Hi friends!!! Today I have something special for you- my gorgeous friend Kara has prepared a guest post to share her story. I think you will all find her story very motivating and encouraging! Without further adieu...
Happy Monday, everybody!
You don’t know me, but I’m Kara, a friend of Melissa’s. I have a tiny little blog called Two Ton Teacher. I met Melissa through Instagram, and we’ve discovered that we have a lot in common. We decided to trade guest posts…so here I am!
You probably already guessed by the name of my blog that I’m a teacher. If you didn’t guess that, well…you might want to contact one of YOUR elementary teachers and ask him/her why you weren’t taught how to make inferences. Just kidding! J Anyways, I am a 30-year-old teacher living in the suburbs of Pittsburgh with my husband and our babies: two cats and a little dog that my husband walks on a pink zebra leash but will never admit.
Like Melissa, I am on a weight loss journey. I became a “runner” (I seriously can’t refer to myself as a runner without using quotations) last year after starting from rock bottom. I mean ROCK bottom. I hear people say, “I am a beginner, I haven’t run since high school volleyball practice!” and I’m all, “I’M a beginner, I haven’t run since last week’s episode of The Biggest Loser when I ran into the kitchen for more donuts during a commercial break!”
Let’s start at the beginning though. I wasn’t always fat. I wasn’t always skinny either. As a little girl, I had meat on my bones, but I’d say I was pretty normal sized. I’m not going to lie, I was never too active as a kid. I played outside with the other kids (at my grandma’s, because there weren’t many kids in my own neighborhood), but I didn’t really run around much. I danced when I was little (tap, ballet, and jazz), but I quit at a young age. I’ve always been a quitter, and my parents never really pushed me not to be. I make rash decisions, and if I don’t like something, I’m done. Not something I’m proud of, but it’s the truth.
It must have been the summer after second grade that I started putting on weight. I was still pretty normal sized in second grade, and then I chubbed out in third. I was HEAVY the rest of elementary school. Not just chubby. FAT. I look back at pictures and cringe with embarrassment. I almost died the first time my husband saw a picture of me in my fat stage.
Oddly enough, I was never teased about my weight as a child. You’d think this would give me confidence, but I still knew. I have always been self-conscious about my weight, maybe because my sister is beautiful. I don’t think she weighed more than 100 pounds in high school, and even as an adult approaching 40 with two children, she is a size 4. Next to her, I think I’ll always feel like a whale no matter how much I weigh. But I digress.
After about fifth grade, I started naturally thinning out a bit. This wasn’t due to anything I was doing. Don’t get me wrong: I’ve been dieting for most of my life. But when I say “dieting,” I mean starting a diet every Monday morning and giving up every Monday afternoon. Diets never lasted more than a day with me. When I got to middle school and high school, I was back to a pretty normal size, but I didn’t really see it. My friends were all a bit smaller than me, and I think I still saw myself as the fat girl. Maybe I wouldn’t have seen myself as fat at that point if I hadn’t BEEN fat before, if that makes any sense.
Fast forward through college, turning 21, meeting the guy who would become my husband, etc. I still managed to stay a pretty normal size through all that.
I married my husband in October of 2010, and then…whoa. My weight SKYROCKETED. I weighed 155 pounds on my wedding day, and my weight slowly but steadily climbed from there.
In December of 2012, I weighed my heaviest at 186 pounds, and that’s where my weight loss journey begins.
As I said above, I was on a diet most of my life…for a day at a time. It never stuck. And I don’t know what made it stick this time. I can’t pinpoint it. But on January 2, 2013, I began a new journey. I began counting every calorie that went into my mouth, recording it in My Fitness Pal, and exercising. I was too timid to join a gym…I was very honest with myself and knew that I would never go. I began working out in my classroom after my students left almost every day. I did Jillian Michaels videos. Then I went to an indoor track and walked for an hour almost every evening. I just took it one day at a time, and pretty soon the weight began to fall off. After walking for a few months, I incorporated running. The first time I ran, I couldn’t make it more than about 20 seconds. I’m ashamed to tell you that I couldn’t even keep up with the Couch to 5K program, so I had to create my own running program. You can read about that on my blog if you wish.
Day by day, I stuck with my new fitness endeavor. By June 1, the day of my first (and only, so far!) 5K, I had lost almost 40 pounds. I only had about 20 pounds to go…and then summer happened and I got really off track. And then the stress of a new school year hit. And then the holidays hit.
Excuses, excuses, excuses. I have gained about ten pounds back. Here I am today, February of 2014, STILL struggling to get back on track. But you know what? I know I can do it. And you can do it too, if you’re trying to lose weight. I’m not kidding when I say I’m the LAZIEST person I know…I hate physical activity. I’d lounge like a slug reading trashy celebrity gossip magazines all day long if I could. I’d only get up to run (and by run, I mean drive) to McDonald’s.
I know this is the most overused cliché, but if I can do it, you can do it. Anyone can. You’ve got what it takes…it’s just going to take everything you’ve got.