My husband and I went to Japan for my sister-in-law’s wedding in 2017, and I was close to 300 pounds. I remember having to sit out on a few really fun sightseeing activities that involved waking uphill because they were too much for me. That’s when I knew that my weight was holding me back from doing simple things like enjoying life and time with my family.
More recently, my husband and I talked about wanting kids. And when I reflected back on that trip I realized that my body was in no condition to carry a child, and I worried that I could run into health issues. That’s when I decided to make a change.
I started out by cutting all junk foods from my diet.
I was pretty much hooked on fast food before starting my weight-loss journey. My husband always wanted to cook healthy meals at home, but I only wanted and craved fast food. So when I decided to make a change, I gave up the greasy burgers and fries and started eating my husband's home cooking. A lot of his cooking included traditional Japanese foods: nabe hot soup, veggies, and lean meat dishes, for example.
Another thing that really helped me was having fresh fruits for dessert. We cut up strawberries, apples, or peaches and stuck them in the freezer for a few hours to create a healthy ice cream substitute.
I could immediately tell a difference in my body just by feeding it nutritious foods. These changes actually made me crave healthier choices. I won't lie, I still get hankerings for burgers and fries, but now I make them at home instead of going out so I know exactly what's inside my meal.
Here’s what I eat in a day now:
- Breakfast: Homemade breakfast sandwich with English fiber muffin, one egg, Canadian bacon, and some low-fat mozzarella cheese. I also have a Greek nonfat yogurt with a side of fruit.
- Snack: Hummus and carrot sticks.
- Lunch: Greek salad with a side of turkey sausage and mustard.
- Snack: Rice cake with peanut butter and sliced bananas.
- Dinner: Japanese nabe filled with tofu, lean meat, baby bok choy, carrots, green onion, and cabbage.
- Dessert: Frozen fruit.
I began walking for 20 minutes every single day.
Rain or shine, I made sure to go on a walk. Making that daily commitment to myself was so important. Twenty minutes might not seem like a lot but it helped me form a healthy habit and develop consistency at the beginning of my weight-loss journey.
Once I realized that I could maintain a workout schedule on consistent basis, I moved from walking to the SWEAT app by Kayla Itsines. Doing a mixture of intense cardio, strength training, and HIIT circuits really helped me drop the weight.
Since I started my journey I’ve lost 90 pounds, and now I’m pregnant with a baby boy.
My workouts aren’t as intense as they were when I was trying to lose weight, but I’ve built a good foundation to stay active, and I'm even using SWEAT during my pregnancy. And some days when I'm feeling a little tired I just take it back to the basics—making sure to go on a 25- to 30-minute walk when possible each day.
Losing weight wasn’t easy, but I’m happy I did it.
To anyone else trying to lose weight, remember that it’s a process and it’s important to be proud of yourself throughout the journey. I had to learn not to say things like, “Well I only lost __ pounds.” Take pride in what you did lose and do your best to stay as positive as possible. Even if you slip up from time to time, just know that you can always restart as many times as you need. I know I did, and look where I am now.