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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

My Weight Loss Journey (So Far!) + Tips

 Some of you may or may not know this but I've been trying to lose weight for the past couple of months and I'm excited to share my thoughts on the whole weight loss process! I never thought that I would actually last this long and continue to be so motivated towards my goal but I'm proud to say that I am! Honestly, after losing the first 10 pounds I can't imagine my life not going to the gym (weird right!?). It's become my therapy session when I'm going three to four times a week and I've enjoyed not putting pressure on myself and being able to eat and not diet and have everything in moderation. It takes dedication and I always have to rearrange my schedule in order to fit a work out in but it's worth it each and every time. I never walked out of a gym regretting a work out and I doubt you would too! Personally, the hardest part was starting out. I was just so used to eating junk food and feeling bad about myself whenever I looked in the mirror and I decided it was time to change once and for all. My philosophy is that if I could survive a couple years of self-hatred then I could survive a couple intense workouts. 

Left is before and the right is after losing 10 pounds!

I was always chubby growing up (I was born 9 pounds, that just says it all) and experienced more than a few moments where I was ridiculed for it and felt feelings of worthlessness. All I could remember from my childhood is feeling like an ugly duckling up until the point where I started my obsession with makeup and fashion and felt a bit more confident in myself over time. I wasn't overweight, my BMI was normal but I knew that if I kept eating the way I was I would have problems with my health soon. Before working out I remember my pants always being too tight, my belly was always sticking out, I had a double chin and ran out of breath when I walked up the stairs...NOT GOOD. I just always felt unhealthy and was sick of feeling bad about myself, believe me life isn't worth it if you spend the whole time hating yourself and criticizing your body. I finally decided to start going to the gym with my friend and we've been motivating each other through our weight loss journeys ever since. 

When first starting out, I didn't even own a pair of sneakers! I bought a stylish pair of Nikes and knew that because of the expensive price I would be more likely to go to the gym because I usually don't wear sneakers in my day-to-day life. I also decided to buy some new workout clothes and never knew how much I liked to dress up for the gym and look stylish while I'm breaking a sweat. Working out doesn't have to be completely boring!

I still remember the first time I went and how sore I was when I came back home after an hour and a half (which is my usual workout time). I typically work out around 6-7pm and go straight to sleep after I've taken a shower. There's no better feeling than coming home and taking a hot shower to soothe those sore muscles, trust me on this one! Another benefit is having a good night's sleep after a good workout. On top of working out on a regular basis, I took a basic consumer nutrition class in college in order to eat the proper, healthy way and to develop new habits which wasn't easy! It took me a while to break my old habits and to even start drinking more water every day which I used to never do! Other then that, some days I do mess up and eat unhealthy but I know that's it not the end of the world, I just keep eating healthy the next day or even better, the next meal. 

Aside from healthy eating and the gym, I'm addicted to following fitness groups on Instagram and reading about real-life success stories from people around my age. I also love reading the motivational quotes and tips they post every day and I try to avoid following groups that post too many pictures of thin people. After a while, I feel that people get so used to looking at those pictures and feeling bad about themselves and wanting to give up. If it motivates you to work harder then I guess it's alright but it should be in moderation. I don't want to look thin, I want to be healthy and if you look at pictures of thin people and healthy people, there's a BIG difference. It's all about the mentality. If you think of everything in a negative way such as "dieting" instead of healthy eating then you're going to associate losing weight with being annoying and hard work. Yeah, it is hard work but that doesn't mean you have to be miserable! It's just a process to living a healthier lifestyle. As the lovely Jennifer Lawrence has said "I don't diet. I exercise". Like I said, it's a big difference and once you stop putting pressure on yourself to look thin then losing weight will become easier for you. 

Also, another important thing I did was to stop looking at the scale and instead focusing on how my clothes were fitting. I only weigh myself once every 2 weeks and know some people who obsess over their weight and weigh themselves every day! I see no point to that when your weight changes every day from 1 to 2 pounds due to water weight. Focus on the way your jeans fit, if you lost another belt size, or in my case, if your face looks slimmer.

There's just something so beautiful about working hard and being determined to reach your goal and actually liking your body. I'm not saying you won't mess up cause you will, maybe even a few times. But it's the fact that you kept going after each time that you messed is what really counts. Remember: one bad meal won't make you gain weight but one workout won't make you lose weight either. Being healthy isn't a complicated process, all you do is drink more water, eat "clean" (more healthy foods and less junk!), a work out consisting of a mix of cardio and weights, and having rest days. You also don't need to deprive yourself of your favorite foods, if you're craving something then have it but keep it in moderation and don't over indulge.

Overall, losing weight isn't just about looking good: it's about learning to love yourself and accepting the things you can change and the things you can't. It's strange to say that I actually LIKE the way I look and am learning to slowly love myself after years of hating myself. I also love telling people that I work out! haha. If I can make time in between work and school then so can you! And to all the people already on their own weight loss journeys, don't give up you're worth so much more then that! Progress is progress, no matter how small.

My progress so far is that I've lost 10 pounds, lost 2 belt sizes, my thighs look slimmer, I'm no longer self conscious about wearing shorts and swimsuits, and my arms look more toned so I've been wearing more tank tops! I'm someone who's always self conscious and paranoid about what others think of me but working out is making me challenge all those negative thoughts :) 

Until next time lovelies, 


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