss journey... and I still will, however, now that I am 4+ months into this journey I realize it is so much more than I ever imagined. It is not JUST weight loss. What I have experienced in the last 4+ months has been LIFE CHANGING. Since I decided it was time to make a change I have met some amazing people both online and in person!

In the beginning, I was surfing the web looking for ideas, information, and inspiration. While looking on Pinterest, I stumbled across a pin that linked me to a blog of a woman known as Mama Laughlin. Her awesome personality plus amazing weight loss story had me at the first click of the mouse. I read and read her posts and soon found myself making changes in my life to mimic her choices. This directly resulted in me losing pounds, quickly! I soon found out there was a Facebook group inspired by ML dedicated solely to women trying to lose weight! I jumped right on that wagon and the rest is history! I love reading ML's blog and I love the encouragement and support I get from the Facebook group! It all has changed my life. Today I have lost approximately 29 lbs since August 20th, I ran a 5K (with hills) without walking at all for the first time EVER (PR of 41:48), and I met Mama Laughlin in person at the Dallas Marathon Expo!

UPDATE!! 1/18/2013

So, I wrote the above last month but never finished it or posted it. Today, I stand at a total weight loss of 35 lbs since August 20th and am still going strong. I started a 3 day juice cleanse/fast today and will be blogging about my experience later this weekend!