I’m actually terrified of posting this blog post.
It’s petrifying to even think about taking off the rose-colored glasses that everyone seems to wear nowadays. I am no exception. I don’t want people to see my flaws or vulnerabilities. I constantly am laughing and optimistic, but the truth is I have a lot deep down that has affected me to the core. One being my weight after having kids.
Six years ago I was in the best shape of my life and I was proud of my body. Then I got pregnant and realized everything was going to change. I remember going through the pregnancy frustrated with the extra weight, but constantly was reminding myself that I was carrying a baby and it didn’t matter. But the truth is, it did matter. No matter how many times I told myself that it was okay that I was gaining weight, I didn’t believe that to be true. And then the stretch marks came in the last month. So not only was I gaining weight, I was getting marks that I knew would always be there for the rest of my life. I felt absolutely defeated. A line that so many people say is, “you should be proud of your stretch marks because it means your body did an amazing act and carried a child.” I feel bad admitting it, but I didn’t feel proud. I felt angry that my body was being destroyed. The body that I worked so hard to look nice and fit was now riddled with huge, purple craters and extra pounds of fat.
I would do everything in my power not to look in the mirror. Because it would make me want to cry. I remember stepping on the scale after having Zain (my second child) and seeing “262”. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to vomit or cry or both. I was in such a mentally exhausted place and I had no hope in losing the weight or looking better. I was going through the motions of being a mom and always putting myself last. I wasn’t making an effort to eat healthy or exercise. I was defeated. Period.
My family would tell me, “you look great” or “it looks like you’ve lost weight!” And instead of feeling a sort of hope, I would be internally angry. People don’t realize that they can say any amount of compliments and it still wouldn’t make a difference. Because if you don’t believe in your heart that the compliments are the truth then you won’t feel better. People would say, “oh, you look so much better than me” or “where you started looks so much better than where I started.” But it’s not about comparing yourself to others. It’s about comparing yourself to yourself. I was comparing myself to myself before I had kids. Just because I may have looked better than someone else didn’t mean I was happy, because I didn’t feel like I looked like the best version of myself.
I would constantly lie to myself about eating healthy or exercising hard. I wasn’t ready to commit to bettering myself. Below is a woman that I can barely even recognize now. And the crazy part is that it wasn’t long ago at all. This woman is unhappy, exhausted, defeated and hopeless.
It was February of 2020 that I knew I was ready to make a change. I wanted to be proud of my body and myself again. I knew I couldn’t live like I was living.
So I tied my running shoes tight and made my way to the gym. I reminded myself what it felt like to work to my max. I forgot how to have the courage to push myself. I forgot how to take care of myself in general.
Before I knew it the stair stepper went from 5 minutes on level 3 to 8 minutes on level 4 to 20 minutes on level 10. Walking one mile on the treadmill once every other week turned into running 3.1 miles daily. I went from leg pressing 100 pounds to leg pressing 220. My mind turned from “I can’t look and feel better” to “I am going to look and feel better” to “I look damn good and feel so much better.”
The key is to never give up. As cliché as that sounds, it is SO true. Every day you feel like you’re getting nowhere, take a look back at your “before” photo and realize how far you have actually come. Remember to be patient with yourself and the weight loss process. It IS hard. I’m definitely not going to sugar coat it. It’s one of the hardest things you may have to do and it’s a constant battle, but the outcome of feeling better is the best thing ever.
The last 3 months of my weight loss journey I was focusing on exercise and the correct percentages of macronutrients in my diet. I started utilizing Herbalife products hardcore during this time. I began seeing a bigger change in myself by doing that. I had the most protein intake of my life which was helping me build muscle and it began to show. I am officially down 83 pounds from when I weighed myself after having Zain. In the last 3 months alone I am down 10% body fat and have gained 13 pounds of muscle. My metabolic age went from 50 years old to 32 years old.
I am still 15 pounds away from my goal weight, but I know I will get there. It has been such a journey of ups and downs, but your mind has the ability to push you through when you least expect it. Turn frustration into fuel and don’t stop until you get to where you want to be. You CAN do it. You are worth every ounce of time and effort you put in to bettering yourself both physically and mentally. There’s no better time to start than now.
The woman below is SO proud. She is smiling because she feels like she has achieved the impossible. She feels strong and unstoppable. Her mind is in a much better place than those first photos. This post has been absolutely terrifying to write knowing that it will be posted, but if I can show one person that there is hope in their own weight loss journey than it’s SO worth it. It’s time to throw those rose-colored glasses in the trash and realize there is beauty in the hard times and it will only propel you into taking control of your life. Let’s go!