Transformation of the Day: Cara lost 33 pounds. As a Pharmacist, it is her job to teach people how to take their meds and take care of themselves, but she wasn’t making her health a priority. When she found out she was at risk for heart disease, she turned fear into action. By adpoting healthy eating habits and working out at home, she has gotten results and become an inspiration.
What was your motivation? What inspired you to keep going when you wanted to give up?
I battled with my weight for many years. (I can remember back to middle school when I started dieting.) For a long time, my motivation was to be accepted by others. I struggled with thinking I wasn’t pretty enough and thinking, “If only I could be skinny…” I finally stopped trying to make a change for other people, and started the process of loving myself. Once I did that, everything changed.
After college, I was at my largest. I’m in the healthcare profession, and my job is to teach others how to take their medications on time and take care of themselves. I was counseling people daily who were battling diseases that started because they were not eating properly and being active. These people were losing their limbs and eye sight because they could not control their blood sugar. I never thought that I could be that person battling a condition that was brought along due to diet, until I went to have some blood work done. I was told that if I did not get my triglycerides under control, I would have to be placed on medication in order to protect my heart. How can I tell people to live healthier, if I’m not doing it myself? I started working out, but stopped because my mind was not in the right space. That constant battle of not being worthy or not being enough stopped me in my tracks. After years of yo-yoing, fad diets, shots and weight loss pills, I finally found what worked for me: Staying consistent with proper nutrition and exercise. Crazy right!?
The more I shared my story, the more people told me that they were in the same boat. This pushed me to do this for not only myself, but to inspire the people around me. My motivation is the people who’s lives could change, just by me showing them that it is possible. I am driven by the fact that people need to know that you can take control of your health.
My fear of potentially developing heart disease is something I have recently opened up and shared with others. With proper nutrition and consistent exercise, I have been able to change my status. My triglyceride levels have dropped from almost 200 to 32. My cholesterol overall is at the best it has ever been. I am stopping the cycle of diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure run in my family. I refuse to believe that disease has to affect me and my children. This is now my motivation and what keeps me going.
How did you change your eating habits?
The main thing I changed was just being more conscious of what I was putting in my mouth. Life is a hustle. I was working 14 and 10 hour shifts and putting in over 120 hours every 2 weeks. If I wasn’t working, I was asleep. I had to get into the mindset of creating my time;
- Wake up early.
- Make myself a priority.
- Plan out my meals.
- Pack my lunch.
- Always have food readily available so I don’t run to the drive thru.
I love my carbs. I love my protein. I love my veggies… I just love food. I did not cut anything out. Instead, I had everything in moderation. I still go out to eat. I still have a burger, but instead of having foods like that a couple times a week, I may hit up a drive thru once or twice a month.
I have recently started following meal tips from a registered dietician who has really explained to me the purpose of carbs, proteins and veggies. I hit a plateau recently, so I have focused on nutrition to get over this hump. Recently, I started cutting carbs at night and the change has really started to show.
What did your workout routine look like?
I love HIIT training. High Intensity workouts are everything to me. Recently, I’ve started doing a lot more heavy weight lifting as well, and that is proving to be amazing. For a while, I was always doing cardio. Incorporating weight lifting into my routine has shaped my body in ways I did not know were possible. I workout from home, so I have no excuses at all. My workouts range from 30 minutes to an hour. Depending on what program I am following, I may workout 4 to 6 days a week.
What was your starting weight? What is your current weight?
At my heaviest, I weighed 190 pounds. Currently I weigh 157 pounds. I am 5’4”.
When did you start your journey? How long did your transformation take?
My journey has been off and on for as long as I can remember. My heaviest point was in 2012. I completely allowed myself to be overcome by the real world after college. My most recent transformation was from honest, hard work over the course of the past year. 180lbs in 2017 to 157lbs in 2018.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned?
I learned that my body can do so much more than I thought it could. I have also learned that this journey has to be important to me before it can work. I know that I am worthy, and I can do the things necessary for my life. I have learned that I have control over my health.
What advice do you have for people who want to lose weight?
Make sure that you remind yourself daily that you are a priority. Your health is a priority. We tend to run ourselves ragged for other people, but if we don’t take care of ourselves we won’t be able to be here for our families.
Weight loss is not an overnight quick fix. Put in the work, and your transformation will be even greater than just some numbers on scale. Your entire mind can transform when you put in the work and believe in yourself. You can do all things! You are already equipped to do it, just believe in yourself!