My heaviest at 257 pounds. (December 2006-April 2008)
213 pounds - August 2008 - 44 pounds DONE.
ORIGINAL INTRODUCTION - 4/19/2008:
Hi, my name is Jen. I have been heavy my whole life and hope that I can find the support I need here. I am a recovering binge eater and am ready to get real about my eating disorder. I want to meet others who share this crazy relationship with food and want to change it.
I live on a beautiful hiking trail and my biggest obstacle has been to get up and get moving - all I need to do is step outside and PUT ONE FOOT IN FRONT OF THE OTHER...I hope I can find motivation and strength here, as well as good buddies to go through it with! I love life and want out of this hideous fat suit once and for all...
HIGHEST WEIGHT - 257
STARTING SPARK WEIGHT - 247
3 MONTHS IN - 7/21/2008
Ok, so I am 3 months into my Spark program and have lost 36 pounds total and 2 sizes. One thing I have given in to is the amount of TIME and ENERGY it takes to keep up this lifestyle. It takes only a couple of minutes to run through a drive through, but time and effort to plan a nutritious meal. I am involved with my workouts, meal planning/preparing food or online with Spark about 3 hours a day. I am eating a lot of lean protein, some carbs, and trying to keep it very low fat.
My energy level is sky high most of the time. I am able to move my body in ways I haven't in a long time. And my higher self esteem is seeping into other areas of my life! There is no going back now. I am now going on hikes on my beautiful trail 3 times a week now - that same trail that taunted me when I was not fit enough to walk to the mailbox let alone hike several miles! And my body doesn't feel foreign to me anymore. I used to feel like I was stuck in this gelatinous suit. I couldn't move well. I couldn't be active, even if I wanted to! And after just 38 pounds so far, I feel so different. My body doesn't feel foreign. I am more in tune with my body than I ever have been. I know this is due to the cardio. I will be doing cardio the rest of my ife, that I know for sure. I have lost the equivilant of a small toddler - how would it feel to drag a toddler on your back everywhere you went? Not good. And I am very surprised that after only a 32 pound loss such drastic changes have happened. My diet is still what it was in the beginning, 1550-1800 calories or so a day which I find easy to do. I am eating pretty low fat and moderately low carbs. I have a habit of having several lower calorie days, then bump it up a bit for a day, then lower for another few days. I know I should be eating more calories but I can't get in 2000. I am less hungry than I have ever been. That was a shocker also, to NOT be hungry most of the time. This journey so far is one of the most amazing trips of self discovery that I have ever had. Really, I have never been happier in general. I cannot wait to see how I am doing in another 3 months. I'm going to be SMOKIN'! I have gone from a wardrobe of men's XXXL tshirts and size 24 jeans to fitting into women's size XL shirts & size 20 jeans. If I can do this, anyone can do this.
4.5 Months in - 8/27/2008
Another 6 weeks, 8 more pounds gone. It has been tough lately to stay motivated in the diet arena. I have stepped up my exercise lately to include aerobics and jogging, two things I never saw myself doing before. I am averaging about 6 miles a week hiking my trail, and am adding in 3 1/2-mile runs a week. Yeah, it is only 1/2 a mile, but I am running now and it feels great. That is 1 1/2 miles a week, which adds up to 6 miles a month! The exercise is what is key for me. If I mess up my eating for a day or two, (which happens!) it is way easier to recover than say a slack in exercise. It is way harder for me to get back on the exercise wagon if I fall off. I have my best friend's wedding in a month and remember vividly picturing myself in a size 24 gown, being terrified of having to stand in front of people. Now I will hold my head up high and feel honored and proud of my best friend and my weight will be a minimal issue...I feel so proud of myself for doing this and actually keeping the momentum going. I haven't lost in 2 weeks, but I will keep going. It is true! NOTHING tastes as good as being THINNER feels.
6 MONTHS IN - 10/15/2008
Another 6 weeks, another 8 pounds lost. It is autumn now, the leaves are changing, and so am I. Another 1 1/2 pounds and I am at my halfway point. Sometimes it is effortless, getting out there to jog and being active, making the right choices. Other times I feel as though I am a bite away from just suddenly being 257 pounds again and feel like I am holding on by the skin of my teeth. But still my mantra is BABY STEPS. I still sometimes find myself taking things minute by minute! (I am a binger and still am having issues with that...) I still have that voice inside my head that says I can exercise later, or eat that XYZ bad food now, you can have the apple later. The key is to talk yourself through it. I must talk to myself about food or activity at least a dozen times a day. I am still that temped sometimes and have to remind myself (out loud sometimes!), "Jen, you have eaten that before, you know how it tastes, and you will feel BAD afterwards. You don't want to do that." Sometimes I NEED to hear it! I thought that 6 months in I would be well seasoned and able to deal with anything easily. But I guess for some of us it will never end. That need to be FILLED UP. But here it is, 6 months later, and I am BEING SUCCESSFUL. Exercise still the same, cardio 3 times a week, sometimes more. Strength training 4 or 5 days a week, every other day. And calories range from 1300 to 1750. Another 6 pounds and I am in ONEderland. This was my original goal: To be 'not fat' and weigh less than 200 pounds. I never in a million years thought it was REALLY an option. Man, I love myself! And anyone reading this who feels they cannot do it either, BABY STEPS!!!
My ultimate goal is to be fit enough to run, bike, and do whatever I want without weight being an issue at all. As far as numbers go, below 200 seems like a good medium-term goal for now. I haven't been under 200 pounds my entire adult life. I want to break my cycle of emotional eating. I also am looking forward to becoming stronger and having muscle definition. I want to have power over food and power over my body. And I want to learn what it feels like to really treat my body well. I want to gain self esteem and positive body image. And I want to genuinely love what I see in the mirror. And I want to rock climb, damn it!
INITIAL PROGRAM - 4/19/2008:
I have been measuring ALL of my food and logging everything I eat. I am learning portion-control. I am getting moving every day with either cardio or strength training. Taking care of myself emotionally and physically doesn't come naturally so making the time to put into ME is my first goal to really master.
UPDATE - 7/21/2008
I am still measuring everything I eat and logging all calories. I do 3 days of strength training a week, aerobics 3 times a week, and several hikes a week. I am parking farther from the store, taking the stairs, and being more active on purpose every day. I have cut all Fast Food and sodas and haven't eaten one single Cheeto or Reese's Cup since I started.
I grew up in Fort Lauderdale, FL and am now living in Connecticut. My hobbies include shopping, cooking, watching films (horror in particular), and birding. I collect horror movies and love Living Dead Dolls. My favorite movie is Dawn of the Dead, favorite color red, favorite healthy food is rice cakes! I love traveling, aardvarks, reading lots of books, cooking and baking, World of Warcraft, being outside, and being with my family. And I love Howard Stern - BABABOOEY!
....I don't even know what it feels like to be 'not fat'. I won't say THIN because I don't know if I will ever BE thin, but NOT FAT is what I am aiming towards medium-term. I want to break out of my wardrobe of men's t-shirts and mom jeans!!!
| current weight: 240.0