Weight Loss, part 1: How I Put on the Weight

Do you know what it is like to go from being a normal weight, to suddenly gaining a shocking amount, to spending years dealing with your weight going up and down, to being tired of it but not being able to lose it, to not knowing what to do, to finally getting a solution?

Up until puberty, I never had weight problems. I was an average-sized child of normal weight for my age and height. With the onset of puberty began my weight challenges. I suddenly started gaining weight overnight. My mom got concerned and forced me to do workout videos, and I’m sure they helped me stay healthy, since in my teens I sort of had an aversion to exercise. I much would have preferred sitting with books for hours.

As I got older and more concerned for my health (and wanting to be attractive), I made daily exercise a priority. While I wasn’t overweight, I did love food more than was good. I would often eat because I could, not because I needed to. In my early 20’s, I made a trip through the southern US with my family, living in a trailer for several months. We drove a lot, stayed in campgrounds, and often ate in truck stops. I was shocked when my clothes started getting tight.

Once we were home I went on a personal exercise binge and forced myself to work out for 1 1/2 hours a day, doing both cardio and toning exercises daily. I didn’t diet, but because we were no longer traveling, our meals became normal and thus I did eat less. It wasn’t long before I had lost the excess weight.

I was nanny to these adorable munchkins for almost 3 years

I was nanny to these adorable munchkins for almost 3 years.

Back when I still had a flat tummy...

Back when I still had a flat tummy…

After that I kept an eye on my weight and exercises religiously, up until I got pregnant with Logan. I had no idea what kind of exercise was safe for pregnancy, nor did I look into it, so pretty much overnight I went from daily exercise to no exercise. Once the morning sickness wore off and I was able to eat normally, I ate a lot, so much so that I put on too much weight too fast. At one point I gained 6 kilos in a month and even my doctor couldn’t believe it. Somewhere I had read that I needed to eat every 2 hours and also eat for 2, so you can imagine how much food I was packing away.

Six months pregnant with Logan.

Six months pregnant with Logan.

When Logan was born at 33 weeks, I weighed 90 kilos. My pre-pregnancy weight was somewhere around 70 kilos, so that was a gain of 20 kilos between conception and the 7th month of pregnancy. I even developed a problem with my left wrist due to the weight gain. (Thankfully it went away as my weight went down.)

Four days after Logan was born.

Four days after Logan was born.

Thus began my struggle to get back to a normal weight.

With two more pregnancies following Logan’s in rapid succession, my weight was all over the place. I’d go up and down, back and forth. With the girls, I gained weight more slowly, so while I gained the same amount as I did with Logan, I gained it over 9 months instead of 7. Also, I was able to get exercise during those pregnancies, mainly in the form of walks while pushing the stroller. But while I got more exercise, my problem was my diet.

About 6 months along with Scarlett. (Don't Logan and Lila look adorable?)

About 6 months along with Scarlett. (Don’t Logan and Lila look adorable?)

I enjoy food. I always have. Especially pasta. And chocolate. And all that time, I kept eating more than I should, simply because I was either pregnant or breastfeeding and I felt that my body needed it. I was never able to cut down, though Glad did point out that that was the problem.

When Scarlett was a year old, we went with some friends to a resort for a day, just to relax and swim. I fought with myself to get into a swimsuit that had fit and I couldn’t figure out why I couldn’t get it on. Once I saw the photos from that day, I was horrified with how I looked, and that is when I recommitted to exercise.

I'm embarrassed to show this, but this is the photo that did it for me, and gave me the kick to begin weight loss.

I’m embarrassed to show this, but this is the photo that did it for me, and gave me the kick to begin weight loss. (And I think I did eat that whole plate myself. Now I would eat maybe a third of that.)

To be continued…

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2 Comments

  1. Tina

     /  March 6, 2013

    I think the most horrendous part of the exercise is to simply stay on track, we obviously tire ourselves with routine and can find a million excuses to procrastinate the regime. Good on ya Mercy for tackling the problem.

    Reply
    • Staying on track is hard, but giving up large amounts of food has been harder. You’ll see how I’m working on that in the next part.

      Reply

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