One year ago today, I stepped on my scale and saw the proof of what I already knew was true. Still, it was shocking to see the highest number I have ever seen on the scale: 228 lbs. I swore, the last time, that I would never be above 200 lbs again. And yet there I was. Fat. Lethargic. Depressed. And now, disgusted with myself.
The only reason I stepped on the scale on July 22, 2008 was the fact that I had a plan. I was going to try this Weight Watchers plan that had worked for my mother – and this time, it was going to work. I didn’t like living this way. I felt uncomfortable and ill at ease. Especially around people I had never met before. I had little desire to go out with friends or with my husband. I was unmotivated and spent my life watching TV and eating. My husband and I rarely had sex, partly because I was embarrassed about how I looked, and (although he will not admit this to me) partly because my husband no longer found me physically attractive. In September, I was about to embark on a new chapter of my life – graduate school. And, by God, I was going to be thinner when I got there.
And so I began. I didn’t eat a super healthy diet right away, but I did manage to write down what I was eating and stay within my points. I started exercising on the third day – walking on the treadmill at what I thought was a very brisk pace (of about 2.3 miles per hour
). I was slow, but I was moving. And, more importantly, I was proving I could exercise and not die.
I set up mini-goals for myself – lose 15 lbs by my anniversary (done!), lose 20 lbs by the start of school (done!) and many others. I also decided to break my weight loss into 10% mini goals – this is how I decided on my goal weight of 134 lbs. It’s five 10 percent blocks from where I started. So, my goals were 205, 184, 166, 149 and 134. So far, I have reached four of those goals.
I found exercise that I could commit to – some I love (hot yoga and swimming) and some I like (weight lifting and hiking) and some I am learning to like more (running). Speaking of swimming, I now own two bathing suits! For years, I have not even owned one!
I have struggled, cried and rebelled during the past year. I have eaten food I didn’t even really want just to prove that I was still allowed. I have stopped exercising for a few weeks once or twice. I have worried about eating at restaurants. I have obsessed about the scale. I have developed a group of women at my school with whom I exercise and talk about life. I love these women. I have wanted to quit – but never more than I wanted to succeed. I have forgiven myself. Not only for the small struggles along the way, but for not caring about myself enough to do this before. I have found a whole new person inside of me – and I love her.
Today, I run and dance and laugh and play. I eat food that I love in portions that will only nourish me and make me stronger. Well, most of the time, anyway.
My depression has lifted. My husband can’t keep his hands off me. I have so much energy, I am constantly thinking of new things to do to fill what little spare time I manage to wrestle out of my day. (hmm... maybe wrestling?
Oh, and I lost 85 lbs.