Transformation of the Day: Gabrielle lost 65 pounds. The stress of starting her own business and working her day job, led to significant weight gain. She decided that she’d had enough of avoiding mirrors and feeling uncomfortable in her own skin. This world traveler decided to address her unhealthy lifestyle with low carb eating and exercise. Check out her story.
I’m Gabrielle and one day, I just had enough. I decided I wanted to live. I was tired of avoiding mirrors and trying to make myself invisible. Obesity had been a common denominator in my life. In the past, I wasn’t active. I was inconsistent with what I ate and then top it off, I’ve been battling a brain disorder, depression, anxiety and PCOS for years. I started changing my life one meal at a time. I’ve lost weight before, but not like this. Now, I am actively listening to my body and learning about nutrition and fitness.
I began my own business in the summer of 2015 and between the stress of that and my day job, I had ballooned up to over 350 pounds. I honestly don’t know where I weighed in at after that, because my scale didn’t go any higher. What I do know is that I was tired of feeling uncomfortable in my own skin. I went to Morocco and Brazil and I absolutely hated my pictures. I hid my body as much as possible. I never felt more sick. Feeling sick and trapped became my motivation, not a number or any life event. I was motivated because I want to feel healthy and alive. I wanted to change while I was able to do so. I’m 5 feet tall even and I only could deny how unhealthy I was for so long.
My workouts are focused on strength training first and cardio second. Muscle burns fat all day. A cardio only routine lacks the sculpting and burns muscle as well as fat. I workout between 3-5 times a week, depending on my schedule. My workout regimen is as follows: a 10 minute inclined walk, 1 hour of strength training and free weights, 40 minutes of mixed cardio. I love variety, so I pick 4 machines and do 10 minutes of HIIT training on each. I love the elliptical, but I truly use all of the cardio options available to me at the gym (except the stair climber, that begins in the new year).
My nutrition is low carb based. I eat high protein meals with moderate fat. I also eat smaller portions. I eat 30-40 grams of carbs a day. I learned about timing what I eat and how that effects my body. I follow a macronutrient focused eating regimen that is low carb before dinner and no carbs after 5pm.
I stopped eating fruit for three months and then I slowly reintroduced lower carb options such as apples. I completely removed alcohol, white grains and bread, frozen diet meals (sodium is atrocious) sugar drinks from my diet. This includes crystal light due to the side effects of fake sugar. Complex carbs (such as an apple) are amazing before I work out as opposed to eating sushi post workout, which leaves me starving.
I began this journey in March of 2016, and I’m still on it. My current weight is 285 pounds. I haven’t had any surgery, hopefully I won’t need it. It’s a daily choice for me to workout, to eat right, to make healthier choices throughout my day. If anyone is reading this and you are looking for advice, just start where you are. Focus on your journey and the end result, not any quick fixes. It’s not an overnight process, but the inches add up. The pounds add up as well. And lastly, be gentle with yourself.