Hi! I've decided to stop lurking and introduce myself. I recently my weight watchers goal on 10/19/04 and felt that it was time to share my story:
I was a chubby kid and an overweight teenager that blossomed into a morbidly obese young adult. I'm guessing that I was about 40-60 pounds overweight in high school weighing around 150-180 pounds (I'm a little under 5'2"). I was also completely uncoordinated and was always the last one to be picked for any game in PE. I dreaded the yearly "Presidents Fitness Challenge" because running the mile felt like torture. I was always the last one to finish...Even though I wasn't the heaviest in my class I was the most out of shape. I had no concept of good nutrition and I put myself on a number of crazy crash diets in my early teen years...like the NO fat diet. I often would try to restrict my calories to around 800 per day or less. I wasn't trying to be anorexic or anything...I just didn't know better. I thought that in order to lose weight I had to suffer. After 3 days of starving I would find myself so famished that I would just binge. I never actually managed to loose more then a couple of pounds with any of my dieting attempts so I can't even call it yo-yo dieting. By the time I was 16 or 17 I decided that I didn't want to torture myself anymore and that my body was incapable of loosing weight. I decided to accept myself the way I was, as someone that was a bit on the heavy side but also healthy and very voluptuous. It just seemed too difficult to fight with the scale and torture myself with it. From that point of I stopped paying attention to what I was eating and just ate whatever I liked and felt like eating. Between high school and college I ballooned, I was completely oblivious to how heavy I was. While I was in college I met my husband, I loved that he thought I was beautiful and didn't see me as fat. Unfortunately his acceptance of me and his love of high calorie foods didn't help my already expanding waist line. I graduated with my BA in Psychology and got a very high stress, but well paying, job working in the human service world. I knew even when I accepted the position that it wasn't what I wanted to do but it was an offer that most recent grads would jump at.
Several of my co-workers belonged to Weight Watchers and had had wonderful success. I decided to join too, in part to lose weight for my up coming wedding and in part develop a common bond with my new co-workers. When I stepped on the scale for the first time I was shocked to see that I was over 215 pound ( I can't remember my exact weight). I took to Weight Watchers quickly but soon grew tired of counting points. I didn't like paying for the meetings and I figured that I could do the program on my own. I also figured that since I have an excellent memory I could keep track of my points in my head...yeah right. I don't know who I was fooling but I know you all know what happened. little by little the 10 pounds that I had lost came back and then some. When I re-joined Weight Watchers again in order to lose weight for my wedding I was up around 225ish...but once again there was a part of me that was holding myself back. I think that in truth I didn't believe that I could really succeed. I convinced myself that I didn't need to lose weight...I had everything I needed. A wonderful husband-to-be that didn't care about my weight, a good job (even though I hated it by this point). I was going to the meetings and going through the motions even though I had no motivation. I was beginning to feel overwhelmed with work and wedding planning. Needless to say I didn't lose weight in time for my wedding on 9/26/02. I was close to my highest weight ever on my wedding day and I was in complete denial as to how big I really was.
It was sometime in March of 2003 that it hit me. I'm not really sure what happened...I think it was the culmination of many things. The stress of my job made me realize that I wasn't who I wanted to be or where I wanted to be in my life. I knew that I needed to change me. I decided that I wanted to get healthy and become physically fit. I didn't care about loosing weight to get a man or to be popular...which had always been my weight loss motivation in high school. I wanted to lose weight for me! I decided that this time I wanted to add something that had been missing before...exercise. The weird thing was that once I had resolved to get healthy nothing could stop me. The thought of exercise terrified me. All of my previous attempts had failed. I knew that I enjoyed walking but I didn't like doing it alone or outside. I promised myself that I would only make changes to my lifestyle that were maintainable and realistic to me. In order for me to be comfortable exercising I had to do it on my terms. I decided that I HAD to have a treadmill. I bought a treadmill and started walking...at a pace of 2.5 MPH for half an hour several times a week. In April I decided to join Weight Watchers again. This time when I weighed in my weight was up to 239.4. That is my highest recorded weight but I know that I was probably even higher then that since I had been walking on the treadmill for several weeks prior to joining and was making small healthy changes in my way of eating. In keeping with my new philosophy that I would only make changes in my life that I could maintain I decided that I needed to find a way to track my points without the hassle of writing them down. I liked the idea of the points bracelets that they sell at Weight Watchers but I thought they were ugly so I decided to make my own with pretty blue beads and a butterfly charm to represent my transformation...this also served as an anchor for me when I was going through rough times.
I wish I knew what it was that was different for me this time and what really motivated me to loose the weight. I wish I could remember that "Ahh ha moment". I just know that I woke up one morning with a new resolve to do it. I knew from the beginning that I would succeed, unlike my half hearted attempts in the past. Exercise was a huge part of it for me too. Over the months I progressed from a slow short crawl to an hour of fast paced walking every day. January 04' marked the beginning of learning to run. I stared out by doing repetitions of running 1 minute and walking 3. After twelve weeks of increasing running intervals I ran for 30 minutes non-stop for the first time. This was nothing short of a miracle in my mind, considering that I had never been able to run an entire mile before in my life. Running has been a great way for me to change my focus back to my original goal of getting healthy, now that the excitement of loosing has worn off.
It's taken about a year and a half to get where I am now...and I'm surprised how quickly it all has happened. I now weigh 136, and wear a size 4/6 and run between 3-7 miles 4-5 time a week. On the days that I don't run I walk and have recently stared incorporating some light weight training into the mix as well. My life has changed in a lot of other ways too over the last 18 months. The "great job", where I was so miserable, laid me off in November 03'...talk about a blessing in disguise. I was unemployed for several months but it allowed me some time to focus on myself and learn about who I was and what I wanted to do. My weight loss gave me the courage to try a new job in a new field, it pays less then what my previous job did, but the benefits of not working in a high stress job are immeasurable.
I'm not quite where I want to be yet. The weight range for someone of my height is between 108-136 according to WW. I would like to be around 125ish I think...though I'm having a lot of trouble assessing where I'm at physically. I have some saggy skin, though it does seem to be shrinking. Even though I think the sagging is excessive my doctor seems to think it's not that bad considering how much I've lost. I think that has been the hardest thing for me to come to terms with. I don't have the perfect body....I'm not where I want to be. I still see myself as 240 pounds sometimes. Right now my plan for maintenance is to continue eating and exercising as I have been. I'm also adding some strength training into my routine...and hope to learn a lot from those of you that have more experience in this area. I'm going to continue to work on my running and increase my distance and speed. I still want to loose some more mass but I'm not going to be as concerned about my numbers as I have been. I'm healthy, I'm at a normal weight for my body and that is what is most important to me. There is something addictive about loosing and I'm going to miss the rush I get from seeing the numbers on the scale go down...though that happens so seldom now that I think I've become accustomed to it already. My biggest fear is that I will gain back the weight that I have lost. I think that by staying connected to other people that have lost weight and are maintaining their loss I will have a much better chance of succeeding. I'm glad to have found this place.
start 239/current 134.4/WW goal 136/Personal goal 125ish?
Last edited by Deelighted4Ever : 10-31-2004 at 12:10 PM.