Losing 100+ Pounds and Finding Myself

In 2008 (when I was 26 years old) I got the worst call of my life. My dad, who I loved more than anyone, had a stroke at work and had been taken to the ER. I flew home as fast as I could, but I never saw him awake again. A week later he passed away.

That day I thought my life fell apart. But, I was kidding myself- my life had started to fall apart way before that. When I got home from Chicago I was in a daze. About 3 weeks later, I started “living” again- going through the motions. You see, my dad was overweight, diabetic, and had really high blood pressure. As they were trying to stabilize him, it became apparent that he hadn’t been taking the meds he was prescribed, like he was supposed to. All of this culminated in an aneurysm in his brain that the neurosurgeon couldn’t correct.  Over the next year, I began to evaluate my own life. My dad was a week in to 51 years old when he passed- way too young. He and I had a lot in common from our love of the outdoors to our love of food. Also, over the next year, my marriage fell apart. I was a mess.

At the end of 2009 I made a clear, conscious decision (a stake in the ground sort of moment) to stop “going through the motions” and OWN my life and my choices. January 2010 I was 267 pounds, an emotional time bomb, and just plain miserable. Nothing I was doing gave me joy anymore. And that wasn’t going to work for me.

I spent the next two and a half years watching what I put in my mouth, and moving my body more. Diet-wise, I watched calories, tracking everything, and then eventually switched to a mostly Paleo lifestyle in the spring of 2012. I don’t do it perfectly, but right now I am in the middle of a Whole30 (from www.whole9life.com), trying to figure my body out. I’m not going for a quick fix- I’ve been at this for a long time and plan to be healthy for the rest of my life.  Exercise wise, I started with walking. I could hardly walk a block before getting winded and the little voice inside my head would tell me “you can’t do this; you may as well go home now.” Somehow, I learned to silence that voice. I started running with my friend La Nae, first with Couch to 5k, then with Lifetime’s Run Club and their trainer David Clark’s organization http://thesupermanproject.org/ . I have since run a ton of 5 and 10k’s as well as 2 half marathons.

In the process of finding a better (best) version of me I stumbled upon www.nerdfitness.com . This changed my life. I had all the individual components, but I couldn’t seem to juggle them all at once. Reading the articles and talking with others who have had success helped propel me into a position to really level up my life. I learned to do some strength training in conjunction with my cardio. I learned a lot about food and have made an informed decision to cut certain foods out of my life. I have made amazing friends, like Amanda(Wicked Pixie) who all support me and encourage me to keep going. The challenges help me take my long term goals and make them bite size and baby-stepped. I have learned to put into action all the small pieces of my life simultaneously. THAT’s where life change happens.

I have now been at this for two and a half years. I have lost 102 pounds (and am still losing) and in the process I have found a reason to keep going- I’m worth it. I’m worth the hard work, the sweat, the pain, and the tough choices. All of it. I am stronger, smarter, and more joyful. I haven’t arrived- I still have a lot of really hard work to do. The difference is that now I know I can.

Before and Now (ironically wearing the number 102 and the day I lost 102 pounds!)

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12 thoughts on “Losing 100+ Pounds and Finding Myself

  1. You are an amazing woman! I am proud to call you friend!
    You are going to inspire so many! I’m crying such happy tears for you!

  2. You. Are. Amazing.
    I feel so inspired to get moving but know that I need to get a green light from my dr. (3 weeks postpartum) since I did have major surgery. Anyway, I love how you have taken charge of your health and future and chose to create a new definition of yourself as a fit superwoman! Congrats and now I must go for a walk with the baby! xoxo you rock!

  3. Oh wow, I hope you don’t mind if I reblog this – this is AHmazing! We share a few similarities. When I started my journey, I was around 270. I was depressed, unhappy and going through the motions of living. I felt like I was a prisoner, trapped inside my own body and there was nothing I could do to get away from it. Type II diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and other maladies are common in my family, particularly among the older generation. We were never taught about nutrition, fitness or just the importance of simply making good choices and being healthy. My mother was morbidly obese and had high blood pressure. She did not take her medication as she was supposed to, largely due to lack of health care coverage and the expense involved. I lost my mother to a brain aneurysm when I was fifteen. She was only 34 years old. Sadly, I have followed in her footsteps for most of my life as far as my diet, lack of exercise and excess of stress. When I turned 33 this year, it hit me – I am only one year away from the age my mother was when she died. THAT was a scary thought, particularly considering that (like her) I have three children that are depending on me. I’m not sure why it never hit me before but I am glad that it finally did.

    Anyway, I am SO inspired by your post! It makes me want to write about my AHA moment, too. Maybe one day… 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing your story!!

    • Thank you so much for your kind words, and I’m sorry that we share a similar story. I wish it weren’t a common theme among so many people, but unfortunately it is. I hope that others can be encouraged to change their lives and be better for themselves, before it’s too late!

  4. Reblogged this on The Paleo Spot and commented:
    Here it is, ladies and gentlemen – proof that you CAN change the course of your life! This woman certainly did. She did things that she never envisioned being able to do – and then some! Seriously, what are you waiting for? We can join her and be a success story, too! 🙂

  5. Robin … you did this the right way, with the right mind-set! I know it wasn’t easy, and a LOT of hard work, but I’m glad you learned from your dad’s mistakes! I LOVE reading success stories like this! Amazing!! Congratulations

  6. Pingback: Carb Nite and Food Remorse | Hammi: Bacon-Fueled Fitness

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