My Weight Loss Journey
"In October of 2016 I was at an all-time high weight. For my 5’ 6” frame I was considered obese by medical standards. To say the least I was pretty disgusted with my looks and how I felt. Lethargic, body aches and feeling bloated were my daily companions. There was a part of me that desired freedom, but I just couldn’t seem to ever get to a place of being totally successful to change some of my destructive habits. I chose to ignore signs and symptoms, and lived in denial about the possibility of becoming a diabetic. (Below is Cindy before)
The core of healthy eating and exercise have been a part of my life for many years, but my addiction to sugar was bigger than life and destroying me. Like a drug it drew me in, and no matter how I tried I just couldn’t quit. I “played” with weight loss and did manage to lose weight, but sugar was still a part of my daily diet, and lots of it. My efforts to quit were always short-lived; two to three weeks at the most of either no sugar or scaling back, but ultimately always returning to that which held me captive. There was always a deep nagging for a couple of years that I needed to get blood work done to truly see where my numbers were, but never followed through until early February of 2017.
The test results came in and I wasn’t surprised to hear I had borderline cholesterol issues, and now in the pre-diabetic range. It wasn’t a mystery as to how to happened either, but it’s still difficult hearing the news. It was at that point I made a life-changing decision to change what I was doing.
With the help of my nutrition coach, Ann Musico, she created a plan to help me get on the right track. Because I was already eating healthy main meals, the transition wasn’t quite as difficult as I imagined it would be. There were definite modifications that had to be made and some were easier than others. The biggest decision made was to cut out all refined sugar cold turkey…no candy or sweets. With that change alone, in a short amount of time, I began to see and feel the difference. The stiffness in my body, and the inflammation caused by the sugar dissipating. Eliminating all grains for a season was a tremendous benefit as well. Today I limit my grains to once a week and enjoy them in smaller portions. During this time, I also discovered new ways to get creative with foods to satisfy cravings and still eat healthy.
It has now been five months since starting the “real” journey to change. Secondary blood tests in June put me back in the normal range. I’ve lost a total of 39 pounds from last October until now, a good portion of it after the diagnosis. But weight loss was just one piece of the process. The brain fog is gone, I have more energy, and my overall being has been transformed in many ways.
In the past, my changes would be short-lived. I would reach a goal and then reward myself with food and start the cycle all over again. Today I’m more mindful of what I eat. On occasion, I still enjoy something I really want but have learned a smaller portion is just as satisfying. I’ve also learned what I can’t keep in the house, however healthy, if it causes me to binge. Personally, I love to track my eating. It keeps me accountable, and allows me to see how a particular food may affect my overall goals, or health, even before deciding to indulge. (Here is the "new and healthier" Cindy!)
This success would not have taken place without the help and support of my coach, Ann. What she offers does not come in a package. She encouraged me to stay the course and was my cheerleader at every turn. Her advice proved to be an invaluable resource. She provided recipes and ideas, and was available to answer any questions or address any concerns I had and still does.
Today a healthier me has emerged internally and externally. I’m thankful to have been given the tools to be successful on so many levels. Change is difficult. At times I became frustrated, but the life that was awaiting me if I continued down the same path would be even more difficult. It would be a heavy weight around my neck. I chose freedom and joy!"
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