Thursday, October 4, 2012

Weighing In

I've recently gotten loads of questions about my diet and my 40 pound weight loss.  Sooooo, after much deliberation and judgement about posting such personal information and pictures, I'm here to let you in on my attempts to get off the LBs.......(and hopefully keep them off!!)

*I'd like to start off by stating that I'm NOT a weight loss expert (by ANY means) and I'm NOT suggesting that you do the same diet that I've done.  I'm a firm believer that everyone needs a diet tailored for their own body, metabolism and personality.  A friend of mine lost a great deal of weight on the diet that I will talk about in this post, so I went for it.  I am not endorsing this company, nor promoting it.  I'm only writing this post because I've gotten lots of questions about it and wanted to let everyone know what has worked for ME.

A little insight into my weight history:

Body type and height: 
5'9"  I carry most of my weight around my waist area.  I have shorter legs but a very long torso.

I'm a little embarrassed by the fact that I'm going to give you insight into what the scales tell me at different times in my life, but here goes:

I've been on a diet my WHOLE life.  Like plenty of people I know, I've tried all kinds of different gimmicks and tricks to lose weight.  You name it, I've tried it--from pills, to exercise.  I've counted points, calories, fat grams.  Acai berry, Alli, Green Tea, Cabbage Soup Diet, Rice Diet, Fat Smash, Atkins, South Beach. Any of that sound familiar?  NONE of these things did much good.  I would see friends lose weight with some of these methods, but somehow, I seemed immune to these diets.  It has NEVER been easy.  EVER! I've always joked that I came out of the womb on a diet.

I was always an average weight, but on the upper end of average---borderlined overweight.  I can't remember what I weighed in High School, but I always hovered  between sizes 8-12 (depending on clothing brand).  I went through a period of about 5 years in my early 20's where I packed on the pounds.  Staying out late, drinking loads of beer and bad food didn't help things.
Me (left) in High School 1995-ish (Age 15) 
Me on the far left 2003-2004?  (Age 23 or 24) 
After my husband and I got engaged in 2005, I vowed to get the weight off for our wedding.  We bought an elliptical machine and I started working out as much as possible.  A few weeks before our wedding I was working out at least 4 nights a week on the elliptical for at least an hour a night.
The year that we were engaged, I lost a good deal of weight, dropped a few sizes and at my lowest the week before my wedding, I weighed 147 and was wearing a size 8.

Right before we got married in 2006 
Fast-forward to 2009.  I find out I'm pregnant with Baby B, it's March 2009 and I weigh roughly 170.  I had gained around 23 pounds since we walked down the aisle in 2006.
This was my last shower before Beckett was born.
I should have be saying "No more red velvet cupcakes!!"
but I was probably saying "Can we stop so I can get another cupcake?"
Now..... fast-forward to November 2010.  It's the day before I give birth and I get on the scales weighing.....wait for it.................245!!!!  I thought the scales were full of shit!  I really did, but I knew, looking in the mirror that they weren't lying.  It was the first time I'd seen my weight in months because I had been stepping on the scales BACKWARDS at my Doctor appointments. 2 weeks later to my Dr. appt. AFTER delivery.  I'm at my ob appointment and the nurse yells out "225" as I step off of the scale IN FRONT OF MY HUSBAND!  I was moritified!  My sweet hubby will NEVER admit this, but I saw his eyes bulge.

When I had Beckett, my blood pressure shot up and I ran fever during delivery.  2 weeks after having him, I was still carrying around massive amounts of fluid, so they put me on Lasix. Within about 2 days, I dropped 20 pounds of water weight, but was still holding strong around 200 pounds.  200 POUNDS!  I was depressed, my self-esteem was at an all-time low, and I knew I had to do something!

I downloaded a calorie counter app on my phone (one with a barcode scanner) so I could keep track of everything I was putting in my mouth.  I scanned EVERYTHING.  It helped.....a bit.  I gradually started losing and by the time my maternity leave was over I was around 185-190ish.  Unfortunately, this is where I stayed for a long time.  Slowly, over the YEAR, I managed to get down to about 180 and stayed pretty close to that weight for a while.  THIS weight was etched IN STONE!  No matter what I ate or what I changed about my diet, it didn't seem like I could move under 175-180.  NO MATTER WHAT!

I got the stomach virus in February, threw up for 2 days and only managed to lose about a pound.  ONE POUND!!!!  I was completely at the end of my rope and desperate for a solution.  When you're unhappy with your appearance, it affects your mood, your social life, your marriage and your overall demeanor.  I didn't have the time to workout that I once had when I lost the weight for our wedding, so in late March, I made an appointment at the Metabolic Medical Clinic.
In the hospital after having Beckett in November 2010
Tipping the scales at 225 
Age 30
September 2012; Weight: 138 
Age 32
I've been on the diet since March 28th and have lost roughly 40 pounds.  I feel fantastic, have tons more energy and will be starting a maintenance plan shortly.  The plan is essentially learning to eat lower carbs and fats, while supplementing with protein shakes to reach your goal weight.  It's a physician assisted program with emphasis on lifestyle change.

Since starting the program, I have talked to numerous people in my area who have lost weight and successfully kept it off for years.  That's always music to my ears when I hear that!

I'm aware that when we decide to have another child one day, I'll probably have start from scratch.  I just don't plan on playing the pregnancy card next time and living off of Lizard's Thicket and red velvet cake.

While on the diet I've found out a lot about my body and my metabolism, what foods make the scales move and what foods don't.

As with ANY diet, you plateau.  There are times when I've stuck with the same weight for 2 weeks and the scales seem glued!  I've had to reevaluate and change up my food intake to get the scales moving again.

Here are some of the big changes I've made that I believe have made the biggest impact on my weight:

*I work out when I can, but for ME to get the pounds off, I have to work on what I put into my body!
*I cut out Diet Coke altogether.  Before I started this diet, I drank 4-5 or more a day along with coffee.
*I try my best NOT to eat after 7 pm.
*I've never been a believer of the "smaller meals more often" hoopla, However, I now have changed my mind.  If I'm not famished when I get home, I'm less likely to eat everything in the fridge.
*I drink TONS of water.  Flavored water.  Plain water is boring, but amen for Crystal Light!
*I use seasoning with little or no sodium on meats and veggies.
*I measure out dressings and creamer portions.  2 tbsp. of dressing will go along way if you mix it up right.  I make my salads in a hug mixing bowl so I can distribute the dressing evenly.
*As soon as I get home from work (5:15) I eat a portion of steamed broccoli or green beans to fill me up. That way, by the time I eat dinner, I've already filled up on veggies and don't tend to eat things I shouldn't later in the evening.
*I remember reading somewhere that if you're hungry, drink a lot of water, because chances are you're actually dehydrated instead.  I always keep beverages close by in the late afternoon, because I know that's when I'm the most hungry during the day.
*I steer away from low cal dressings.  They taste like crap and have more carbs than the original.

Foods I eat most often: 
*Grilled chicken
*Grilled Shrimp
*Grilled Fish
*Steamed asparagus, broccoli, or green beans with Molly McButter, spray butter or Mrs. Dash.
*Turkey Sausage
*Turkey Bacon
*Turkey Pepperoni

Salads with a base of baby spinach mixed with either Italian blend or Mediterranean blend salad mix.
Toppings for salads include some of the following, but I change it up:
*Rotisserie Chicken from the grocery store deli
*Grilled Chicken or shrimp
*Shaved Parmesan
*Romano Cheese
*Turkey Bacon
*Favorite Dressings:  Newmans Own Lite Honey Mustard (the only lite dressing I eat), Ken's Ranch, Naturally Fresh Jalepeno Ranch
*Mrs. Dash Italian Blend

*Sugar Free popsicles, Sugar Free Fudgesicles and Sugar Free Jell-O

*Coffee with Sugar Free Creamer and Splenda or Stevia
*Crystal Light (comes in about a gazillion flavors)
*Sparkling Ice flavored water
*Vitamin Water Zero
*La Croix Sparkling water (I mix it with Crystal Light)

Supplements I take daily: 
AM:   Biotin
         Vitamin B12
         Psyllium Fiber
         Fish Oil

PM:  Chromium Picolinate
         Potassium Gluconate
         Vitamin D with Calcium

I DO eat out and I DO drink alcohol.
I usually eat out 1-2 times a week.  1 fast food meal and 1 sit-down restaurant meal.  If I'm eating fast food, I always go for the salad with grilled chicken.  Most every fast food chain has a grilled chicken salad on the menu.  For nicer restaurants, I almost always order salmon or seafood with a side of veggies and a side salad to start.  I TRY not to drink alcohol during the week and limit alcohol consumption to Friday and/or Saturday nights (unless I've had a shitty day, otherwise the rules may be broken).  I try to stick to red wine or Michelob Ultra.

Basically, I've restricted calories in my diet, but more importantly, sugar and carbs.  I don't crave sweets NEAR as much as I used to and I'm not constantly hungry all the time.

Essentially, the biggest thing that has helped me is that I'm on a PLAN!  No thoughts about what to eat, very little meal preparation and planning is involved.  I know that I'm allowed shakes and meals at certain times during the day and nothing else.  No Hershey's miniature, no bite size Snicker.  What's on the list of allotted foods is what I stick to!  I'm aware that restaurants add sauces with sugar and extra ingredients for marinating, but in all reality, it's a luxury for me to sit down at a quiet restaurant and I don't sweat that my salmon might be dripping in butter.  It's still a better choice than the fried shrimp because I'm limiting my carb intake.

More than anything, it's a way of thinking.  I've learned what foods trigger binge eating and how my body reacts if I eat high fat, high carb and sugary foods.  I know how easy it is to fall off the bandwagon of weight loss.  I've had weekends of binging on carbs and unhealthy foods.  I've watched the numbers on the scales creep quickly back up again, and I start back over the next day.....and watch the numbers reverse....again.

I have never (and will never) strive to be perfect.   I didn't set foot in the door of the diet clinic with an aim to look like a Victoria's Secret model.  I know I'm flawed.  HUGELY flawed.  I know that most likely, no matter what, I'll always have a muffin top that I pinch and poke at every time I put on a bathing suit.  I know that no matter what, I'll have always have row of stretch marks across my back and along my stomach from being pregnant with the most beautiful creature I've ever laid eyes on.  I could care less about those.  They make me who I am!

For the first time in my life, I've been happy with my body.  Stretch marks and a muffin top included!  To be very honest, my original goal was to get past 150 and into the 140's.  I told the nurse on my initial visit, I thought that was a pipe dream....but somewhere back in my mind, I've always felt that there was a skinny person trapped in my fat girl body.

NEVER did I think that after having an almost 9 pound baby and gaining a ton of weight (literally), I'd be able to fit myself into size 2's and 4's.  It's still an adjustment for me to walk into a clothing store and look for clothes.  I gravitate automatically to the size 12's and 14's.  Then I realize, I need to keep on moving down the rack to the lower sizes.  I'm amazed by the fact that I'll turn 33 in a few weeks and just NOW can wear sizes I thought I'd never see even back in my teenage years.  Even if this only lasts for a short amount of time (which I hope isn't the case), at least I know that I'm capable of meeting my personal goals.

Email me or leave a comment if you have any questions, I'll be glad to answer any.

Left:  Size 16-18  Right:  Size: 4
If you're interested in the exact plan that I'm on, I'll include the website at the end of this post.  The site lists prices for plans, etc.  Look under the FAQ section at the top of the webpage for more information.
If you don't live in an area where there is a MMC close by, there are plenty of Physician assisted weight loss centers like this one across the US.

Bottom Line:  If I can do this, believe me....ANYone can!!

Happy Thursday!


  1. Congrats to you. You look healthy & gorgeous. Great job!

  2. Congratulations! This is very inspiring and I appreciate you being so honest!

  3. Congrats. You look healthy and happy.

  4. This was very inspiring! I have a very similar story to yours and could relate to everything you said. I always managed to make excuses to stay at my 180ish lb weight after two babies but was never really happy with my body. I am now down to 155 and still going strong! Congratulations on your weight loss you look FANTASTIC!

    1. That's fantastic, Stephanie!! Way to go! It's much easier when you get the ball rolling, right? Thanks for the sweet comment and good luck!

  5. Way to go Katie!! You look amazing and your story will help many others.
    Love your blog and following you on Pinterest!


    1. Thanks Paula!!! .....and if you're the same 'Paula' I follow on Pinterest, the feeling is mutual!!

  6. You look AMAZING! You always have been beautiful, though. :)

    1. Awww, thanks Susan! Your'e ALWAYS so kind!!!

  7. Congratulations! That is an amazing accomplishment - one that you should be really proud of. (By the way, I would have given a death stare to that nurse that yelled out your weight. Regardless of the number, that is a very private matter that should not be yelled.) I'm not good at commenting, but I love your blog and your pins!