Ok, so I’m sure there are plenty of you who have noticed that I’ve lost some weight and I wanted to share with you my “secrets” so that if there are others struggling with their body image, energy level, etc maybe my journey can help you too. (Bear in mind that this is a big deal for me, putting myself out there in all my fatty glory, so please be nice!**) I already talked about my health issues and why I wasn’t able to work out for awhile, but once I started feeling better I wanted to lose as much weight as possible in the shortest amount of time. Pretty typical, I guess. I also wanted to make sure I was doing it in a way that would ensure the lbs would STAY OFF.
And honestly, it wasn’t that hard. It took some discipline and determination but I had a goal- I was not going to be the chubby wife with a hot, ripped military husband. It just wasn’t an option. Find what motivates you and focus on it every. single. day. If it’s not feeling like shit when you’re wearing a bathing suit- bam! If it’s being able to fit into all your expensive clothes that are now two sizes too small- bam! If it’s being the hottest soccer mom on the block- bam! Whatever the hell it is, it has to be for YOU because this fight is yours and yours alone.
Here were my initial goals:
1. Stop drinking- the extra 200+ calories I was consuming 4-5 times a week was definitely not helping my waist line or my health. I had my last drink the day after Ryan left and didn’t take another sip until his graduation weekend. In the past 11 weeks I’ve had 3 drinks and I feel fantastic. The hangover I’ve experienced after just one is worth it to me to not have one in the first place. DONE
2. Stop eating meat- this wasn’t going to be a problem since I’d pretty much gone veggie almost a year ago. Of course, I’d slip up every now and then but I vowed to stick by this 100%. DONE
3. Drink recommended water per day. I started drinking club soda with lime and cucumber and this hasn’t been hard to do every day. Plus, I drink coconut water after my workouts and have found I don’t crave anything else anymore. DONE
4. Sign up for races to stay motivated. In February & March I ran a few 5k’s. Some were easier than others, but I did them. Then, I upped the ante and signed up for a 12 miler. I’ve also committed to two Chicago half marathons in June and August, as well as my lifelong goal The Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon in October. DONE
5. Jillian Michael‘s The Shred every day for 30 days. HOLY WOW! I think this is what put me over the edge weight-loss wise. I hadn’t seen the needle drop much on the scale and was becoming frustrated. Another Navy wife and I decided to hold each other accountable to 30 days of The Shred. It worked. I lost weight and found my waistline and my jawline. My legs got stronger and so did my arms. I lost 3 minutes on my 5K time. DONE
6. Move every single day. I have a pretty strict workout schedule since I have a half marathon coming up in June and I’m currently running between 20-30 miles a week. But even before that, I vowed to myself that I needed to workout in some fashion every single day. On the days I didn’t run, I Shredded, took the boys for a long walk and did Pilates stretches. On the days I did run, I walked the dogs anyway. When you get into a routine, breaking it seems so strange, you don’t want to. This has worked for me and it makes getting motivated a little easier… it’s just part of my day. DONE
7. Start swimming. This was hard at first because I didn’t want to be in a bathing suit! Once that passed, I started swimming 2-3 times a week. I can still only really do the breaststroke comfortably, but on my swimming days, I’m in the pool for at least 45 minutes so I’m getting a good workout. I’ve grown more confident in my abilities and feel fantastic when I’m finished. DONE
8. Lose 15 lbs. This was a big goal I shared with Ryan before he left. He probably didn’t think I’d reach it… hell, I didn’t think I’d reach it. But just last week, I finally hit my goal! I’m not quite done yet, I think I still have 5 more to go before I feel like I’m at my preferred weight, but I’m closer than ever. And I did it the healthy way… not the ways I’ve done before: not eating, smoking, diet pills, not eating, caffeine, not eating some more, etc. This is bonafide weight loss and I couldn’t be more proud of myself. DONE
Part of me would really like to take my vegetarianism to the next level and go vegan, because I’ve heard it’s a great way to shed extra weight but I just don’t really have the desire to. Some days I eat 75% vegan (that’s for you honey!) but I just love milk, cheese, eggs, butter and honey too much. I think by cutting out the other things I have and exercising 7 days a week, I’m doing ok.
And for the grand finale- here are some before and after shots so you can see the change for yourselves:
Looking at those pictures, I realize that I never felt as big as I was. Of course my jeans got smaller and I had to wear loose tops, but to be honest, I didn’t realize how much weight I had gained because it happened slowly. Looking at these pictures, I barely recognize myself.
And not to leave Ryan out, he’s looking AH-MAZING these days as well. The Navy looks good on him. 😉 Here is us the day he left for bootcamp and then on his graduation day 9 weeks later.
**Don’t get all offended when I call myself “fat”. I realize there are others who weigh more than I did, but to me, I was fat. And if you are too, then please know that you don’t have to be.