Tuesday, November 16, 2010

So, What Are You DOING?

Hello everyone and thanks for visiting my new blog!

I've had a blog on Weight Watchers Online for almost a year now, from the start of this leg of my weight loss journey (the journey is LIFE but more about that later), but now that I'm down more than fifty pounds and everyone is noticing, I've decided to share tips and ideas I've picked up with the purpose of spreading the word that 1) this does not have to be as hard as people (including myself) make it, 2) that I am not resorting to extremes and you don't have to either, and 3) to keep myself going as I try to chip off the last (and more difficult) half of my excess weight.

So I'm going to address some questions that I've been asked and not asked but imagine people are thinking.

What ARE you doing?
The short answer is tracking my food with Weight Watchers Online and exercising my booty off. I'm making an effort to eat healthier (though I have not and will never completely cut out the food I love that isn't so great for me), and working out 5 or 6 days per week with both cardio and strength training (both are VERY necessary if you want to be able to lose weight without living off of twigs and berries and keep it off but that's another post for another day)

Didn't you do this all before? What happened? Why do you have to do it again if your way is so great?
Yes I did do this before. In 2003 I joined Weight Watchers for the first time. I had hit my highest weight ever (at that time) and knew that a wedding was in my future (wasn't engaged yet but we were getting there soon). I did not want to be a fat bride. There are plenty of women who are gorgeous weighing what I did then. I wasn't one of them.

So I joined and between November of 2003 (I literally joined the Saturday after Thanksgiving after an awful picture was taken that snapped me into reality) and April 2005 (when I got married), I lost almost 70 lbs.

And, while not a skinny bride, I was definitely a healthy glowing one.

Then the wedding was over and, though I said that I wasn't losing 'for the wedding', I kind of was. My motivation was gone and the weight was getting harder to lose. And I was on my honeymoon so why not enjoy it?

The weight started creeping back and six months after our wedding, I went off of birth control and started trying to conceive. My body does not do well off of birth control. I do not have PCOS but I have a lot of the symptoms of it, including infertility. We tried to conceive for 18 months and in that time I had to go on fertility drugs. Between the drugs, the hormone fluxes, the stress, and the overall attitude of "I'm going to get pregnant anyway, might as well eat this cookie that is as big as my head", the weight came back.

In May 2007 we discovered I was pregnant, with twins, and my pregnancy starting weight was the exact same as my original Weight Watchers starting weight.

Good news? Two weeks after having my very healthy baby girls at 38 weeks via c-section, I was back to my pregnancy starting weight (bad news? I can't blame my problems on 'baby weight'.) Thank you, gestational diabetes for keeping me on a food control regiment whether I wanted to be on one or not.

I tried Weight Watchers again when the babies were about 9 months old and got nowhere because I was not at all focused on what I needed to do and played fast and loose with the 'rules' since I was an 'expert' and knew what I could eat and not eat since I lost all that weight before. (This is the lesson most Weight Watchers I know have learned...you cannot lose if you do not put the effort in and trust the program...logging your food is a pain in the rear. But that's what you have to do if you want to do well).

But then my husband lost his job while I was a stay at home mom and we kind of fell into a rough period. We both went through some funks and were a little more self-indulgent with food choices than we should be. All told he was out of work for 20 months and I came out at the end of it 15 lbs heavier than my original heaviest weight ever.

New Year's Day 2010, I know I have to do something, so I signed up for Weight Watchers Online because I knew we couldn't afford meetings (and frankly, during the last go-round I became kind of turned off by them, not through any fault of the meeting leaders or participants, mostly through my own attitude), and hit the ground running. I'm still not totally sure what my starting weight was because I refused to weigh myself for two weeks, that's how bottom the rock was. Or something.

So how fast are you losing this weight?
'Bout a pound a week on average over the last year. Sometimes faster sometimes slower. Lately, its mostly slower.

OMG you could lose soooo much faster if you did that cleanse/magic pill/supplement/surgery/drinking tiger blood thing!
No thanks. I want to know I did it the right way and be proud of what I did and not worry about side effects or joining class action law suits down the road. Plus I like what little money we have. I'd like to keep it, not flush it down the toilet.

So why start a blog now?
I want to give specifics about what food I eat, what tips I've picked up, what exercises are really working for me and what not to waste your time doing so that you can see it may be possible for you. Even if you don't have 100 lbs to lose (like I may or may not by the end of this, the goal weight is TBD), exercise and eating healthy is vital to living a full life and setting up your children to have a positive image about food and themselves.

I'm also hoping it shows people that yes, I am doing this the right and healthy way and you can too.