Category: Family

Getting Healthy: 500 Days Strong

Today marks the 500th consecutive day I have logged into MyFitnessPal.  I’m pretty sure I have NEVER done anything in my life before this for 500 days straight.  And this time it was for my health.  Honestly I couldn’t be more proud of myself for staying committed to something this long.

In 500 days I have changed my life.  It seems like a long time, but it really isn’t.  It’s 1 year and 4.5 months.  A lot more things in life take a lot longer than that amount of time.

In that time, I’ve done the following:

  • Lost 90 pounds total
  • Said goodbye to the 200s and welcomed a 1 in front of my weight for the first time in over 15 years.
  • Exercised 229 out of the 500 days
  • Logged 12,897 minutes of exercise.  Or 215 hrs or 9 days of the 500 days total.  That’s only 2% of my time spent on exercise during those 500 days. TWO PERCENT people!
  • Burned 136,031 calories from exercise
  • At 3,500 calories per pound, I only lost 39lbs of the 90 from exercise and 51lbs from diet alone.

Pssst…excuse me as I get on my soapbox and remind you that that means diet is more important than exercise….again.

  • Lost 11.5 inches from my waist.
  • Went from a plus size 20 to a normal size 10.
  • Started and completed 3 workout programs – Insanity, Focus T25, and 30 Day Shred
  • Stopped drinking soda
  • No longer frequent a fast food restaurant on a weekly basis.  Can’t even stand to eat McDonald’s.
  • Tried new foods, like green smoothies, chia seeds in oatmeal, kale, roasted cauliflower, black beans in everything (I love black beans), found alternatives to breads and pastas, and I eat A LOT of veggies and like them!

And most importantly, I changed my perspective on life and how strong I am, what my body can do, and how important mental health is as well as physical health.

iamstrongI wasn’t perfect out of those 500 days.  I had my ups and downs.  I had my great days where I logged every single calorie and every minute of exercise and stayed within my limits, my good days , my bad days, and my just plain ugly days where I logged it, but wanted to look away at the same time.  But the important part was that I stayed the course.  Just because I tripped up one day or one meal didn’t mean I gave myself an excuse to ruin all that hard work.  I recognized the bad, picked myself up, dusted myself off, had no regrets (most of the time…because you have to live a little), and corrected course.

So, all of this is to say that 500 days ago, when I really, REALLY got serious about taking back my life and my health, I had an idea in my head of what I wanted to accomplish (lose weight), but I never imagined what all else would follow.

317 to 177

Getting Healthy: Why I’m Choosing Not to Focus on the Last Pound – For Now

I recently hit 176 on the scale.  That means I only have 1lb left to hit my goal, but I have chosen to forego that last pound right now.

I know, I know.  You are saying, “What the frig Tracy? What are you thinking?” But hear me out.

In the process of getting to the 176 from 180 I lost myself.  For the past few months, I plateaued in my weight loss and hovered anywhere between 180 – 184.  It was frustrating, despite my constant – DAILY – reminder to myself not to get fixated on a number on the scale.  So, finally when the scale dipped below 180, unfortunately the crazy clicked on in my brain too.  I had another boost of motivation to keep going, but maybe a little too much of it.  I got laser focused, to the point of extreme.

I forgot about the journey I was on.  The journey to be healthy.  And instead all I could think about was a number.

So after some reflection, several long chats with friends, and a really hard talk with myself, I have decided to push the goal of 175 to the side (for now).  I’m still on my journey, that will never change, but I’m choosing something else to focus on in a healthy way.  Before I can get to 175 I have to mentally become healthier.  Along the way I’ve realized my mental health is just as important.  And going to extremes or becoming obsessed with a number on the scale is not the way to get to my definition of a healthy me.

I’ve thought about what being healthy is for me and it’s not that number.

Yes, one day I will get to 175.  It may even be tomorrow, but being healthy is so much more.  It’s being able to walk up the hill to the parking lot at work and not even get out of breath.  Carrying a 4 year old up 2 flights of stairs and not even think about it.  Running around outside with the kiddo.  Being more centered with who I am.  Controlling my anxiety and depression better.  Going for a run to let off steam.  Gaining my confidence back to make smarter choices.  And living in the here and now.

Here’s a look back, again to celebrate where I have come:

Sep 2012 to May 2014 - 140lbs

Getting Healthy: Why Your Scale Isn’t Always The Best Measure of Success

Today marks something amazing for me on this journey.  Two things happened.

First, the scale hasn’t moved in months.  It hasn’t budged past my lowest of 180lbs.  Now for someone trying to get to 175lbs this would be frustrating.  Like seriously what the frig.  But, and there is a big BUT here, everyone who is losing weight has to remember (and I seem to constantly have to remind myself of this fact like a big slap in the face) –

Your scale isn’t always the best measure of success!

Why do you ask this?  Well the second thing that happened was when I stepped on the scale and it read 182, I then went to my closet and zipped up a size 8 pair of pants for work.

A size 8 people!

I don’t EVER remember wearing a size 8.  Maybe like when I was 10 , but it just goes to show that with eating well and exercising my body is still changing, getting stronger, leaner and healthier!

So here they are, my size 8 pants:

Size 8

Starting Weight: 317lbs | Current Weight: 182lbs | Goal Weight: 175lbs + Healthy

 

Getting Healthy: New Workout Gear

When you are on the journey to get healthy, nothing makes you feel better than some new workout gear and a dear friend of mine got me hooked on Athleta’s clothes.  I am in LOVE with everything Athleta.  I’m pretty sure I have circled one of everything in the last catalog I got in the mail.

Their clothes are amazing for any type of workout.  I’ve started up another round of T25 (yes, I couldn’t stay away from Shaun T for too long), which means I need something tight with compression that will hold everything in and keep it from bouncing all over the place when Shaun T has me jumping, shuffling and doing 100 burpees.

photo1The first thing any girl (guys are so lucky) needs is a good sports bra to hold the girls in (You know what I’m talking about.  Let’s just be thankful that mine are not as deadly now that I’m smaller.).  I found the Hullabraloo Bra from Athleta that is AMAZE-BALLS!  By far the best sports bra I have ever owned.

The next thing on the shopping list for me is a good pair of compression pants.  I’ve tried all kinds from full tights, shorts, and capris and I personally prefer the “knickers” length that comes just below my knees but gives me full coverage everywhere I need it.  I always feel like when I wear capris that I’m hiking them up and with shorts I’m pulling them down, so knickers are the way to go.  I got the Be Free Knicker from Athleta (size M).  These compression pants are great for HIIT workouts, running, yoga, whatever you want to do!  They hold EVERYTHING in and stay in place.  For anyone who is losing weight and working out I strongly recommend compression pants.  If you have any loose skin or fat, compression pants help in keeping all of that in place so it doesn’t hinder your workouts.  Because seriously who wants your belly to be bouncing more than your whole body?

Finally, a good compression/support top rounds it out for me.  I found the Empowerment Tank from Athleta (size M). I went with a slightly tighter fit on this top to make it more of a compression tank to once again hold the tummy.  Love this top with all the cool straps on it in the back.

For a girl on a budget, Athleta is a little pricey, but definitely worth the price because the clothes hold up.  If you can’t afford Athleta though, I would recommend Old Navy’s active wear.  Until now, I have been an exclusive Old Navy active wear girl, but it was time to treat myself to some really nice workout clothes to keep me moving forward on my journey.

Starting weight: 317lbs | Current Weight: 181lbs | Goal Weight: 175lbs + Healthy

Getting Healthy: Celebrating How Far I’ve Come

So, let’s just start off with I’ve started seeing a therapist.  Big shock.  But seriously, I needed it.  With everything going on and my anxiety mounting, I needed someone outside to help me work through everything.

In talking to my therapist, he said something to me that really resonated.  We were talking about how focused I have been on trying to get to my goal weight that I haven’t allowed myself to fully celebrate how far I have come.

You need to allow yourself to celebrate how far you have come when losing weight and getting healthy.

Sure along the way I have taken pictures and given myself that pat on the back for making it to another goal, but I haven’t ALLOWED myself to celebrate, to REALLY, truly celebrate the accomplishment of losing over 130lbs.

This simple statement really has changed my mindset over the past week or so.  It’s taken awhile to sink in and let me muddle over it, but that’s what I needed.  I’m so close to my goal I had forgotten where I had been.

If you stay the course, the weight will come off.  Sure it will be hard at times, but you have to reflect on where you have come from AND where you are headed.

So, this past weekend I found a pair of pants that helped me realize how far I have come and celebrate it a little more. Yes, a pair of pants.  See, when I started the journey to get healthy and lose weight I had this idea that I didn’t want to keep anything that reminded me of the “fat Tracy”.  Of course I took pictures, which I can’t stress enough to do for anyone trying to lose weight because pictures speak volumes.  But, I didn’t keep anything tangible.

Well, I was cleaning out some clothes in the garage and found a tub of clothes from 2 winters ago.  In the tub, a pair of pants I wore back then.  So, I compared them to my current jeans.  From a plus size 24 to a size 12.  It’s been a roller coaster ride of a journey, but I’m now starting to FULLY celebrate where I’ve come from and what I have accomplished.

pants - 24 to 12

Starting Weight: 317lbs | Current Weight: 183lbs | Goal Weight: 175lbs (and healthy)