2009 was my life changing year….

WEIGHT STRUGGLE
This is my story. I was skinny as a child and then once the wonderful puberty came into my world so did the beginning of my weight gain. In Middle School and High School I was very active at home. Always the one to hang out with the guys and play sports, ride bikes, go swimming but my eating wasn’t controlled or really at all that healthy — espically in the soda department. I was addicted to PEPSI. It seemed I would gain a little then stay the same weight but never losing and this continued even after I graduated High School. I remember getting on the scale my Senior year and seeing 190 I think It was.

That made me realize even more so that my weight was only going UP. After High School, I became really, really lazy. I did NOTHING for a whole year except sleep all day then play video games all night and into the morning. Rinse and repeat. I continued to gain as the years passed and 2006 was the year I stepped on the scale to see the highest number I’d ever seen that sent me into an overwhelming panic. My husband and I wanted children so I went to the Doctor and was diagnosed with PCOS in 2006 and also the knowledge that my hormones were out of whack so I took Metformin for a year for that purpose. Along with that I “attempted” my own exercise and tried to “control” my eating but I fell right back into my old habits.
I finally got pregnant after 14 months of trying and I was overweight during pregnancy of course and did wind up with gestational diabetes towards the end. The picture below is me about a month before having our daughter.
After having our first daughter in 2008, I finally got that eager feeling I was so waiting for. At the end of 2008, I wanted so badly to exercise and to start to really change my life! I had already given my life over to God completely in mid-2008 so my faith was increasing and that I think is what helped me receive that eagerness that I had so been wishing, praying and hoping for. Then came a new year. That life changing year…. 2009. I prayed for guidance. A few days into January 2009, my Mother In Law RANDOMLY asked my husband online If we WANTED their treadmill!!!!!!! I was beyond ecstatic! My prayers had been answered, literally. I decided when we brought home the treadmill that I was going to take this seriously. January 10th, 2009 was the day I said I was going to start my weight loss journey. As the year went on, more blessings came into my life. A lady from church not only gave me her old exercise bike but also her pilates performer!!! I felt so overjoyed and so I took my faith and built up my motivation that helped me progress throughout 2009 and beyond!

PAST AND PRESENT
starting weight from 2006: 250 pounds
starting weight from 2009: 216 pounds
starting BMI from 2006: 44.3
weight loss in 2009: 76 pounds
highest amount of weight lost all together: was 115 pounds
weight gained from 2010-2011: 40 pounds
hoping to lose: 25 more lbs into 2015 and I WILL!

MONTH BY MONTH FOR 09


starting date: january 10th 2009
goal met on: december 26th 2009

1st month lost = 7lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -2lbs, -3lbs, -1lb, -1lb)
2nd month lost = 4lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -1lb, -1lb, -1lb, -1lb)
3rd month lost = 8lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -2lbs, -2lbs, -1lb, -3lbs & UNDER 200!)
4th month lost = 9lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -3lbs, -3lbs, -0lb, -3lbs, -0lb)
5th month lost = 7lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -2lbs, +3lbs, -6lbs, -2lbs)
6th month lost = 6lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -0lb, -0lb, -5lbs, -1lb)
7th month lost = 6lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -3lbs, +2lbs, -2lbs, -2lbs, -1lb)
8th month lost = 6lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -0lb, -2lb, -4lb, -0lbs)
9th month lost = 8lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -3lbs, -1lb, -1lb, -3lbs, 0lb)
10th month lost = 6lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -3lbs, -2lbs, -1lb, 0lb & 100lbs lost TOTAL)
11th month lost = 6lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -1lb, -1lb, -2lbs, -2lbs)
12th month lost = 3lbs
(weekly loss/gain: -1lb, 0lb, -2lbs)
TOTAL LOST: 76 pounds

COMPARISON PHOTOS

2009 will be the year I will always remember. It was the year I took full control of my emotions, feelings, weight and spirituality.

THE DOWNFALL
I reached my first weight goal of 140 in December 2009. My weight struggle sounds like I took control and got everything straight, right? I did…. but I really didn’t. When I started to lose weight in January 2009, I started to not feel right so I went to the Doctor and she told me I was eating nothing but carbs and needed PROTEIN. I went home and set up a plan right away!!! I set in stone my new eating plan: low-carb, low-fat and HIGH protein. I ran with that concept and IT WORKED. ….Until the bad started to happen. First sign was in August of 2009 when my period went missing until Halloween 2009 when It came back for one cycle then disappeared for around 9 months! I thought when It went missing in August that maybe my then-current IUD was somehow delaying it. From August 2009 on things started to slowly get worse but yet I still felt great! I had my gallbladder taken out in November 2009 after some questionable pains. After surgery, the surgeon noted that my liver enzymes were elevated and nobody knew WHY. At the beginning of 2010, I felt AMAZING. I felt like a kid with so much energy and was so uplifted with EVERYTHING.

I was 5 pounds away from my goal of 130 then sometime in April 2010 is when things really started getting bad. My ob/gyn had me try Provera to see If it would help bring on my cycle… nope. She said to wait a few months then call back If I still didn’t get it. Nothing for 3 more months. May 2010 is when I started to give into all my MAJOR carb/sugar cravings. I went crazy. I couldn’t lose weight. I kept gaining. July 2010 I went and had some bloodwork drawn and come to find that everything was fine EXCEPT my estrogen and progesterone – both really low but not pre-menopause levels. My ob/gyn recommended I try birth control to help the levels. I always told myself I’d stay AWAY from fake hormones but she’s a great Doctor so I went for it. Really bad idea. I did get my period back though! Went off the birth control after a few months and got back my IUD. I noticed my energy was GONE after April 2010. From June 2010 – April 2011 I gained almost 40 pounds.

Here are all the symptoms I dealt with in 2010:
~ extreme fatigue
~ VERY easily COLD
~ heart palpatations
~ no menstral cycles
~ no libido
~ lowered concentration and focus
~ dry skin and hair
~ low blood pressure
~ random dizziness/lightheaded
~ no energy from exercise
~ appetite completely messed up
~ weight gain and unable to lose it
~ insomnia
~ tingling and numb hand
~ VERY easily angered and frustrated
~ enlarged liver and elevated enzymes

I’ll try to cut this down to a short story. I suffered the above symptoms until I went to my Doc in November 2010 & they did blood work. Everything normal, so they said I was crazy and needed anti-depressants. I said no! Walked away… confused and sad. I wasted SO MUCH money on supplements, thinking it was a lack of this or that. I consulted an online Holistic Doctor November 2010, who tried to help “figure out” my situation. I had been having repeated sinus infections / sore throats / tense neck, since spring 2010 all the way into 2011. I did a 24 day juice fast in June 2011 but felt terrible during it. I did trial and error, trial and error, trial and error…. different diet plans, different supplements. I WANTED TO FIND OUT WHAT WAS GOING ON! November 2011 I went to the hormone Doc, to find that my thyroid function was a little low and that my anti-bodies were high. I was put on a low dose thyroid medicine and took that for a few months, but felt no difference, so I went off the meds and I THOUGHT I could sort this out without thyroid meds. I learned after trial and error that certain foods made my weight stall… and of course, I had been suffering with controlling binge eating for a long while. My online Holistic Doctor saw my thyroid antibodies number and automatically said I had Hashimoto’s, which is an autoimmune condition where my immune system is attacking my own body & thinks that my thyroid is the ENEMY – like it’s some disease. Basically, I stressed my body out to the point of it turning on this autoimmune condition, which meant my immune system was ANGRY, that led to the attack on my thyroid & the symptoms, that led to my binge eating (but I’m sure nutritional deficiences had a factor in that too), that led to gut/intestinal problems, that led to CHAOS AND HELL. *shew* It is NOT FUN, AT ALL.

Prior to late spring 2010, I could eat WHATEVER I WANTED to and not have any problems. Sadly, my body is so out of whack that if I am not careful I stir up lots of inflammation in my gut that leads to back pain, a certain “hot” feeling in my midsection, and sometimes with certain foods I get major gas, bloating, or serious stabbing pains. My health means EVERYTHING to me. I want to lose this extra inflammation weight and be the athlete I originally wanted to be when I set out to lose the weight in 2009. I will continue to FIGHT. I got myself into this mess and I will somehow dig my way out. I have faith and believe that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE with that faith. I love to push my limits and at one point, I was able to see and FEEL what it is like to reach my potential. It was incredible. I want that back, but in a way that my body is healthy and happy.

I have learned sooooooooooooo much throughout my health struggles since late 2009. What a journey. I’m thankful I feel 1,000 times better than I did in the HELL I was in during the worst in 2010, but it will take time to bounce back. I am a child of God and I know through HIM all things are possible, including overcoming health struggles like mine.

Tests done in 2013/14: Saliva testing for cortisol levels (usually low), thyroid testing (FULL panel), usual blood work, ALCAT Food Sensitivity Test, EBV (Epstein Barr Virus) which came back chronic EBV but neg for mono, spectracell vitamin/mineral testing.

UPDATE DEC 2014~ The problem was that I did not have a good balance of healthy fats (diet had 0 healthy fats, basically) when I lost weight in 2009, so there went my hormones and everything. Everything went low, but then I spent years trying to regain that balance, yet was still deficient in certains vitamins and minerals. I’m finally turning a good corner with my health and I’m excited to rock it in 2015, but in a HEALTHY MANNER. Let’s get it!!!! I know I have SO MUCH experience and knowledge to offer to people and I’m excited to use that in my future career towards health and fitness. =)