My weight loss journey has been an uphill battle. From working two jobs after graduation to starting grad school, I haven't found much time to invest in myself. However, with the motivation from friends, family, and classmates; I am ready to make something shake. I've come to the realization that it is okay to stay busy, but you've got to make time for yourself.
The person who motivated me the most was a fellow classmate who would "check-in" and tag someone in her Instagram story every time she went to the gym. I took notice and started checking in with her too. After a few days of checking in, another friend of mine started checking in as well. It's a form of accountability and I'm grateful to have accountability partners! It pushes me to stay active even when I don't want to. I also think that checking in to my Instagram story, where everyone can see, could possibly be a silent motivator for others.
I am not much of a gym person, so I made an effort to exercise outside or at home. I invested in a few things such as a jump rope, resistance bands, medicine ball, and weights. Although I do not have as much equipment as a gym, I am still able to get a meaningful workout by combining weight/resistance training with cardio. For cardio, I walk/jog at the nearest park. I use the app "Running." It offers a free 7-day trial and can either be used as a free version or a premium version, which is $9.99 a month. Although that may be a little expensive for some, it is cheaper than a gym membership. It includes virtual personal trainers, playlists, different level and style workouts, recipes, shopping lists and more. I also go to classes at the LSU UREC since its free (for now lol). My favorite group class is spin!
I have also been using J.J. Smith's green smoothie recipes to help with my journey. I would recommend purchasing her books: The 10-Day Green Smoothie Cleanse and Green Smoothies for Life. I also joined her Facebook group. Since the beginning of the year, I've lost 12 pounds. However, I have only been consistently exercising for about 2-3 weeks.
For anyone trying to lose weight, my biggest tips would be:
In the meantime, we'll see how "Take 4" goes. Wish me luck and keep checking in!
Last year's weight loss journey did not go as planned.
Before school started, I was eating healthy and working out semi-regularly. After school started, that all came to a halt. Not only did I regain the four pounds I had lost, but I've nearly regained the 30 pounds that I lost a few summers ago. Juggling classes, work, homework, extracurricular activities, a social life and sleep is hard. Trying to stick to a healthy eating plan and find the time to workout in addition to that was nearly impossible.
I won't blame all of my poor choices on my busy schedule, but we all know how hard it is to juggle so many things at once. I chose to put my health on the back burner and I paid for my actions. My clothes don't fit how I want them anymore, I can feel all the weight I gained and I became low-key depressed and angry with myself.
All of this to say, I'm taking my health back. Since January 2, I have been following the Daniel Fast. Not only am I fasting to get closer to God, but I'm fasting to kickstart a healthier lifestyle. I know that if I am going to make healthier choices, I can't do it on my own. I need God. And taking care of my temple is a top priority.
We are human. Humans are not perfect. Humans fail. And I am not afraid to say I backslid. But I know that when I have people looking up to me and asking me for advice, I can't go back to my unhealthy ways. I'd be a hypocrite and I can't let down all the people who have been cheering for me from the beginning.
I'm claiming 2016 as my year for breakthroughs, Weight loss and all.
For those of you who followed my previous blog, you probably read about my weight loss journey. Since it's been about a year since I've posted to my blog, I'll go ahead and start all over.
I have always been a bigger girl. I started gaining weight in the first grade and instead of dropping the baby fat like most people do, it stayed. I wouldn't say that I had an unhealthy lifestyle as a child as far as food goes, but I wasn't very physically active. I was the type of child who would rather stay in the house and paint.
Fast forward to my junior year in high school. I started working at McDonald's. It was my first job. I loved making my own money and I loved the free meal that came with every shift I worked. My mom told me that eating fast food every day probably wasn't a good idea, but I didn't listen. The food was just so good.
Well, maybe I should have listened. I can remember the day my grandmother showed me the collage she made for my graduation party. It had pictures of me at every age. The picture that stood out the most was one taken before I started working at McDonald's. That picture put in perspective of just how much weight I had gained in little over a year.
It wasn't until the summer after my freshman year in college that I decided to make a change. At the beginning of the summer I weighed in at a whopping 277 pounds. My friends and I decided to have a summer weight loss competition. With healthier food choices and exercise I dropped down to 245 by the end of the summer. I was ecstatic.
But just as quick as I lost the weight, I gained it right back.
During my sophomore year, I changed my major and for a few semesters I had to play catch up. With more classes and less time, I turned to quick, cheap food and over the winter break, I indulged in gumbo and desserts. Over and over again, I told myself that when I got back to school the habits would change but they didn't.
I went from 245 to 262.
My friends and I have again decided to partake in a weight loss competition. This time around we will support and encourage each other along the way. Just like so many people told me that I inspired them during my first journey, someone is encouraging me this time around.
My very close friend Stephonie has decided to document her weight loss journey on YouTube and Instagram. She has entitled her journey #LoveThyself. Check her out on Instagram @n_myopinion and on YouTube under S. Nikkole for inspiration.
Hopefully I will be better at documenting my journey this time around. I will share food tips and recipes and try to talk about my daily routine. Our official competition started on Aug. 29, 2015, but my lifestyle change started on Aug. 24, 2015. Since that day I have lost four pounds.
Anyways... Stay tuned for more updates!