Thursday, October 28, 2010

Don't Hog Your Journey

In one week, I turn 31. Perhaps it's the driving force behind my light bulb moment. The realization that a year ago I swore I would not still be this weight when I turned 31. So today, I am being more real and transparent than I've ever been. I'm sharing...gasp...REAL NUMBERS that I've seen on the scale.

One morning - a week or two ago - I was watching the Today Show while I was getting breakfast ready for the kids as I do every weekday morning. On that particular day Hoda Kotb was being interviewed and was disusing her battle with breast cancer. As I listened to her describe what she has been through, something hit a chord with me, and the things she said are things that I could apply to my own life.

First of all, let me say that I am not trying to compare weight loss to cancer. However, I feel we each have a story to tell and share. One that could bring understanding from some and encouragement to others. That is what I understood with Hoda.

She began to discuss that she had been very reluctant to share her battle with breast cancer in the public eye. Although she is on television everyday, she prefers to keep her private life private. But a chance encounter with a stranger on airplane convinced her to go public and share her story. The stranger on the airplane told her...“Don’t hog your journey.”

Hoda recalls, “When he said that, my eyes just opened wide. I knew right then and there, I told myself that when it’s time, I’m going to do it.”

And for me and my weight loss journey, I feel like it's time.

It's certainly not that I haven't shared with you before about my struggles and occasional successes. Who could forget my somewhat pathetic post where I declared my failure during a weight loss competition? That was actually something very hard to admit.

Let's start at the beginning. When I was the most fit and most toned. And I'm supposed to mention...I am 5'9".

It was the summer of 1999. I had just finished my freshman year at SBU and just completed my first season of college softball. I was running, swimming, lifting weights, and even doing step aerobics. It was the "perfect" me:

That was me at 165 pounds. That is the weight I'd like to be.

A few years passed. I got married, graduated from college, got a job, and started being a grown up. I gained 20 pounds from about 2001 to 2003. At 185, I looked like this:

Then I had three babies between 2004 and 2008. Brace yourself...I'm still sharing real numbers. At the end of each of my pregnancies, I weighed in the 240's. This is me three days before I had Gabriel (my third). I think I might have been 237 at the last appointment before this picture:

Imagine my dismay when I only had babies that were between 8 and 9 pounds. I left the hospital only losing the weight of the baby, maybe a pound more.

There I was. A woman weighing around 230 pounds. In my mind (and probably in the mind of most people) a woman isn't supposed to weigh that. Ever. How could I have let it get that high? What was I supposed to do?

Nursing certainly helped. Within a month or two after having Sarah (my second) I lost 10 pounds or so - which is pretty good considering I wasn't even trying. But I really wanted to work at it, so in the spring of 2007, I cut my calories, drank tons of water, and lost 25 pounds to get down to 195. At that point, I looked like this:

And even though I had about 30 more to go, I became content with how I looked, and stopped working at it. Then came the day when I quit nursing Sarah. Did you know you can't eat as much when you quit nursing? Otherwise, you will gain weight? Yeah, I think I would have nursed her longer! Within two months, I gained 10 pounds! How frustrating.

Then another pregnancy put me back where I was before.

Last year on my 30th birthday, I weighed 215 pounds. As if turning 30 wasn't traumatic enough, I was at a weight I didn't want to be.

(By the isn't really fun seeing pictures
of myself next to skinny relatives.)

I told myself another year would NOT go by being that weight. In fact, that's when my friend Kim and I decided to start training for a 5K! We told each other we would begin in January, and we did!

But running didn't help me lose weight. I still had horrible eating habits, and I stayed at 215 through all of our training. I was 215 on my birthday, and I remained at 215 through June of the next year when we ran that 5K together.

And guess what...I quit running. Did you know that running must train your body to think it needs to run? After June, I gained 8 pounds from not running!

As for my current numbers...

Something clicked for me on September 1st. I'm not sure what it was. I stepped on the scale and saw 223. Really. 223. A friend of mine had just shared that she lost 40 pounds, and I was genuinely happy for her. I told her I was going to take her will power from her, and I think I must have meant it.

I've lost 18 pounds since September 1st, and I am now at 205.

I wanted to be 199 for my 31st birthday, but I think I'm going to fall a bit short of that goal. If I keep at my pace, however, I will be at 203, and that will be 20 pounds lost by my birthday. I think that's a great accomplishment.

The hard thing about being tall is that this kind of weight loss is just not noticeable. My mom is 5'4", and when she lost 20 pounds, it was VERY noticeable. Everyone knew. She ended up losing 30 all together, and it's just like a new woman!

For me, it's not going to be that way. When I lose 20, I still have almost 40 to go. And it's ok. I do notice that my jeans are falling off. That's enough proof for me.

So...big sigh...there's my journey. I doubt I will write much more about it until I get closer to my goal. I've been losing 2 pounds a week, and I think I figured I might be there by the end of February.

Stay tuned.


Jamie said...

Girl I'm right there with you!! Way to be brave and share your journey. My numbers are just like're not in this alone!

Jodie said...

What a wonderful, honest post! I just turned 31 last week...and it was my first birthday that seemed to slide by without much excitement. Amazing how when you get older life just gets busy. The weight will come off, keep at it. My girlfriend is 5'11" and she just lost 50lbs with diet and exercise. She hired a trainer. Her diet was the trouble, and once she took control (do you have a food log?) she was on her way. GOOD LUCK! And happy almost 31st Birthday! You look great by the way, don't sweat it!

Jo Ann said...

Stick to it girlfriend! I should have told you on Tues when I saw you that I thought you lost weight, cause I really thought it looked like you did! Food logging is a great thing. It brings to reality what really goes in! Making a menu for the week and a shopping list helps too. Don't use your kids as a reason to buy junky food. They don't need it either!
From your "could be thinner if I had more willpower" friend...

Mrs. Haid said...

Good job! Real numbers! Brave girl!

Now...are you praising God for your health, your physical well being, the encouragement you are getting from others, and reminding yourself that you are not meant to be perfect but that God loves you anyway (and at any size)? I bet you are. I think you see the trees AND the forest.

marielamar said...

I think you look great! Keep up the good work - I am hoping to gain more control of my eating as well.... if everyone would quit bringing me junk food that would be great... I also have to work on not drinking my calories. Thanks for being so honest - it's awesome!

Mrs. Haid said...

PS, I would really enjoy to share a plane ride with Hoda, as long as Kathie Lee isn't there. She makes Hoda seem so pathetic.

I really thought you were going to talk about the JOY fit club in this post.

ALSO... could you do this without a scale to mark your progress? You know we haven't had a scale in our home for the last four years and that has been the healthiest for me. I think if you start to weigh yourself more than twice a week or so (like every time you use the restroom or more like I did) and the scale can ruin your attitude, you need to TOSS THAT SCALE. okay??

Cheryl Sybert said...

Congratulations Girl!! Might I add that you look absolutely gorgeous in ALL of those pictures!! I know that it took a lot for you to post your weight, but just think; It really gives you an incentive to get down to your ideal weight. You can keep my will power as long as you'd like because it makes me extremely happy that it is being put to great use by such a wonderful person!! ;o)
P.S. I am with Bethany. Put the scale away, it's the devil!! Maybe at the most weigh once a week or every other week. I am to the point where I only weigh every other week. When I started I used the scale every morning and night and when I did not get the results that I wanted or expected I would literally get depressed.
I can't wait to see your final weight loss post in February!!

Chrissy said...

Mrs. Haid - I must have my scale. I don't know how I'd feel successful without it.

Ashley said...

Will you share how you've lost the weight since September? I know different things work for different people, but how have YOU done it? I'm walking 1 mile every morning and drinking WAY more water, and still haven't seen any changes...yet. But - I'm okay with it! lol

Kelley said...

You know, I think there's something freeing about releasing your real, bare-bones story into the world- good for you for being brave enough!

Mrs. Claus said...

I think you look great too! I don't even know you and I think you look to be a healthy weight.

Just stopped by, don't really know how I got here, but I'm your newest follower!

Check out my blog sometime

Josh said...

I am so proud of your hard work and determination.

Audra said...

You are very brave! Way to go - 20 pounds is awesome! I'm on the other end of the spectrum - I've struggled being both over and underweight through my life. I'm 4'11" so when I lose 5 pounds it is very noticeable, like you said. However, when I GAIN a couple pounds, none of my clothes fit and everyone can see.

I actually have a post in the works for sometime in the next couple weeks about my weight journey and things that have helped me. You have given me courage to actually post it!

alicia said...

I'm popping in from the blogher ad... This is a brave story! I am 31 also and in the same boat- however, I think you see it on my pics a lot more, you look great! (and yes, I'm 5'9" also!) This summer a blogger buddy and I did an online weight loss/Bible study together and it worked great. I lost 15lbs in 60 days- had I been more disciplined at the beginning I'm sure I could have done better. But now its done and here I sit. Again.

Best wishes to you! I pray you meet your goal and learn that you're a beautiful daughter of the King and He loves you no matter what the numbers say.

thechattymommy said...

Thanks for sharing!
I hear ya sister!
By the way, you are truly beautiful in each one of your pictures!

Aries said...

This post sort of encourage me to exercise more. Nice pictures and you look lovely, fat or not, sincerely from my heart. Your post makes me so guilty that I think it is time for me to start going to the gym again. Happy Halloween to you and family

Kelly @ Blessed Mommy, Blessed Wife said...

Thank you for sharing your story. It's inspiring and I am sure you related to a boatload of people. Congratulations for doing this for yourself and your family! I am having the hardest time not being able to exercise while I'm recovering. You're right - your body becomes accustomed to running and the moment you stop it wreaks havoc on your body. Best wishes as you continue on this journey!! xoxo, Kelly

P.S. Happy early Birthday! I hit 31 this week...

Crystal said...

What a delightful post. You were so honest. I struggle a bit with my weight right now. Not sure what the problem is I just don't want to deal with it right now I think. Good luck on your journey.

Wendy said...

I think you look fantastic at any weight! You are one brave woman writing the "real" numbers. Don't get discouraged, you'll get to your dream number some day!

I feel the pain of the up and down roller coaster! I looked my best the year I met my husband. And then I got married...I swear marrying him caused weight gain! LOL I didn't get back to my pre-marriage weight until AFTER I had Hunter. And now...I'm the size I was at 7 months pregnant. Talk about disheartening! I think this is what women do...we sacrifice so much that it ultimately has an impact on our own health. (Unfortunately)

Hang in there Chrissy!! Don't give up! Happy Birthday to the new you!!

ferienwohnung playa d’aro said...

Great post !!!!
Write up of the post is so true and honestly you write it.Strong determination and hard work helps you to achieve your goal.All the best your goal will achieve soon.

villa tossa said...

I really like your post..So honest and real without any hidden part..My best wishes are always with you..Good Luck for your future!

Karen said...

Ok - My first thought after reading this post. You don't look like you weighed the amounts that you said. You look really, really good.

I have struggled with my weight all my life, but after having children it is SO hard to lose weight. I'll have to stay tuned to your journey...and maybe gather a little inspiration and motivation for myself.

becca jacobsen said...

I just want to say that you are so honest and bold to share all this. Also, I think you look great. I really never would of thought you weighed what you say you weigh! Are you sure your scale is right? : ) Seriously, I'm 5'7 1/2" and I do have quite a bit of muscle, but you must have strong bones and lots of muscles! Keep up the good work and I love your blog!

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