This morning I was running on a treadmill that happened to be in front of a mirror. Seeing myself workout is not something I like to do, but I caught a glimpse. And then a question snuck into my head. How did I get so dangerously heavy?
I know exactly what happened. I ate a lot. More bad food than good. I slept very little. Which of course made me eat even more. And I did not exercise. My 5'4" frame expanded quite heftily. So much so that a friend of mine did not even recognize me in a video. I grew 70 pounds overweight.
My actual question...How did I change that?
- I eliminated the major stressor in my life. Day in and day out I was in an environment that was toxic for me. The stress was more than I could bear. It affected my sleep; I was up all hours of the night unable to get or stay asleep. The lack of sleep threw off my eating patterns. I fueled my days with immense amounts of caffeine, sugar, and fat. The more fat and sugar I ate the more of it I wanted. All that little sleep and great deal of sugar wore me out. I barely had the energy to walk from the door to the couch. So, I left that environment. Within a month I lost 8 pounds.
- I began running. I have always been a bit of an indoor girl. I was not on any sports teams in high school. The most strenuous things I did were walking and yoga. Not only did running require more from me, but at the time I was using two inhalers just to breathe through the day. I downloaded a few running apps to build up my endurance and speed. I've written about them here. Now, I consider myself a runner and I look forward to running every day. I still hit a yoga class and go for walks, but I feel my activity is much more balanced than what it used to be.
- I slowly have been changing my diet. First, I eliminated anything that was processed. If it was in the frozen food department, came in a box or can it was not coming home with me. I quickly stopped craving sugar and gained more energy. From there I added more and more fruits, veggies, and water. I use MyFitnessPal to track what goes into my mouth. You can read more about that app here. I also swapped out my caffeinated teas and sodas for herbal teas and infused water. My skin has a healthy glow to it now!
- I have become more informed about my auto-immune disorder. I didn't realize that a lot of the foods that I had been previously eating were essentially poisoning my body. I've eliminated gluten, dairy, most nuts, and a few other items that are bad news for my body. I am sick TONS less now; I could count on a sinus infection about once every two to three months, have constant stomach pain, and a slew of other issues that are beginning to disappear.
This is difficult to admit, but there was a point where I could not see my feet. I used to say that I didn't care, but that is just what I said. Deep down I was deeply disturbed by how I looked and felt. Although I still have weight to lose (my auto-immune condition makes it difficult for me to lose weight) I feel better. I view situations like the objective person I used to be, instead of the bitter one I had become. I have a few other apps that I have found helpful during this time and it is my plan to share those in this blog space.