My Journey!

Update-January 2014:

First, I want to say that 2013 brought lots of changes for me -- seems I am always writing that, lol. I found love again, relocated a couple hours away, changed jobs and seems my head was always in a spin. But in June I stepped on the scale and saw 119 -- that was the same number I saw on the scale 35 years prior in June when I graduated from high school!! Wow -- I could hardly believe it. I had gone from a high of 240 to 119 -- more importantly, I had dropped my BMI to 22% - THAT was my goal. Since June and amidst all the the changes, I maintain a range of 118-123. The way I do that is pretty much eat the same way I did to lose -- grain-free, sugar-free and low-carb.

Okay, the next thing I ALWAYS say is IF I CAN DO THIS, ANYONE CAN!! I know that is trite expression, but it is so -- the greatest gift I gave myself was just sticking to it long enough tht my thinking changed -- not a diet, a lifestyle -- not temporary, but everyday, -- not a sacrifice but a way of living that provides all I need in a body that is so much healthier and happier.

Wishing you the same happiness and health in this new year. We're all on the journey together!!

Update-November 2012:

My journey continues. Since I originally shared this post last December, I have lost an additional 15lbs, redefined my goal (the first goal was just a number picked out of the air, now I am shooting for a specific BMI number instead of scale number) and I have grown in the lifestyle that is Low-Carb. I am closing in on my goal of 22% BMI - only 8 more pounds to go. Although I look forward to getting there one day, Low-Carb is my lifestyle and that will continue no matter what the scale reads.

As Originally Posted-December 2011:

My blog is not one that is very defined. You know, some blogs are *cooking* blogs and some are *crafting* blogs and others are *decorating* blogs. Mine has always been a *slice-of-life* kind of blog - a little of everything. That said, in the last (almost) 2 years I’ve tried to not say too much about my journey to lose weight because I didn’t want to be a *weight loss* blogger. Mostly because I am no expert and have struggled on the way.

A few weeks ago I got the idea that it was time to share my journey. New Year’s seemed to be perfect timing – it is the time of year that many will make a RESOLUTION -- I know I've made many of them. BUT something kept nagging at me -- you see, my journey is not complete. Somehow I felt unqualified to share IF I still was a work in progress. So, *I* decided I'd share *IF* I made a milestone – my 100lb weight loss mark. That milestone had been eluding me and seemed to be just out of my grasp. Despite the work I've put in, seems it still is - I stand before you today 96lbs lighter than I once was and 15lbs from my ultimate goal. I didn’t make the 100lbs before January 1, 2012 – and somehow that doesn’t matter to me now – what does matter is that each day I get up and continue on my way – I've worked hard – keeping to my low carb eating plan, exercising, journaling my daily intake and activity – I’ll continue to work hard and someday I’ll get where it is I’m going. You see, really, my journey has been just as much about redefining my relationship with both food and myself as it has been about losing weight.

I should tell you a little about how I ended up where I was. I come from a long line of shorter, rounder peoples. Body fat was our insurance policy during times of famine or seasonal food scarcity. We were accomplished at surviving. Besides that fact, wonderful cooks abound in my family. Despite that working against me, I was a very active teen and young adult and I never had a weight issue until baby #1 arrived (is it still baby fat if baby is going on 29, lol). Then baby #2 arrived 2 years later without all the weight gain from first baby gone. I have 4 children – see the trend here, lol? A marriage that was less than perfect only compounded my issues. I tried many things along the way – the worst being the drug combination Fen-Phen. I always was able to achieve some short term weight loss but the weight always came back on – PLUS MORE. I hit my heaviest weight in 2002. I rarely allowed myself to be photographed and the photos from that time bring tears to my eyes….mostly because it is evidence of just how unhappy I was.

Spring 2002

New Year’s 2003, I resolved to finally do something about my weight. I started Atkin’s. I felt GREAT. The weight started coming off and I was never hungry and had energy in abundance. I did the Atkin’s program diligently from January 1 until mid-May and lost 40lbs. At that point I was derailed. Then started what I call the *counting* years. I counted – steps, points, calories, fat grams, fiber grams – IF you could count it, I did. I never had the success I did with Atkin’s and it didn’t escape my notice that the Atkin’s weight loss didn’t come back like with other things I tried. My marriage ended in November 2007 (although the divorce wasn’t finalized until mid-2011). I don’t know why it took me so long to return to Atkin’s, but it did – all the way to March 8, 2010.

February 2010

My weigh-in on that day found me 30lb less than my all-time high of 2003 but still classified as obese (when I do a BMI on my highest weight it says EXTREMELY OBESE). I started program and have never looked back. Today I am close to being 100lbs lighter than the heaviest me and 66lbs lighter than I was March 8, 2010. I am active, I run and I feel younger than I have in years. I also feel compelled to say that eating low-carb and the Atkin's program are not a *diet* to me -- this is my lifestyle now. Yeah, I still love to bake for my family and those who can tolerate carbs - but not for me. I will forever eat like this. That is a huge reason why my weight loss hasn't been over just a few months -- I am learning to maintain as I go.

December 2011

So I’m sharing – even though I struggle - struggling is what people do – what I know is this – struggling with someone else makes the struggle easier - maybe my struggles can encourage you or yours can encourage me. If you are embarking on your own journey or you, like me, are somewhere along the way, reach out. I am here. I will celebrate with you and offer whatever words of wisdom I can to encourage you along.

Happy New Year AND Happy Trails!!