I've been asked a lot recently how I've successfully lost over 50 pounds, how I've stayed motivated, what I did, what I ate, etc. So I've decided to record it all in a blog to share with everyone :)
First off, a tiny bit of background. I've never been skinny, or even normal weight, I've always been overweight basically as long as I can remember. The smallest adult size I've ever worn is a Size 14. I was never miserable about my weight, but I was never comfortable. I was just too busy/lazy/tired/unmotivated/etc. to do anything about it, until I was in my last semester of college last fall.
Starting out, I didn't really do much, or make a pledge "I'm going to get healthy and lose weight". It almost happened by accident. I moved into a rented room on campus at the bottom of "The Slope", which is a GIANT hill that I had to walk up whenever I wanted to go anywhere on or near campus. So I had some great built in exercise. It wasn't much, but it really got my heart rate up by time I reached class! And I also was living out of a minifridge and microwave. I ate a lot of low calorie instant meals, my breakfasts were small and low calorie, and lunch was on campus most days. I was just so busy that I didn't snack much. So subconsciously it seemed, I changed my habits to be healthier. When I came home after graduation in December 2009, I had lost 15 pounds!
Once I started my full time job in February, I knew that if I sat on my bum working 8 1/2 hours a day. kept eating like I had in the past, and didn't exercise, I'd gain back the 15 pounds and probably a ton more. So I made a decision not to let it happen. I started going to the free gym in my office building. I bought EA Sports Active for the Wii and did it 5 times a week, even if it was just for 20 minutes, and I started using MFP to log my food and make some awesome friends for support. I've kept this up for a solid 6 months now.
Lately, I've been eating more protein, I've worked strength training into my routine (using the 30 Day Shred to start and now the Chalean Extreme DVDs), I eat back half or so of my exercise calories, I make an effort to workout every day, I've taken up running through Couch to 5K. Everything together has helped in getting to 50 pounds lost. It's slowed up somewhat since I upped the protein and strength training, but I can tell I'm building muscle as well. I've stayed motivated using MFP and by shopping.
Yep, shopping is my #1 motivation. I love clothes, I really do. And I've never really been 100% happy with how I look in clothes. Every time I fit into a smaller size, it was an extra boost to keep going. Never been in a size 12 before and I fit into it in June. Never EVER thought about being a size 10 before and these past 2 weeks I've bought 3 pairs of size 10 pants. I buy medium tops for the first time ever... even a few smalls! It's exhilarating! And maybe I also have a tiny, somewhat superficial reason of hoping to meet more guys with dating potential once I've lost the weight.
Anyway, that's my story of how I did it and why I did it. For the next 25-30 pounds I need to lose to reach my goal, I'm gonna keep doing what I'm doing. Keep eating my protein, doing Turbo Fire and Chalean Extreme 5 times a week, go to the gym 2 times a week, improve my running distances/times, and stay POSITIVE! I haven't really lost a pound in 3 weeks. Has it stopped me? Nope. Have I said "Screw it, I'll eat a carton of ice cream!" Nope! I trust my body and I know that what I'm doing now is WAY better for it than what I was doing. The scale isn't the only measure of progress. I take measurements monthly (lost 6" off my waist in 5 months), and I just bought a body fat scale and I'm nearly in the healthy range of 21%-33%, despite still being 24 pounds over weight. I know the scale will move eventually, but it's not my biggest concern.
If anyone has questions or anything, let me know! I hope my story can help someone in some way to meet their goal :)