Success Story: 'It Was Worth It to Spend Time on ME'*
Meet Diane Wilson, a SparkPeople.com member (username WILSOD1) who lost 75 pounds! Here, Diane shares what has worked for her in her journey so far--and how she plans to lose the baby weight from her recent pregnancy.What is your age? 28
How long have you been a SparkPeople member? How did you find SparkPeople? I joined SparkPeople in November of 2009. I had started trying to lose weight, but no matter what I did, it didn't work--I was always hungry! My friend suggested I check out SparkPeople.com, and I fell in love with the site. I had found a "pot of gold" to the rainbow of my life! I now had the tools to help me with my weight-loss journey.
What is your favorite feature on SparkPeople? My favorite feature is the Nutrition Tracker. It allows me to see exactly what I'm eating and how much I'm eating. I've learned that carbohydrates are in everything, and that I don't need to eat bread/pasta/rice to get enough carbohydrates in my diet. I also learned I was eating way too much sodium. No wonder I couldn't lose weight; too many carbs paired with too much sodium equaled me carrying extra water weight and being hungry (eating carbs, but not fiber-filled carbs).
How much weight have you lost? I have lost 75 pounds.
How long did it take to lose the weight? My weight loss took about a year of very focused effort. Shortly after joining SparkPeople, I got pregnant with my first child and gained far beyond the amount of weight I needed to for a healthy pregnancy. Three months after my child was born, I decided to get back on track with SparkPeople to lose the weight.
What was your light bulb moment that made you decide to lose weight? I decided to lose weight to feel better, and to look better for my wedding.
What was your biggest obstacle while trying to lose weight? I would have to say learning how to say no to bread, pasta and rice. I tried to only eat small amounts of them, but I quickly learned that once I started eating these foods, I couldn't stop! Surprisingly, limiting cereal, soda, cookies and ice cream was not a problem.
What does your weekly exercise schedule look like? I walk almost every day and play on the floor with my children. I also make a point to make the bed every morning, scrub the dishes by hand, wash the floors on hands and knees, and go up and down the stairs at least three times every day. When I find time to put in a yoga DVD or another exercise DVD, I will, but that is maybe once every week or two. I also stretch daily to relax and keep my muscles loose.
What is your favorite way to exercise? I love to play with my children. I chase them on hands and knees and pick them up to play airplane (keeping the abs tight for extra core work!). We play follow the leader. We run outside. We climb the stairs together on rainy days and days that are too hot or too cold to be outside. I take my two girls on a walk using the double stroller and go up and down hills in town. When I need more of a challenge, I add more weight to the stroller and try to climb the hill in less time—and then I look for steeper hills to climb!
Do you have any personal fitness goals coming up? Since I just had my second child on August 14, 2012, and need to lose more baby weight, my goals are as follows:
1. Re-master the hill next to our home with both girls in the stroller
2. Start looking at the foods I'm eating to get a feel for how much I'm eating
3. In a few weeks, start to cut back on refined carbohydrates and increase stroller time with the girls
4. Continue to drink 1.5-2 gallons of water daily, continue to breastfeed, continue to do all of my normal tasks at home
What does a typical day of food look like for you? How does this compare to the way you ate before your transformation?
Breakfast: 1 cup Cheerios with dried fruit and 2 cups soy milk OR
2 servings Malt-O-Meal hot cereal with dried fruit and 1 cup soy milk OR
1 oatmeal packet with 2 cups soy milk and dried fruit
Lunch/Dinner: Lean meat and veggie stir-fry with fresh fruit on the side, 2 cups soy milk.
My lunches and dinners are generally made up of the same ingredients, but I mix it up by adding different herbs/spices/flavorings. (Be sure to watch sodium in your seasonings--some are more than half salt!)
I will also sometimes make chili, ham and pea soup, tacos and, even more rarely, spaghetti or pizza. I let myself enjoy these meals because my motto is: ''Everything in moderation, including moderation."
What is your favorite healthy food? Fresh peaches and fresh cherries. I love to eat them as soon as I bring them home from the store!
What is your favorite treat food? Real ice cream and my homemade monster cookies.
Who is your biggest inspiration? I've always been the ''fat kid,'' and as the fat kid grew up, the fat kid became a fat adult. Loads of people, including my mother and siblings, told me that I would always be fat and that no one would ever want to be with me because I was fat. It wasn't until my second year of college, when I finally had some space from my negative family, that I started to make friends who were much more positive about body image. These friends helped encourage me to change my body image views for the better. They helped me to see that it was worth it to spend time on me. I thank my college friends every time I slip into a smaller size. I fit into a medium shirt and size 12 pants! I've never been a medium in my life until now!
Do you have a personal mantra/saying/quote that you live by that you’d like to share? Everything in moderation, including moderation. To me, this means it's alright to splurge and go all out on a particular food/meal every once in a while. Just start back up again with your healthy habits when you're done with that meal.
Congratulations, Diane! What tips from Diane can you use in your own weight-loss journey?
*Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.
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