I've been a little bit absent from blogging, I'm trying to get into a routine and I have about 10 posts composed partway in my head, I just haven't been able to find time yet to sit down and write them yet. This was not at all the first post I planned to write, there are several others in line ahead of it. BUT I was looking through my old blog entries regarding my weight loss journey today and came across one with measurements. Feeling curious, I decided to take measurements and see where I'm at. The results? I am almost crying looking at them...
Starting Weight (Feb 2009): 267 lbs
Current Weight (Jun 2010): 215 lbs
Total Loss: 52 lbs
Final Goal: 150 lbs
Starting BMI: 41.8
Current BMI: 33.7
Right upper arm
Start: 17.5 inches
3 mo later: 16.5 inches
16 mo later: 12.75 inches
Loss: 4.75 INCHES!
Waist (1 inch above navel)
Start: 50.5 inches
3 mo later: 49 inches
16 mo later: 37.5 inches
Loss: 13 INCHES!
Hips (at the maximum width)
Start: 58.5 inches
3 mo later: 58 inches
16 mo later: 43.5 inches
Loss: 15 INCHES!
Right Thigh (just below the buttocks)
Start: 31.5 inches
3 mo later: 30.5 inches
16 mo later: 24.5 inches
Loss: 7 INCHES!
I can't believe that I've lost that many inches. It happens so gradually that sometimes you don't think about it, but if you go a while in between weighing/measuring? It can be shocking when you get around to it.
The thing is, I've lost 52 lbs. 30 of that was before my pregnancy and 20 was during/after the pregnancy, without much actual work on my part. The first 30? Was a lot of work. But when I look in the mirror or down at my body, even though I see the positive changes, I still see society's definition of a fat person. I look at myself in the mirror and think I look pretty good, but then I wonder when other people look at me if they still just see a fat girl. Last week I went to a retirement party for my favorite teacher from High School who lead the school newspaper. I got dressed, and thought I looked nice. But in my head I was still thinking about how even though people who know me now are telling me how good I look, the people from HS that I haven't seen for 10 years? Were still going to see someone who had GAINED weight and was fatter than she was back then.
The reality, though, is this:
A picture is worth 1000 words right? In those old pictures, I cannot believe how big I was. I can't believe I was tipping the scale and heading towards 300. 300 LBS. It was out of control. And despite the fact that I am still not where I really want to be in the end, and that I am still not in the best shape (yet), I have changed so much. I feel more like myself now. I don't feel so embarrassed to just BE. Last week I tried on all my pants from before - I had been wearing black yoga-type pants for the past 9 months while I was pregnant - and I got rid of HALF MY PANTS. Because they were too big. Some of them, WAY too big. Some of the ones I kept are verging on being too big but I kept them because they don't fall off and are still in good condition. A lot of my shirts don't fit quite right anymore, they're baggy and a little strange fitting.
I am planning to join Weight Watchers again, probably in the next 2 weeks. I've got a week until I hit the 6 week postpartum mark and am 'allowed' to start really exercising again. My Mom is switching gyms, so I have to decide if I want to pay for that gym membership or shop around, or just try to use the Wii Fit and walk. I went to a retreat recently for my volunteer gig, and we got an hour yoga class. The woman gave us a coupon for 2 free classes. I really enjoyed it, and I'm thinking about trying that out. Maybe I can do Yoga and walking as my main exercise over the summer, but I need to figure out what to do with the kids... maybe evening yoga classes? Or a babysitter.
I am ABSOLUTELY DETERMINED to not gain back this weight I've lost. It would be stupid and ridiculous. I am so close to getting under 200 lbs again, and it's been years since I weighed this little. It is hard. I know it's going to be difficult to go back on WW and start counting points and watching what I eat again. Since I ate so little during the pregnancy, I got used to eating WHATEVER I WANTED. And that is going to have to stop. I think it will be easier than when I first started out, but still a challenge.
If you've ever been on this kind of journey, you know how emotional it is. When I started this whole thing, part of the reason was that I didn't want to die. I thought about my family and walking up a hill with my Mom I wondered if she was worried that I was so unhealthy and could die young because of that. That I would actually shorten my lifespan because I was too fat. That I could get diabetes and have to deal with that for the rest of my life. That I couldn't play with my son because I was too fat and unhealthy to even chase him around. That when he got older, my son would be embarrassed of me. That I felt self conscious eating in public. You can judge people for their weight all you want, but you know what? It's not fun to be that way, and it's not a choice a lot of us consciously made to become that. And it's REALLY HARD to change.
I have been VERY inspired by Yvonne, who writes at Joy Unexpected. She also started out with 100 pounds to lose, and also has thyroid problems, though hers are more severe than mine. I love reading her entries about her triumphs because I can relate so much - I KNOW how hard it's been for her, and even though we don't really know each other, it's sort of like we are on similar journeys at the same time. It reminds me that this IS possible, even when it's hard. Writing this post was a lot harder than I thought. Looking at the numbers, thinking about how fat I was, and the rest of the journey? Realizing how far I've come? It is a little bit staggering to me.
Seeing those above results though? Realizing that my arms used to be 5 inches bigger around? That I've lost over a foot off my waist and hips? That's some motivation if I ever saw it.