Friday, June 28, 2013

How I did it...

Recently I have posted a before and after picture of my weightloss on the Facebook. It has been 5 years since I lost all the weight, 6 years since I started the journey and that was the first time I had ever posted a before picture.
That picture got an amazing response, which I am so humbled by and grateful for. I appreciate so much everyone's support and praise.
I've had a lot of people ask me for advice and tips on losing weight and keeping it off. I've had a lot of people ask how I did it.
Here is what I have learned in the last 6 years...
For starters, how I did it...
On June 18, 2007 I had gastric band surgery. I, along with my parents, did a year's worth of research prior to having the surgery. I studied it, I went to seminars, I talked to people who had had it done themselves, I talked to doctors. I wanted to know everything about it. The reason being, I was 23 years old and I had been over weight since I was a little girl. I had tried EVERYTHING and failed at EVERYTHING and before I spent all this money on something I wanted to know everything about it.
I remember the night before the surgery writing in my journal, terrified that this would just be something else I had failed at. I had resigned to the fact that the girl I was then was the girl I would always be. My life was set. I'd never get picked in sports, I'd never make it as a singer, I'd never fall in love, I'd never be able to go shopping at a regular department store, I'd never run a mile, I'd never be a "head turner". Writing in my journal that night I was afraid of all of those things, but for the first time in my life I felt like, maybe they weren't true.
I will say this, that surgery changed my life, BUT it was nothing more than a tool. It was nothing more than a catalyst. It was nothing more than a jumpstart. Yes it was forced portion control which does a lot for an overweight person, but I was still in charge of what those portions were. I was still in charge of my exercise and activity.
Over the next year I worked harder than I ever have before, mainly because it was working. As the weight came off, the more I could do physically, the more I could do the more I would do, the more I would do the more weight would come off and so on and so forth. In one year I lost 80 pounds.
One thing about myself is I am a naturally athletic person. Being active is just what I love, I was just never able to be that person before because what I was capable of was so limited. I love working out and pushing myself. I love racing, NOT because I actually like the racing part, but because no matter how many years it's been I'm still amazed at what I am NOW capable of. I don't think I'll ever stop being surprised and amazed at how my life has changed. When having that surgery, I NEVER expected that I would make it this far.
After that first year I had the band expanded all the way (I won't go into the details of how the band works but the basics are it can be tightened if you only want to be able to eat smaller portions, and it can be loosened if you want to be able to eat more) I wanted to know that whatever weight I lost from that point, and IF I kept it off that it was me doing it. It was my determination, it was my work. I didn't want to be dependent on it for the rest of my life.
In the 5 years after that I lost 20 more pounds for a total of 100 pounds.
I have changed my diet completely. I rarely go out to eat, I rarely eat sweets, I rarely (if ever) drink soda. I work out, I do races, I play sports, I go hiking, biking, swimming and running. THAT is why I have lost all of this weight. That is how I have kept it off. It was not an over night thing, and it was CERTAINLY not an easy fix. Those don't exist.
You can do all the fad diets, you can limit yourself in so many different ways and you can have results, but the fact remains: The only way to lose weight and keep it off is to change your diet and exercise plan forever. It's not something you can do for 6 months and then stop. It has to be a life change. That's it. It's that basic. Is it easy? Of course not! Is it possible? Absolutely.

Love you All!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

That Awkward Moment When... see identical twins, but they aren't by each other and you only know one of them, but not well enough to know which is the one you know.

This was what happened to me last night. I went to a stake activity last night of a stake that I am not a part of. I have friends there so I was meeting up with them. When the activity was over, everyone was standing around mingling. Again, this was a stake activity so there were a lot of people, very few of which I knew. I look to my right and in a small group of people I spot a guy I know. We have only met a few times but he is someone I know. I thought about going over and saying hi, but then I looked to my left and there he was again... in a different group of people. He is an identical twin so obviously it wasn't him in both groups, but there-in lies the problem, I didn't know which was the one I actually knew.
I stood there looking to my right and to my left trying to decipher the two.
Here is where it gets tricky, I made eye contact with one of them. I didn't know if I should smile and wave, potentially looking like an idiot if it was the one I didn't know. Or if I don't acknowledge him at all, potentially looking like a jerk if it was the one I did know. So by default I did nothing. I looked away and stayed where I stood.
Luckily I didn't go to this activity alone, so I didn't just look like an idiot standing there by myself. (I looked like an idiot for completely different reasons, but not because I was alone)The next thing I knew one of them was standing right in front of me. I was almost certain it was the one I knew, so very awkwardly I poked him, he turned and looked at me, and I'm pretty sure time stopped as I waited to see if familiarity would streak across his face or if it would be a look of utter confusion as to why this strange blonde girl is poking him. He smiled and hugged me (phew!!!) and we caught up for a bit.
I'll tell ya... that is a strange reality to be faced with.

Pretty sure I'll use this picture of Leila for all of my awkward posts... I just love that face.