|Where has The Perfect Knot Been?|
So where has The Perfect Knot Been???
Well, if you follow my Facebook Page you know that it's been pretty quiet lately and I have been a little MIA.
There are good reasons for that though and I truly do appreciate all of you who have asked when I was coming out with new patterns, what I have been working on, and where I've been. You made feel good to know that you did notice that I wasn't around as much. :)
Well the fact of the matter is that I had to take some time away from the Crochet and Knit world in order to work on some other things.
Last year, I was diagnosed with some pretty challenging health issues and I knew I needed to make some changes and adjustments if I was going to overcome them and be healthy.
In July of 2014 I found myself at a very unhealthy weight of 225 lbs, and having issues with my thyroid, adrenal glands and several other things. I've chosen to write my story out for you all to read so you can see where I've been and what I have done over the last year.
So here we go! *Eeek!* Here are my before pictures in all my rolly glory LOL. :p I'll be honest and say I hate the way I look and I remember how poorly I felt here. They definitely aren't pretty, but hey, they are part of the process and I can proudly say this is no longer the way I look today. We all have to start somewhere right? ;)
Anyway, I knew I needed to make a lifestyle change in order to overcome some of my health issues. I set out to create a plan to basically reinvent myself and work towards a healthy lifestyle. I knew it couldn't be a "Diet" or I would fail at it just like I had every other time I had tried one.
So I did my homework and my research and I decided the best way for me to go about it was through proper nutrition, clean eating (no junk or gimmicks), portion control and exercise. (Lots and lots of exercise! LOL) I needed a plan that I could realistically do for the rest of my life because after all, it was meant to be a Lifestyle and not just a diet.
So where to begin?
I knew I had to start with food. I had to get the proper nutrition involved in order to fuel my body. Very quickly one of the things I discovered was that I was an under eater. Now you'd think that you would lose weight by under eating, but nope, you can gain weight because you aren't eating enough too. Your body goes into a starvation mode and starts storing whatever it can get because you are not eating enough and you gain weight. My life was so crazy running around taking care of my mom and my family, that if I ate twice a day, I thought I was doing great. Nope. Not quite. ;)
I had to learn how to eat more, and not only eat more, but eat more of the Right things in order to fuel my body. I had to learn what portion sizes were, I had to learn what foods helped my body and what foods didn't help it or caused it to work slower. I went back to my old college days and my nutrition classes and started pulling those memories back to the front of my mind and applying them to my life now. I cut out processed foods and sugars as much as I could, I limited my gluten intake (hypothyroidism recommends that as part of the treatment plan), and I started eating whole and unprocessed food. Eating Clean as they call it.
Along the way I discovered some very useful tools to help me keep track of my food intake and nutrients, as well as foods I really liked and could not feel deprived on. I seriously eat more now than I ever did on any "Diet" I was ever on and I never feel deprived or like I am starving hungry! (You should see how much I eat! LOL)
Through this whole process, I have not deprived myself of any foods. I just learned to make good choices and what portion sizes were. Yes, it is okay to splurge once in a while, but I try to stick to an 80/20 rule and eat clean 80% of the time at least. ;)
Now for the next part once the food was in place.
You need to have goals and you need to write them down! I set a realistic goal of losing 50 lbs in 1 year and having my target be a 1 lb a week loss. You have to be realistic! It's a marathon to lose weight, not a sprint! Don't expect to lose 5 lbs a week, because in most cases, it's just not going to happen! You may see a huge jump in your loss at the very beginning, but it usually tapers off and a 1 lb loss is usually the average on most nutrition programs.
I set tons of small goals along the way and every time I got to one on my list, I could check it off and work towards the next one. Like I said, be realistic and set both small short term ones and some bigger long term ones. Set goals both on and off the scale and do rewards (other than food) for things once you get to a certain goal. It can be simple stuff, or it can be big stuff, but set them out on paper so you can work towards them. :)
I used to grimace when I'd say that word before because most of it wasn't fun, it was hard work and I can safely say, I hated being sore afterwards. That is so not the case now, but a year ago, yes that was my attitude about it! LOL
So where to begin? I literally started with a 5 minute video on YouTube for exercise and I figured I could work my way up from there. Now you may think that 5 minutes is barely anything, and yes in most cases it is, but when you haven't worked out in 2 years plus and you're 75 + lbs over weight, completely out of shape and have asthma on top of it, trust me, that 5 minutes felt like I was going to die! LOL
I worked my way up though and I did 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, then 20 minutes and I finally found a program that was 25 - 30 minutes that I really enjoyed and I knew I could stick with it. One of the things I would strongly recommend is finding exercise that you personally enjoy! If you enjoy it, you are much more likely to do it and stick with it. It becomes fun and much less like work.
Did you want to Quit?
Yes, there were a million times I wanted to quit. I think that's normal. Everyone at some point, wants to quit. Especially when you are working your butt off and you don't see the results you want to. Do yourself a favor though, and don't just rely on the scale and most importantly, don't quit!
And for me they have happened several times on my journey. For 3 months at one point I got stuck at one weight, but I don't just rely on the scale, because that is not the only place I see results. I measure with a tape measure, and I use a body fat percentage caliper. In that 3 month period, even though the scale wasn't budging, I was still seeing changes in inches and things toning up. I actually lost enough inches to drop an entire size without dropping a pound. Try your hardest not to get discouraged and just keep going! With a few modifications the plateau will usually break and things will start moving again. Just keep at it! Make adjustments and things will change.
One of my favorite quotes is "Success comes in Can's not Cant's" and a big part of losing weight is to tell yourself you Can do it! You really can if you believe you can and if you are willing to do the work necessary to transform yourself!
So Where am I at today?
Well, last Monday (8-3-15) I actually hit my first big milestone and checked off my goal of losing 55 lbs and this is what I look like now! Not even close to the same person I was a year ago!
I'm not finished yet though, so don't enjoy these images for too long because I am not at my final destination. This is just a progress point, and I have to keep going! I still have another 20 lbs to lose before I get to my next reassessment goal. Hopefully in the next 6 months or so, I can show you all those pictures and use these as my comparison pictures. :) I'm determined to get there and I know at some point I will!
Why did I write all of this?
Well, it's pretty simple actually. One, I wanted to encourage any of you who might be thinking about starting your own weight loss journey and tell you, that yes it's going to be a lot of hard work, but yes, You Can Do It! You just have to start. Don't do it alone, find support where you can. If you want to know about some amazing support systems that I have found, just message me and I will be happy to share them with you. (All are free and very beneficial.)
Two, I did this to document not only for you how far I've come, but also for myself. So I can look back on this and see where I have been and where I will be heading next. It's an amazing thing to know you can succeed at something if you set your mind to it and work hard to achieve your goals! Yes, it took me a year to get here, but I did it and I am very proud of that!
I know someone out there is in the same boat I was a year ago and I can only hope by reading this, that they will know there is hope and there is a way to overcome your health issues and live a better life! You can change your own life with just a few simple changes!
Thank you for sharing in my journey and for reading my blog! If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.
I wish you all much health and success!
Thanks for stopping by The Perfect Knot Crochet and More!
Much love and God Bless,
The Perfect Knot
PS. Yes, I will be back to playing with my yarn soon enough! ;) Winter is coming and I have presents to make! :)