We’ve all been there I’m sure. Avoiding every mirror, feeling like crap, and eating to feel a little bit of comfort. I’m here to say that enough is enough. I’ve sat down and fully outlined what I’m going to do to lose 100 pounds. It may not be perfect, it may not be for everyone but I know that this is what I need. I am going to prove that I can lose 100 pounds on a budget. Getting fit financially doesn’t mean your health needs to take a back seat. So here is my plan to take my life back physically, emotionally, and financially.
I’ve finally had a breakthrough. After years of ups and downs and failures. I’ve figured out my key to unlocking my weight problem. I am creeping in on the morbidly obese range for my height and age. That’s scary. It literally scares me to my bones. I’ve had these little “ah-ha” moments before. Never quite like this though. I’ve never forced myself to really figure out what makes me tick. Picking apart habits, routines, and weaknesses. Using them to make a whole plan. Doing this truly changed how I think about losing weight and getting healthy.
Which got me thinking about all the other times when the motivation wore off and I just gave up. I sat down and thought… Why? Why didn’t I have the willpower, determination, or the self control? What am I constantly doing wrong? Are things I do out of habit making it more difficult? How can I change?
More importantly I asked myself how can I do it differently this time? How do I use failures in my past to take that leap into success? How do I go from complaining about my weight and making half-assed attempts to being THAT person? The one that succeeds and changes their life.
If you’ve ever tried losing weight I’m sure you’ve played the mental tennis match. Wracking your brain for reasons why it didn’t work in the past. Questioning how it works for others, but not you. Every time ending up feeling like a failure. I’ve read the self-help books, the weight loss books, and the lead a better life books. Nothing ever really clicked for me. Nothing really sank in. I’ve been a sponge for years and now it’s time to made good use of that knowledge. To take the bits and pieces of information that stand out to me and put them to use. Not just say I’m going to use them. To make a plan. One that will change my life and how I see myself.
I don’t know if what I’m doing is going to work for everybody. It’s such a deep personal issue, everyone will have a different key for unlocking their weight problems.
Personally, focusing on my pant size, number on the scale, or a crazy fad diet doesn’t work for me. I know that from years of trying. So this time I’m not doing that.
I won’t stress over the little details. Yes I’ll track my calories, measurements, and weigh myself. But, I will also focus on bigger things. The weighty issues. Habits, goals, motivations, and rewards. Most importantly I will focus on how I feel.
Keeping a journal and getting to the root of my habits, enforcing new healthy ones, and really becoming in tune with my body and mind. If it’s the little decisions everyday that truly add up to success then I need to know what steps are helping or hindering my success. Determining routines that will guarantee success for me. Realizing what weaknesses are derailing me. Listening to my body physically and mentally to change my life.
Since switching to real foods I’ve really started picking up on my body’s signals and triggers. I know I eat most of my calories at night. For some reason I am ravenous before bed and eat everything in sight. I know I don’t drink enough water. I even figured out my cues for when I give up entirely and we stray from real foods, ordering out instead.
Seeing my triggers helps me work on ways to pick the lock. Finding the root of individual behaviors and changing them into positive habits and routines.
For example, I know I eat the most at night so I have to create a new habit. I know my cue is to skimp on meals and snacks during the day. Then before bed when I take my medicine I chow down, because I have to take it with food. I don’t think that warning is a valid excuse to eat a full 3 course meal. So I have to change that habit. Make sure I eat my largest meal in the morning and eat smaller meals/snacks throughout the rest of the day. I’ll make big batches of my favorite healthy breakfasts that I can eat all week. I don’t have to think about it. It’ll be a habit to wake up and eat breakfast. To increase my water I’ll keep infused waters in the fridge, iced oolong tea in a pitcher, and to carry my big water bottle so it’s always next to me.
My biggest challenge is ordering out when I’m just not in the mood to cook. This is such a deep issue for me right now. I have depression, anxiety, and insomnia. Most days are a struggle to get off the couch. I’m weird and love cleaning, like really love it! But I have been struggling with just the day to day picking up. So I’m doing an experiment and I’m the guinea pig. I want to know if eating healthy and getting regular exercise can relieve or completely end my symptoms of depression, cure my insomnia, and help with my anxiety. So, to help create a fool proof plan that will keep me from ordering food I had to determine individual triggers. Exhaustion, stress, and feeling overwhelmed drive my urge to just “give up” on the day and give in to comfort foods. But this bad habit with my overeating at night is a bad combo. See, everything rolls together and effects the outcome of the whole process. Seeing how detrimental the effects of this one single habit was really opened my eyes to change.
My solution to ordering out is simply to create a meal plan. Easy and simple meals for the evenings. Especially focusing on meals I can throw in the oven or slow cooker and not worry about it. Making enough of some meals to freeze and cook later. Like my baked tomato penne with cheese. Simple, easy, whole ingredients that I can easily double freeze half, and throw in the oven the following week.
Also, to help lessen the feelings of being overwhelmed (mostly with the cleaning) I am setting aside a specific time everyday to clean. Setting a schedule for myself is so important. I hope it gives me a stronger sense of structure to my day, keeping me on track, and knowing ahead of time what the day will bring. Scheduling cleaning, work outs, and meals will give me a feeling of accomplishment at the end of the day. Having specific things to do will keep my mind and body busy. Leaving me more time to spend playing with the kids, and really be able to enjoy it.
Do you see how it all fits together? Everything has a trigger. You just have to identify them. Once you know what they are you can start changing them. Make each and every trigger a way to reach your goals.
Goals for me have always been a hard concept for me to grasp. I know roughly what I want but can never find a way to pinpoint exactly what I want or how long to give myself. It’s always been more frustrating and makes me feel like even more of a failure. When each goal is super specific and I miss one I feel awful. Especially if I miss the first one. “I didn’t lose 2 pounds this week. I failed my goal. I give up, it doesn’t work.”
Wait… No more of that. Stop with the negative thoughts. I am not a failure. I’ve made mistakes but I’ve learned from them. I’ve fallen many times but I keep getting back up. Maybe it’s not about determination but willingness to fight. I will fight harder for a healthier life more than anything else. I am a strong, kick ass, beautiful woman. The woman I am today is strong enough to decide to change. Strong enough to kick my own ass into gear and fight for my goals. Most importantly… I BELIEVE I WILL! I will get healthy, I will lose weight, I will lead my family into a much healthier lifestyle. Sorry for the rant, back to goal setting…
I’ve tried setting weight specific goals before. I will lose 2 pounds per week, I will weigh this much by this date, I will lose this much weight over this much time. It just never clicks for me. Always leading to disappointment. I want to enjoy every pound I lose, realistically I know there will be times that it really sucks but stay with me here, and celebrate every small victory. From scale victories, workout victories, to eating victories, and emotional victories.
My overall goal is to lose 100 pounds. Believe me, I know how huge this number seems. But a healthy weight range for my height is 115-145 pounds.
To achieve this huge goal, I asked myself three questions and came up with answers that I can look at during the rough patches when I lose motivation.
1.) What eating habits will I need to reach this goal?
- Eat real whole foods
- Cook every meal at home
- Drink more tea and water (quit energy drinks completely!)
- Make a meal plan each week and stick to it
- Larger breakfasts, smaller dinners, and no late night gorging
- Think before every time I eat “Will this help me reach my overall goals?”
2.) What workouts/activities do I enjoy enough to incorporate into a daily routine?
- Incorporate walks as often as possible. I will set my walking shoes right in front of the door, set my alarm and get up and just do it.
- Try new workouts. I will check YouTube and once a week try something new.
- Use mental boredom and stress as cues to exercise. Don’t eat away feelings. Work through them with some kind of physical activity.
- The moment I catch myself making excuses to skip a workout, is the moment I will stop whatever I’m doing and get through my workout. I will never regret doing a workout but I will regret skipping one.
- Listen to my body and modify exercises. It doesn’t make me weak it will help make me stronger and keep me coming back for more.
3.) How can I heal mentally so I don’t stand in my own way?
- Always, always, always stay positive. Realize some days will be a struggle. But sticking to the routine will get me through them and keep myself on track to reach my goals.
- Remember to be kind to myself. I will make mistakes. This time I won’t dwell on them, let little setbacks become reasons to give up, or allow myself to say I’m a failure ever again. Instead I will learn from it. Dust myself off. Jump right back into my plan.
- I will stop using my depression as a crutch or an excuse. Leading a healthy lifestyle will be my treatment plan, and staying on the plan is the only way to come out of the depression black hole.
- Keeping a journal. Instead of writing everything down I am going to start a video blog series and post them to my YouTube channel. I always hunt for before and after stories but I want to know the whole journey. So I will use videos to document my whole journey. From overweight and unhealthy to fit and healthy. I will talk about what gadgets and workout gear I’m using, my workouts, and eating healthy. Along with my victories and struggles. Giving an honest perspective on what it’s really like to be in the trenches of losing weight and especially while being on a budget. This will also keep me 100% accountable.
- Use every motivation weapon in my arsenal. From Pinterest boards, my weight loss apps, motivation board, goal outfits, to words of wisdom and quotes. Anytime I am running low on determination or tempted to give up I will turn to these as reminders of why I started and where I want to be. When I get frustrated or plateau I can turn to these tools to regain my focus and excitement.
Speaking of motivation… I’ve noticed that I struggle with staying motivated pretty quickly. I let myself get disappointed and quit when I don’t instantly get results. I saw a quote on Pinterest that really helped me see things way more clearly. “People say motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing. That’s why it’s recommended daily!” So instead of losing my motivation altogether I’m going to set aside time to really focus on my goals and keep myself pushing for them. After I come back from my morning walk I am going to sit down with a cup of tea or coffee and look at things that motivate me to keep going. Pictures, techniques, recipes, my goals, and focus on WHY I want/need this.
Making sure I set myself up for success by taking hold of my strengths and weaknesses is so important for me. When I’m seriously struggling I know exactly where to turn, what to do, and how to keep myself on track. I know for me I need more incentive than just staying motivated. Something to look forward to.
I have set a reward systems, of sorts, to help celebrate my victories. Rewards that help keep me in good spirits. I won’t celebrate with food anymore. Instead I’m using rewards that show how far I’ve come. They’re a little abstract but they’re things I have always wanted to do “when I lose weight.”
List of fun rewards:
- Run a 5k
- Do the Warrior Dash
- Run a half marathon
- Submit my before/after pictures to the Beachbody Challenge
- A weekend away with the hubby
- Professional family pictures
- Run the Grandma’s Marathon
- Get the tattoo I’ve been dreaming of, a full back piece of a phoenix
- New workout gear
- New clothes, that are stylish and fit properly
- A simple happy dance, mental high five, really feel the happiness of every pound
None of these rewards involve splurging on bad foods. Nothing is set to a particular pound loss. Just fun things I want to do on my journey. Celebrating every small victory is going to be fun. Even if it’s just a happy dance in the bathroom after I weigh myself. These rewards will be my boredom busters!
I am confident that these approaches will work. After all attempts in the past I’ve learned so much. I have years worth of knowledge that was stored up and not being used. Looking at weight loss differently, being more open about it, setting up new habits/routines, having a plan to navigate the rough spots, and truly believing in the process is going to make me succeed.
I know this is going to be hard. I know it’s going to take time. I know people are going to have opinions on this (especially my video series.) I won’t dwell on outside negativity. I will focus on myself and my happiness. I really hope that maybe one person reading this can find comfort and inspiration.
Everyone needs to find their own key. Something that finally clicks and allows the changes to happen.
So here it is. The beginning of my journey.
My very first weigh in: 233 lbs (see… my 100 lb goal still keeps me in the healthy range!)
- Right Arm= 15.5″
- Left Arm= 15.75″
- Bust= 48″
- Waist= 43″
- Lower Tummy= 53.5″
- Hips= 50.5″
- Right Thigh= 30.25″
- Left Thigh= 30.25″
BMI = 38.9 (healthy is 21-24)
Body Fat = 51.8% (healthy is around 25%)
I could be embarrassed or ashamed of these numbers. Or get depressed and hate myself for letting it get this bad. But you know what? It took me getting to this point, right now, to be strong enough to make a change.
I won’t be upset by this. Those numbers are more wood on the fire. Makes me more competitive with myself to improve. To push my own boundaries, get outside of my comfort zone, and allow myself to rise to the challenge. I will prove that you can lose weight, get healthy, and find happiness on a budget!
I found my key. It’s time for change.
I really hope you all join me. Follow along through the victories and the struggles.
Set your own goals and follow along! Let me know how you’re doing!
Don’t forget to check out the video blog! (COMING SOON!) What would you like to see me talk about on the video blogs?