"I never thought I would be able to have a "before" and "now" picture showing a 100 pound weight loss. Nor did I think I would ever show it to any one, much less send it to be "put out there" for others to see. I have always been very private in my weight loss/gain struggles and successes. I was not comfortable talking about my journey with anyone other than my closest family and friends. Obviously that did not work so well for me!
I am not one who can say I lost this in a year, or two, or even three. I was at my heaviest weight ten years ago this summer. After two decades of yo-yo'ing, I had yo-yo'd out of control. That summer I had started on a journey that has led me to where I am today -- 100 pounds closer to my goal weight. Since that summer I have lost substantial amounts of weight at a time and then always gained some of it back, but I never yo-yo'd all the way back to where I started that specific weight loss. So as the years continued I would have some success and then backslide. I could never keep the momentum going, but even after a "backslide," I weighed less than I had when I had started my latest weight loss journey. I gave up "dieting" about 9 years ago. After a big loss on the Atkin's diet and then a big gain, I decided that I would never "go on a diet" again. I knew I needed to make lifestyle changes. I joined Weight Watchers about 7 years ago and had great success, but after eight months I moved to Mexico where there were no meetings. A new country, new job, new food... the pounds started packing on. Three years ago a group of us created a weight loss support group that met once a week (this was a huge step for me to talk about my weight loss with others.) I was quite successful with losing weight, but then once again backslid... the pattern continued.
Some of my friends had been participating in the Wellness Challenge, but I didn't think it was for me because I had always been so private in my weight loss and this would not be a private journey. I was asked to join a team for the summer, but my summer travels take me here and there, sometimes away from civilization for over a week (when I'm lucky.) I knew that I wouldn't be able to make team contacts, submit points, etc. Last summer in just 6 weeks I gained back 15 pounds I had worked so hard to lose last winter and spring . I decided that THAT WAS IT; I had to do something. I agreed to join the challenge in August and I have found a path that has worked for me.
Since August I have lost 28 pounds, 20.5 inches, gained strength, endurance, and energy. I have run in two 5k races as well as having met some other milestones: "drivers' license weight." 10% weight loss since August, as of today 102 pounds since summer of 2003. I continue to set my goals in "milestones." My next is to see the number on the scale start with a "1." This hasn't happened in over 25 years. It IS going to happen this time. I realize that I had to have a mind shift.I can not do this alone! I have tried and it didn't work. I need support. This challenge and my teammates have given me the support and encouragement I need to be successful. I have made lifestyle changes and really have built healthy eating and living into my life, but I know that if I don't continue with an encouraging team and the accountability, I'm going to fall back into my "backslide" pattern. I look forward to the day I can post a "before" and "after" photo at my goal weight. Meanwhile, I look forward to continuing this health journey with my team mates, my Monday support group, and the Lifetime Wellness Challenge."