I’ve always struggled with my weight.
My first memory of being conscientious of my weight was in Junior High School when someone told me I should watch what I eat and my weight. “Watch what I eat? Watch my weight?” What does that even mean? Watch it do what?
That is one of the many reasons I wanted to become a Dietitian; I wanted to know how to lose weight and be healthy at the same time. I think the majority of us know WHAT we need to do to be healthy. We’ve learned it since we sat at our parent’s table and they told us to eat our fruits and vegetables. We also know that we should exercise. In my experience with counseling people on weight loss, it’s not so much about knowing WHAT to do, it’s knowing HOW to fit it into your life.
Questions that come to my mind on HOW to lose weight include:
- How do I make time to cook healthy food?
- How do I cook healthy?
- How do I make food taste good without the calories?
- How do I change my schedule to fit in exercise?
- How do I exercise for my current fitness ability? (I’m not going to run a marathon, or bench press half my body weight on my first day of exercise)
- As a mom I think: How do I get my kids and husband to eat the healthy food with me so I don’t have to cook more than one meal?
- While breastfeeding I think: If I lose weight, will I lose my milk supply?
So there you have it, my list of excuses that keep me at 200 lbs. Yup, my body has hit the postpartum plateau at 200 lbs. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed, or that I felt great at this weight.
I have even MORE EXCUSES:
- I just had a baby 6 weeks ago
- I’m pregnant (3 months ago)
- I’m breastfeeding now (I can safely attribute at least 5 lbs to my boobs)
- I’m up all night and day and don’t have energy or time to exercise
- My toddler doesn’t want to eat what I make half the time
I’m sure I could come up with more excuses, but my toddler is crying and my infant wants milk. I’ll contemplate more excuses the next time I inhale my next meal (because I don’t have time to eat at a good pace) and eat ice cream late at night (because the kids are finally asleep and I want some comfort food).
Let’s face it, whether or not my excuses are legitimate or not, I decided to stop using pregnancy as an excuse for my poor eating 3 months ago and started taking care of myself. I am not a public person (my friend Britney is always telling me to post more pictures on Facebook) and I don’t particularly like discussing my own weight.
I'm a dietitian and I shouldn't have weight issues, right???
I’m more than happy to talk about other people’s eating habits and weight but I’m very private about my own. I have cried along with my clients during several weight loss counseling sessions because I know the struggles they face. Now I’ve decided to try and help others by sharing my own journey, one day at a time. Even if only one person is inspired by my story, it will be a story worth sharing.
Where did my journey begin?
It started 4 months ago while I was still pregnant. I kept telling myself that my journey would begin the moment I gave birth. I kept using the pregnancy excuse to eat junk food and over eat. I started to sound like someone waiting until the new year to start their weight loss resolution. “I will start once the holidays are over, and I’ve allowed myself to over indulge Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years Eve.” I had a love/hate relationship with my excuse. It was great for allowing me to eat everything in sight but it was horrible when I stepped on the scale and saw my weight jump 5 or 10 pounds between doctor appointments. I knew at the rate I was going that I was setting myself up for a 50+ weight gain for my pregnancy. I also knew that whatever I gained I would have to lose in the end.
One day I decided to start my journey and not look back. I decided to commit to 30 days of one or two goals with a specific (non-food) reward for myself at the end of the 30 days. I don’t like counting calories (although I know it’s very effective for weight loss) and I didn’t think it was a great idea to do while I was pregnant. Instead, I decided to achieve the appropriate serving sizes in each food group according to the Dietary Guidelines set by the USDA (https://www.choosemyplate.gov/vegetables).
I have always been a big promoter of vegetables and fruits. Because of this, I have regarded my vegetable intake as meeting standards. Knowing that vegetables were the best thing to keep me full without a lot of calories I decided to keep track of my actual intake.
Most Females Need 2.5 Cups of Vegetables Per Day.
If discussing bodily functions makes you squeamish then skip to the next section.
The first 2-3 days of eating 2.5 cups of vegetables per day, I had the worst gas ever from the huge increase in my fiber consumption. Constipation is a common side effect during pregnancy and I definitely hadn’t escaped its grasp. Of course, I knew that eating more fiber would relieve constipation but I was delusional and thought I was eating lots of fruits and vegetables. I quickly realized how inadequate my vegetable intact really was. If I had to guess my previous vegetable intake it would probably be on average one cup per day. Occasionally more (rare occasions) and frequently less than a cup. After starting my 30 day goal, my constipation quickly subsided and my weight gain significantly slowed down to the recommended rate during pregnancy.
I felt a lot better because:
- I stopped making excuses.
- My weight gain slowed down during pregnancy.
- My constipation went away.
That is where my journey began. Every 30 days I reevaluate my progress with my current goal, my weight loss, and my overall progress to my ultimate goal of a healthier body.
Follow me as I document my progress and add new goals along my journey.