Thursday, September 3, 2009

Flab to Fab

I have started and stopped so many diets that it's impossible to keep track. I have started and stopped so many diet journals that it's impossible to keep track. So if you see a week go by where I don't include a "Flab to Fab" post, please virtually slap me and ask me about it. It probably means I've slid into the deep end, once again.

Since high school, I've labeled myself as a "fat girl." I pondered the idea of anorexia for about a week. I even went to pro-anorexia websites to search for tips and ideas on how to go about this insane "diet" plan. But then I mentioned it to a friend who spent an entire bus ride home talking me out of it. (Funnily enough, she used Britney Spears as an example. But this was in 2003, when Britney Spears wasn't such a train wreck.)

Then I tried eating healthy, watching my calories, and exercising. Problem is, the fitness room at my apartment was laughable. They had one treadmill, one out-of-date Stairstepper, and a Bowflex-inspired (but not Bowflex-quality) weight system. And it was hard to get my mom on board. She was still in her B.W.W. (Before Weight Watchers) days.

Then came college. In 2006, I pranced off to Tampa to live on campus in a dorm. (Read: the worst decision of my life!) In October of 2006, my mom started attending Weight Watchers. And I guess the lightbulb went on for her because she ended up losing 80 lbs on this program. Eighty. POUNDS. That's the size of a fourth-grader! She took up running (which she, um, loves. Weirdo.) and began making healthy choices and watching her portions. It was an amazing thing to witness and so inspirational for a fat girl like me. If my mom can do it, I can do it! Right?

So I started Weight Watchers when I came back from college in May 2007. I lost about 20 lbs by the start of fall semester but then I hit a major plateau. By Christmas of that year, I had lost less than 5 pounds. Granted, I hadn't gained the weight back, but my weight loss was just silly. And I was paying $40 a month for this! I kept going until June 2008 when I decided it wasn't worth it. I tried to do it on my own and ended up going back to Weight Watchers, quitting, going back, quitting. This has happened 3 or 4 times since June 2008.

So now I'm here. September 2009. I'm back at the weight I was when I started WW. I'm happy I haven't managed to become even bigger. But I know that if I don't start making some serious changes and really challenging my body to change, I'm going to get to a point of no return. I don't want to get to the point where I can only shop in plus-size stores, can't walk up a flight of stairs without panting, or worrying that I won't fit into the car on the rollercoaster. It was a life my mom lived. It's one she doesn't live now. And it's one I do not want to live.

So I'm beginning this weight loss journey over again. And it's not a diet. It's a journey of learning how to change how I think about food and exercise. I don't want to depend on food to make me happy anymore. I want exercise to become a normal, every-day part of my life. I want to make healthy eating choices without thinking about it.

It's going to be hard. It's hard to completely change the way you think and live your life. But I have to do this for me. Not just to be thin (and fab!) but to be healthy. Living a healthy, active lifestyle equals less stress and less troubles down the road (i.e., cancer). I hope it's a journey I can conquer and succeed at. I'm determined not to fail.

As I start this journey, I want to include goals into every post. Since I'm beginning this journey tomorrow, I'm going to write up a list of yearly goals.

By this time next year (September 2010), I want to...
  • Have lost a total of 30 lbs (and kept it off).
  • Ran in a 10K race.
  • Established a consistent exercise program.
  • Stopped drinking so much soda, except for once in a while.
  • Bought a bikini (although I'm still unsure if I could ever be comfortable in one.)

I'm sure there are some of you out there who struggle (or have struggled) with your weight. I'm hoping we can all become successes at this monster and learn how to be healthy and fit!

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