My family photos last year were all screwed up. My family looked nice, but the photographer had obviously altered my photo to make me look heavier. To be honest, I had retained a little baby weight after having each of my four children. As I prepared to turn 40, I realized that being overweight was only going to become more and more of a challenge and a health concern. As I contemplated the heavy woman posing with my family in the photos, I wasn’t sure where to turn.
I considered my options. I could join a gym, but I knew I would not use it. I would have to lose a little weight before I could be seen at the gym. A friend of mine had some luck with Weight Watchers®. I joined the online program and downloaded the app onto my phone. The phone app was very user friendly; it allowed me to scan foods at the grocery store before putting them in my cart. Slowly, I started changing my eating habits; the app was helping me to make healthier choices. I could even plan what to eat at a restaurant ahead of time; most large chains are listed in the app with the menu items rated by calorie cost. My eyes were opened – I had no idea that my previous dinner choices were so rich in calories.
Within the first two weeks, I was losing weight. I was so encouraged that I started to pass on second helpings. When it came time for a snack, I still ate potato chips. The difference was that I started pouring the chips from the bag to a small bowl and weighing the portions. Once the chips in the smaller bowl were gone, snack time was over. I also started eating better throughout the day, because I wanted to have extra calories available after dinner so I could snack as I watched television.
When I turned 40 five months later, I hit my first major milestone. I was 30 pounds lighter! I was able to buy all new summer clothes, and I still kept losing weight.
Then I hit a wall. With the support of two friends, I began walk/jogging three times per week. It was exhausting at first, but my body adjusted and the weight started coming off again. My birthday present to myself came a few months late, but a year later I am 40 pounds lighter.