I know that I mentioned I would talk about my weight loss journey this week, so that’s what I am going to do. I lost a little over 40 pounds altogether from my highest weight in 2016 to my lowest weight. I don’t know what I weigh now; however, and I don’t measure myself. I just go by jean sizes, and I’m in the lowest size I have been in since living at Penbrooke in 2012. (Shoutout to everyone from my college days!) I used to use a scale, and I used to measure, but I would get obsessed. It wasn’t healthy.
But anyway, I want to talk about this past year’s portion of my health journey. I had gained some weight back and was on track to losing it the right way when my life turned upside down in August of 2018. At that point, the pounds just fell off. I had stopped eating and was constantly in the gym, because it was the only thing that gave me some sense of power back. I went to a good friend and mentor of mine who works at Science Nutrition and asked him for his help. (Here is my plug for Mitch Cownie for those of you back home. He knows his stuff and has a passion for what he does!) I knew that what I was doing to my body wasn’t healthy, but eating made me sick to my stomach, especially when I wasn’t hungry. I needed his knowledge on how to make sure my body was getting some nutrients, even if I couldn’t eat. He suggested a meal replacement shake they offered at SN, so that’s what I did. I could at least try to force myself to drink that if nothing else.
And when I was hungry, I wasn’t eating anything that was good for me. If I craved something, I gave in to it, because at least then I was eating. (That’s what I would tell myself to justify eating terrible food lol. Starbursts were my main food group as I have a weird obsession with them.) I had weeks where I would binge but still was maintaining my weight loss because the very next week I was back to not eating. People would come up to me and congratulate me on my weight loss, but they had no idea the internal struggle I was dealing with. I was sick. I would be lying to you if I said that it didn’t mess with my head. I was finally “seeing results” from my weight loss. Even better, I could give in to my cravings and still see results. It was a win-win for me. I thought that if I could just do this forever, it would be perfect! I was essentially starving myself…except I wasn’t hungry. My body was still in survival mode. And when bad things happen to me, I just can’t eat. My body paid consequences, though. I had weeks where I was fatigued. I couldn’t concentrate. My metabolism slowed down. I didn’t have energy to get to the gym after awhile.
There was a point in time where I stopped working out. January-February I think I hit the gym like 3-4 times? That’s it. I went from going to the gym 4-6 days a week to not at all. But I was still losing weight.
I knew that the day would come where my body would no longer be in survival mode and I would get a regular appetite back. And that day did come once I moved out of South Dakota. I had to be very careful about what I was putting back into my body because we all know that our metabolism slows down when we aren’t eating regularly…meaning I could have ballooned up real quick depending on what I chose to put back into my body.
I binged for a few weeks. And I put some pounds back on. But then I got it together and started taking care of myself again. I’m eating regular healthy meals. I go to the gym on a consistent basis (5-7 days a week). I work my butt off at the gym, too. I even got a trainer whose goal I think is to make me puke. Lucky for me, I’ll be seeing him 3 days a week for a month (can’t wait for those results!)
Mostly what needed to change was my mindset. Why did I choose to lose the weight in the first place over 3 years ago? I needed to love myself to establish consistency. I needed to do this for me and recognize how good it made me feel to be healthy. The weight loss is just a piece of the whole puzzle, when I had made it out to be the entire puzzle. I had to acknowledge that there was more to keeping the weight off than the mindset I had when I lost the weight in the first place.
The way I lost weight this time around was NOT healthy, but I need to let it be known that I didn’t do it on purpose. My body was dealing with the aftermath of a traumatic event in the best way it knew how, and it caused a lot of damage. But what’s important is that I am healing mentally, and I am proud to say that I am finally physically healthy. I have goals in place to maintain this healthy lifestyle, and as always, I’ll keep you posted!