i've lost it, weight loss

I’VE LOST IT! – Brianna Westhaver

Brianna is no stranger to the spotlight. She has a very popular and influential weight loss blog titled, My Commitment to Me, and she has been showcased on her local news station as well as being interviewed for other weight loss web sites. She truly is an inspiration to herself and to others. She has worked her butt off and it definitely shows! Just watch her in action!

Here is what she has to say: {from her fitbottomedgirls.com article}

Weight has always been an issue in my life, ever since I was a young child. I can’t remember a time when I felt comfortable in my body.Lose_weight_quickly113

By my 24th birthday, I was well over 300 pounds, but when I looked at myself in the mirror, I didn’t think I was that big. Looking back, I compare it to an anorexic person who doesn’t think they are thin. In December 2007 at a work Christmas party, a picture was taken that gave me some big perspective. Looking at this photo, I realized I had to do something about my weight. People had told me over the years how to lose weight; they told me that I had to do it. But I’m the type of person that does not respond well to people telling me how to live my life—I had to make the decision for myself.

I have tried every fad diet known to man, DIETS DO NOT WORK. When someone asks me what diet I’m on my response is "I don’t diet" and that’s true, I don’t. I eat clean, I eat small portions and I am aware of what I put into my body. I work out 5-6 days per week and choose active options instead of sedentary. I don’t count calories and I drink lots of water. I fuel my body for energy and not for emotions. So doesn’t that sound simple? Sure it’s super simple and it works. It’s SIMPLE but not EASY – I know that I’ve been there and I still get into those situations. It’s about having the tools and knowledge of self to know what to do and be prepared.

How or when did you start to notice your weight and unhealthy lifestyle?

After high school is when I realized how unhealthy I was living but I didn’t have the knowledge on how to change my life. I just thought that if I didn’t eat much then the weight would come off, but knowing what I know now that is not the case. I wanted to change, but I just didn’t know how. I just figured I was one of those people who was “big boned” or genetically predisposed to being heavy. Now I know that is not the case, a rare percentage of people in the world have a very hard time losing weight due to genetics but for the most part anyone can make the change they just must be willing to commit.

What was your turning point to change your life?

I always knew that I had a weight problem, but I never realized that I had gotten so big until I saw a picture of myself at a Christmas party in 2007. Seeing it on film I realized I needed to make a change, even if it just meant not getting bigger. On January 1, 2008, I made a new years resolution that has changed my life for the better.

Give a sample of the foods you consume:

I eat 5-6 small meals per day. In general for breakfast I will have fat free greek yogurt & berries or sometimes I will make protein pancakes. My second meal of the day is a salad with grilled chicken or ground turkey. My lunch is normally steamed veggies and chicken. My fourth meal is fruit with cottage cheese. My dinner will be sometimes a protein shake or another salad with cottage cheese as the dressing

Weight loss is difficult. What has been your greatest tool to help you achieve your goals?

My support system is the #1 tool that has kept me going through this process. If I was doing this alone I know I wouldn’t have stuck to it this long. I have a great group of friends who are supportive of my goals. I have developed lasting friendships in my workout buddies. Surrounding myself by people who enjoy the same things that I do has kept me going.

BEFORE

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AFTER

BW AFTER

 Don’t be shy: I would love to feature you! If you or someone you know lost weight and is now living a healthy lifestyle please email me: thecleaneatingmama @ gmail.com

tashasig

i've lost it, weight loss

I’VE LOST IT! – Steph Norton

After my first I’VE LOST IT! post, I started receiving emails from others who had lost weight and wanted to share their experience. I am completely moved and proud of ALL OF YOU! I read each and every story, and by the end I am crying yet smiling at the same time. You are all heroes! You are heroes to yourself, your family and to others struggling with the same issues. Remember: YOU ARE NEVER ALONE!

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Meet Steph.

Steph, like so many of us, started comparing herself to others in High School. The spiral effect this had on her life was something she was not prepared for. Fortunately, she found help at the right time in her life and made a drastic change that saved her life. 

How or when did you start to notice your weight and unhealthy lifestyle?

I have always never been the skinny one throughout my life I wish I could’ve been.. I remember when I was in 8th grade and Britney Spears first came out and I thought why can’t I look like her, and from that day on I was on a "diet" to try and achieve that. I Never really struggled working out cause I was a dancer and played volleyball, basketball and was in track. This thinking of achieving this look continued into College where everyday I would try but somehow always fail at the diet part. I felt extremely lost and alone in college so to fill the void I would eat what I thought was healthy but was really not. My workouts went to zilch and I slowly was gaining when I was hoping I was losing. After the first semester I was so lonely and "depressed" I left school. When I was at home is when all the destructive behaviors started, I was never officially diagnosed with an Eating Disorder but had a lot of tendencies. I would starve myself to achieve that "look" I would see how little I could consume calorie wise and from there everything continued to slowly go down hill. When I hit 21 I started to drink everyday all day. Then when the cutting started. As you can tell my life was a complete mess and with all I was doing I just continued to put weight on and I sunk farther into depression.

What was your turning point to change your life?

My turning point came when my mom and I were living with a girl who was a single mom with some destructive behaviors of her own. We were out at a bar one night and I was completely wasted when I felt I could trust to talk to her and not say anything to my mom about any of this. Little did I know she went behind my back the next morning and talked to my mom about everything I told her. That day my Mom came home from work and told me I needed to get help. We then went to the doctor and I was put on meds for depression and anxiety. I was starting to feel ok after the meds started to work but was still unhappy with my weight. So I kept it to myself and continued to drink and balloon up. It all came at me when I was at my heaviest in my Sister’s wedding. I was her maid of honor and felt so uncomfortable next to my rail thin sister. Finally at the age of 24 my Mom had said she had enough of her weight and we vowed to join Weight Watchers together. So with my meals starting to come together with that program I wanted to try running as a workout since I was an athlete in high school I thought no big deal. I then got the race bug itch once I ran on and off for the exercise. Since then I haven’t looked back on running. I have completed two 5ks and 4 half marathons since. With running I picked up weight training. Since May of 2009 I have lost 60 total lbs and kept it off. My destructive behaviors were finally in control after I picked up the running even though they will never be completely gone I have kept the under control. I also have stayed on the meds which have helped.

Give a sample of the foods you consume:

Even though what I consume on a daily basis this is what a typical day may look like.. Breakfast is 2 slices of Eziekel Bread, 2 tbsp of a nut butter and a banana. Lunch is a salad and veggies of some sort ( I love spinach/spring mix salads, carrots, celery, cucumbers and on and on) Dinner is usually a protein smoothie, sandwiches or wraps, sometimes sweet potatoes. Snacks are usually Larabars and fruits and veggies. Like I said when I first started with the weight loss journey I followed Weight Watchers, then I switched to Weight Watchers/ Clean Eating and now I am a Vegetarian who tried to Eat Clean and sticks to all healthy option 80% of the time!

Weight loss is difficult. What has been your greatest tool to help you achieve your goals?

The greatest tool to get me to my goals is running and weight lifting. I constantly try and challenge myself all the time. People ask me how I keep the motivation to run as much as I do and I say One it brings me joy and is like my therapy and two I sign up for races, knowing I have a race coming makes me push so I am not "lazy". But I do have one rest day a week they are important for weight loss! I also stay on track with the loss with only consuming water throughout the day. It’s very important key in losing weight!

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Don’t be shy: I would love to feature you! If you or someone you know lost weight and is now living a healthy lifestyle please email me: thecleaneatingmama @ gmail.com

tashasig

i've lost it, weight loss

I’VE LOST IT! – Stephanie Badger

While at the gym a few weeks back, I couldn’t help to notice this one particular member. He wasn’t the typical gym type: he was older, probably in his 60’s, and severely overweight. Chances of him having diabetes or some kind of heart problem seemed very likely. However, he was the hardest working person there. I stepped on to the stair stepping machine next to him and in my head I was praising him, being his own cheering crowd. I was so proud of him! He was sweating, huffing and puffing, but he was not giving up. He was my inspiration for that evening, and will continue to be my inspiration. I would have loved to get to know him, to hear how he had gotten to that low point in his health and to learn about his turn around experience. I hope I continue to see him at the gym. Maybe one of these times I will approach him and to learn about what inspires him to keep moving.

Because of this I wanted to showcase ALL of the hardworking individuals who have reached their lowest point and decided to turn a negative into a positive by eating cleaner and started living a healthier life. These hard working individuals need their own spot light. Their own recognition. The chance to share their accomplishments.

I am starting a blog series called “I’VE LOST IT!”. I am planning to feature individuals who have lost weight, established healthy habits and want to inspire others. Losing weight is one of the most difficult, challenging and emotional rollercoaster’s an individual can face. I know because I’ve been there. It is important that we must not give up on ourselves and to know that no one is ever alone. I hope these stories help motivate you to keep working at your own personal goals or to help you start. You have the power!

Lose_weight_quickly113

Don’t be shy: I would love to feature you! If you or someone you know lost weight and is now living a healthy lifestyle please email me: thecleaneatingmama @ gmail.com

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Please meet Stephanie: she has lost an incredible amount of weight and started developing healthy habits for life! She is such an inspiration – thank you so much for sharing your story!

How or when did you start to notice your weight and unhealthy lifestyle?

I actually gained the bulk of my excess weight pregnant with my second child. It totaled 87 pounds. That seems astounding but my 6’ frame carried it pretty well.

The big problem came when I kept eating the same way after he was born. I’ve always been a stress eater too. He was born with a cleft palate which meant that the normal things that are done with a baby could not be done quite as successfully with him. Breast feeding was not an option, special bottles had to be bought, he could barely drink or eat anything without it coming out of his nose. Also, at 9 months old he had to go in for surgery to repair the cleft. That was stressful. I put on an extra 25 pounds on my own in the 4 years following. I found there were only 2 stores in my city where I could clothes shop and I was still wearing my maternity clothes and they were snug.

What was your turning point to change your life?

I had been out applying for jobs, getting interviews and never hearing anything back. There is only so many times that can happen before you start asking yourself what you are doing wrong. After doing some fake interviews with some people I know and them telling me I did great, I went to my mom for some advice. I know it was hard for her to say but she simply stated “I don’t want to upset you, but do you maybe think its because they may assume that you are pregnant?”

That did me in. I sobbed. I got off the phone and looked in the mirror, like really looked. I realized that I was doing a dis-service to myself, to my kids and to my husband. Not 6 years before he had met a confident, attractive, active woman who had tuned into a lazy, un-kept, fat person. I had enough

Give a sample of the foods you consume:

On an average day this is what I eat (keeping in mind that it does change):

Breakfast:

2 eggs, 1 slice of diet bread, water, fruit

Or

fruit smoothie made with protein shot instead of yogurt

Lunch:

Generally a salad of some sort. I prefer something other than regular lettuce. Spinach salad with mushrooms, peppers, dried cranberries and a grilled chicken breast is my favourite.

Dinner: This one changes often as I have 3 other mouths to feed

A protein of some kind. Could be chicken, steak, pork

Veggies: whatever is in my fridge (its always stocked). My most common is a grilled veggie medley. Chop it all up, throw it in a Pyrex backing dish with a little EVOO and spices and bake.

Often a starch of some sort is added such as wild rice, whole wheat pasta, baked potatoes.

I eat a lot of fruit throughout the day as well. Anytime I am feeling hungry, that’s when I eat fruit.

The biggest tip I can give anyone trying to lose weight is to drink water. We are fortunate to have some of the best water in the world where I am from, so drinking it unfiltered from the tap is no problem for me. But, if you don’t, get a filter. Caffeine free tea’s are also a great thing. Make a whole jug or a fruit tea and throw it in the fridge for a hot day. Make popsicles out of it, drink it hot. It’s a tummy way to get that water into your system.

Weight loss is difficult. What has been your greatest tool to help you achieve your goals?

My greatest motivation has been success. I lost 10 and couldn’t wait for the next 10, then the next 20. Hitting that 50 pound mark was astounding! Having to buy 4 new wardrobes in 1 year was amazing… expensive, but amazing. I also loved the reactions that people were giving me. Some people would freak out if they hadn’t seen me in 3 months. In the first 3 months I started, I lost 45 pounds. That made a pretty big difference.

I think the biggest thing that people should know is that they need to do it cause they want to, not because they want to conform to how “society” thinks they should look. I didn’t feel good. I felt older than my years, sluggish and not only like I was just observing others living life, but that I was taking life away from my kids.

I remember one night in particular. I had lost about 50 pounds by this point. My husband walked into the kitchen where I was cleaning up after dinner, gave me a big hug and looked me in the eye and said “I hope you are not doing this for me cause you know I love you for you and don’t care what you look like right?” I was amazed but responded with “nope, no worries, I am being totally selfish on this one.” He just laughed and said “good”.

I have heard people say so many times, you cannot make someone else happy if you are not happy, you cannot love someone else if you don’t love yourself. I now know that is true. As a result, my kids aren’t eating crappy pre-packaged convenience food anymore, we are eating more organic or locally grown produce and less of the chemical filled, color enhanced, hormone induced foods that I think were causing them to be lethargic and moody. All 4 of us seem to have benefited from this change I decided to make.

before and after tashasig