Update 2017: Dani is still going strong her her journey. Size 18/20 to size 14.
I wanted to give an update to my sisters on our healthy journey. My motivation for slimming down started in January 2013. Initially was wanting to feel healthier, especially when I finished my PhD in May 2013. Within the past year, my motivation has shifted to wanting to have more energy since I became more involved with community organizing and activism. In order to fight social injustice, I knew that feeling my best was was critically important. I also went natural in April of 2015, so I think the process of growing out my natural, healthy hair inspired me to help my body become even healthier as well. My eating habits have changed.
February 2017 marked a full year of me being a pescatarian, eating only fish and seafood. During the week (Monday – Friday), I usually drink coffee with fruit for breakfast and have veggies for lunch. Sometimes I have a light snack, and then for dinner I usually have something with a soy burger or fish. The past year has taught me the importance of healthy eating, and I’ve been taking that really seriously. I try to workout at least 4 or 5 times per week, alternating upper and lower body strength training and doing at least 30 minutes of cardio every time I workout.
In January 2013 (photo on the left), I wore a size 18/20. In February 2017 (on the right), I am a size 14 (height: 5’2″). I started my journey in January 2013, and it has been a process of victories and setbacks, but now I really feel like I’ve found the equilibrium on my journey to becoming my healthiest self. My advice for others is to be gentle with yourself and continue on the journey, even if some moments are more difficult than others. You’ll get there, and we’ll be cheering you on along the way. I would love to be in touch. I’m on Instagram: @daniellisha, and I’m on Twitter: @dani_creolegirl. Love to you all!
Lifestyle Change: Dani lost 30 pounds. A few months after finishing her PhD in Higher Education, she committed to starting her weight release journey. With healthy food choices, exercise and lots of self love, she has committed to her new healthy lifestyle for good. Check out what she shared with us.
Hi, Black Women Losing Weight! I want to share my weight loss journey, with hopes that it might inspire my fellow sisters who are losing weight. The photo on the left was taken in December 2012, and the photo on the right was taken on March 5, 2016. I started my weight loss journey in October 2013.
I started doing a lot of strength training along with cardio, and found my body becoming a lot leaner and stronger. I recently also became a pescetarian (a vegetarian that eats fish and seafood), so I’m looking forward to integrating this eating style into my overall wellness plan.
Motivation: My motivation for losing weight was wanting to feel stronger and to feel more comfortable in my own skin. After having finished my PhD in Higher Education in May of 2013, I decided that I wanted to make exercising a lifestyle, not just something to do in spurts. When I began exercising regularly, I discovered my love of strength-training. Using weights helped me to discover how powerful and strong my body was, which was so liberating in so many ways. When I wanted to give up, I just remembered that I was on a journey, and even if I got frustrated, I could always start right back up.
Eating Habits: About a month ago, I decided to become a pescatarian, which means that I gave up eating all poultry, beef, and pork altogether, and I only eat fish and seafood. Since I stopped eating all animal products except for fish and seafood, my body feels so much better, and I feel like my body is digesting food so much more efficiently.
Workouts: During most weeks, I try to work out at least 4 times per week. I do some form of strength training and cardio every single day. I try to get at least 30 minutes of strength training and at least 20 minutes of cardio in during every workout.
Progress: I lost approximately 30 pounds over the course of my journey, and I hope to keep progressively burning more fat and losing more weight, slowly. I am 5’ 2” tall.
Advice: My advice to others who want to lose weight is to love yourself from the moment you start your fitness/weight loss journey, and never let that love go. Very often, people think to themselves, “I’ll really love myself after I lose weight.” However, we can’t punish ourselves that way, and deny ourselves the self-love that we all deserve. Just think of it as a lifelong commitment to healthy eating, exercise, and loving ourselves from the inside, out.