Hello!My name is Amber, and I'm here to share my weight loss journey with you!
Me:I am 26 years old. I am an elementary teacher and absolutely love my job! I also tutor 3 students after school and work as a customer service library substitute on the weekends. Yes, I am crazy. :) I work about 50-55 paid hours a week. ;) Being busy creates challenges with losing weight, but I've learned some good ways to deal with it.
I love to read and craft when I have the time. I love to cook and try new healthy recipes. I love spending time with my family and being outdoors. I love the Spring and hate the winter!
My History with Weight Loss:
Be prepared, it's detailed...I wasn't a chubby kid. I feel like I was pretty average when I was young.
Here's me in Junior High. This is the summer before 7th grade.
(I must not have been too worried about my weight since I had a pool party for my 13th birthday.)8th grade, I'm in the middle of course.
The first time I remember feeling "fat" was in 9th grade. I wasn't fat, but I felt like it. I had a "boyfriend", who had been my best friend since 7th grade. Then.... he dumped me for the head cheerleader. Who was extra skinny, tall, and beautiful. I started bingeing and purging. Alas, 2 weeks later he wanted me back.
I can't remember how long I was bulimic, but it got to the point where I couldn't keep food down. (I think it was about a year or less) I finally told my oldest sister (in a letter), who then told my mom, since I was too embarrassed to tell her myself. I don't know how I got through it, and I often wonder if I'm still holding on to some things, emotionally, that I never dealt with. Over the years I have slipped back into those habits at times, but only for a few days.
I wasn't fat in high school. I wasn't super-stick-skinny either. I am pear-shaped so I have a tiny waist and huge hips and butt. But, like many teenagers, I always compared myself to others and felt fat. I often ate a vending machine lunch of Sour Patch Watermelons and Sun Chips. I don't remember eating out too much because I didn't have a lot of money, but I don't think I necessarily ate very healthy. My friends and I loved to go on Slurpee runs, I probably had one almost every day in the summer.
I graduated high school and went to college in 2004-2005. I didn't have the best first year of college and put on more than the Freshman Fifteen.
MARCH 2005 (I'm on the right)After my first year of college I worked at a family camp in New Hampshire in the summer of 2005. I was so embarrased by my thunderous thighs when we did water activities. I love to water ski though, so I did brave it in a swimsuit for that. I remember I started running that summer. New Hampshire air is MUCH easier to breath than Utah air. And I LOVED trail running. So beautiful and fun. I ran my first 5k that summer with many of my camp friends. I absolutely loved the experience.
I was on the Recreation Staff, which meant I was in charge of many activities for the campers. I avoided the more strenuous activities like ultimate frisbee and all day hikes. Although not extremely overweight, I still had extra pounds that made me tire more quickly than the other staff members.
I was pretty active overall, but the food was tempting. All the food was prepared for us. Every day you could eat bacon for breakfast, waffles, ice cream, all kinds of baked goods... it was hard to make good choices all of the time.
When I got home from camp the pounds just kept coming on. I was depressed, not going to school, and working at a job I didn't like. I didn't weigh myself at these certain periods of my life, so I just have pictures to go off of.
2006 was a horrible year. I started going back to school to get my Generals and figure out what I wanted to study so that was good. But, I was dating a scumbag, and things went from bad to worse. He ate out a lot and drank a lot of soda, and I followed suit. I never really like soda before, it never tempted me, but he was drinking it, so I did too. I crumbled that year. I lost myself and have never felt so horrible about myself. He did some damage to me emotionally, that's for sure.
SUMMER 2006- 180 lbs.
At the beginning of 2007 I'd had it. I'd finally cut all ties with the scumbag and needed something to change my life. I started Weight Watchers in February where I first weighed in at 180 pounds. It was really working for me, and I was really losing weight. I met an amazing guy, Brandon, and we started dating. He supported me in my weight loss, helping me eat healthy, and going to the gym with me. When we met I was about 160 pounds.
I continued to lose and in a year I had lost 42 pounds. My lowest was 138, and I was feeling pretty good. I actually wasn't horrified to wear a swimsuit, although I wasn't quite at my ultimate goal then (I would like to be 130 pounds).
2008 and 2009 I stayed pretty much the same. I think I looked good. See pictures. :)
FEBRUARY 2008- 140 lbs.
DECEMBER 2008- 140-145 lbs.
SUMMER 2009- 140-145 lbs.
I started gaining in 2010, my last year of undergraduate school. It was slow at first. A little gain here and there. It was an extrememly stressful last year. I was student teaching, working and going to school! I did not handle the stress very well. I did a lot of emotional eating.
APRIL 2010- 150 lbs.
APRIL 2011- 160 lbs.
I would often say I was going to lose weight, would try for a few days, or a few weeks, and then give up. This happened so many times that my boyfriend stopped believing I was serious. Do you blame him? I was in a bad cycle of feeling horrible about myself and eating. Eating more made me feel bad about myself and feeling bad about myself made me want to eat more. I ate fast food a LOT. My weight started affecting my relationship with my boyfriend.
I finally got a teaching job, but I was also tutoring after school and substituting at the library. I was super busy and overwhelmed. I started binge eating again, but not throwing up. I ate huge quantities of food. I started really packing on the pounds from the Winter of 2011 to Spring 2012.
I reached the heaviest I've ever been in March of 2012. I weighed 193 pounds. I got a little freaked out to how close to 200 pounds I was. And the fact that I almost weighed as much as my 6'5" boyfriend. So I started really getting serious. I started doing the things I know work to lose weight, and stopped telling myself I couldn't do it. This started on March 18, 2012.
Instead, I decided to just count calories, and watch what kind of calories I'm putting into my body. I accomplished this by following good health guidelines of eating (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, good fats, less sugar, etc).
To make it even simpler, I don't even write down what I eat or the calories in number form. All I do is mark off boxes. My awesome boyfriend made me a little booklet I keep in my pocket. There are 25 boxes and each box is worth 50 calories. 1250 calories are how much I allow myself each day. By marking off boxes as I eat them I can easily see how many I've eaten and how many I have left for the day.
I lost 10 pounds in about 6 weeks doing this. Then a lot of stressful and overwhelming things happened and I gained it all back by binge eating. (So frustrating that it takes 6 weeks to lose and only a few weeks to gain back!) Grrr.
I started therapy to try and figure out why I binge eating, since this has been an on and off problem since I was in 9th grade. I've been learning a lot and hope that it will help me get to a healthier state with food, and help me control my binge eating.
This is my journey in doing just that.
Thanks so much for visiting my blog! I'd love to hear from you. I can use all the support and tips I can get.