Nine things I’ve learned while losing 30 pounds (weight loss tips)
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Today I began setting up my tripod and camera.
“What are you doing?” My husband asked.
“Taking pictures for a post.” I responded. My husband stood there and watched me while I set up my gear.
“Honey – this is stressful enough – I can’t have you watch me while I do this.” My husband recognized my tone. He went back to the kitchen.
“Maybe you can tell me when you’re finished.”
I hate being short with my husband – because he’s an amazing supportive man. But I was stressed about theses pictures. I was trying to take shots of me that weren’t just of my face. Pictures that actually showed… my waistline. And long time body insecurities don’t disappear overnight.
It’s January and the time where we all start to look at our waistlines and vow “this will be the year” that it will shrink. This past year I’ve worked hard and lost 30 pounds. I weigh less now than I did at my wedding. Honestly I haven’t weighed this since I was in junior high. For most of my life I’ve been on the “plump” side (to put it kindly). It’s been a journey (one that isn’t complete in my mind). But I thought I would share some things that I’ve learned along the way.
Keep in mind that I am not a medical professional so all of this is strictly my opinion/ experience but my first piece of advice is:
Get thee to a Doctor.
And I mean a real doctor – not a weight loss clinic. Women are complicated machines and if your thyroid or hormones are off – you could be fighting an unfair battle while trying to lose weight. Find a good doctor (ask friends and family)get some blood work done, and tell them that you want to work on getting to a healthy weight. By the way – when they check your thyroid, if they won’t run a full panel and will only look at your TSH (they won’t check your T3 and T4 levels) – they don’t understand thyroid and you need to find a new doctor.
When it comes to your diet – begin as you mean to go on.
If you’re waistline is not where you want it to be – it more than likely means that you need to change what you’re eating. For some reason (and I say this sarcastically) eating white cheddar popcorn and a giant diet soda everyday is not conducive to weight loss. Name the diet and I’ve been on it (Weight Watchers, Adkins, eat a potato for lunch and skip dinner..) but I could never fully succeed with these because they weren’t sustainable for me. When I say begin as you mean to go on – I mean pick a diet that you can do FOREVER. Not just a few months but for the rest of your life. For me I found that a modified Paleo diet works best. Basically no sugar (or artificial sweeteners of any kind), very limited flour, limited dairy , lots of veggies, a few fruits and low fat protein. I’ll have a couple of treats on the weekend and that’s it. This diet is pleasant, manageable and I can do it the rest of my life. By finding a sustainable way of eating I can maintain my weight loss. So find a healthy way of eating that you can live with. Weight loss isn’t a journey with a final destination. It’s a way of life. To get me started I used Dr. Oz’s rapid weight loss plan. You can find it here. It was recommended to me by my doctor. But be sure to consult your health care professional before you try it.
You need to breathe hard – 6 days a week.
I honestly used to be scared of breathing hard. But over the past several months I’ve learned that I can push myself harder. The human body is an amazing machine – the harder you work it, the stronger it can become. You need not just to exercise, but you need to get your heart rate up. Depending on your fitness level it might just be a walk. Or you might need to take it up a notch and push yourself. I’ve learned that for me to stay interested I need convenience, variety and exercises that I find fun. I do best if I roll out of bed and exercise before my kids are up. It gives me time to myself and puts me in a good mood for the day. My favorite work out videos lately have been TurboFire – a fun kickboxing meets dance series that has several videos/classes of varying lengths to keep things interesting.
For strength training I’ve really enjoyed the PiYo series. It doesn’t have as much variety but I am loving the results. Ans again – check with your Doctor on what is a good level of exercise for you.
Invest in workout clothes…
Make sure that you have the proper work out gear. You’ll need good sneakers for exercise in ( key for healthy knees and feet). If you’re well endowed be willing to get a good/sturdy exercise bra that you can jump in and keep everything in place. Be sure to have workout clothes that are separate from your lounge clothes. You need to have clothes that you can sweat in and not think twice about it. A good place to look for cheap workout gear is Zulily.
…and smaller clothes.
Once you start losing weight, buy smaller clothes. Don’t keep wearing your baggy ones. This is for a couple of reasons :
1. baggy clothes will make you look FATTER than you are.
And 2 – it’s a signal that life is different now – you’re a different person. So buy a few things in a smaller size – and donate the big clothing. That way there’s no going back. Buy a few shirts and some cheap jeans – if you have a large amount of weight to lose – you will need to buy some clothing to tide you over until you get there. And window shop for that one dress you can’t wait to wear when you get to your goal size. My personal favorite place to shop online is ModCloth – they have prettiest dresses. And you can make a “wishlist” of items that you want. I like to have a wishlist to keep me motivated.
You can still feel fat
Even after losing 30 pounds there are days where I still feel fat. The truth is it takes the brain time to catch up to your body. I think this will take some time for me to wrap my head around my new size. But until I can maintain this weight loss (and trust myself that I will maintain it) I think that feeling will hang around for a while.
Objects have shifted during flight
I have given birth to and nursed three babies. Stuff has, well shifted. Giving birth changes you to your core – literally. Paleontologists can look at a female’s bones and tell if she had kids or not. So if the skeleton is different your outside is going to be different. I confess I struggle with this one. My breasts are different and my stomach. But I wouldn’t trade those things for my kids. Being a mom changes your mind, body and soul. It’s made me a better person. A few stretch marks and sagging items are really a small price to pay.
You will fall off the wagon
When you are trying to completely change your life. Old habits die hard. At some point you will screw up. You can either throw your hands up in there and dive into a bag of white cheddar popcorn (my personal favorite and nemesis) or your can dust yourself off and pull yourself back on. It’s the willing to pull yourself back on the wagon that makes you able to succeed. Don’t give up on yourself – you’re worth it.
Believe it’s possible.
You need to believe that you can reach your fitness goals. I say fitness because getting hung up on number will hold you back. At the end of the day you need to believe that it’s attainable. Take it from a former fat girl that still figuring it out. I went through my twenties and a good part of my thirties being overweight. But if you put good food into your body, stop feeding it crap and move everyday – you’ll see results. speak to yourself in a positive voice and fight for yourself and your family. You’re capable of amazing things, you just need to be willing to do the hard work to make them possible.
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You look amazing!!! Congratulation on making this decision for your self.
I can not say enough good things about the Paleo way of life. ( and I think of it as a way of life. NOT a D.I.E.T. ) My hubby of 46 years is a type 2 diabetic. Now, he was fairly good at controlling his eating and blood sugar or should I say I WAS fairly good at watching him and trying to control what he ate. (Everybody knows that doesn’t really work) but no matter what we did his blood sugar in the am was always over 150, and that is bad. The rest of the day it was normal but not that first one in the morning. His doctor said she could not give him higher levels of meds because than the rest of the day his blood sugar would be too low.
About 4 months ago we decided we would do something about our weight and hopefully his diabetic
My hubby and I where both about 40-50 pounds over weight. .So we talked with our doctor about Paleo, she loved the idea and said she believed it a good way for any adult to eat.
So we decided to change our lives. and let me tell you it HAS. My hubby in a little less than 4 months has not only lost 37 pounds but his am blood sugar is normal!! Never over 100. He says he feels 15 years younger, and most important he is never hungry any more. I have lost 35 pounds and feel fantastic. I am over 64 and female and lost 35 pounds in almost 4 months that is almost unheard of. We are very active ( was active even with the extra weight) but now we are not as tired and are looking for more things to do.
I really believe this is a way of life that we can live with for the remainder of our lives. 2 of our sons are slightly over weight (they both just turned 40) and they are so impressed with us that they also have decided to do a Paleo life style.
I am so happy for you that you have gain this control in your life and I wish you all the best in the New Year.
Dayyyyyyyum girl! You look god!
Congratulations, that is some very hard work. It took me about a year and a half to lose 25 pounds and I know the work it takes. Funny how people will ask my secret, many times I feel the need to lie and credit some detox or diet pill, cause telling them that I stopped shoving food in my mouth, limit calories and choose healthier options, incorporating activities that involve movement and exercise are never popular responses.
Keep it up, you can do this!
Angel, having known you for several decades now, I’m so happy for you and proud of you for taking on the weight loss battle and winning it! You look terrific. But, what your pictures don’t show is the sweet and beautiful woman you’ve always been inside. Now your exterior matches your interior.
Thanks for sharing your lessons.
So awesome! I lost about 30 pounds last year and I put off buying any new clothes because I still had a ways to go. We just found out in October that we’re expecting and when I switched to maternity pants it was AMAZING how different I felt just having pants that fit and weren’t baggy and worn out in all the most unflattering places. It’s funny that it took my belling growing to make me feel really good about all the weight lost! These are wonderful tips, thank you!!
Looking good! Keep up the good work. I usually don’t comment much, but I had to compliment you on your journey to a healthier you. I am on that road myself, and I swear by Blogilates and the calendars by Cassie Ho, as well as eating healthier. You go, girl! And give yourself a hug. 🙂
You look amazing. I have struggled with my weight all my life and have loss and gained over the years. I turned 65 in October and decided that 2015 was going to be different. I had moved from Iowa to Washington State in May 2014. The Cardiologist that I started to see in Olympia, Dr. Bill Gavin had written a book titled “The Tree-Rule Diet No White at Night”. I purchased a copy and stared following it and then I watched a program on PBS with Dr. William Davis who happens to be a Cardiologist as well. He has written a book title “Lose the wheat Lose the weight”. I have been eating gluten free since January 1st and have lost 11 pounds so far. The one thing that I noticed by not eating wheat is that I have no cravings or get hungry between meals. I have also notices a change in my skin for the better. Another change is that my arms and legs have stopped hurting and I quit taking my muscle relaxers and nerve medicine for my Spinal Stenosis. I sleep better at night and am full of energy.
You have done a marvellous job! Congratulations! And Thank you for sharing your tips and what you learned along the way, it is very inspiring 🙂
You look fabulous! Congrats on your hard work. You shine.
So glad you mentioned the thyroid testing – too many do not realize that the “standard” test is a useless test!
Really great post. Thank you. You look so happy. We are ready to do the same for a healthy new year…with lots of sewing;)