What makes us change a lifetime of habits? Shock!

Hi! My name is Katie, and I’m a 42-year-old small business manager from Monroe, Washington. Like everyone else, I’ve been searching for the magic potion on weight loss for 19 years. I’ve tried every weight loss diet plan in the books — prescription pills and shakes — but none of them worked for me. In desperation I even tried all of those expensive specialty exercise gimmicks seen on infomercials, with no success. And then, “success.” I lost 124 pounds in 17 months, going from an over-sized petite of 5’0″ at 234 pounds to my current weight of 110 pounds.

My story goes like this. On my wedding day I weighed 98 pounds and maintained that for the first year of my marriage. Then I gave birth to my daughter in 1989 and started gaining weight continuously. My basic activity levels just seemed to drop to chasing diapers instead of my morning five-mile run.

As a result I started feeling sluggish and less motivated for high-activity pursuits. In fact, going out to eat at a fine “fattening” restaurant seemed the best form of recreation. Food became the pivot point of our family life with all the rest of my time tied up in the many hours of trying to take care of Samantha, my husband and a full-time job.
And if any of you know Filipinos, we love to cook and must have our social eatery gatherings! Ten or 15 of my friends and I would get together and we’d all cook enough to feed an army; especially the rice and lechon (roast pig). I often laughed with my husband that it all felt like a re-run of the movie “My Big Fat Greek Wedding.”

So how did it happen? I don’t know. Every few months I’d look in the mirror and hate the reflection. I’d then rush around to find an innovative way to lose the weight, only to fail miserably after two or three weeks of intense effort and then start the cycle over. After nearly 18 years of this I’d ballooned from 98 pounds to 234. I’d become very disappointed in myself with low personal esteem and saw only a future based on high-blood prescriptions and diabetes like my mom.

What makes us change a lifetime of habits? Shock!
The fact that we can all look into a mirror each day and disavow the view says something for adaptivity, but when that impression is recorded for all prosperity, boy are we in trouble. I couldn’t hide from the view of myself in a video taping of my parent’s 50th anniversary. That made me face the absolute reality of how bad things had become. And perhaps my tears of frustration and personal shame finally gave me “absolute motivation”.

But what to do? I’d tried everything, even “fen-phen”. So I sat down and asked myself, “What was common to all of the plans?” The obvious answer — diet and exercise. So I decided to bite the bullet and go for it. And this time all I had to do was think of that video to re-energize my motivation. I enrolled myself into the local gym and joined weight watchers simultaneously.

For the past 17 months (and even now) I’ve gotten up at 3:25 a.m. every morning for a brisk 90 minute workout at the gym, before the daily madhouse starts. It may sound crazy, but finding time to exercise when it doesn’t interfere with our busy day is the excuse we all use. I sure don’t have many excuses at that hour. Of course it wasn’t always easy. In the beginning I’d swear the gym’s floor was on a steep incline.

I also learned what to eat and not to eat, with critical emphasis based on portion size. Coupled with weekly support from my friends within the local Monroe Weight Watchers group, I was finally able to learn how to monitor and control my intake. And I lost weight.

These days I continue my exercise and watch the amount and type of food I eat. I stay away from fried foods, high fat, high sugar, etc., and try to maintain a balanced diet of white meats, fish and vegetables, along with many different types of fruits.

And I’d finally come to realize that the magic potion is really part of me and not from external sources. All I really needed was the personal motivation to combine careful portion control with consistent exercise. And 17 months later, I’m 124 pounds lighter, happier, more confident and off my blood pressure medications completely. I feel good.

Source: allday


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