I have always struggled with my weight. I remember going on my first diet at the age of 8. The doctor said I was too big for my age. While I was never obese I was overweight. My eating habits consisted of the usual suspects candy, soda, chips, and fast food. Exercise was interment until later in middle school when I joined the basketball team. With increased physical activity some of the weight fell off but my eating habits didn’t change.
My weight was consistent until I entered college and I gained the freshman 15 or for me it was more like freshman 20. I was totally unhappy about how I looked and felt and I knew I needed a change. My second year of college I enrolled in a course that paired nutrition with exercise and I lost my freshman 20. I felt great and looked good but in reality I still hadn’t dealt with the real reason I was overweight.
Throughout my 20s and 30s my weight would bounce up and down and would reach an all time high after I gave birth to my twins.
In 2015 I hit rock bottom. I needed and wanted a change. I wasn’t happy with how I felt or looked. I was tired of being tired and having aches and pains a 34 year old should not have. I knew I couldn’t be all that God was calling me to be if I didn’t get my body in-shape, inside and out.
I applied for and was accepted to a program my church sponsored which focused on honoring God with your body and making a lifestyle change, not just going on a diet. Getting started was hard but I knew I needed to investment in myself so that I could in invest in others. I knew that my poor eating habits and being overweight were keeping me from what God was calling me to do. I knew that I couldn’t live out my purpose if I wasn’t honoring Him with my body.
Was it a sacrifice? Yes. If you want to achieve any goal you have to sacrifice something! I would rather sacrifice a little time, money, and comfort to LIVE.
I knew I needed help. I invested in a personal trainer who helped me with nutrition and exercise because I knew I didn’t have the knowledge and discipline to do it on my own. It was one of the best decisions I ever made!
Over the last year I had to admit to myself that I neglected my body under the guise of taking care of my family. I lost myself as a stay at home mom and had to remember that I still had dreams outside of being a mom. I realized and accepted that I was an emotional eater. Looking back it was during times of loss, heartbreak, change, and transition that I gained the most weight. If I was upset, sad, angry, or stressed I ate. Instead of working through my feelings and depending on God, I turned to food for comfort. The extra weight I carried was just a physical manifestation of what I was going through emotionally on the inside. I learned that it’s okay to have ME time whether it be sleeping in, working out, or spending a couple hours working on my goals and dreams. I’m a better mother when I have time to work on me and be refreshed.
My journey has not been perfect but the key to my success was admitting that I needed help, finding the help I needed, and trusting the process.
Do I always feel like working out? No. Do I always stick to my meal plan? No. But I know that each day is another chance to get it right. Just because I missed a workout or ate some chips on Monday doesn’t mean I give up on working out and eating right for the rest of the week.
I made a LIFE change not a one week, one month, or one year change. The changes I implemented are for LIFE. Everyday I choose to stay committed to myself and the vision God has given me for my life. It’s been a little over a year since I implemented my lifestyle change and I’m so glad I made a change. I’ve lost fat, gained more muscle, have more energy, and have less aches and pains. My workouts are stress relief for me and I now eat more than ever before but just the right foods. I still like oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, mac and cheese, and reese’s peanut butter cups but I now know how to put them in their proper place!
My journey has just started. I’ve set new goals and I’m determined to help other women realize they NEED and CAN carve out time to prepare their minds and bodies so they can fully live out the purpose God has for them.