And So It Begins

Writing a blog has been in the forefront of my mind for such a long time.  Figuring out a topic that can and will grasp a reader’s attention has been the most difficult for me.  As for any brilliant writer, the struggle is real, finding a topic that will grab readers attention and keep them coming back for more.

Healthy living and life style seems like such a common theme for bloggers, however everyone’s journey is different.  I have decided to chronicle my journey to a healthier better version of me which hopefully some of you can relate to and find solace in it knowing you are not on your journey alone.

While the world may be adapting and accepting of size these days, how you feel about yourself and where you’re at may differ.  I am in that place right now. Allow me to share with you my backstory and perhaps you can relate.

Growing up my parents always commented on my weight, that I was heavy or pleasantly plump to down-right fat.  In reality, I was healthy in comparison to kids these days.  My days consisted of playing outside, riding my bike, roller skating, climbing trees, and playing detective with my best friends.  My mother never kept snacks in the house, no chips, no candy no baked goods. Weight had always been an issue for my mother riding the rollercoaster of diets throughout my childhood. I think she tried every powdered diet out there and then some.  Sugar was taboo.  She bought every self-help book out there, from Sugar Blues to the South Beach Diet.  Yet I was constantly reminded if I eat this or that “you’ll get fatter!”

As a mom myself, I am very conscious of what I say as well as how I talk to my kids.  I have a 6 year-old daughter, Tink and 4 ½ year old boy girl twins, Bo and Daisy.  While only 6, Tink is very aware of her appearance and how intense bullying can be already.  She’s above the 95th percentile for height and weight, but is strong and healthy. As my mother before me, I generally do not keep snacks in the house and my kids sugar consumption is quite minimal.  When asking the kids what they want for a snack, Tink will ask for an apple, Bo wants Strawberries and Daisy will have carrots.  The concept of having a bag of chips or a candy bar isn’t even on their radars. Tink is aware that she is bigger than her friends, sadly they mention it, but she an amazing self-esteem. While words can hurt, she has a self confidence that is unmatched.

I was 39 when I was pleasantly surprised with the discovery that I was pregnant with Tink after 20 years of having been told it was unlikely that I would ever conceive naturally. Then nine months after she was born, I found myself pregnant again…this time, with twins!! Within six months, I was suddenly single and tasked with raising these three beautiful children alone. To say I was overwhelmed was an understatement. For their first three years, I walked around in a daze, battling depression and just getting by. While I was very conscious about what I fed the kids, I ate whatever was handy, always putting the kids first.  Somehow along the way, I lost myself and took a backseat to my own life.

My previous relationship did not end  well.  At no point along the way had I even remotely considered dating although I was alarmingly aware of how lonely I’d become.  While I had friends from my mommy groups, I really didn’t have anyone to talk to or hang out with outside of the children.  I was seriously longing for adult conversation.  While I didn’t even want to date, I signed up on Plenty of Fish.com with the intent of just talking to a variety of people.  I started talking with a guy from New York and felt like he really got me until he said that he had met someone, but we could still be friends. I would send him links on Facebook about places to go and great date ideas, at random.  We had never met face to face, although we talked on the phone and texted. Within a week or two, he contacted me and asked if I would be interested meeting in person. I was shocked. Who in their right mind would want to date an overweight, depressed mom of three children under four. I was SO nervous and had VERY low expectations, but the idea of getting out of the house without the kids was quite enticing.

JB and I met at the Olympia farmers market and had decided to go on a picnic on the water. It was a glorious day, the kinds dreams are made of, nothing but blue sky as far as the eye could see and diamonds dancing on the water. We literally sat and talked for three hours, which felt like a blip in time. Never in my life had I felt SO comfortable with anyone and it was so natural.  We shared crackers and cheese and he fed me grapes. I knew that afternoon that my life had changed forever. Within 6 months we had become a family, even my children fell in love with him.  The five of us have blended so well, JB thanked me one night for giving him the family he never knew he had wanted.

As is the freshmen fifteen, so happens the family flab.  While we’ve been together three years now, I hadn’t noticed the weight pile on. I was dumbfounded when I realized I had gained forty pounds.  Having injured my ankle at work, I am no longer as mobile as I sit awaiting surgery.  What started as a subtle mist of depression rapidly became a dense fog.  JB and I had always been able to sit and talk about anything, yet I kept my devastation to myself.  I finally worked up the courage one afternoon and said “I need your help and support” as I explained my plight, his eyes softened, he took my hand and reminded me that I’m not alone. He encouraged me to find a lifestyle plan that I felt comfortable with and he would do it with me. Not once in my life have I ever experienced a relationship that I felt this safe in, JB loves me just the way I am but is encouraging me to become the best version of me I can be.

Recently, there has been a development on the dieting front.  There is a metabolic state called ketosis which is extremely useful when it comes to dropping substantial weight.  Basically, the state of ketosis is when your body produces ketone bodies out of fat, using them for energy instead of carbs.

Ketosis takes place when there is restricted access to glucose in your body.  Glucose, blood sugar, is the ideal source of fuel for many of the bodies cells.  When you go on a strict carb-restricted diet, ketosis happens.

Another key component to weight loss is increasing your water intake. The recommended quantity per person varies.  You take your total weight divide it in half, and that’s how many ounces of water you should drink for optimal weight reduction.  My goal is pretty attainable, as I enjoy drinking water. I am drinking 154 ounces per day.  If water consumption is difficult for you, try adding lemon, cucumber or lime.  In a future blog, I’ll review various ways to your body detox with water.

So, as I begin this journey, I invite you to join me.