Friday, March 25, 2011

Where it begins

Thirteen years ago I joined Weight Watchers for the first time.  I lost roughly 50lbs and  I gained a new me.  Most of my life I struggled with food.  Overeating was my way of life.  It was taught to me since the moment I was born.  I watched over eaters my whole life.  I grew up in an Italian family where food was love.  There was no such thing as eat until you are full.  There was only we are all eating until this ten ton bowl of spaghetti is gone.  Like so many people I learned to comfort myself with food.  I learned to make food my first priority and myself my last.  College was the worst of my years.  I had this little card that money was placed on every week.  It gave me freedom to the best food court a college campus could offer.  I had 2am feeding calls after hanging out or studying all night.  By my last year I realised I had become the "fat girl" and I hated it.  So I researched different weight loss programs and for me weight watchers seemed the best fit.

        I went into a meeting and my journey to overcome over eating had begun.  I began exercising and following the program and it was fantastic.  About 5 months later I saw the girl I wanted to be in the mirror.  I had so much support and love and admiration for what I had achieved.  I was proud and felt like I could accomplish anything.  I really thought at the ripe old age of 21 I had broken my family's cycle of food is everything. I couldn't have been more wrong.

   For roughly 4 years I maintained my weight loss.  Then I threw it all out the window.   At the age of 25 I was married and having a baby.  I was not just eating for two I ate for an entire family of 12.  I gained 70 pounds.  After my first son was born I returned to weight watchers and lost the weight.  That was short lived as a couple years later I would have my second son and resume my championship pregnant woman eating style.

    After I had my youngest son I found myself weighing in at a whopping 230 lbs.  I gained about 80lbs.  I was miserable.  The largest I had ever been.  I wanted to return to weight watchers right away but I wasn't ready to do it.  About a year after he was born I woke up and realised, I could sit there and say I wanted to to do it or I could just do it.  So I did it, I rejoined for a 3rd time. This time though I knew I needed to make more changes then just working a program or being able to eat right.  I needed to learn to manage life's events without using them as a license to eat of control.  I knew I needed to find ways to say to myself this is the rest of my life and nothing will take me away from me again.  I decided to apply the things I learned from others in weight watchers and I decided I needed a new approach to exercise.

    After rejoining weight watchers to handle my eating habits, I joined a gym to get a handle on my activity issues (or should I say lack of activity issues). I began trying new machines and consulted a personal trainer for new workout routines.  After I dropped my first 20lbs I began taking yoga classes.  I set small goals every step of the way.  My main reason for setting small goals was to boost my confidence.  I wanted to see my achievements every step of the way.  I wanted to build a stronger mental attitude and stronger physical body to match.  I lived in the Northeast at the time and battled snow storms and -1 temperatures but I would tell myself I can do this and I'm worth it.  As the weight began to come off I noticed I didn't care what the scale said or about being the "skinny girl".  I cared what I was able to do. I cared how much stronger I felt and how much more confident in myself I was.   In the face of many different adversities I still was able to stick with it.  No excuses. I looked at why I had taken both pregnancies and used them as a reason to overeat.  I acknowledged to myself I was always probably waiting for a moment where it seemed more excusable to go back to bad habits.  I learned so many bad habits with food growing up that it was time to really address them.  I accepted why I need food, why I enjoy food and why I have had a hard time with it over the years. 

       Almost 5 years later now I have maintained my weight loss of 82 pounds and going strong.   I'm very passionate about weight loss.  I'm also very passionate about weight watchers (by no means am I endorsed or associated to the company).  I want to share with people tips that have helped me over the years and hope to hear of other peoples success's!  I hope what I share in my blogs helps you as it as helped me. 

     My first tip I want to offer up : "just do it"  There is a reason Nike has managed to take those three words and have success beyond belief from it.  It is because the statement is true, simple and impacting.  There will never be the perfect time to start and you may never "feel" ready.  The time to start is now.  You are more ready then you know and wait till you see how you feel when you take that leap of faith and commit to you and your weight loss goals.  Commit to you because you are worth it!  I recite to myself when I lose motivation or face temptation to fall back into bad habits that "I'm worth it!".  I'm worth the effort.  I'm worth my time. I'm worth valuing and respecting my body. "I'm worth it" another 3 simple word phrase, yet true, simple and impacting.  Let these words radiate in your heart and in your mind.  Then live them.  Just do it because you are worth it!