Transformation of the Day: Marsha lost 43 pounds. She is a 54 year old mom and wife with 8 grandkids and one on the way. An evening of roller skating led to a wakeup call in the form of an unflattering photo that was posted online. Check out what she did to achieve true lifestyle change.
Growing up, as a little girl, I had no issues with weight. Somewhere between junior high and my first year in high school, I ballooned to almost 230 pounds. I was wearing a size 24. This was my highest weight. By the 12th grade, through diet & exercise, I dropped to a size 12. However, it wasn’t long before I went back up to a size 18, where I stayed for most of my adult life. During the early years of my marriage and while having kids, I continued to yo-yo.
When I did exercise, it was only because I wanted to look good for an upcoming event I had to go to at the time. I do, however, have a passion for roller skating and I would skate every chance I could, sometimes 3 times a week. I did nothing to change my diet and continued to eat all the wrong things.
The miracle: I was at a skating event, rolling on the skate floor when Larry Black, a skate
photographer, took my picture. A few days later, while I was at work, Larry posted the picture of me on Facebook and tagged me. When I saw it, I was MORTIFIED at how huge I was! Of course, I see myself everyday in the mirror, but to see myself in the public’s eye was an awakening for me.”This is how others saw me too!”, I said. I immediately asked Larry to take the photo down, but he did not respond. I could no longer concentrate at work. My thoughts were to get home, log into Facebook and hide the pic (didn’t have a smart phone at the time). It was then that I realized that I had to make a “lifestyle” change. This change was not for any upcoming event in my life. “The event” was my life!
I slowly started to wean myself of all the wrong foods, but knew I could not go cold turkey on everything that I loved and craved. I chose one thing at a time to concentrate on and mastered living without it before I moved on. For example, in a 12 oz cup of coffee I would use 16 packs of sugar! I switched to Sweet & Low and only used 4 packs. Once I no longer craved the sugar, I moved on to the starches; white starches, french fries, white rice and breads. I switched to whole wheat bread, eating no other starches. I doubled my vegetable intake even when I ate out.
Once I no longer craved the white starches, I moved on to the next item; soda and fruit juices. If it took me 2 or 3 weeks to wean myself off those drinks, so be it. You see… this was NOT a race for me. I needed to be comfortable and satisfied with my food choices, as this was my “lifestyle change”. I could not afford to feel deprived and end up being vulnerable to falling off again (which was my pattern). I’m a very picky eater and bad with following diets. For example, I don’t like beets, or yogurt so I’m not going to eat beets or yogurt just because they are healthy.
In addition to roller skating, which I still do, I joined a gym and concentrated on the cardio. When I first got on the elliptical, I was exhausted and done after 7 or 8 minutes. I alternated from the gym to walking outside and bike riding. In a nutshell, I exercised every day for 30 to 60 minutes, sometimes more. Today, I can easily do an hour. I go to the gym 3 to 4 times a week and go roller skating 2 to 3 times a week.
In 2 years, I went from 198 pounds to 155 pounds and from a size 16 to a size 8. I am 5 ft 6 inches tall and it was hard for me to maintain the size 8, even with the exercise and new eating habits. Now, I am very comfortable wearing size 10 and weighing 160-165 pounds. If the scale goes over the 165 mark, I buckle down to stay on track.
I am a working professional who loves to roller skate. I’m 54 year old mom and wife with 8 grand kids and one on the way. Have I fell off track? I’m human. Of course I have, but the difference is that when I fall I no longer wallow in it or feel sorry for myself. I get up quickly, brush myself off and get back on track. I LOVE my new lifestyle! I am more confident and feel accomplished every day that I have taken control of my life. I thank God for placing Larry Black in the right place at the right time. I will always remain humble throughout my journey!
My focus going forward is to concentrate more on incorporating weight lifting into my workouts to help me tone and maintain my new lifestyle. When the scale don’t move and I feel like giving up, I go through my pictures and put together “before and after pics” to keep my memory green! That always works for me.