|40th Birthday - August 2012|
I didn't even attempt to eat anything healthy, I did not eat a balanced 3 meals a day etc... plan. I just lived on junk and ate whatever I wanted whenever I wanted. I didn't have a piece of cake or some chocolate - I ate the whole cake & the whole block of chocolate & would then be looking for the next thing I could eat. I was too find out that this pattern was called binge eating - it's a disorder a lot of overweight people have. Its like bulimia except you do not purge.
Our last miscarriage in October resulted in my depression getting worse. All I did was sleep, eat & cry. I hardly got out of bed except to go to the local store to buy chocolate, cookies, cake etc... If I could avoid leaving the house I did & started eating any food that would deliver like pizza etc.... By December my Dr suggested I come into hospital so she could change my medication. In hospital there was not enough food for me to binge on so I would get to Leigh to go & stock up on oreo's, lollies, chocolate etc.... I do not know why but near the end of my hospital stay something inside me made me look at the weight problem, I don't know if I was sick of living on junk or the realisation that walking, just a short amount would have me breathless with my back aching. I promised myself that I would do something as soon as I got out of hospital. So mid December 2012 I faced the scales, at 171 cm I weighed in at 129.8 kg with a sky high BMI that put me in the morbidly obese category. I couldn't believe I had let things get this bad. I set a goal of getting back to 65 kg so I could wear things from my wardrobe bursting with things I couldn't even get an arm in. The amount of weight I had to lose scared me, it was half of what I was. That was the goal but I was unsure if I could do it.
I wasn't sure what I would do but I was sensible enough to know I wasn't eating properly. I did some looking around & made an appointment with a dietitian to see if maybe they could help. I didn't want to go on another diet like Jenny craig etc... where when you stop the program you go back to eating normal foods & the weight creeps back on. I couldn't get an appointment till mid - January so I made the best plan I could until then. No more junk was to enter the house, I ate 3 meals a day & had small healthy snacks as well. I weighed myself each week & I was losing, only small amounts like 400 gram etc... but at least I had stopped gaining.
When it was time for the appointment with the dietitian I weighed in at 125kg but her special scales broke down things like what % of my body was fat, I showed as being at 49.1% fat & I had a fat mass of 61.4 kg with a BMI of 42.3. I stressed how I didn't want to go on a diet with foods I was only eating to lose weight, I wanted to find healthy things I would enjoy & when I reached my goal weight I would continue to eat. Not a problem! If I have something I like then I don't mind having the same breakfast & lunch everyday (which was would I had done in the previous weeks). Her advice seeing I was so large & because I wanted to get healthy as soon as I could was to go on the optifast shakes for 2 weeks (you also can have 2 vegetable serves a day & certain fruit). Then I would stick to a plan that was 1000 calories a day. There are lot of foods I don't like (yoghurt, cream cheese lots of healthy things that are low cal). So we worked out foods I would eat that came to 1000 calories a day.
A skim banana smoothie for breakfast
A serve of fruit for morning tea (watermelon or strawberries were my 2 faves)
A turkey & salad sandwich with low fat mayo on a good grainy bread for lunch
A small serve of raw nuts for afternoon tea (cashews were my choice)
We worked out several dinner options and they all included protein of either chicken, turkey or fish & a serve of vegetables
Last snack of the day was a cup skinny of milo
So the idea of doing 2 weeks on Optifast was to get my body used to eating less & kick start the weight loss, then going on to 1000 calories would seem like a lot of food! I was really worried I wouldn't be able to stick to that for the first 2 weeks. I made it through the first day & was to my surprise not starving, the 2 weeks flew by & when I saw the scales drop 4kg in 2 weeks I was thrilled. When I started eating the food plan we had worked out - it did seem like a lot of food after being n Optifast. Not much exciting to share here, I stuck to the plan with no problems (I liked all the foods) & watched the scales go down each week. I had my food sorted but I also knew I was in such bad physical shape I would need to exercise also.
Sometime in February 2013 after losing nearly 10kg I decided today was the day to go back to walking! When I was healthier I always enjoyed a good fast walk for daily exercise, I prefer to be actually doing something than being in a gym. Because I had got into such bad shape, a year earlier Leigh was feeling unhealthy & decided to do something, he cut out junk & went walking each day & lost about 35 kg. Leigh said he would help me with the walks - the first walk I went on was horrible, I was slow, out of breath, my legs & back ached & I only made it about 500 metres, Leigh said he would get me able to walk the full 5km & do it in about 35 mins ( I said no way would that ever happen!!) I was not discouraged by how I felt on that walk, in fact it made me more determined to be able to go further & faster!
Each night we walked the same track ( I still felt like hell!!) but each walk Leigh would encourage me to go a bit further - make it to the next big tree, make it to the benches, etc.... I felt great that I could make it that bit further each time. I cursed every extra kilo I was carrying that made the walks feel so bad but it also made me want to lose the weight asap. We went for a walk every night after dinner if it was raining we would go to the convention centre car park & do laps of it till we had walked the same distance. Each week we would walk further & work on getting my pace up, I could see with the exercise my weight lost each week was higher than when I was not exercising. I even started to go for extra walks on my own a few times a week & the first week I did that I lost 2.2kg. I always lost at least 1kg but most weeks it was maybe 1.5kg & then every couple of weeks I would have a huge loss like 2.5kg, my biggest week was 3.3kg.
A benefit I noticed after I had been eating good food & exercising was I was sleeping much better every night & the chronic migraine's I suffered from & usually had to go to hospital with (easily once a fortnight & that's not counting the ones where I took medication at home but would last for days, this was virtually every week) went away. I then only suffered headaches & my medication would take care of them & they would be gone in 1 - 2 hours. (The neurologist I saw was another medical person who told me I needed to lose weight that I didn't listen too). My constant backache was so much better as well. Besides seeing the scales go down the health benefits were alone another reason to stick with what I was doing.
Because I had so much weight to lose I did also set myself goals along the way like getting to 120 kg, 110kg then getting under 100 kg & making it to double digits! Also to see my BMI reading change categories from morbidly obese to obese to overweight then healthy. By April 2013 I was down to 104 kg, as a side note I wanted to go to Supanova to meet Rose McGowan & Barbra Eden. Getting ready to go my fat dresses no longer fit - they were too big, I ventured into the cupboard & pulled out a pair of size 20 jeans I had purchased when my weight was going up but had not fit me in over a year. I couldn't believe it when they did up I was also determined that going out all day not ruin my plan so I took my food with me. Looking back now I think I look huge in these photos but when I first saw them I couldn't believe the change losing 25kg had made.
|April 2013 after losing 25kg & meeting Rose McGowan|
I did not stray from the eating plan when Easter came around I had one egg & made it last a week (something unheard of for me) & I still had a loss that week. May arrived & it was our anniversary which Leigh was taking me away for, also I was THRILLED I had hit 99kg, I was in double digit land now with 30kg gone! We went to a lovely place in the rain forest at Springbrook, we took all our own food (even the blender for my breakfast smoothie!) For exercise we went on bush walks each day we were there, these were hard as they weren't the nice paved surfaces I was used to walking on & especially all the uphill climbs killed me (I was still cursing the weight as I knew it was holding me back) but I managed to always complete the walks no matter how hard & exhausting they were. As I've mentioned I was strict abut sticking to my plan but I did eat out for special occasions etc.... We had a lovely Italian meal for our anniversary & cake, the main difference was I ate much smaller portions. Leigh was very proud of me & what I had achieved so far, I wouldn't have made it that far without his support & encouragement. I suddenly felt overwhelmed that I still had 35kg to lose & started crying & saying I wouldn't be able to do it. I can never look at what I've achieved & congratulate myself - in all aspects of my life I always look at what I have not done instead (am still working on that issue!!!)
Seeing I had done those hikes while away Leigh suggested he would take me to tracks near home that he walked when losing weight, I was up for the challenge. The first time I did an uphill track that was a nice paved one I was out of breath & saying never again. However I did do it again so we started going for hikes in the morning on weekends & still doing our walks of a night. All up with walks & hikes I was going 10 times per week ( we added a 1 hour walk through the botanical gardens every Wednesday morning ). When Leigh took me on another longer track that was dirt, rocks, uneven surfaces etc.... it was so hard. I felt I was going to trip over any second, this was another of my famous never again moments but as the week went by I forgot that bit & was up for trying it again the next weekend.
By June 2013 I was at 90kg & was keen to crack the 80's, one problem I was having was clothes getting to big for me (good problem!) I had some things from when I was gaining that I was fitting back into but I had to buy some stuff & I didn't want to spend much money as I hoped I wouldn't need these clothes for long! I found inexpensive workout gear & basic items like jeans & pants for work at Target. Roughly every 6 weeks I would need to go back & get the next size down in jeans & pants etc... My wardrobe was packed with many things I had bought in my old size even when I was big with the hope of wearing it someday. To my disbelief some of the items started to fit.
|June 2013 at 90kg|
By mid July 2013 I was down to 86kg, I had made lots of posts on facebook about what I was doing but did not want to post photo's, my friends were all supportive & kept asking me for photos so not knowing how it would turn out I got Leigh to take a photo I could post.
|July 2013 at 86kg - the first pic I had posted on facebook since I started getting healthy|
The response to the photo was facebook lit up like a christmas tree! All my friends were so lovely & couldn't believe my results (remember the last photos I had posted were from my 40th at 129.8kg the previous August). Their supportive comments made me feel even better about the path I was on. I decided to buy myself a treat for getting to this far & got a lovely pair of earrings from Tiffany & co - wearing them they were a reminder of how far I'd come & encourage me to keep going!
The next big thing was my birthday in August & I was down to 84kg, we went away to Montville to celebrate & again took our own food with us but went out to dinner on my birthday & cake. We also did a different hiking trail in the area each day. I was a bit worried that eating out & having cake & a few chocolates etc... would mean no weight loss that week. I was wrong, at the next weigh in I lost 1.9kg that week.
|My birthday August 2013 at 84kg, one year on from my 40th & 45.8kg gone|
I was so determined to make my goal that nothing swayed me, being offered cake & lollies at work I had turned into a person who always said no thank you instead of going back for 2nd's! By this time our nightly walks were 5.5km & we were doing them in 38 minutes. I even splurged on some workout gear from Lorna jane (I couldn't believe it fit me!!) Our hikes on the weekend had grown too, I was now doing one hike that was 13km & took us just under 3 hours to do. At this stage I now had no problems our pain walking/hiking. My health was amazing I had not been sick once in the past 8 months & my migraine's were now, just the odd headache a couple of times a month. As a treat on the Saturday's we did the big hike, we would have lunch out & my tastes had changed - I did not want McDonalds or Kentucky I either enjoyed half a chicken & salad burger with a half serve of chips at Grill'd or a burrito with chicken, rice, beans, (no cheese - not for weight but because I don't like it!!) pico de gallo from Guzman & gomez. I also had a starbucks frappacino made on skim but I only ordered a small, not the biggest size they have like I used to.
I have never felt confident about the way I look, but when going out I did feel less embarrassed/ashamed then I had become used to. It was strange whenever I passed a mirror or my reflection in a window as I didn't know who that person was. September arrived & I had hit another goal - I had cracked the 70's & was 77kg. I decided I again deserved a treat & splurged on a Louis Vuitton bag. By the last week of Sept I had cracked another milestone - I was 72.5kg which put my BMI in the healthy category. I treated myself again with a necklace from Tiffany & co (I had extra money to get these treats as I wasn't spending huge amounts each week on junk food).
|Sept 2013 & 77kg & my reward below|
|Sept 2013 & in the healthy BMI category :)|
I couldn't believe it but I only had 7.5kg to go! Next goal was to crack the 60's, due to getting smaller my weight loss slowed down a little & I didn't always get a big number each week instead I would get 1 - 1.5kg one week & the following week a smaller amount like 700grams.
At the start of October Leigh had a trip to Sydney had just cracked the 60's & was 69kg it was such a good feeling to have so much room in my seat on the plane as the year before it was pretty uncomfortable. These few days would be a challenge as I couldn't take my own food. We went for our walks each day & I tried to find foods that were close to things I had at home & had calorie info so I could have a rough idea of where I was at. The first night there we had a date night with a dinner cruise on Sydney harbour. I had packed the gorgeous Dita Von Teese dress I had managed to find on sale earlier that year & had bought a small size with the hope of it fitting, I couldn't believe I fit into such a lovely dress. We had a lovely romantic date & I actually was starting to have a bit more confidence about how I looked. When Leigh told me I looked gorgeous that night I actually believed him. He has always given me compliments at any size I was but when you are 129.8kg its hard to accept.
|October 2013 69kg wearing my Dita Von Teese dress & new earrings I got at Hardy Brothers as my reward for cracking the 60's|
|Leigh's 40th party Nov 2nd 2013 wearing my Roberto Cavalli dress I never thought I'd fit|
|Mid -November 2013 at 66.5kg wearing a new top that was size small & size 10 jeans|
The last 4kg were the hardest to lose, it was frustrating seeing small numbers each week when I was so close. The last week of November I was at 65.4, that was good but I was desperate to see the number 65 come up. The following week on weigh in day which was Dec 7, I waited for my weight to come up - I'd beaten my goal & was 64.1kg I was so happy I cried. I kept asking Leigh to check it as I couldn't believe it. For Christmas Leigh & I went shopping & got me a lot of new clothes. I was fitting into sizes I didn't when I was 65kg previously. All the walking & hiking had changed my shape & I couldn't believe the sizes I was able to buy.
|December 7th,2013 & finally hit the goal & below that night being silly at the Taylor Swift concert in another new outfit|
During the year I saw the dietitian about every 2-3 months so she could weigh & measure me. My weigh in with her just after hitting the goal was my fat % was now 20.9% & fat mass 14. I couldn't believe I had done it & in a year like I had hoped to when I set the goal. I promised myself if I could make my goal weight I would buy myself the Cartier Love bracelet that I had wanted for years on our trip to Europe in 2014.
|Going to a Christmas dinner with friends in one of my new dresses|
|Christmas 2013 & Leigh & I both wearing new clothes we had got each other for Christmas|
To sum it up I had never been this healthy or fit in my life, I was annoyed with myself for not having done something about the weight problem sooner. If I could turn my life & health around like this then anybody can .It is a great help if you can have people supporting you & exercising with you. I never would have achieved this if it was not for Leigh & all his support & I can't thank him enough.
I will post about the next phase which was maintaining & reaching the 12 month mark at this weight.
|Leigh & I at my 40th Aug 2012 & both of us healthy Dec 2013|