Since October 2016, I have lost 30 pounds. For as long as I could remember, I had never dropped below around 169 pounds. I wasn’t necessarily obese, but I was definitely overweight. In high school, I had no desire to change. I was unhappy with the way I looked, but not so much to become more active or to eat better. Instead, I allowed myself to binge eat snacks after school, and to help myself to seconds (sometimes even thirds) of dessert. I was involved with my school’s tennis team and took dance lessons, which I believe to be the only reason I wasn’t obese. I was arguably active, but nowhere near fit. Or healthy, for that matter.
When I went to college, something changed. I decided to take control of my health. I registered for the gym, became conscious of my diet, and made myself more active in my day to day life. I might credit this to the friends I surrounded myself with, or my discontent with my weight and appearance finally overwhelming my laziness. . . whatever the reason, my days of crashing on the couch and devouring half a bag of potato chips alone were over.
In my early days of attempting to lose weight, I became obsessed with trying to find a way that would make me drop pounds in minutes. My Google history was filled with searches like “Lose 20 pounds in a month” or “How to Lose 10 pounds in one week.” I wanted results immediately, but I was only willing to work moderately hard for them. Sure, I can commit to a solid month at the gym, I thought. Just so long as I have a bikini bod by the end.
As one might expect, I had another thing coming. After attempting to attach myself to unhealthy fad diets (i.e. completely cutting out dairy, gluten, and red meat for 30 days–like HOW), a close friend texted me a video with a simple message: “I want you to be safe, and this is a much healthier option.”
The video was the one I will link here now: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ERlQnHDQp6o, and was everything I needed to hear. Youtuber Karissa Clayton (Karissa Nichole) talks about her weight loss journey, her simple tips, and a diet that was actually manageable.
It was this diet that I decided to make my starting point. I began on January 2, 2017 and “ended” on January 31, 2017 (I never stopped implementing these dieting techniques). I cut out all white breads, noodles, and rice from my daily meals. Instead I opted for wheat, rye, or wholegrain options. I also cut out most sugar (I made some exceptions in my coffee or for special occasions), and soda products.
From January 2 to January 31, I lost 15 pounds.
I still remember the excited feeling I got entering my new weight into my FitBit app. I still remember feeling so proud that finally I had been able to lose weight, and in a way that I barely even noticed in my day-to-day life.
Today, I weigh another 15 pounds less and I’m still dropping. I’m always trying to find new ways to spice up my workout or keep my healthy meals entertaining, and I don’t regret my decision to become healthy at all. The support of my family and friends has been overwhelming and essential to my lifestyle change. I can’t imagine going back to the way I was living before.
To anyone out there debating about whether or not they can/should do this, my answer is yes. But only do it because YOU want to. Not because someone else says you need to, or because you want to have “before” and “after” pictures or because you don’t want to be the “fat friend” anymore. Do it because you’re unhappy with your health, and want to become fit and active. Do it for yourself.
And yes, you can do it.