I am an ex-professional yo-yo dieter.
I say “ex-professional” because I’ve kicked the yo-yo to the curb! I have lost 40 pounds and this time I am successfully keeping the weight off!
I have only 10 more pounds to go before I’m done and while I’m still teaching myself better lifestyle habits, I’ve learned a lot about weight loss over the past four years of my weight-loss journey.
But my battle with weight starts much further back than just four years ago.
I began battling weight gain in my early twenties. At age 17 my family and I moved away from the home and church I’d always known, I began comforting myself with food. Up to that point in my life I’d always kept a normal, healthy weight for my height. And to be honest, I didn’t really notice how out of hand it was.
That’s actually a classic story for me. I almost never realize how bad it is until it’s too late.
My dysfunctional relationship with food became so bad in my mid-twenties that I would binge all day one day and then starve myself the next…out of shame. I was so afraid of being hungry that I would keep food in my car and bedroom, even in my desk at work.
I would spend a lot of money on groceries and then eat out every night.
I would drink at least 2 liters of Coke a day and only ate vegetables if they were on a burger or club sandwich.
It only took a few years and my health began to decline. My doctor ordered me to see a dietitian, and that’s how I ended up at Jenny Craig.
On Jenny Craig I lost a lot of weight and very quickly; but before I finished the program I left for Bible school where I had a full schedule and major income reduction. And the weight came back on almost as quickly as it came off.
Three years later I was heavier than when I began Jenny Craig.
And that yo-yo continued.
I tried a lot of things: Adkins, weight-loss pills, counting calories…
And I am really good at taking weight off quickly, and putting it back on as quickly!
When I got married, I was once again at a healthy weight for my height….but I didn’t get there healthily. While I was pretty active, I didn’t eat any better than I had before.
My dysfunctional relationship with food was deeply ingrained in me and soon after getting married I became less active. Not only that, but now I had to cook actual meals…which meant I ate more often. Truth be told, I just ate more.
By the time I had my first son, I was the heaviest I’d ever been in my life.
After my second son was born, I knew I needed to get the weight off. But, I wasn’t very serious about it. I loved food too much and exercise too little. Plus I’d been told 3 years prior that I had Adrenal Fatigue, which makes weight loss a lot harder.
For the next year and a half I was a yo-yo of 10-15 pounds or so.
But by mid-2014 my Adrenal Fatigue had progressed so much that I was experiencing some debilitating symptoms, and I knew I had to make a radical change.
It began with a choice to eat low-carb/high volume. Now, unless you think this is another fad-type diet that I had tried and failed at so many times before; this was simply a decision to eat less carbs in the form of breads and more fruits and vegetables. Not only is this a much healthier lifestyle, it’s something I can continue to do for the rest of my life.
Then I began moving more.
I began a very strict vitamin regimen.
I also began to destress my life. I’ll be honest, this was a huge factor for me! A lot of my comfort eating was tied to my stress. Along with that, I began to deal with a lot of stuff inside that was keeping be bound to my dysfunctional relationship with food.
Lastly, I began to value rest and sleep more. You will never be healthy and lose weight as long as you’re chronically sleep deprived.
Over the month of February, I want to go into more detail into these new lifestyle choices I’ve made. Changes that have ended the yo-yo and helped me to naturally lose weight over a long period of time while making new, healthy habits that will last a lifetime.
I hope you’ll join me next week as we look at how weight loss must start on the inside first!
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