December 13, 2012

Redemption Run, and Other Interesting Notes on Weight Loss

Holy cow. Apparently I wrote this post almost 5 months ago. And since my "redemption run" has come and gone, I figured I would update anyone interested in my progress.

I have lost 43lbs since May 1.

Since the top question is, "omg, how'd you do it?" I will indulge. Short answer: I worked my effing ass off. Literally and figuratively. As mentioned in the previous blog, working out a few days a week with my BFF Jillian Michaels. And, to train for this redemption run, I used the 5k Runner app 3 days a week. I counted my calories using My Fitness Pal. None of these companies paid me, but I love love love them for what they did to help me on this journey. So yes, it really is that simple. Calories in calories out, and move your ass. So why don't people succeed every day? Well there's a whole mess of reasons for that.

What They Don't Tell You:

The hardest part of losing weight is finding the reason you have kept it on to begin with. For me, the turning point came that day of the Warrior Dash (see last post). I never wanted to feel that way again. That was my rock bottom. Deciding to lose weight parallels a decision to stop drinking or stop doing drugs. No one can make the decision for you, and until you really get to the bottom of why you do it and decide to CHANGE YOUR LIFE, nothing is going to change.

It is an emotional roller coaster. At least it was for me. To see yourself changing, to realize where you were, to know how far you have to go, it is a lot to process. You have to say goodbye to someone you knew for decades. You have to break up with the person you were and the habits that kept you there. In order to do that, you have to constantly motivate yourself by reflecting on why you made the decision to change your life.
There were days that I would wake up and expect to see that fat person staring back at me. And there were days when I would stare at myself, amazed at the new person that I saw. There were times I was so mad at myself for abusing my body for so long. I would think about all I missed out on because I was scared and insecure. There were days I didn't know if I could keep this new lifestyle up. I would cry listening to Jillian Michaels podcats, because there were so many people who were living a part of my story, and they were the only ones who got it. As if the inner struggle you have with yourself  isn't enough, there are a million other obstacles that will stand in your way.

Not everyone is going to be happy for you. Yeah, it sucks but it is a reality you have to face. I am BLESSED to have an amazing family who supported me because they knew how important this was to me. They ate the healthy food I made, they understood that making time for my health was my number one priority. My youngest sister did let me know that I could stand to talk a little less about running, but it was done out of love and a desire to get back to our discussions of Ru Paul's Drag Race. :) But there are always people around you that aren't so excited. That say "oh, live a little," when you turn down a donut. They announce "oh look, she's eating a piece of candy!!" when you indulge. Imagine what their response would be if you yelled across the office "oh look, she is eating ANOTHER chili dog!!" Not really the same, eh? So as hard as it is, you have to let it roll. Making healthy choices is your new life and you don't have to explain that to anyone. When they decide they want to do the same, they can stop being miserable and catty and they can suck it up. :) (Ok, maybe I don't always let it roll) I have some amazing and supportive friends who have supported me, and for them I am grateful. (there, less bitchy)

It's going to require effort, every day. Everything that is important does. Because I cut out so much processed crap, I have to plan and make meals all week. Stopping through a drive through usually isn't an option. Ordering at restaurants can be tricky. But once you navigate through that long enough, it becomes second nature. And you can even sneak the healthier options into group settings and unless you say something, people rarely know the difference. (I use greek yogurt at a substitute for all SORTS of things!) And, when it's really dark in the winter... getting up to work out SUCKS. And running in the cold is close to insanity. But because you understand the value, and because your body craves it- you get it done and work it out.

Once you start to really live the change, you can inspire others. I never had the intention of doing that. But to know that someone made changes in their life, no matter how big or small, because they saw that you could do it. Well, that's really freaking amazing and it feels really great.

So now you are rewarded with photos

This is me October 2011. Not the heaviest point I reached,  but the last time I let a full body shot be taken as that person.

Here is me end of May 2012 (about 10/15 pounds down) and August 2012,  at about the 30 pound mark. I put that shirt on expecting to be able to wear it, and promptly started sobbing when it fit like a dress.

Here is me being a LADY and getting amped up for the Dirty Girl Mud Run. For the record, my face didn't stay that way.

Here is me being a ridiculously photogenic runner.
This is the face of someone elated by reaching her goal. So proud of the person she  is becoming, and so grateful for the journey, no matter how rocky and muddy it was.

So now what? Why, more mud runs of course! Spartan Sprint February 9th, and OF COURSE I will have to tackle the Warrior Dash April 13. And, a few fun themed 5 ks in between.

Let me tell you. Having been on both sides of this, it is AMAZING to actually like the person you are. To feel comfortable in your skin. To not be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and get a little dirty. To know that you are stronger than you ever thought you could be. It is worth every sacrifice to get to where you want to be. Trust me.