…because those pounds ain’t gonna lose themselves…

I am really close to having the nerve to actually publish the few posts I’ve written.

I have created a couple of blogs during this weight loss progression but deleted them for various reasons.  I know so little about blogging and making it look nice and legible…plus I felt like I didn’t have enough time to attribute to it.  But I have found, just by friends asking me “how are you doing it?” that I feel like i need to document thing things that have motivated me so that they motivate OTHERS. There are things I have done that I wouldn’t recommend to others.  And there are things I have learned that really work for me that I hope work for others so that they FEEL  the sense of accomplishment that I am beginning to feel.

I don’t want my suggestions to sound all, well…preachy.  Because I am far from perfect, and I am so not done with this process.  AND- I have gained/lost/regained a total of more than 100 pounds in my whole life! So I am not an expert at keeping weight off.  But the older I get, the more important my health becomes.  So I forge on.  And the less I weigh, the easier it is to MOVE.

These tips and ideas are in no particular order.  They just mean something to me and hopefully you will find your own things that work for you.  Maybe you can share yours with me?

It’s really simple when you think about it.  Eat Less. Move More. 
But it’s hard to move when you don’t feel like moving.  It’s hard to move when you’re heavy.  Stuff hurts.  Knees hurt from the pressure of carrying excess weight.  Back hurts for the same reasons.  And don’t even get me started on feet because my feet hurt, even now, all the time! But they hurt now because I am busy kicking so much ASS! LOL.  You just have to decide one day that it’s YOUR time.  My day was after my 40th birthday.  Unfortunately, in the four year span from then to now, I lost a considerable amount of weight and managed to gain half of it back because I wasn’t strong enough mentally to change.

To change your body, you have to change your MIND.
Get your butt off the couch and MOVE.  It doesn’t matter how you do it.  Walk in your neighborhood.  If you have an elliptical or treadmill that is currently serving as a plant holder or wardrobe keeper, clean it OFF.  Chances are, you paid good money for that equipment. Cash in on your investment.  Get the crap off the machine, plug it in and GO!
But before ANY of this stuff can happen, I’d really suggest talking to your doctor and letting him/her know you’re making plans to change your lifestyle and see if he/she can offer some advice.

Start SLOW! Slow and Steady!
A mile is still a mile, no matter the pace.  I so badly wanted to just dart off through my quiet neighborhood and run the first day.  I am here to tell you that 200+ pounds on a 5 foot 3 woman does not allow for any kind of dart.  It hardly allows for one to crawl.  But – I simply put one foot in front of the other.  It took me more than 20 minutes to walk that first mile.  Now I walk/jog and a mile can be between 10-13 minutes, depending on how fast I feel I want to go.  But I remember those first few months where it was a struggle to walk a mile.  Feet swollen up with blisters, back hurting. But all the while,  I’d try the next day to walk just a couple of feet further.  I enjoy distance walking now.  I live in a rural area where it’s quiet.  Sometimes, on a spring or summer morning when it’s just me, an ipod and God’s grace, it’s like I’ve visited church.  I’ve walked 13.5 miles a couple of times.  And other days, I walk much shorter distances.  It’s whatever moves you.  I figure if I walk outside, AWAY from home, it’s harder to go back.  If I walk on the treadmill IN my home, it’s way easier to hit the STOP button and go to the kitchen for ice cream:)

Do you have a Wii?  Some of my neighborhood ladies would come to my house and we’d do Zumba for Wii in my garage.  You can burn 500 or so calories once you get moving, plus it’s great fun to laugh at yourself with your girlfriends.

I am currently into cardio kickboxing.  I NEVER thought this would be an activity I would enjoy.  BUT- I burn 700+ calories, if not more, during an hour long class.  SO good for your core.  It’s a workout like no other.  Can be expensive to strart…I joined a gym whose specialty is kickboxing, cardio kickboxing, MMA training and kids boxing.  My daughter loves the kid’s boxing classes!

My gym: www.tko-fitness.com
The instructors are awesome! They have several classes each day. They also have the normal gym stuff… elliptical trainers, treadmills, ARC trainers, free weights, etc. But the boxing…that’s where it’s at.  The best workout for me personally, hands down.  I’ve seen more changes in my body in the 1.5 months I’ve been at it than in the last six months.  I still have a membership at my old gym, too.  But I will likely have to stop that because it’s a lot of money to belong to both.  I like www.O2fitnessclubs.com because they offer so many classes in various locations that are convenient to my office or home.  And they have late night/early morning hours.

Create your plan:
Have a plan of attack.  Do you know what you want to try in the way of eating?  I have done Weight Watchers, which is a great plan…I’ve done Atkins, which worked really well for me, but is not an ideal plan for me because I like beer too much:) I’ve pretty much done them ALL.  But what seems to work for me is documenting what I eat in http://www.myfitnesspal.com and I also have the app on my phone.  Set yourself a goal- like “this month I will lose 5 pounds.” Or you can make it a NSV (non-scale victory)…”I will walk a half mile further today than I did yesterday”.

Get help:
Tell your closest friends that you’d really like to change your life and get healthy.  There’s strength in numbers, friends.  I get so much motivation from my friends and co-workers! It’s like fuel for me when someone first said “have you lost weight? I can really tell in your face.” or when someone asks if what I am wearing is new. Why yes, it is new, because I had to drop a size- I am telling you there’s no better feeling!

Little changes = Big results
Just by leaving a few bites of food on your plate at lunch or dinner each day adds up! We live in super size land where we want HUGE portions of food! Do we REALLY need to super size?  If you want a hamburger, HAVE it- but have the kids meal instead of the super/stupid/size meal! NOBODY needs to eat that much!
If you burn 100 more calories per day, that’s a huge change! That’s a hundred calories that isn’t going to bed with you that night and won’t wake up with you the next day.

Many people weigh in and think, “I only lost 2 pounds this week” Oh my goodness! Go to your fridge, and get the box of butter out.  You know the kind with 4 sticks in it?  4 sticks of butter is one pound. If you lost 2 pounds, you lost 2 boxes.  Still think that’s not a lot?  How about if you lost 2 pounds per week= 8 pounds per month?  that is the equivalent to a full gallon of milk. You know how heavy that is when you’re lugging it onto the conveyor belt at the grocery store, right? You know how heavy it is when you carry it in the house? That 8 pounds is no longer hugging your hips!  To date, I’ve lost about 75 pounds.  That’s 9+ gallons of milk! Still think that’s not a big deal?  It is!

DON’T STARVE YOURSELF.
You can’t burn calories or fat if you’re not eating anything.  You must eat to live.  We do not need to live to eat…hence the reason we don’t need to eat the super/stupid size I mentioned above. And if you starve yourself, you will see changes you don’t like…admittedly, I have eaten so little that I damn near passed out.  We must eat. We just have to be smart.

DRINK WATER:
Can’t stress enough that your body needs water.  Our bodies are made up of mostly water.  Plus, we drink water to speed up our metabolism.  We want a faster metabolism to burn fat! Carry a water bottle wherever you go if you can.  Don’t like water?  Try some Crystal Light in it…or squeeze lemon, lime, or orange juice in it.

Lay off the soda …and the “sauce” and I don’t mean the kind we put in spaghetti!
I used to drink Coke like it was my purpose on this earth.  I switched to Diet Coke many years ago.  it’s still high in sodium and I don’t recommend drinking it much.  But I love Diet Coke once a day.  It’s my vice.  I’ve tried stopping altogether, but I just can’t.  And I won’t.  So sue me:)
Cutting calories from alcohol has REALLY served me well.  I love beer MORE than I love Diet Coke. If that’s even possible?! And I used to be a much heavier drinker= but I also was a much heavier me.  You do the math.

MUSIC makes exercise so much more enjoyable!
Do you own an mp3 player? a Smartphone?  An ipod?  Load it up with songs that are fast tempo and make you smile.  I have songs on my iphone that were popular when I was a teenager that make me smile and take me back to a place where I was happy.  I have 80’s hair band songs, 90’s Madonna, and a bunch of stuff from all genres. Favorites that I can’t start a workout without?

  • Luke Bryan’s Country Girl (Shake it for Me)
  • AC/DCs Shook Me All Night Long
  • T-Rex Bang A Gong
  • Jessie J’s Domino,
  • John Cougar’s Hurt So Good
  • Black Crows Jealous Again
  • ZBB- Keep Me in Mind
  • Katy Perry- Last Friday Night
  • Boston- Let Me Take You Home Tonight
  • Bon Jovi- Livin’ on a Prayer
  • anything Maroon 5
  • Anything Nickleback
  • Anything Def Leppard
  • Kings of Leon- Sex on Fire
  • Heart- Straight On, Barracuda
  • Rascal Flatts- Summer Nights, Me and My Gang
  • Anything Jason Aldean
  • How Country Feels- Randy Houser
  • Marvin Gaye- Got To Give it Up

Some of those songs will MAKE you wanna get up and move your body!  You just don’t have a choice in the matter!  what are your favorites? 

DON’T be surprised when people call you “obsessed”
You know what?  This pisses me off.  Yes, I am obsessed.  But I prefer to call it DRIVEN.  I am obsessed, but others can take pictures of their food they’ve inhaled at a restaurant or prepared at home, or talk about their binge drinking, take pictures and post them on facebook- ALL while sitting on their asses on the couch.  But I am the one obsessed because I choose to make healthy choices in my life?  Then by all means, call me obsessed.  Just blow it off and keep going.  Your family will say you are obsessed.  You just have to roll with it.  You’re just making changes in your life that were not present before.  OF COURSE they will notice these changes.  But they are also going to notice when you drop a dress or pant size ,too.  Just think – you look good now- just you wait- you are gonna look some kinda awesome:) Think they’ll call you obsessed then?  Not likely!

REMEMBER that you are WORTH IT!
You need this. You must carve some time out of your day to take care of YOU! Most gyms offer daycare services.  I know this can be pricey.  My daughter is a teenager, and self sufficient, so I don’t need to figure out who’s going to take care of her while I go workout.  But I know many of my friends who can only get in 30 minutes a day, which is great! On warm days, take your son/daughter with you?! A ride in the stroller and couple of laps through the neighborhood is better than sitting on the couch, right?

But really, the point I want to make is- We take care of many things and people in my every day life.  My family deserves the best of me and I am determined to give it to them.  I can’t make them happy if I am not happy.  And I was NOT a happy woman. I am deliriously  happy right now!  I made these changes for MYSELF so that I could serve MYSELF and my family better! Happy mommy= happy daughter and happy husband:)
We don’t want to spend the money on ourselves.  But the fact is, you DO need stuff to be successful with weight loss.  You need good shoes.  And when I say good, they don’t have to cost a lot.  They just have to fit you well.  If you choose to do a Weight Watchers-like program, you will need to pay for your online tools, or your meetings.  You’ll need a good trip to the grocery store to start your journey.  These things are necessary.  You don’t have to have ALL of it, but the good shoes part is a must.
You deserve this, my friend.  Chances are, you spend your lifetime making others happy.  MAKE YOURSELF HAPPY, TOO.

I love some of the motivational quotes I find on pinterest and facebook.  these are some of my favorites.

Those are just a few things that come to mind.  You gotta want this, and you gotta want it badly because there is a fast food joint on every corner and it is much harder to choose to eat healthy.  I don’t ALWAYS eat healthy but I really try to abide by my calorie goal as much as possible.  Fridays are my “cheat” days….where I don’t count them and I usually indulge in some adult beverages…but Saturday I get right back on it.

It sounds so cliche but it is true…I can’t promise you that it will be easy.  But I can promise you that it will be worth it! 
So get on it! 

You got this!
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