Before and after and numbers, oh my08/28/2012 at 9:57 am | Posted in weight loss | 33 Comments
I spent a good hour on the computer looking for the most dreadful shots of myself from the last year. I remember them well. The ones that made me cringe after I saw them up close, outside the tiny preview window on the back of my camera. Extra chins, muffin top, you name it.
But I couldn’t find them.
I had deleted all of them. Well, almost all of them. I kept a few in which I’d squatted strategically behind Lily. Or the ones where I held Sophie in my lap.
You see, I never mustered the courage to take a true “before” photo. The little yellow sticky note sat on my dresser for weeks, an annoying reminder that I had just started the weight loss journey of my life and I needed a picture to prove it. But I just couldn’t do it. I already felt bad enough about myself, and seeing my entire body through the lens of my camera likely would have sent me straight into a carton of Ben & Jerry’s.
But now I wish I had done it. So I could see exactly what it looks like to lose nearly 40 pounds. And so I could show you. Ah well.
These will have to do …
Here I am at the state fair last year, generally not feeling good about myself and hiding behind Lily:
I weighed 196 pounds in this photo. The exact same number on the scale at my 6-week postpartum check nearly five months prior. I had figured breastfeeding would help me shed the baby weight, but that doesn’t quite hold up when you’re stuffing your face with cookies and chicken biscuits.
By Christmas, I didn’t even feel like myself. I wondered who this woman was who couldn’t fit into her clothes, who felt sluggish and became winded after one flight of stairs. So when Marc met with a nutritionist for his own health issues and came home with an eating plan, I jumped on board.
I lost about a pound and a half a week, give or take, over a span of seven months. Today I weigh 158 pounds. I’ve weighed as little as 153, but that was during a very stressful time when I wasn’t eating much, and that’s no good. My goal is 155. But I’m happy to stay inside the 155-160 range. At 5′ 10″ tall, this is a good weight for me, at a healthy BMI.
I’m used to weighing about 180 pounds, so this business of weighing in the 150s is very new to me. I’m comfortable at this weight. I still enjoy food. I exercise more. But I don’t deprive myself. My body seems happy.
So … here goes … the “after” picture, nearly 40 pounds lighter:
The thought of this photo also scared the crap out of me for entirely different reasons than the “before” picture. What if I couldn’t tell a difference? What if I looked the same? We had been at the beach all week, and I was still hiding from the camera. So I grabbed Laura at the end of our vacation, on the last day I’d wear my swimsuit and she snapped off this quick shot. It took me a few days to look at it.
But I can see.
I am leaner. Healthier. But still curvy and big and strong (albeit with much smaller boobs, thanks universe). And, above all, happy.
Marc and I get asked all the time, “How’d you do it?” so I’m going to dedicate some space here on the blog for the next few days talking about our journey and all the tools we used to lose a combined 90 pounds. Food, exercise, books — the works.
Because there really is no easy solution. No miracle diet. This process took a lot of time and patience.
And coming out on the other side feels so incredibly amazing that I can barely describe it.
If this is what you want, YOU CAN DO IT.
I’m living proof.