I love that through reading other people’s blogs I meet tons of people who have already won the battle of weight loss and have started their own blogs because of it.
I met Tracey through my sister’s blog and I am glad to know her! She’s done great with Weight Watchers and has not only lost 70 pounds, but she is keeping it off.
Please enjoy reading her answers to my questions!
1). What was your “Aha” moment when you decided you needed to do something about your weight?
~ I think plain and simple; I just got tired of being obese. Thanksgiving 2007 we took pictures and I tried really hard to not be included. I cried when I uploaded the photos. A week later I joined Weight Watchers.
2). Had you tried to lose weight in the past – were you successful when you tried?
~Being overweight my entire life I tried several “diets” but all were too restrictive. After 1-2 weeks I gave up. I LOVE food, love to cook, love to eat, and I do not want to feel deprived. I tried the basics of calorie counting but I was eating all the wrong foods. I never changed my eating habits really, and by lunchtime I was out of calories for the day- and left feeling like a failure. I did see a loss while counting calories but as soon as I stopped the pounds came back slowly.
3). How do you find time for yourself to concentrate on losing weight?
~Time is something I have plenty of right now. I had to stop working a couple of years ago due to arthritis in my spine and I decided to make myself my job. My boss can be a real jerk sometimes! lol
4). What kept you going? Were there times where you wanted to give up?
~I think everyone struggles and feels like giving up at some point. It’s normal. I have had a battle with myself on many occasions when I was upset about something or stressed out. What helped me keep going was looking at where I was. Taking old pictures out to compare- placing newer ones next to them. It was all about the visual for me, still is.
5). How has maintenance been, is maintaining harder than losing weight?
~ I am not quite at my goal yet! I have about 10-15 pounds more that I would like to lose. (also to be at goal with Weight Watchers they require you to be within a weight range and I am not quite there yet.)
6). Did you exercise while losing weight, if so, what do you like to do for exercise.
~Because of my back I was unable to do much exercise besides physical therapy. For the past 4 months I have been going to a water therapy pool that I have found a great deal of enjoyment from. I can do way more things in that water than I can do on land! 🙂 I see my body changing from the exercise and I feel stronger for doing what I am doing. I also love it- so I say if you are exercising, make sure it is something that you love!
7). What are some tips that helped you a long the way?
~For me it was important to eat yummy foods. Not to feel like I was on a DIET. I found that if I was craving something BAD, it was healthier to make it at home. I love cooking so when get a craving for Taco Bell- I FAKE IT at home for WAY less calories! Oh, and it tastes better! 🙂
~I love cookbooks- and have a nice little collection that I enjoy opening up to find new ideas for each week that I plan for. Having new recipes available is very helpful to anyone just getting started on a weight loss journey. If you don’t want to spend money buying books- head down to your local library and check out what they have. I photocopy pages that I like all the time from books that I’ve checked out. Great way to save some money too! 🙂
8). Did you have people in your life that weren’t positive towards the changes you were making?
~Thankfully no. I am fortunate that I have a family that supports me and cheers for me along my journey.
9). What was a typical eating day like when you were heavy?
~Not pretty! lol
Breakfast was usually a bagel w/ cream cheese.
Snack- I loved bringing a BIG bag of pretzels to work. I would offer them to my co-workers but I think I pretty much ate the entire bag myself. lol I would “dip” them into cottage cheese.
Lunch- If I was working I made salads, or frozen TV dinners, or sandwiches. If I was at home or out- that is where I would binge. I loved getting Chinese take out to bring home and eat in private. It really looked like I picked up food for two people. Same thing with any fast food restaurant. Always made it seem like I was ordering for two. Even went as far as getting two drinks sometimes so I would feel less embarrassed about just how much food I was leaving with.
Dinner- Huge portions! I ate alone a lot so sometimes a fast frozen pizza- but I would eat the entire thing. If I was out and saw a place to get something to-go I would and again it was way more food than I needed. I use to binge eat like that most nights, but never when my boyfriend was home or with family around.
10). What is a typical eating day like now that you are eating healthier?
Well NO fast food in my life anymore! That had to come to an end. I feel that it triggers me to eat poorly. I also know that when I eat those type of foods I feel sluggish, and unsatisfied. So I guess why bother?? lol
~Now my meals are measured out either by weight or points. I know exactly what I am eating and how much of it at each meal. I get a daily points target of 22 so I need to plan out my day to fit in foods that not only fill me up, but that I enjoy too.
Breakfast- I like making a breakfast sandwich most days. I also enjoy baked oatmeal. Adding in a side of fresh fruit to my breakfast daily too. (4-6 points)
Lunch-I like to keep my lunches within the 5-6 point range. Some weeks I make something for myself on Monday that will last all week for lunches- like a batch of chili. Or some weeks I like a variety of foods. I guess it depends on how I am feeling, or what I am craving.
Snack- I love fresh fruit/veggies I also enjoy hummus, greek yogurt, cottage cheese, string cheese. Air popped popcorn is a favorite too! I think snack time about 4pm hits me most days. I try for a 2 point snack to help tide me over for dinner.
Dinner- I cook each night. Some nights it is easier meals than the next, but I enjoy having something home cooked. Lots of fresh vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. Again I feel it is important to LOVE what you eat- and I DO!
Dessert- Most nights it is fresh fruit. I do enjoy Vitatops too!
Thank you so much for being a part of this series! You are a great inspiration!! Tracey has a great blog, so visit it often to see what she’s up to!
I have an update on a Weight Loss Superstar interview I did on Keith Ahrens!!
When I think about the 200 pounds that Keith has lost, I kept thinking about that man Eric from The Biggest Loser who lost over 200 pounds to win the whole thing, only to go back home and gain it almost ALL BACK!
Not Keith though, through his determination and how great he feels living in a way smaller body, it’s no wonder why he has kept the weight off. Recently he sent me updated pictures, which will show you just how far he has come!
Keith wrote a book about his experience called “Outrunning my Shadow” which is available on his site www.keithahrens.com, so check it out when you get a chance!
Are you someone who has lost weight? If so, join my growing number of success stories and e-mail me at email@example.com