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    SHERRYLHBB   48,873
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70 Pounds Lighter (70? Really? Yikes!)

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Saturday, January 05, 2013


(Near my 231.5-pound max.)

At 231.5 pounds, the heaviest Iíd ever been in my entire life, I was a big girl. I knew I was big. But as big as I was, I donít think I saw myself as being THAT big.


(Near my 231.5-pound max.)

(How could that be?!) No matter what my mind thought, I was having trouble breathing while seated, because my stomach fat was pressing up on my lungs. In addition, I thought a thinner me might have better luck at finding a job. I started eating more healthfully and exercising (45-60 minutes a day, five times a week), but progress was slow. The more I exercised, the hungrier I was, the more I ate, the less weight I lost. I was frustrated.

In March 2010, still at 228 pounds, I joined SparkPeople and immediately started reading articles and blog posts. I joined a few groups and started writing my own blog posts. I used the nutrition and fitness trackers. I learned about portion control and about daily caloric ranges. The very first week I saw results. From there, I made a slow, but consisted progression downward. Until April 2011 when I found out that I would be moving to England.

My weight slowly crept back up between April and December 2011. I was stressed and busy finish up at my job, then visiting friends and family all over the United States before my move, then packing and moving, then adjusting to a new country and all its wonderful and delicious new foods that I had to try (every single last one of them!).

One year ago, on the first of January 2012, I weighed 194.5 pounds.


(January 2012 at 194.5 pounds)

With a goal weight of 163 pounds (65 pound loss from my 8 March 2010 start date on SparkPeople), I had a ways to go. I rededicated myself to my weight-loss efforts, resolving to reach my goal weight by the end of the year.

I recall the first 8 months of the year as being a slow struggle to lose weight. I ate well, was mindful of portion sizes and calorie counts, and exercised regularly; but I was leaning too much, once again, on food for comfort. I found that each bout of emotional eating set me back, undoing so much of my positive efforts. This led to frustration at my seeming inability to control myself and disappointment in my progress.

In September, I was becoming disillusioned about my ability to reach my goal weight by the end of the year. After all, Iíd lost only 13 pounds in over eight months. A loss is better than a gain or even than staying at the same weight, but how was I going to lose 18.5 pounds in four months when I lost only 13 pounds in eight?


(September 2012 at about 181.5 pounds)

Then something amazing happened.

I was walking on the treadmill at my gym thinking that what I needed was a weight-loss mentor. Someone who was an expert and could offer me guidance. Someone who could show me what I was doing wrong and guide me to a better way. Just as I was thinking this, one of the personal trainers at my gym came up to me (mind you, while I was still walking on the treadmill) and asked me whether I was taking advantage of what they gym had to offer to reach my health and fitness goals. I told him about my challenges and he replied that he actually worked successfully with clients with similar issues. At this point I didnít really believe in the benefits of a personal trainer, because I was self-motivated and knowledgeable about exercise and fitness equipment. I had also tried working with a personal trainer twice before (3 sessions with each trainer), but both trainers worked me so hard that I ended up almost passing out. BUT I had just mentally asked for a mentor so I thought the least I could do was listen to what he had to offer.

A few days later, after hearing about the science behind his program and about the great results some of his clients had achieved, I signed up for five weeks of diet menus, an exercise plan, and personal training sessions (one per week). After the five weeks, I had all the knowledge I needed to continue on my own, but I had such good results (almost 10 pounds down) that I ended up signing back on for an additional 10 weeks.

While working with my personal trainer, I learned new and effective exercises, received diet guidance, including evaluation and menu adjustments, as needed, and discussed diet and exercise struggles, which resulted in a lot of mental-barrier breakthroughs. In 15 weeks, I lost over 22 pounds. Not as much as weíd predicted, but I had to be happy as the time frame included Thanksgiving and a trip to Belgium (think Belgian waffle topped with melted Belgian chocolate and whipped cream! Okay, not a good idea. Think carrot sticks!). In addition to the weight loss and mental-barrier breakthroughs, I also discovered a way of eating based on glycemic load that completely eliminated all my cravings, allowing me to eat real food when I was actually hungry and to avoid emotional eating. This truly was a life-changing development!

By yearís end, not only had I reached my goal weight, but Iíd surpassed it! I lost 33 pounds in 2012 and rang in the New Year at 161.5 pounds! Instead of losing a total of 65 pounds since starting on SparkPeople, I lost a total of 70 pounds since I started my weight-loss journey. Amazing!


(November 30, 2012, at 164.5)


(November 30, 2012, at 164.5)


(Christmas Day 2012 at 161.5)

Although I gained so much from working with my personal trainer (who is always motivating and never degrading), I spend only one hour a week with him. The rest of the time I am on my own, so I still find myself logging in regularly to SparkPeople for motivation, information, and support. My trainer, SparkPeople, and SparkPeople's people were all instrumental in 2012's weight loss success. So, thank you!!!!

Even though Iím below my goal weight, which had been chosen somewhat arbitrarily, I know that I want to lose more weight, because Iím still carrying too much fat on my abdomen and back. But Iím feeling very positive about the process and can continue eating as I am doing well into the future. I donít know what weight is best for me, so Iíve decided to set 5-pound weight loss goals, reevaluating as I go, until Iím at a weight where I look and feel my best.

Year-end goal for 2013: Reach the ideal weight for my body where I look and feel my best.
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NDKARIKARI 2/3/2013 10:40PM

    your story is incredibly inspirational, thanks for motivating me this evening!

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YENGLISH100 2/3/2013 10:19PM

    Great journey. You inspired me to keep going. emoticon

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ANGELWINGS71079 2/3/2013 10:18PM

    Very inspirational blog and may I say you look amazing. How do you like living in England? May 2013 be a great year for us all!!! WTG

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SCOOTERLADY1216 2/3/2013 8:17PM

    What an inspiring Blog!

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ROSAMARCELLE 2/3/2013 4:38PM

    Fantastic achievement. emoticon

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MCOLLINS428 2/3/2013 3:53PM

  Wow! I am amazed at your accomplishments. Congratulations! I had weight loss surgery in Sept. 2012 and I have lost 67 lbs but Im needing to add in exercise. Do you mind sharing what type of exercises you did and how long on each exercise? I am doing really well on the diet but I need to add more exercise. Before Christmas I was walking 1-2 miles a day (3-4 days a week) However, I have not seen a gym since Christmas. This has motivated me .....BIG TIME! Thanks!

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HARRIET2 2/3/2013 3:38PM

    Your story was quite inspiring. thank you!

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BOMBCHELL23 2/3/2013 3:38PM

    What an amazing and inspiring story, thank you for sharing. I am still trying to lose weight because I had some set backs but I am not giving up ever. It is a lifestyle change and one that has improved my life. I believe I was pointed to your story by a God because sometimes I need that encouragement, so thank you. Feel free to drop by my spark page I have been working on this for over 2 years but still not giving up. Your pictures of your journey are awe inspiring.

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FRABBIT 2/3/2013 3:30PM

  Congrats! Way to go. Very inspiring!

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DONNA5281 2/3/2013 11:48AM

  emoticon emoticon

emoticon emoticon emoticon

Thank you for sharing your story with us. Keep up the excellent work.

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MANILUS 2/3/2013 11:23AM

    Amazing difference in your pics, congrats!!

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NLYR20 2/3/2013 11:16AM

  emoticon emoticon

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NLHILGER 2/3/2013 10:10AM

    Can you help us who struggle with the same things you did. I work out and eat, ok but the weight is not coming off. Tell me about the gly. rate thingy you talked about.
Nancy emoticon

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CUDDLYPOLARBEAR 2/3/2013 8:43AM

    You look great

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40PUDDLEJUMPER 2/3/2013 6:09AM

    emoticon

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DSJB9999 2/3/2013 4:53AM

    emoticon

You look amazing! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CTHOMURE 2/3/2013 12:12AM

  Good for you! Awesome


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LYNN-LOVESLIFE7 2/2/2013 11:18PM

    emoticon emoticon

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GRACIE4ONE 2/2/2013 10:37PM

    I. THINK. YOU. ARE. AMAZING!!!!!

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NANAWILDCAT 2/2/2013 10:17PM

    WAY TO GO GIRL!!! I am so glad that you found a way, your way. Thank you for sharing your story. Good luck and continued success.

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BLUEKITTYJAN 2/2/2013 8:44PM

    emoticon

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MDWESTOVER 2/2/2013 8:04PM

  You are truly amazing!! I lost almost 30 lbs as I am small and a type 1 diabetic and that was a great feat for me. You are beautiful Maria

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AGRLNKY 2/2/2013 7:36PM

    Thank you for sharing your journey! You are inspiring!

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MSKIZ69 2/2/2013 7:26PM

    Amazing and inspiring!! Congrats on all of your hard work!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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COCOONGIRL 2/2/2013 6:30PM

    Super amazing!! I am so happy for you! I had a personal trainer once and I had such a horrible experience that I am afraid to try another one...thanks for showing me that there are better ones out there!

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PAULA523 2/2/2013 4:05PM

    I didn't hear anything you said past Belgium Waffles with melted Belgium Chocolate!
Just kidding - your blog is amazing. Congratulations on your success. You look great and you must feel absolutely wonderful.
Best wishes to you and your continued success.
You are an inspiration. emoticon

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MARIEWINDSORA 2/2/2013 2:40PM

  YOU ARE AWESOME!! :)

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BIKRGRANMA 2/2/2013 1:27PM

    Congratulations, truly inspiring emoticon emoticon

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PSYCHICGAL 2/2/2013 12:20PM

  Congratulations! Very inspiring. Thanks for sharing your journey.

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MILLIE5522 2/2/2013 11:15AM

    Wow! You look amazing! emoticon

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RUNNING-TURTLE 2/2/2013 10:25AM

    Wonderful blog. You look amazing. Keep up the great work.

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MICKEYMAX 2/2/2013 9:32AM

    Wonderful, great blog. You look so tiny!

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SWEETNEEY 2/2/2013 9:29AM

    this really resonated with me. emoticon

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LITLBEAR 2/2/2013 9:07AM

    There are a lot of parallels in our stories, except that I haven't found what will ultimately lead to my successful weight loss. Congratulations to you for your success.

Comment edited on: 2/2/2013 9:46:07 AM

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FELICIA1963 2/2/2013 8:49AM

  How cool - thank you for sharing with us - WTG!!!!!

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TDEMAIO2 2/2/2013 8:23AM

    AMAZING journey woo hoo : ) Thank you for sharing :D

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DURBBY42 2/2/2013 8:18AM

  Thank you for sharing your wonderful journey. You look great! Keep up the great work. I am just starting out to get fit and feel better about myself. Keep us posted!!

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LARRYM32 2/2/2013 5:05AM

  continued goodluck, and way to go!

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JEN_CHARLES 2/2/2013 1:57AM

  Congratulations!!! You are an inspiration to many!

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GZELLEFRO 2/2/2013 1:51AM

    You are such an inspiration! Congratulations! Good for you! Keep up the good work! emoticon

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BRANTSWIFEY 2/2/2013 12:03AM

    You look so fabulous! Congratulations! I am just starting the weight loss journey. I have 100 pounds to lose....your post was motivational!

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MISSLISA1973 2/1/2013 11:28PM

    Congratulations and thank you for sharing your great story!

Lisa

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LUVTOBOWL 2/1/2013 11:01PM

    You look amazing. emoticon emoticon

Keep up the goal setting. Like you said, looking and feeling your best!!

Tammy

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MMAZZIE 2/1/2013 10:53PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LYNNIERN 2/1/2013 10:44PM

    So inspirational! Congratulations on your success. emoticon

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SWEETBITC64 2/1/2013 10:43PM

  WOW thank you for sharing your story I am just starting out again to loose weight. Reading your story tonight really helped I get so discouraged with my weight loss and I to am a very emotional eater. Luckily this time I have caught myself from falling into that trap abut I am so so worried that my will power is going to run out or that I will not be able to stick to this life change. Food for me is like being a drug addict and having drugs on your mind every minute of every day. I am hoping that there comes a point in which I don't obsess about food and it can just become a normal part of my life. Sorry for rambling I just wanted to thank you for your story and thank you for reminding me that there is support out there I just have to look for it. emoticon emoticon

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FAT2GAINHEALTH 2/1/2013 9:51PM

    good job... you look great.


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MAYBER 2/1/2013 9:35PM

    thank you for sharing your journey
best wishes as you continue to set more goals
one day at a time
emoticon

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ELIZACG9 2/1/2013 9:33PM

    Oh my gosh....your amazing.... emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GINGER5-9 2/1/2013 8:25PM

    Wonderful progress! You look amazing.

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