I have had two separate conversations about wearing string bikinis this week. Both conversations, with two separate ladies, went a little like, “Back then I used to wear a string bikini and had the body to show it off…..” I cannot relate to this, as I have never worn a string bikini. Not because I didn’t want to, but because I have never had the body for it.
When I came out of the womb, my grandmother commented on the size of my bum. Yes, I had a J-Lo bum before J-Lo! Then growing up I would put on weight and then have a growth spurt. Then at some point the growth upwards stoppped and I was left over weight. One of the first memories I have of weighing myself was in school, sometime between the age of 11 and 12 years. I weighed 140 lbs then. The first diet I ever went on was a liquid diet called Cambridge at age 13. I remember losing 10 lbs and then after awhile vomiting because I just couldn’t keep the mixture down any longer. This was my first failed diet.
The next memory I have is around 16 years of age. I remember wearing a size 22 back then. I had to order them from a catalog, because they didn’t have those sizes in stores. Through my teen years my weight went up and down, but I was always over weight and likely obese. I didn’t understand BMI back then. In college, I managed to keep my weight in the 169 – 185 range. I don’t remember what I weighed when I found the Atkins diet at age 25. I believe I was over 200lbs at that point. This was a very difficult diet for me being a pescatarian. I basically ate fruit and yogurt for breakfast and fish and vegetables for lunch and dinner. I did this for 18 months and reached my lowest weight (155 lbs) since I remember being on the scale in primary school. After 18 months, I swore I would never diet again. It had literally broken me. I never wanted to see yogurt, fruit or fish again. I remember switching to an almost pure vegetarian diet at this time. Feasting on pasta, rice and beans. Of course, the weight began to creep back on.
Fast forward 12 or so years, after more failed eating plans etc. and I find myself at 293 lbs horrified and trying Weight Watchers for the third time. Of course, it didn’t work because just 6 years ago I was still in the same weight range. Why did I fail so many times. Was it genetics? Was it food allergies? No, none of these things, although I think I have used them as an excuse a time or two. Why is this time going to be different? Well I can’t tell you if this process I am undertaking is going to work totally and if it will work long term, we will all just have to wait for those question to be answered. From my highest weight I have lost 92.5 lbs, 74 lbs being in the last 10 months, so something is working thus far.
I can tell you what is different this time and why I think it will work out better. When I have engaged in diets and eating plans before, they have been fad diets, boxed process foods or plans made on averages. But given my history, I am not average and I have never been an average weight almost my entire life. As for fads diets, they don’t work long term, they just aren’t real life. This time around I am armed with data, which is based on me, my activity, and the calories I put in my body. I love that technology has given us this tool of real time data (via my Fitbit). Each day is different, if I move more I eat more, if I move less I eat less. I eat 90% whole foods that come from the earth unaltered and as organic as possible. I am working on a plan that is sustainable for life, not just for the next few months until I reach the goal. Like I said, it’s a work in process, but I can say I am eating food I like and I am still able to have the treats I like to eat (Gotta have some chocolate in my life!). It is working for me (well it worked for my husband too, he’s already at his goal weight) and we shall see how I progress. When you aresetting out to change your weight, I just believe it has to be a plan that will work long term and something that can fit with your lifestyle with real food in the real times we live in. As much real unprocessed whole foods as possible, no fads, no boxed foods, in other words eat your vegetables!