Tell Your Tale Tuesday: Fat Girl Vs. World

by , on
Jan 15, 2013

Today I’m bringng you Robby’s story. After you read her story here make sure you check out her blog. Great stuff.

What is your name?  Robby

How old are (roughly)?  **fidgets** ahem . . .  err . . .  31

Site name:  http://fatgirlvsworld.blogspot.com

What was your starting weight in this process and what is your heaviest? My heaviest weight was 240, and that was from ages 16-21.  I fluctuated a few pounds up and down, but always hovered around that number.  When I graduated from college and worked at a restaurant (of all places!), I immediately lost 20 pounds from going up and down stairs every day.  I started the “process” at 220.

What do you current weight?  **hangs head** 204.  My lowest was 188, but then I had a pretty serious injury that meant I couldn’t exercise the way that I wanted to for over a year.  I let that be an excuse to let my diet slip, and the weight just crept back on.

Please compare what you ate before to what you eat now.  My dietitian described me once as a “chaotic eater” – and to a degree that’s still the case.  Whereas I used to forage on junk food and pastries, I forage now on things that I know are healthy for me.  Now that I’m including homemade juices as part of my diet, I’m learning to plan more and be a little less chaotic.  I try to keep lots of fruits and veggies around (including frozen fruits and veggies) and lean fish and meat. 

Do you take any supplements? If so, what kind?  The only supplement I take is Vitamin D.  Back in 2010, my dietitian suggested that I get this tested because emerging research was showing a strong correlation (not causal) to people who were obese and people who were Vitamin D deficient.  My levels were not just below average, but dangerously below average.  I now take a few thousand IUs a day of Vitamin D.  My most recent blood tests have shown that my levels are now in the normal range.

What do you do for exercise?  Right now, my surgeon has limited me to just walking and using the elliptical.  But I can’t wait to get back to playing sports (softball, volleyball) as well as incorporating boxing back into my routine. 

What flipped the switch? What was it that finally motivated you to take control of your health?  I tell everyone that you can’t force “the epiphany” on people – that it has to come in their own time.  Having a doctor tell me I was fat didn’t do the trick.  Seeing myself in pictures didn’t do the trick.  For me, it was finally being able to cast out all the negative voices in my head that were telling me that I wasn’t worthy.  I was sick of settling in life and wanted to take back what was rightfully mine.  My health, my confidence, my future.

How do you keep yourself motivated?  I’m lucky to have so many great friends on Twitter and Facebook that are going through the process themselves.  The #GoTheDist challenge has definitely helped me find like-minded people that focus more on effort and behavior than results.  When all else fails, I rely on three things:  (1) all the voices of people telling me that I couldn’t do something (2) my duty to the child that I was who needed guidance and (3) the person I’m supposed to be that is waiting for me. 

How do you reward yourself?  I used to reward myself with food.  Have a hard day at work?  Beer and some nachos.  Now I reward myself with things that reflect how I feel about myself and my body – new clothing, a fancy kitchen gadget, or something sparkly to wear around my neck.

What do you do for fun?  Let it be known that I am a singer.  I studied classical voice growing up.  Being an opera singer doesn’t stop me from tearing it up at karaoke.  But beware, if you ever see me on a dance floor give me a wide berth: I’m dangerous.

Please tell us anything else you would like my readers to know?  Everyone asks me “How do I start to exercise” or “how do I start a diet?”  So I’d like to answer those questions right here.  You start exercise by thinking about what kind of activities you liked to do as a kid.  What was fun to do?  Jump rope?  Hula hoop?  Playing tag?  Game of basketball?  Do what brings you joy.  As for diet (I hate that four-letter word), educate yourself on what your metabolic needs are.  Determine your active metabolic rate, your nutrient and caloric requirements, and work with a dietitian to figure out what’s best for you.  Make small changes that are sustainable for the rest of your life.  It’s not a diet, it’s a lifetime.

 

Robby at 188

Robby at 188

Robby at 204

Robby at 204

Robby at 240

Robby at 240

Tell Your Story: Tim Young

by , on
Jan 8, 2013

Today I’m bringng you Tim Young’s story. He’s a weight loss blogger from across the pond in England. Seems like a helluva nice guy. After you read his story here make sure you check out his blog. Great stuff.

What is your name?
My name is Timothy Young but everyone calls me Tim….or possibly offensive names behind my back!

How old are (roughly)?
I have just celebrated my 30thbirthday. Happy birthday to me!

Site name:
http://Timmoyoungfatboythin.blogspot.com

What was your starting weight in this process and what is your heaviest?
When I started my weight loss journey, my start weight was 17 stone 7lbs (245 pounds) which meant I was in the class II obesity category on the Body Mass Index (BMI) scale. I was so heavy that my weight wasn’t even on my BMI chart which the National Health Service gave me. It was only when I researched it online that I discovered just how unfit I was. This was because I didn’t exercise and I ate very poorly.

I’ll be honest; I didn’t really care what I was doing to my body. Looking back, the sad thing about it was that when I turned 18, a decade before, I was even heavier! I don’t really know what my weight was at my heaviest but part of me doesn’t care anymore because I know I will never be that heavy again.

What do you current weigh?
Just under a year ago I hit my goal weight of 12 stone 6lbs (174 pounds) which meant I had lost a total of 71 pounds. I then spent most of last year in the maintenance stage of my weight loss journey where I maintained my weight. After an all-inclusive vacation to Mexico and the many temptations at Christmas, my main focus is now getting rid of those few extra pounds that have snuck on and get back to goal weight again.

Please compare what you ate before to what you eat now.
Despite eating poorly, I haven’t totally changed my diet since hitting goal weight. I still eat similar food as I did before I lost weight but I have changed my portion size, introduced different ways of cooking food and also I find alternatives to certain foods which might be healthier but just as tasty.

An example of a pre-weight loss meal would be a visit to McDonalds to eat a 1/4 burger with fries and a large coke. I always find the idea of eating fast food a lot better than the actual taste. In my head it’s going to be big and every bite will taste amazing. In reality it always comes out small, squished, not very hot and after a few mouthfuls, it’s gone and I crave another because I’m not satisfied.

An example of a post-weight loss meal would be a homemade burger using extra lean beef mince, homemade fries cut from potatoes or sweet potato, which is baked in the oven instead of deep fried and a glass of water. I would pile up lots of salad onto the burger because I hate eating salad on its own and it makes the burger a lot bigger too! Making the burger homemade was great because it tasted fantastic, it was actually bigger and more filling than a McDonald’s burger and I felt less guilty because it was less calories!

I still have days where I just want to eat junk food which is fine as long as there are other days where you eat healthy foods. It’s all about having the right balance.

Do you take any supplements? If so, what kind?
I briefly started drinking whey protein shakes but after a few weeks I decided to stop because I didn’t really know why I was drinking it. I just did it because everyone else did. I think in the future if I decide to take any supplement then it will only be because a nutritionist or a professional tells me to do so because it will actually benefit my body.

What do you do for exercise?
My main exercise is walking. I bought myself a pedometer and my aim was to walk 10,000 steps per day, which is the recommended amount of steps people should walk per day if they want to lose weight. Walking was great because it was free, it wasn’t too strenuous and can be quite relaxing. I then set myself a challenge to walk 15 million steps which has helped me shed lots of weight. See my page for more details:

http://timmoyoungfatboythin.blogspot.co.uk/p/15-million-steps.html

I also play football (soccer) weekly, which is something I could never do as often in the past, because I kept getting injuries, due to my weight.

I also taught myself to run and now I try and run around the park, which makes me laugh and smile because I used to think people who ran around the park on their own were crazy. That’s now me!

What flipped the switch? What was it that finally motivated you to take control of your health?
I ate poorly and I didn’t exercise. My confidence and self-esteem was at an all-time low and I wasn’t happy with my life so I knew I had to do something about it and change it for the better. My Dad has type-1 diabetes, which meant I was at a greater risk of getting that too. Also my friend sadly died due to health issues the year before, which scared me because he was my age too. I didn’t want to die young. The combination of everything motivated me to lose weight. I’m pleased to say that I recently had a health check which resulted in me NOT having diabetes as well as having good health. Hearing that nearly resulted in me crying because it meant I made the right decision in losing weight especially on those days when I wanted to give up. It meant it was all worth it.

How do you keep yourself motivated?
Writing my blog was a great way to stay motivated. I recorded the good times and the bad times. I read other peoples blogs and over time I became more involved in a community of fellow weight loss bloggers. We supported each other and motivated one another to achieve the goals we set ourselves.

I also motivated myself by setting goals and rewarding myself when I reached them. I set myself exercise challenges (i.e. learn to run a 5k) as well as food challenges (i.e. learn to cook healthier meals). If I found myself not enjoying something, I would stop it and try something else until I found out what I enjoyed doing. Most importantly I tried to keep things simple and not overcomplicate things because otherwise my motivation levels would drop if I didn’t think a goal was reachable.

How do you reward yourself?
I set myself goals and then rewarded myself when I reached them. I started off with small goals such as aim to lose 5lbs, 10lbs and rewarded myself with gifts which would also help me reach my next goal (i.e. a pair of walking shoes, water bottle). I then set myself harder but achievable goals and rewarded myself with a bigger reward such as an iPod or a mini-vacation to relax.

It’s important to reward yourself because it helps keep you motivated. I also noticed that there were a lot of non-scale victories (NSV) which helped keep me motivated such as buying smaller clothes, having to put a new hole in your belt, noticing your feet are getting smaller because they’re less fat, seeing your rib cage. Little things like that, which might seem silly to “normal” sized people, really do give you a boost and a reminder that you’re heading in the right direction.

What do you do for fun?
I like to visit new cities and countries, go to sporting events (I’m a huge English football fan) and I watch a lot of movies. I also like to go out into the forest with my camera for long walks visiting quaint villages in the English countryside, maybe find a nice pub and have some traditional English pub food and a relaxing drink.

Please tell us anything else you would like my readers to know?
Don’t rush it. You didn’t become overweight overnight, so you won’t lose it overnight either. Take your time so you can get used to the changes that are happening in your life, especially if you have a lot of weight to lose. If you lose a lot of weight quickly, it can be a huge shock to the system. By losing weight slowly, you will adapt better and it will feel more natural and your body will cope a lot easier.

 

Thanks so much for sharing, Tim. I wish wish you the greatest success in life’s journey!

Before After - Tim Young

Tell Your Story: Jack Sh*T

by , on
Jan 1, 2013

One of my goals is to introduce my readers to the world of weight loss bloggers. I want to share their stories of inspiration, hope, perserverance and as you’ll read in Jack’s case, comedy.

I hope you enjoy this new segment!

1. What is your name?
Jack F’n Sh*t (the “F’n” is short for “Franklin”)

2. How old are (roughly)?
I’m 24 years and I… what? Okay, well… I just turned 30. Yeah, I know that… huh? Did I say 30? I’m pretty sure I said 40. Y’know what they say: 40 is the new 24. You want to see my driver’s license? Okay, okay…I’m turning the big 5-ohhhhhhhh this year. But I’m 24 inside!

3. Site name:
Jack Sh*t, Gettin’ Fit

4. What was your starting weight in this process and what is your heaviest?
Unfortunately, I often suffered from scale-nesia where I would forget to weigh myself if I knew I was doing poorly with diet and exercise. I had found myself creeping around 300 pounds, which was always my DANGER, DANGER mark.

5. What do you currently weigh?
237

6. Please compare what you ate before to what you eat now.
It wasn’t really what I ate but how much and why. I ate when I was stressed out, when I was bored, when I wanted to be entertained, when I was sad, when I was happy, when I was reading… you get the idea. Now I try to be a bit more mindful about what I stuff in my mouth-hole. I try to eat a little less and a little healthier.

7. Do you take any supplements? If so, what kind?
I’m a big believer in Omega-3 Fish Oil. However, I’ve started taking capsules since it took too much time to oil a fish and then add Omega-3 to it.

8. What do you do for exercise?
Exercise is the key for me. I joined a gym that’s right around the corner from my office and I spend just about every lunch hour there. I think it’s all about keeping active. My motto: “I’ll rest when I’m dead… or Saturday, whichever comes first.”

9. What flipped the switch? What was it that finally motivated you to take control of
your health?
It’s a long story, which I’ve told repeatedly on my blog. I think we all reach a point where it’s just time to lose or get off the scale. I’ve seen lots of folks who’ve simply thrown in the towel, but I reached a point where I decided that this was my time.

10. How do you keep yourself motivated? Blogging is it for me. My blog is seldom serious in tone, but as long as I’m posting, you can be sure that I’m dialed in on what I’m doing. I make goof and gag on the site, but I’m working hard on eating less and exercising.

11. How do you reward yourself?
Every time I work out, I give myself $10,000. You’d be surprised at just how motivating this can be!

12. What do you do for fun?
Everything.

13. Please tell us anything else you would like my readers to know?
Here’s what I’d like you to know: if you’re here right now, reading these words, there was a reason for it and I believe that reason is that you’re about to go on an incredible journey of self-discovery and body reclamation. It is within you to accomplish your wildest dreams and reach your most optimistic goals, but it’s going to require hard work, dedication and, most of all, time. I’m on my way, and I hope you are, too.

Jack Sh.t Profile

Thanks for sharing, Jack! I’m looking forward to reading your updates!

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