“Thick girls don’t exercise and that’s okay as long as your stomach is smaller than your breasts and your butt.” I remember thinking, did this guy really just say that to me. Yes, he did. I was blown away by his very straight forward attitude and a little upset that he just made the comment. I’ve always been a thick girl since I was little and somewhat thinned out in high school because I ran track, played in the band and did a couple of seasons of basketball. But for the most part, my thickness was always there. One of the most important things that I do for myself now is exercising.
Most of us “Thick” girls have had our journey with weight/weight loss. I think for most of us, it was harder to deal with during the school years because our peers can sometimes be the most hurtful. The wonderful thing about growing up is you learn to accept and love yourself.
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve had my ups and downs with weight loss. I gained some weight after being in a long-term relationship, then lost some weight for the wedding and then gained it all back plus some a few years after being married.
Last year a few things happen that made me change my lifestyle. The first was during a routine checkup my physician told me that I was pre-diabetic. After giving me the full run down of what that meant, I was told that with weight loss and management, that I could reverse it. Unfortunately, life kept going and I kept eating. I knew in the back of my mind that I had to do something about it but it just never seemed pressing.
The second issue was seeing a picture of myself during a family function. I had gotten so use to the weight that it didn’t even dawn on me how heavy I was until I saw that picture. It was devastating, but not devastating enough to make me change my habits.
The final straw happen last year at the LA County fair, as my sister-in-law and I stood in line to ride one of those heart pounding rides. If you know me, then you know that I love thrill rides, so I was excited! I stepped up to the chair, sat down and waited for the technician to lock me in. He walked over and pushed down on the bar but it wouldn’t lock. He kept trying and then looked over at the other tech. You can tell he didn’t want to say that I was too big. However, the other tech had no problem letting me know. Now imagine this, I had to walk the walk of shame back through the line with whispers and giggles. One of the more horrific moments in my life. I wanted to ball up somewhere and cry. As I type this, my eyes start to water remembering that feeling.
I was already fully aware that I needed to make a change but that embarrassment made it so clear that it was now a must. Sometimes, we ignore the signs of weight gain, sore knees, heavy breathing, sweating from short walks, etc… and we just hope that it will magically go away.
My heaviest weight was 350 lbs, it still scares me to say it. I can’t believe I allowed myself to get there but I did and now it’s up to me to get to a healthy weight. Now, I’m going to be very honest, my journey didn’t start with me changing my diet or exercising right away. It actually was more mental than anything. I was aware of the changes I wanted to make so I ate a little less, walked a little more but no real plan. After several months, I decided to go to Weight Watchers and when I stepped on the scale, I was 330 lbs, which meant that just by making small changes, within 6 months I’d lost 20 lbs. This motivated me!
I started my journey with Weight Watchers and before long, I was weighing in at 317 lbs. I could physically feel the difference and it was amazing. But then my marriage took a turn for the worse. My husband and I were not talking, became distant and bitter. My weakness when dealing with stress is to eat and that’s exactly what I did. When we decided to separate, my eating became worse and I could feel the weight packing back on. It took several months of battling depression, that I finally had to make a change.
I committed to going to the gym at least 3-4 days per week. I started going in the mornings at 5am, I would walk 2.5 miles, reduced my portion sizes at meals and increased my intake of water. After a few months, I started walking 2-4 miles at work on top of my morning workouts. After a while that morning routine was becoming too much, so I started going to the gym in the evening and started to add weight lifting. Now that entire time, I’ve been attending LA Fitness and I loved it, but one day some co-workers told me about a class at Spectrum Clubs – South Bay called Body Pump. The class incorporated weights and cardio, I FELL IN LOVE! I now attend body pump 4-5 days per week and I can see my body getting stronger with each class.
I’m still working on my nutrition, but I’m clearly seeing some results. You’re probably asking so, what’s your weight now? To be honest, I don’t know. This time around, I wasn’t fixated on the number, I wanted to see a change in my body. Looking at the number, only made me feel worse on those weeks that I didn’t lose weight. Now, I go hard no matter what!
Your health is so important and not just for you but for your family and friends, but to also be with your spouse for years to come, to feel comfortable in your clothes and to be able to get on the rides you want to at the LA County fair. And no, I haven’t been to the fair yet, but when I go back, it’s going to be a WIN because I can guarantee that I will be riding any ride that I want because it’s what I love to do!
A few quick tips that help me stay focused:
- Purchase a water bottle with 24-32 oz capacity that you love. Keep it with you at work or around the house. Commit to drinking at least 64 oz. daily. (I now have one at my work desk, one in my gym bag and one I keep next to my bed.)
- Make your lunch and eat it! Making a lunch is so much better. You save money, you can control the portion size and it’s usually something good because you know what you like and how you like it. Now the struggle is eating your lunch when everyone else went for taco Tuesday. Just stay focused and you’ll love the results.
- Get Moving! Most of us sit behind a desk all day and we need to start moving. I started to incorporate walks during my workday. I started with a one mile walk and now I’m up to 2 miles(sometime twice a day). I also made the investment into a FitBit, I set my goal of 12,000 steps daily and I look forward to feeling that vibration letting me know that my goal was achieved. You can also set reminders to get moving, which is helpful for those of us that get carried away by work.
What are your fitness and health goals for 2015?
I hope this encourages you to keep moving forward in your journey.
I would love to hear from you?