Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Losing the Weight: Step 1

The first step in weight loss is the motivation it takes to get started. Everyone wishes they could lose 10 pounds or be as skinny as so-and-so or be as toned as someone else. It is easy to want to lose weight, but the hardest part is wanting to lose the weight badly enough to actually start.

The first time I ever really gained any weight was our first year of marriage but you must know that when we got married, I was 21 years old, was 5'6", and weighed somewhere around 115-120 pounds. The picture below was the day we got engaged. Would I like to look like that again? Of course I would! Who wouldn't? I was thin, toned, and totally healthy and happy....and 21. The weight gain was only about 10 pounds so it wasn't that big of a deal.
Then, two years after we got married, I got pregnant with Ansleigh. I only gained 22 pounds with her (excessive vomiting will do that to you!) but that muffin top was a beast to get rid of and I never really did. It took around two years to really get that 22 pounds off. I finally did and I felt GREAT! I used Lose It and ran my first 5K (The Disney Princess 5K) and my second 5K (The Flamingo Run). I ran some and walked some. The weight was off, I went back to work, and stopped caring.

I mostly kept it off for about a year and then I really stopped caring because the talks were beginning about having a second baby. Who cares about a few pounds here and there? Well those few pounds turned into about 25 in just one semester and summer. Yikes!

Once you put on the weight, you feel almost defeated. It is there. You see it in the mirror, you see it with your clothes that you can't wear, you see it the most in pictures of yourself. It was sickening for me.

Throughout my pregnancy, I kept thinking about the first time I lost the weight, how I did it, and how I could do it again.

It is one thing to think, "I'm going to lose this weight." It is another thing to actually do it. It is so much easier to sit on the couch than to get up and do something.

How did I motivate myself? I looked at pictures of myself when I was thin and happy. I also looked at pictures of myself when I was a Fatty McButter Pants.  When you have a new baby in the house, you take pictures constantly and as we uploaded them, I kept seeing myself and wanted to throw up.

I started with food. That is easier (to me) to control. I was careful about what I put in my mouth. Mostly just the amount, not what I was eating.

Then I got out of the house and started walking.

Honestly, my biggest motivation was that I'd be seeing my sister-in-law (who I LOVE! and who weighs like...10 pounds) in a few months and I'm always worried about what I look like when I see her because she always looks so great. My motivation was that I didn't want to be fat when I saw my SIL. She would never judge me, and for sure, not out loud, but it is just one of those things. Plus, I knew I had no more excuses. No pregnancy, nothing. No excuses!

I also was motivated by the fact that I had gestational diabetes. When you have that, it makes you much more likely to develop type 2 diabetes. Pair that with the fact that BOTH of my parents and one of my grandmothers all have type 2 diabetes and it makes me like the poster child for someone who will likely develop it. I love pasta and I love Coke and I love chocolate. I cannot have diabetes.

Another motivator was the fact that we teach our children by example. If I'm always shoving my mouth full of crap and never exercising, what am I teaching my children? Ansleigh is at such an impressionable age. I want her to think that a healthy lifestyle is the only option. Nothing will motivate you like your babies can.

My sweet husband would never say anything to me about my weight or what I'm eating--he values his life too much ;) and respects me more than that, but I knew he was concerned about my odds of having diabetes later in life. Plus, who would really want a fat spouse? I mean seriously! Especially when that spouse was a mere size 2 when you married her? I know he doesn't love me for my weight or my size but I love him enough that I should be healthy. I need to be healthy enough to raise our kids and spend my life with him.

What are some other ways to motivate yourself?
  • ask yourself why you want to lose the weight
  • look at pictures of the you that you want to be
  • talk with other people who have been in your shoes
  • find a buddy who is going through the same thing you are RIGHT NOW
  • find a friend that can be mean to you and by mean, I mean honest. 
  • enlist your spouse or roommate--make them tell you to put that cookie back
  • link up your running app or your weight tracking app with facebook so EVERYONE you are friends with, all 800 of them, can see that you went out and walked, or ran, or maybe went over your calories for the day.
  • ask your friends to encourage you, because they will. They are your friends and they love you!
  • GET OUT THE DOOR! That is the hardest part. 
  • Put on your workout clothes. Wear them all the time. Why? If you have them on, you are more likely to do something that makes you sweat. Promise!
  • If your kids can't read yet, put a sign on the fridge that says, "Put that back, Fatty!" :) Or better yet, train your kid to tell you that you can't have that or to remind you that you need to exercise that day. Kids are relentless. 
  • If you are on Pinterest, do some searches for fitness, healthy foods, running, whatever and follow lots of those board. Your feed will fill up with things that remind you to "Just do it, even if you suck!" Or it will tell you "You're not hungry, you are just bored. Drink some water and learn the difference." If that isn't motivation, I don't know what is. 
  • If you like to read, read books on nutrition, or losing weight, or running, or whatever you are interested in that is active. Not only will it improve your knowledge on the subject, but it will also keep you focused on what you are doing. 
  • Listen to your workout music when you are in the car or washing the dishes. If it pumps you up, it might make you want to go do something. 
What motivates you? 

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