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2 Years of Sparkin': 2 Year SparkVersary Celebration!


Tuesday, August 21, 2012







A little over 2 years ago, I saw the number 298 on the scale. I found this number utterly overwhelming. I knew I could not keep letting that number climb, but I didn't know where to begin. I already enjoyed exercise, but I was debilitated by a bad right knee and could hardly do any exercise. On the other hand, I knew my knee would probably get better if I lost some weight. So, I slowly started picking away at my eating habits and my thought processes. I started to learn how to stop feeling guilty about everything and to love myself instead.

For the first time in my life, neither food nor weight define me. Being an athlete defines me. My life revolves around exercise and training, not around the number on the scale. I have "only" lost about 60 pounds in 2 years, a number which I know to many may seem rather small. However, at no point have I made any major effort to "diet." Those 60 pounds have come off by making small changes and without me having to turn my life upside down to lose the weight. The weight will continue to come off, and for that I am happy...but then again, I have learned to be happy despite my weight.






Near highest weight (290+ pounds in these pictures).






Most recent progress pictures (although it is from March 2012--gotta get some new ones!)--around 240 pounds.



The biggest life-changer over the past year has been Jiu Jitsu. There is the workout factor--Jiu Jitsu works everything...and I mean everything. I trembled and gasped like I never have before when I first started. Grappling is unlike anything else, and rolling (sparring) against another person adds intensity that just isn't there with other workouts. I feel stronger and am more flexible than I have ever been.

I have also found that I am actually a decent grappler and did pretty well in my first competition, taking second place in my division (the winner was a woman who was significantly more experienced, but I crushed everyone else on my level). I had shed the "I'm the fat girl" mentality and started training and acting like an athlete, and the guys at my gym treat me like an athlete. Anyone who thinks they are too heavy to be an athlete has to remember that it isn't how others view you, it's how you view yourself. It's like I've said before, if you think and train like an athlete, then you are an athlete.






The best dudes around! I wouldn't haven't gotten this far without these guys in my corner.




You truly can be an athlete (and a winner) at any weight. More pictures from the tournament in this blog post: www.sparkpeople.com/mypa
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I don't want to think of where I would be without SparkPeople. I started in a very dark place, and picked away until I started seeing glimmers of light. From there, the light started pouring in. I can't wait to see what I can accomplish over the next year.




Very proud moment!









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Member Comments About This Blog Post:
MUSICALLYMINDED 8/24/2012 6:19PM

    Gotta agree with SMILINGTREE. You've shown us all that healthy living is more than just pounds lost and exercise minutes completed. It's about living your best life in all that you do.

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MUGGLE_MOM 8/23/2012 8:47AM

    You are soooo AWESOME!!! Huge Kudos to you!!!
Happy Sparkversary!!!!!!!

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RUNNER12COM 8/23/2012 1:36AM

    Happy Anniversary!

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SPOONGIRLDEB 8/22/2012 1:48PM

    Happy (belated) SparkVersary! I hope I can accomplish as much by the time I reach my 2 year SparkVersary (in one year), and can't wait to see what you accomplish in another 2 years!!! You truly are an inspiration!!

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PAMELA6289 8/22/2012 1:13PM

  Umm, I beg to differ, my darling, 60 lbs is in NO WAY a small #.

You have added years to your life, and you have completely changed your way of thinking. That is a HUGE accomplishment!

I am very inspired by and proud of you.

Way to go!

PS: I love the pic of you at the grappling tournament. You look fit, strong and badass - and you know I mean that in a good way!



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DOODIE59 8/22/2012 12:56PM

    I love, love, LOVE that last photo of you with your arm up. That tells your story. So far. Let's see where you are two years from now. Your journey is very inspiring. Keep growing, girl:)
Deirdre


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SMILINGTREE 8/22/2012 11:38AM

    The thing about your journey that I find most inspiring is that it has encompasses so much of your life. When we talk about a "lifestyle change" we sometimes forget that our lives are made up of so much more than what we eat and how often we exercise.

You have talked about meditating, playing the saxophone, writing, clearing clutter, stabilizing your finances, gardening, loving your home, dating, belly dance, and so many other facets of your entire life here. You remind us all that there is much, much more to this journey than calories in/calories out.

Thank you for sharing so much of yourself with us over the last couple of years.

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JENNIFERH625 8/22/2012 10:23AM

    You have accomplished so much and should be so proud! Keep up the amazing work!

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TAICHIDANCER 8/22/2012 9:39AM

    Happy Sparkiversary to you!

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DDOORN 8/22/2012 9:38AM

    What an awesome couple of TRANSFORMATIVE years it has been for you!

The most important thought in your blog, which I continue to strive to hold onto and maintain?

"It's how you view yourself"...Major kudos to your success in this area!!

Don

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CMCBRIDE37 8/22/2012 8:30AM

    emoticon

Wow...Your path is your path. Sixty pounds isn't insignificant no matter how long or how short of a time it takes you that is 60 pounds gone.

emoticon

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MRSSCHENCK 8/22/2012 6:38AM

    Happy emoticon ! What an inspirational blog!

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FANGFACEKITTY 8/22/2012 5:55AM

    emoticon Happy Sparkversary!!

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JSALERNO 8/22/2012 5:08AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JILLYBEAN25 8/22/2012 4:29AM

    Happy emoticon !!! You've done amazing things on your journey to health. You deserve to be rewarded with wonderful things in your life and to be recognized as someone who is inspirational to others on this site. Super awesome!

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MEWHENRYSMAMA 8/22/2012 2:29AM

    Awesome! You see the light...and that says way more than the weight loss!
Continued success on your journey, Erin! I am so proud and happy to be your SparkFriend!
Love,
Mary
P.
S. Love the last picture with the winning arm up!
emoticon

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EATVEGAN 8/22/2012 12:07AM

    emoticon You have accomplished so much. emoticon emoticon
Janet

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SYZYGY922 8/21/2012 11:59PM

    Happy Sparkversary! It's great to see how much confidence you have gained! I LOVE that picture of you at the tournament!

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ADAGIO_CON_BRIO 8/21/2012 11:54PM

    emoticon

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BLUE42DOWN 8/21/2012 11:40PM

    A very merry emoticon to you!

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MORTICIAADDAMS 8/21/2012 11:14PM

    Happy sparkversary!! You have some a long way!!

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ELSCO55 8/21/2012 11:08PM

    emoticon

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