My Weight Loss Journey

I started this blog in the first few days of 2010, and I have regularly written about my workouts, diet, and obsession with workout clothing.  I've mentioned here and there, but most of you probably don't know that I have not always been a fitness enthusiast.  I made a total lifestyle change about 5 years ago.  Growing up, I was really not an active kid at all.  I didn't really do any sports and I loved to eat.  I was a little chubby at times, but my genetics never let me get that bad.  I lost my baby fat when I became a teenager.  Those were the days when I could eat whatever I wanted, not workout at all, and still not gain a pound!  But a couple years into college, my metabolism slowed down and all the partying and late night snacking didn't help either (I went to UC Santa Barbara, the famous party school, and it lived up to its reputation).  My fitness journey really began in 2009.  I was a few years out of college, and my corporate desk job, stress, and compelete lack of exercise had turned me into a slob!  Whenever I had the time to buy new clothes, I never liked how they looked on me anymore.  I'm 5'5 and at my heaviest I was approaching 160 lbs.

I knew I had to do something about it, so I joined Equinox, an upscale gym chain, and started taking yoga and pilates type of classes coupled with some elliptical work.  After doing that for about a year, I was frustrated that I didn't really see a big change.  It was such a confusing time for me, I could not understand why.  One of my boyfriends told me (nicely) that I should just accept the fact that this was my body type and I could never be a skinny mini.  But I just could not accept that!

Then I took up running.  I kind of jumped into it full force by signing up for my very first race, the Nike Human Race on 8/8/2008 - a 10k.  I had only 2 months to train.  In the beginning, I was in so much pain from all the running that my body was not used to!  I had major shin splints, and my body ached all over.  I was only running at a speed of 4 mph on the treadmill when I first started!  I never even ran up to 5 miles during my training due to lack of time, and that last mile was such a struggle for me during the race.  But I finished in an hour and 10 minutes, and I was just happy I finished!  After that race, I kept on running, my speed steadily increased, and I took up spin and weight based cardio type of class at Equinox as well.  I definitely started seeing more changes in my body then.

However, I still wasn't where I wanted to be!  I knew something was not adding up.  Back then, Equinox used to send out these emails about their real life members with their weight loss or fitness stories.  In July 2009, I happened to read about a lady here in the LA area that had the exact same story as me!  She worked out religiously for years and did not see much change in her body.  Then she knew it had to be her food intake, so she went to a nutritionist to modify her eating habits and it changed her life.  When I read that, it was like a light bulb went off in my head!  I knew this had to be the solution to my problems and the end to my years of frustration!  So I took out my cyber stalker hat and tracked down her contact info so I could go see the same nutritionist that she did!  She was so nice and supportive, we met up in person and she shared her story with me as well as her nutritionist's info.  I was super motivated just by meeting her!  I was so glad I didn't scare her away with my random stalkerish email!

Back then, I knew absolutely NOTHING about food!  I could not even tell you the difference between protein and carb.  My idea of a healthy diet was having Special K cereal and soy milk for dinner (yes I really did that!).  I contacted this nutritionist right away, and signed up for a 6 week modified eating program with her, along with my usual workouts.  She basically had me eat 5 smaller meals a day, with a lot more lean protein than I was used to.  It was also low sodium, low sugar and low fat.  The overall calorie intake was a lot lower than the monstrous portions I was eating before as well.  Within the first week, pounds started melting off.  I lost 6 pounds that week, mostly from water weight/loss of bloat.  Then I lost a few more each week after that, and by the end of my 6 weeks, I went from about 155 pounds to 135.  Even my upper arm had lost 1.5 inches around - that's a lot for an arm!  I was in shock, but I never felt better!  I kept up with her program for a couple more months after that, but instead of seeing her weekly, I saw her monthly while keeping my food intake largely the same.  By December 2009, I was down to about 125 pounds.  I had lost inches all over my body but the most around my waist at 5 inches.  Shopping was fun again!  This was exactly when my obsession with cute workout clothes began.

So from 2009 to early 2013, I maintained my weight and my lifestyle.  I became vastly interested in nutrition and am always reading up on the latest news in that field.  It's not always easy to always be "good" and I struggle at times with cravings for unhealthy foods.  But I lose some discipline, and I tighten it up again.  The "every bite counts" mentality doesn't work as well for me as the "within 100 calories is fine" mentality.  I know I won't succeed in the long run if I restrict myself too much.  I still need my chocolate fix once in a while, and I think Haagen Dazs' green tea and white chocolate raspberry flavored ice cream are to die for!  But instead of eating the whole pint, I have a few bites.  Everything in moderation.... even moderation!  I also kept up with working out at least 4 times a week.  I started doing more HIIT training on the treadmill, and in 2012 I started reading New Rules of Lifting for Women, and began to lift heavier weights.

I would have never believed it if someone told me 5 years ago that I would be on a bikini competitor training program today.  But that's exactly what I'm doing!  I heard from one of my friends who is competing about her online trainer and have started training with him about 6 weeks ago (May 2013).  I don't have any plans to actually compete at this point, but I just wanted to train like one and see what my body can achieve.  So I am lifting heavy weights 4 times a week, with low to moderate cardio and eating lots of food.  I'm eating more than before to fuel my workouts and muscle growth.  It's amazing, because I'm eating more, especially more carb, and still leaning out.  I've read plenty about how eating less can actually be detrimental to your goals, but somehow it is still a hard concept for me to wrap my head around.  Since I started my current training program, the scale hasn't moved much - only around 3-5 pounds, but I don't really care what that number says.  My clothes are fitting much looser than a few weeks ago and I notice in the mirror that I have toned up a lot already.  My butt being the biggest change, from all those squats and lunges that I hate/love!  It just reminds me, again, of what you can achieve in as short as 6 weeks when you fully commit and just do it!

As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words.  I am a bit embarrassed to post this, but hey... if it helps to motivate someone, then it's worth it!  The picture on the very left is from July 2009, pre-nutritionist.  The middle picture is December 2009 with weight dropped mostly from eating less food and doing a lot of cardio and some weights.  And the picture on the right is from 2 weeks ago, which was about a month into my new training program.  Mostly heavy weights and minimal cardio.  You probably can't tell a whole lot of difference between the middle one and the right one, but I've definitely gained more muscle tone and a whole lot of strength.  I hope I see more muscular definition in the future!



Update!  Now that I've been training hard for 6 months, and in the spirit of the New Year New You, here is my latest progress pic!  Taken on 1/5/2014.  Leaned out a bit and put on some muscle!  These things really don't come easy for me at all!




Another update!  It's been another 2 months!  Here is the latest - taken on 2/22/2014.  Leaned out a little more in the tummy area!  I think cutting out all unnecessary sugar during Feb has helped!  



Update!  4/30/2014




Latest Update!  5/14/2014 - this is after about a month of eating about 300 more calories a day than before!




I have come a long way, but sometimes I am harsh with myself so I have to stop and remind myself where I began and where I've been.  I still have work to do and ways to go, but I am feeling motivated and am super curious to see what kind of results I can achieve with my current workout regimen, and I am willing to work hard for it!

Thank you for letting me share my journey with you.  Sometimes I feel down and your kind words of motivation help me keep going!  I feel incredibly honored when you ask me for diet or training advice, and I try my best to answer and help out.  I know there are probably lots of you out there that have similar experiences as I had.  I will say to you that if you want something bad enough, you will put in the work and make it happen.  It's only a matter of knowing what to do.  The process is full of trial and error, you have to learn and become familiar with your body's tendencies, and you will probably need help from others with more knowledge and experience.  But your hard work will pay off if you stick to it!  Feel free to contact me any time!

46 comments:

  1. You look amazing!! People are so afraid of carbs, but they're necessary for the body to process protein. Weights really do make a difference. I'm trying to nail the food thing down, but I hate the taste of any kind of fish. Chicken gets boring! Anyway, your hard work is definitely paying off. As you stated, everything in moderation, even exercise:-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you are wondering what stores sell Phen375, you should know it can be found both online and at many pharmacies. phen375 reviews

      Delete
  2. Can you post an example of your workouts for 1 week, e.g. It looks like from your Sunday Funday that you do lower body twice a week, and upper body twice a week? How many sets & how many exercises per muscle group, e.g. Two shoulder exercise, two biceps, etc. 4 sets....?

    ReplyDelete
  3. Can u share contact info for ur vurtual trainer? I am looking for one.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I would love to know how to get started with a virtual trainer. My story is a little different than yours but essentially the same in a lot of ways. In November 2010 I was diagnosed with cancer and then went thru 7 surgeries and chemo/radiation. I went from a healthy 5'4" 125 lbs to 82 lbs by the time I was cancer free in Feb 2012. I have worked with a nutritionist and started cardio kickboxing , karate, and Jiu jitsu. I am now at 110 lbs but would love to see more muscle growth, more strength, and a weight gain of at least 10 lbs. My email address is peaceandjoy@charter.net if you would like to share the virtual trainer info. You look great and strong in that last pic! Good for you.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi everyone! First of all, thank you for your kind words! My trainer only trains competitors now. I don't know of any other online trainers unfortunately. But maybe if you contact him, he can give you a referral - here's his facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Next-Level-Personal-Training/136488019696127

    ReplyDelete
  6. Can yo please share your diet changes and tips?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is what I recently wrote to someone, hope it helps!

      I think first step is to figure out how much total calories you need in a day, and break it down into macro nutrients - protein, carb and fat. I think the Zone diet breakdown actually works for most people. My current breakdown is about 40% protein, 35% carb and 25% fat (give or take). It takes some research and calculation to figure out the exact portions for yourself, but owning a food scale is a must. And then you can just google nutrition info on what you like to eat. For protein choices, I usually stick with eggs, chicken, turkey or fish. I also have protein powder to add to my protein intake. And I do eat lean cuts of beef and pork occasionally too. For carb, you'll be best served to stick to things like whole wheat bread, quinoa, brown rice, sweet potato/potato, and of course fruits (watch out for this one as some fruits are very high in carb/sugar) and vegetables to get enough fiber. For my fat, I get it from things like avocado and nuts.

      Delete
    2. And this: You can do as many meals a day as you like. I like to have 5 smaller meals instead of 3 large ones, but whatever for you works as long as you stick to the total calories and macro nutrient breakdown.

      Delete
  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  8. “Everything in moderation.... even moderation!” Exactly. This line here sums up a great deal of what should be a healthy approach to one's journey to fitness. Your story's quite inspiring, and anyone struggling with their fitness goals can relate to this.

    Fitness Together, Inc

    ReplyDelete
  9. im super impressed by your story!
    great job!

    ReplyDelete
  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  11. You look amazing, congrats on all your hard work! One day I hope to be where you are. Just having a little trouble getting started :-)

    ReplyDelete
  12. You look amazing! The funny thing is I found your blog while searching for Vince Scuba leather jacket (was buying one on sale and wanted to see it on real people). Anyway, I noticed your workouts and then I wandered over into other parts of your blog. And it's funny because I just started lifting heavy again after years off. You reminded me (from your progress pics) that it will come together as long as I stick with it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Isn't weight lifting great?? It has definitely changed my body the most! I also feel stronger so I love that too. Yep yep, gotta stick with it... it's hard to see progress sometimes, but persistence will definitely pay off. :)

      Delete
  13. You look amazing! Thank you for sharing your story.
    The bikini that you are wearing in the last progress pictures is gorgeous! Where is it from?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! It's from Victoria's Secret. I got it a couple years ago though...

      Delete
  14. you look really great! i also had the same issue as you did in the start - working out but not seeing much changes! i've just started on a new diet for a week and it seems to be working..hopefully it continues!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Great post. Thank you very very much.This article is efficient. Thank you for sharing it with us.Reducing your appetite, blocking fat from being made, and improving serotonin levels in your body are just a couple of exciting breakthroughs learned about Garcinia Cambogia! The most exciting part about Garcinia Cambogia is it can work on its own! No more time wasted searching for expensive weight loss products and no more hours wasted at the gym!Garcinia Cambogia Extract is finally here!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Wow! You improved so much. Kudos for a job well done. I wish I have the same body as yours. :)

    ReplyDelete
  17. sounds great! congratulations! People say Garcinia Cambogia blocks your body's ability to make fat and it puts the brakes on your appetite. Learn more how does garcinia cambogia work!

    ReplyDelete
  18. I am very much delighted that I came across your blog.I am an obese and really trying hard to reduce weight.

    Metadrol auto teste

    ReplyDelete
  19. your blog Provides things are helps me to find my detail. your blog is very good for me

    please keep it up.I like it
    Visit :- Yoga Class Weight Loss

    ReplyDelete
  20. Great to have this blog here with us . thanks for sharing here about your weight loss journey and the effects of it on you.Thanks and keep sharing more motivational blogs with us.

    ReplyDelete
  21. My boyfriend and I lost a lot of weight following an excellent program! I think it will not be online for a long time, so watch the video now!

    Find out here: Fast Healthy Weight Loss

    Thanks again

    ReplyDelete
  22. My greatest dream for this year is to lose weight. I hope I can do it.
    Weight Loss

    ReplyDelete
  23. When I read this story I was reminded of my own fat loss journey.
    Through all the ups and downs and the struggle to keep the weight down, I realized one thing...
    It's all about mindset, really. You can get results but they don't mean anything unless you can appreciate what is happening.
    You see, there is a fundamental mindset switch that needs to take place to truly be successful at fat loss and fitness, for that matter.
    For one thing, most workout programs get you off to the wrong start by stimulating the incorrect metabolic effect.
    To get the greatest metabolic effect from an exercise, you want to get as many muscles involved.
    You can do this the hard way by spending long hours and physically getting as many muscles involved in a given workout or...
    Do it the smart way by enhancing the electrical signals to a group of muscles instead. By working on nerve instead of muscle, you actually end up working on multiple muscles at once and on all of each muscle.
    I've tried everything and this is the only thing that has produced lasting results with minimal effort.

    In fact, this article explains this interesting concept much better than I could...
    http://www.journalofnaturalhealth.com/metabolicfatloss

    Hope it helps anyone reading this!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Hello, I truly enjoyed reading your post. I wanted to thank you for this great post!!!
    weight loss

    ReplyDelete
  25. You did a good effort to lose your weight, good!
    Many people still believe with instant way. In fact, the instant way is don't have long last effect. We also need to maintain the body by doing exercise and live healthier life.

    Please also visit my site at www.healthdiscuss.co

    ReplyDelete
  26. Few Super Foods Which Makes You Slim

    Alleged super foods are dietary powerhouses that construct bones, counteract ceaseless sicknesses, enhance your visual perception, and even keep your mind sharp. In any case, did you know new proof recommends these best slimming super foods, can likewise help you get—and stay—thin?

    ReplyDelete
  27. Good tips to follow. I think regular exercise and managing proper diet will show great results. But weight loss will take some time so we have to think on long term. Thanks for sharing the tips. HP Laptop Service Centers in Chennai

    ReplyDelete
  28. Good points. I think weight problem is common in the current generation. It is due to junk food eating habits and also improper lifestyle. Your points are also good. Keep writing more. Dell Laptop Service Centers in Chennai

    ReplyDelete
  29. Keep updating. Excellent information. we look for new information about the weight loss.Thank you for your tips. I will try this method. I hope it will works. Jobs Micro.

    ReplyDelete
  30. thanks for tuning, Drinks definitely work out for your body! We all at Glamrs have tried and tested these drinks and they do aid in weight loss! :) just following my online “Pro Fitness Coach” who helps me free. Get free coach online ProFitnessCoach4u

    ReplyDelete
  31. Thanks for the information about the weight loss. It’s help to motivate myself to reduce the weight losing. Keep updating more. Question and Answer Website

    ReplyDelete
  32. I have tried all methods but not able to lose weight. I will definitely try your methods. Thanks for sharing the post.It’s truly amazing.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Thanks For Sharing the wonderful article, this post is really amazing.
    rapid weight loss diet

    ReplyDelete
  34. Really very interesting and very valuable information about the health and good health is a everything.
    14 day teatox & best tea for weight loss

    ReplyDelete
  35. I'm very grateful to you that you wrote very useful information in your weight loss journey. Lots of things I have learned from your experience. Thanks a ton.

    Regards,
    Mantis Hugo
    Goji Berry Juice

    ReplyDelete
  36. Your post is very informative, thanks for sharing! This method is very GOOD too and Healthy, take a look where can i buy garcinia cambogia

    ReplyDelete
  37. but I was also splitting those miles up into two short rides per day instead of one long ride. I think that was the key. official statement

    ReplyDelete
  38. After i read this great article, i'm more enlightened about the way what i must follow for weight loss.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Nice Information you have written here. Really Great Stuff. I keep it bookmark for our future purpose. Thanks for the information and links you shared this is so should be a useful and quite informative.
    how to lose weight

    ReplyDelete
  40. Your story is very inspiring. I would like to say that people who want to lose weight should not give up. They should maintain a daily routine and follow it every day.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...