How I Lost 110 Pounds In 1.5 Years With Weight Watchers
Hi! Tell us about yourself…why did you decide to start losing weight?
I have always been a bigger girl. As far back as I can remember I never was called tiny or petite.
I really noticed a size difference between around the age of 12, and so did the kids at school. I was teased and that’s when the binge eating started. Even for those brief minutes- I learned food made me feel better. The first time I went on weight watchers I was 14 years old, weighing in at 222. I managed to lose 50lbs by the time I started 9th grade. Slowly but surely, social life became more important and the weight crept back on. I graduated highschool probably right back at the 220lb mark.
I got married young and had my 3 daughters back to back. I don’t ever remember weighing myself back then. At the Doctor’s appointment, I was around 240 pounds with all 3 girls. After my last daughter was born in 2010, life was a blur. 3 babies under 4, a husband, 2 dogs and I just opened a daycare. I remember being tired all the time, never feeling good, and just always reaching for the quick and easy. Triple teas and honey donuts were my go-to. I never left the grocery store without a chocolate bar. I always remember saying, “after my last child- I would lose the weight.” Well…it was time.
In Feb 2011, my life changed. I was randomly at my mom’s house and I stepped on the scale. 269lbs…….. Is what I saw. How did I get this heavy? Where did I take this turn? Approaching 300lbs scared the sh*t out of me. That month I started the process of weight loss. I knew what to do being on Weight Watchers before. I lost the first 50lbs over the course of 6 months just by cutting back and watching what I was eating. Then I hit a plateau and decided to join weight watchers again. The last 50 lbs took over a year to lose – 18 months total. September 2013 is when I hit the 100-pound loss mark.
What did you do for exercise when you started? Did you change it up throughout your journey?
I actually didn’t start any type of exercise until I had lost about 80lbs. I was too self-conscious to step foot in a gym and had no idea what I was supposed to be doing. I joined the YMCA and started going once a week, just using cardio machines. I was curious about how to tone loose skin and some sort of weight lifting looked to be an option. My brother’s friend who was a CrossFit instructor agreed to train me once a week at my house. But when he no longer could, he suggested I try a new Crossfit gym that opened in my town.
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Me? Crossfit? A barbell? I didn’t even know the first thing about it but I really wanted to continue with my journey. I was doing it and I couldn’t give up now.
September 2013, when I hit the 100-pound loss mark- I started CrossFit. At first, I only went once a week, using the lightest weights at the gym. Little did I know that was the start of my love affair with the barbell. Gradually working up to 3 days a week I started to notice a huge change in my body. The definition, the continued weight loss (another 10lbs), and how it was making me feel.
What did you do for nutrition when you started? Did you change it up throughout your journey?
I ate horrible food as a young mom. Quick and easy was my go-to. Lots of pasta and pizza, and fast food. I knew that I needed more veggies, fruit, and lean meats in my life. Cutting sugary drinks out of my diet was the first and biggest change I made. I did not realize how much I was drinking my calories. I started by eating more veggies and salads while watching my sugar and sweet intake. In the end, I needed more help to see where I could be successful. So I started Weight Watchers as well as weighing and tracking my good. I’ve been doing that for almost 9 years!
The way I eat now is very clean. I eat 80% clean with about 20% processed. I find the less processed foods I eat the better I feel. But it was a learning experience to get here. Learning what my body thrives on has taken a long time of adding and subtracting.
I still weigh and track everything. It’s my tool that helps me stay on track. Visually seeing what I have to “spend” on food helps me stay on track. I eat a lot of turkey and chicken, veggies and fruit, yogurt, cottage cheese, avocado. Sometimes I feel like I eat the same 20 things in different variations but I enjoy how I eat and how it makes my body feel.
Only within the last year or so have I introduced any type of supplement into my daily routine. Collagen, magnesium, fish oils, vitamins, and protein powder and vars are my go-to.
How did you stay mentally strong when it was tough? Did you ever give up? How did you recover?
There have been many ups and downs in my journey. It has never been a smooth line. This journey is not linear. There is a lot of growing and learning, gaining, and losing. Gaining weight sometimes, but gaining confidence, self-love, friendships. Losing weight, but losing self-doubt is part of the plan.
I remember thinking that the weight loss itself was the hardest but little was I wrong- the maintenance journey is another monster of its own.
I think the most important thing I have learned is that there is no finish line if you really want to make a lifestyle change. You just don’t reach your goal and everything turns out to be ok. You have to continue to learn and grow and be willing to keep changing and evolving.
I have learned more about myself in the past 2 years than I ever thought possible. It’s funny because I now believe losing the weight was a bi-product of me finding myself.
Did you use any sort of trackers/apps/scales to track your progress?
So most of my journey I used the Weight Watchers program. I truly believe that it is one of the only weight loss programs that work because you can eat anything you want essentially. Everything is moderation and you can tweak recipes and ideas to fit your budget. You just have to learn how to spend your points. But this was just the tool I used for my journey.
I believe everyone has to find their thing. What worked for me, may not necessarily work for you. How I eat may not be the way your body best responds to the process. Currently, I am tracking my calories and eating about 2000 per day. I have become serious about strength training over the last 6 months and have started to see the scale move up in the direction I have been trying to prevent for the last 7 years. Gaining muscle and strength is now the goal.
When did you start to notice progress?
It’s always nice when people start noticing your weight loss. I remember about 40lbs down. I ran into a friend at Walmart and he didn’t say anything at the moment but texted my husband and asked him if I was trying to lose weight, and that he noticed!
At about 50lbs down, my father in law passed away from complications and he was obese. I truly believe that if he lived in a healthier body he may have had a fighting chance. This was literally the turning point in my journey. I needed to be there for my daughters- I wanted to live.
Do you have any fitness “hacks” or “secrets” that helped you succeed?
ZERO! ZERO hacks or secrets! Hard work, diet, and exercise is how I got here. Making the hard choices, saying no, making time! There is no magic pill or magic answer. You have to want it and be ready to make the change.
Where can we find more about you?
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