Thursday, March 10, 2011
Today, I am celebrating 1 year on Sparkpeople.
I was going to write a bunch of facts about how much weight I have lost and how many miles I walked and how many inches smaller I am. These are all important facts but they are not the most important things that have happened to me in the past year.
I found spark people when I googled “free online weight loss programs". When I came on, I decided to “try” it and see what happened. I was not committed, I was just sick of myself. At 291 pounds, I wanted to try but I didn’t really believe I could do it.
I first created a profile and began to log my food. I figured if I could get my eating under control, I could add exercise later, which is what I did. I read blogs. Every day. I became a “Blog Ho”. And every day, I read about someone who had lost 50, 70, or 100 pounds. I read how happy they were, that it was hard but worth it, saw before and after pictures that blew my mind. And I began to blog, too.
I made friends. I learned something from everyone. I was uplifted, encouraged, understood. I remember talking to Dan, aka Clevagal, my first sparky friend who lives in Australia. She got me and I got her. Then Deb (Nederlung) always full of encouragement and practical advice, then Robin (Robinsnewnest) who reached out to me and we had an instant connection. Then my sweet Tricia (Bigmamat) who just fills my soul with sunshine and my dear, honest Ashley (Ashley1977) and my evil twin, Maia (Maia1369) who just delights me beyond measure. Of course, Paula, (Mezzoangel) who inspires everyone, Threee who is my Blog Ho Pimp, HisBlondie with her spunk and her sweetness and Baybeliever who lays her soul bare and powers through , Atreatforme with her sweet, solid support and….. Oh geez, I could just go on and on.
How have I lost 64 pounds in a year? How have I gone from not being able to walk further than my front yard to walking 3 miles several times a week? How have I lost dozens of inches and lowered all my medical numbers and changed my life? Support.
When I was discouraged, I was lifted up. When I succeeded, I was celebrated. When I was suffering, I was wrapped in love. When I thought I was never going to lose another pound, I was encouraged.
Yes I had to do it myself. I had to log my food, believe in myself, go for walks and I do take credit for that. But if I had not had the support of spark and all the benefits of it, I am sure I would have failed. Spark made the difference.
How could I make my goal of 111 pounds in a year? I couldn’t. But I lost 64 pounds in a year and I adjusted my goals. It will take me a year and a half, or maybe 2 years to lose it all but I am ok with that. If I wanted to work harder or cut out more things, I could have done it. But I chose to let my body and my lifestyle lead me and I am really happy with this pace. I am not overwhelmed, I do not suffer and I make progress all the time.
This is a way of life for me now and I can do this forever. I have lost weight on vacation, I have maintained during holidays and severe stress situations, I have gained when cake balls made an appearance in my life at Christmas but I always kept going, I always honestly filled out my nutritional tracker and I honestly update my tracker every Thursday.
How could I fail when my health was on the line, when my family was scared for me, when I was so unhealthy and miserable I was wasting my life?
How could I fail when my friends wouldn’t let me?
How could I fail when I now knew the truth? That is wasn’t always easy but it was always worth it?
How could I fail? I couldn’t and I haven’t. Sparkpeople made the difference. Meeting my friends made the difference. Working the sensible program with all the information necessary made the difference.
How will I get to the next half of my weight loss? The same way. Every day.
If you are just starting, please know you will get there. If you are stalled in your weight loss, remember how far you have come since you began. If you are reading this, then you are part of my journey,too, and you matter to me. You have changed me and I am grateful. Jan