I was going through my Facebook photographs and decided to show myself (and the world) my transformation in pictures. The first photograph was taken May 2009. I admit there are not a terrible amount of photos of me during my heaviest because the camera was not my friend (that is as long as it wasn’t JUST a face shot here or there). Part of this goes into my denial of how large I truly was and my blinders not wanting me to see it before I was “ready” to.
One thing that is clearly evident is as I dove into my healthy lifestyle, I began to appreciate life more. I began to truly smile in photographs. The happiness I began to learn to build was shining from deep inside me as it’d been hidden and lost for so long. I didn’t mind having my photograph taken because it showed me the progress. I saw the number on the scale while at my Weight Watchers weigh-in, but I enjoyed seeing me because that’s what mattered. The way my clothes fit. I started to want to wear clothing that was “flashy” (I’m not talking bedazzled I’m talking colors!) not the staple dark blue, grey, green and black I had become very accustomed to wearing.
These days, I try to not shun clothing when I see it on a rack. A small part of my brain still says “you can’t wear that” but I still take items into the dressing room to try them on because you never know how something is going to fit until it’s on your frame. Being a former morbidly obese person it’s surprising to step outside of your comfort zone. For instance — the yellow shorts worn int he last photograph? I fell in love with them on the rack — the color, the style, but almost never tried them on because for 25+ years of my life I never wore anything that wasn’t above mid-calf level. Turns out the shorts fit me perfectly and made me really actually LIKE the legs I “grew” into.
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I have am active Weight Watchers member and have been for 3+ years. Without the tools, tips and tricks I have learned with many thanks to the Weight Watchers program and my original leader (Carol) I admit I would not have achieved the success I have found today.
- Being able to walk up and down the stairs, repeatedly, without gasping for air
- Being able to sit in a restaurant booth and swivel chair (that are connected to a table) comfortably WITH room to spare
- Went from a 5X shirt down to a Large
- Went from a 30/32 pair of jeans down to a 12
- Donated ALL clothing that is not in my current size to family or charity
- Is able to make it through a 50 minute gym class without sneaking out early
- A stranger at the RMV, when renewing my license said, “Great job sweetheart, you look amazing!” after seeing my license photo and me in front of her
- I no longer completely shun doctors because I’m ashamed of my size
- My doctor is no longer “mad” at me when I show up for physicals
- Being able to shop at ANY store I want because I can fit into non-plus sized clothing
- Blossoming into a positive AND happier person
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One very important thing I learned very early into my weight loss journey was that I had to believe in myself. If I didn’t believe in me — who else in their right mind would? If I didn’t care enough to believe I could do it, I would never be where I am today. Even if you’re struggling with “liking” yourself in the current stage you are in — fake it ’til you make it. You’ll get there as long as you don’t let negative thoughts, feelings, etc., get in the way and burden your path forward.
It’s so very important to believe in yourself. Belief in yourself will get you anywhere and everywhere – it can push you through a workout, it can push you across that finish line, it can assist in you losing 2 pounds in a week. It can get you through a birthday party NOT having any cake or if you do want cake a small sliver. Belief in myself has made my journey SO much easier because I feel as though I am an unstoppable machine — my views are set at that ultimate destination.
It’s the second guessing, the excuses and the sheer inability to believe in yourself and your program that will keep you from finding success. Not believing in yourself will push you into “cheat days” and not tracking and eventually giving up all together. As I have said to many … believe in you first and believe in the program because anything is possible as long as you believe.
Keep your head up and your mind right!
I had the immense pleasure of sharing my weight loss journey with a group of individuals at a Weight Watchers One Amazing Day event yesterday. When I was asked to participate I admit I was scared to death and part of me wanted to back out. I’m not the most comfortable with public speaking and being heavier practically my entire life I’ve always slid into the room (as unnoticed as possible), mingled in the back and quickly exited. So the thought of being the center of attention panicked me just a little bit. But the new me stepped into place and said “You’re passionate about this and a lot of people tell you you’re an inspiration to them. Do this. Do it for them. Do it for yourself. YOU deserve this!” So I did it – I signed up and took the 1 o’clock spot.