8.09.2016

How Losing 85 Pounds Improved My Life

Left picture was taken the night I went in to have Brecken (2/3/13). 
Right picture was taken after I met my goal weight (7/4/16).

**Deciding whether or not to post this article is something I have contemplated for awhile. I don’t want anyone to think that I somehow feel like losing weight or being “skinnier” makes me feel like a better person or a better mother. I know the stigma that surrounds weight loss, and especially the pressure women go through to “get our pre-baby bodies back”. I understand that weight loss in general has negative connotations due to eating disorders and unhealthy habits. To sum it up, I know that this topic is a very sensitive one and I hope you find that I approach it well.

I was at my very heaviest weight after returning home from having my first child. I actually gained 10 pounds from the time I checked into the hospital to be induced and the time I went home. I was under the impression (or hoped I suppose) that I would go home weighing way less than I did prior to having our baby. Due to the amount of fluids they had to give me, I was extremely bloated and uncomfortable. Some mama’s have amazing pictures of themselves with their babies after childbirth (seriously how do you do that!) but I couldn’t even recognize myself in any of the pictures because I was so puffed up and heavily medicated. To sum it up, at my heaviest, I was 55 pounds heavier than I was prior to getting pregnant, and 85 pounds heavier than I am now.

After having my second child I eventually returned within 10 pounds of my initial weight prior to both children. Then, this year I decided I finally needed to do something about it. I know some people won’t believe me, but I truly wanted to lose the weight in order to be healthier for my children. It wasn’t to look good in a bathing suit, or to be able to wear cute clothes again. I’m not saying those are bad reasons to lose weight, because they aren’t. Those just weren’t my reasons. I had tried to lose weight before in order to look better. Then one day I was thinking about it, and I realized-since becoming a mother, I don’t put myself first anymore. I put my children first. I couldn’t lose this weight for myself, but I could/and would do it for my children.

I scheduled an appointment with my doctor and talked to him about my concerns. My height and weight put my Body Mass Index in the “Obese” category which increased my health risks exponentially. I told him that I needed to be healthy for my children and that I needed help. I had been strictly dieting for 2 months and had only lost three pounds. My doctor talked to me about a weight loss program he has been utilizing with his patients since 2005. A low calorie diet coupled with a medication had proven significant results.

I worked the program. I didn’t cheat. And I successfully lost the weight I sought to lose and put my BMI in the “normal” or healthy weight range. I can say that I believe the number one reason I was successful is because my husband also decided to do the program with me. We used MyFitnessPal to track our calories and we worked together to prepare low calorie meals. As most people who have had a significant amount of weight to lose know, it isn’t a sprint, but a marathon. I am now working to maintain the weight loss and this will be a lifelong lifestyle change for the both of us.

After losing the weight, I went in for a follow-up appointment with my doctor and he asked me what losing the weight has done to change my life. The biggest changes I have felt since losing the weight include my energy level, less anxiety about the way I look and less physical body pains. Because my energy levels are up I play with my children more. I sit on the couch less and actually want to go outside and play. I have less anxiety about the way I look. I used to wake up every morning and just stress about my weight. I just wanted to be comfortable in my clothes and in my skin. Due to the amount of weight I was carrying around, I had extreme lower back pain and couldn’t sit or lay in certain ways. My back pain started during my first pregnancy and got progressively worse. I can thankfully say now that I do not have ANY back pain and have very little/if any body pain at all. My doctor told me to remember these things. He told me to write them down or blog about them. If I started gaining the weight back, he told me to reference this place in my mind. Reference the reasons WHY I need to keep the weight off. Reference the life changing effects this weight loss has had on myself and my family. My doctor said losing this weight is probably the single best thing I have done for my health in my lifetime. And I am proud to say that I did it.

I am not trying to sell anyone a product or a lifestyle or anything like that. If you have specific questions for me regarding my journey I would be more than happy to answer any emails. I am not a medical professional and do not know what is best for each individual, but I do know what worked for me and I thank God everyday that I no longer have the burden of losing weight.


32 comments:

  1. What an incredibly inspiring post! And what an amazing thing you did for you and your family...that takes some serious strength!!

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    1. Thanks so much for reading and for the kind words! Making a myself a priority was the first step. Which was very difficult to do.

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  2. You should be very proud of yourself as most people understand what a challenge this can be! I am a healthcare professional and understand the health benefits you will gain from your weight loss journey. I appreciate your doctor's wise words...."reference this moment in your mind and the reasons you need to keep the weight off". It is an incredible achievement for you and your family!

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    1. Thank so much for reading Mom! Yes I am blessed to have a great healthcare provider!

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  3. You are seriously a rockstar and admire you for writing about such a vulnerable topic. Big kudos for reaching your goal!

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    1. Thanks so much Amy! Reaching goals is so much fun and so rewarding!

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  4. WOW, so wonderful thanks for sharing and congrats on the weight loss. You did wonderful!

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  5. Such an inspiration girl! You look AMAZING! Go, girl!

    xo, Amanda | www.thegoldengirldiary.com

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  6. I'm so encouraged by this post! You were so honest. Thank you for sharing!

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    1. Thank you so much for reading! I'm glad you found encouragement from the post :)

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  7. Thank you for being an inspiration to many women by sharing your story! You are beautiful inside and out, and I am so blessed to have gotten to know you better! ♥️

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    1. Thank you so much for reading Amanda! And thank you also for the kind words :)

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  8. This post is very encouraging! My son just turned 11 months old and I'm feeling like I'm finally ready to REALLY try to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight, or at least close to it. Its tough!

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    1. It is SO hard as a mother, especially a new mother, to make our bodies a priority! Thanks so much for reading!

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  9. Thank you for sharing your journey! It's so hard finding the motivation to make big changes like this, and I'm inspired by you and your commitment.

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    1. Thank you very much for reading! I truly never thought I would be able to do this. I had come to terms with the fact that I would carry around the extra weight. I probably honestly had the weight on for nearly 10 years.

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  10. It sounds like your hard work has definitely paid off! I've been recently trying to start taking care of myself better since having my son for the exact same reasons: wanting to feel better physically (more comfortable, more energy) and really for him. So I never have to miss out on memories, so I can be his mom for as long as possible. So proud of you!

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    1. Thank you for reading! It has been such a struggle for me as a mom to make myself a priority, but this year I have done that, and I am shocked what I have been able to do.

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  11. INCREDIBLE!!!!! So proud of you!

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  12. You look incredible! Good for you for going out and accomplishing such a massive goal so you can be around for your children. You should be so proud of yourself!

    La Belle Sirene 

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    1. Thank you! Yes I have to get yearly bloodwork and health check done for our health insurance and I am actually excited to do it this year to see how my numbers have improved :) Thanks for reading!

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  13. Awesome work, thanks for sharing! You should absolutely be so proud of yourself for living a healthier life. Go girl!

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  14. You look amazing. Nice job!!

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    1. Thank you very much! I feel so much better! Thank you for reading!

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  15. Congrats to you. Now you can do anything. I have kept 60 pounds off for 30 years. It can be done.

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    1. I am scared of gaining the weight back for sure. Great job losing and keeping yours off!

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  16. You look really great!! I understand how you feel about losing the baby weight. I had my 4th baby last year and I need to really work on losing the weight I gained from pregnancy. It is a challenge. I think it's good that you shared your weight loss story with other women. It is very inspiring. Thank you for sharing!

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    1. Thank you very much for reading! I am glad you found it inspiring :)

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  17. Great post! It will be very helpful for women. Weight loss is hard especially around pregnancy. It's a struggle for so many I think because of being SO hungry being pregnant and breastfeeding and having little time to eat healthy at times. Thanks for writing this, I think it is good that you did.

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