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Success to hopefully keep you going! :)

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  • DeeDeeLHF
    DeeDeeLHF Posts: 2,301 Member
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    Amazing, inspirational, incredible, startling, unbelievable, encouraging, hopeful, heartening, elevating, wonderful, awesome, fantastic, breath taking, magnificent, tremendous, remarkable, extraordinary, fabulous!!:heart::drinker: :flowerforyou:
  • meana717
    meana717 Posts: 261 Member
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    Wow Tam... you are so motivational!!! Great job with all of your success...
  • Redkoala
    Redkoala Posts: 146
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    Your pictures are great and you look fab! well done
  • Nanalmw
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    Thanks for the share!!! You look REALLY good!!! My goal is to get the last 50 lbs off before my 40th birthday! You just jumped started my drive again! Keep up the good work, you look FABULOUS!!!!
  • nayeliob
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    WOW! You're gorgeous :) Your transformation is amazing...I can't wait until I get to my goal! Knowing that you reached your goal & have been able to maintain even with a pregnancy is such an inspiration for all of us on this journey! Congratulations :)
    Thank you!! And best of luck. You can do this! :drinker: :flowerforyou:

    omfg!!!! you look soooo good....motivated me more!
  • angelwings2000
    angelwings2000 Posts: 357 Member
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    Amazing.............you are beautiful & an inspiration to all of us!
  • TamTastic
    TamTastic Posts: 19,224 Member
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    Hey all! Thank you so much for the comments/compliments!!

    I have gotten a lot of emails asking how I did it. My life has been all sorts of hectic lately..but I am snowed in today...so get to finally respond! :wink:

    Honestly, when I started in September of 2007...the thought of all the weight I had to lose was SO daunting. And I had lost weight before but didn't do it the right way. So, I had a 9 month old son (at the time) and was huffing and puffing and had no energy. Also, my mother and maternal grandmother died young. (my mom was 50 and my grandmother was 49). So, I just said "Ok,, if I am going to do this, it has to be done a way I haven't done it before.). That started my "Take it a day at a time" approach.

    I slowly started to make changes and ease into a new way of living. I didn't put pressure on myself to know how to do everything overnight. When you do that, you burn out and give up. I just made one change (like cut calories)...then once I got used to doing that and counting them...I started paying closer attention to where the calories were coming from. Once I got used to that, I started paying attention to the specifics...fat, fiber, sodium, etc. I also eased into exercise. I started doing what I could do..maybe 20 minutes on the elliptical...and slowly worked up. Again, I didn't want to burn out.

    Also, if you are on this site, you have internet access. There is SO much information out there. I love Web MD, etc..for articles. And I love Cooking Light.com for recipes.

    I started to pay attention to how food affected me. I would see how whole grains, lean protein, good fats, etc..would keep me "fueled" and going longer than other things. It kept my blood sugar level and kept me satisfied. And let's face it. If we are feeling satisfied, we aren't as likely to overeat.

    For example, a whole-grain english muffin, with egg whites, a bit of 2% shredded cheddar and a little salsa....would keep me going. Then maybe a banana mid-morning. I was barely hungry by 1...sometimes 2!! If I ate a sugary cereal, I'd be hungry in an hour.

    Get out of that "fat-free" frame of mind. I was doing it. Fat free cheese chicken breast only. I finally understood that fat is just as important to our diet as anything else. They are called "essential fats" for a reason. I started doing 2% and having chicken THIGHS sometimes. I also ate plenty of peanut butter. And guess what? I still lost the weight. You don't gain weight by eating too much fat. You gain weight by eating too much of ANYTHING. It's just about being sensible.

    One thing I had read early on is that one of the traits of naturally thin people is that they do have fun and do have junk and fun foods. They just don't do it every day. For some reason, as simple of a concept as that is...I had never felt confident that I could be that way. I was always afraid that one night of fun would lead to me going back to that way of living every day. I decided to take on that challenge! I started my "Journey" in Sept of 2007. I enjoyed holiday foods and fun stuff once in awhile. And sure, my loss that week might not have been great and I may have even maintained....BUT...I just kept on going. Didn't let it get me down. And sure enough, I kept on losing and doing my thing. And every time I did enjoy some fun foods, etc...and got back on track the next day, my confidence increased and I realized it didn't have to be all or nothing. Now obviously that isn't going to work for everyone. You just need to find what YOU think you can do. If you aren't at that place yet...then wait until you are.

    Now, regarding calories. I NEVER ate as low as 1200. The lowest I got was 1400 on non-gym days. And when I worked out, I ate at least half of them back. That was at least 4 days that I was eating A LOT. And by eating foods that would fuel me, even the 1400 cal days were fine. It's all about WHAT you are eating. Fiber is your friend. Women should have at least 25 g a day and men should have at least 30. And fiber is what keeps you feeling full. It makes it easy to put your fork down and push your plate away saying "ugh!! I'm stuffed!!!" haha!

    Basically, it's a trial and error deal. Everyone is different. You need to figure out the right combo of food and exercise that will work for YOUR body. But give yourself that time to experiment a bit and find out. And realize that you don't have to starve and suffer to do this. I didn't! And the best thing is when you are out, enjoying yourself...eating junk once in awhile, there are those that like to be petty and say "Ohhh, she's going back to her old ways"....but it is YOU that will have the last laugh when you continue to lose weight and be healthy ANYWAY..and they sit there :noway: :laugh: :tongue:

    Exercise. I started at 20 min on the elliptical, level 3. I slowly worked up. When it started to feel too easy, I would add 5 min and bump it up a level. Now, I easily do over an hour at level 19. When exercise starts to feel too easy, it means your body isn't working as hard. So, if you hit a plateau, it can be as simple as switching something up in your routine. Maybe hop on the bike instead or treadmill or do Wii....or try some zumba classes. Keep your body guessing.

    Weighing. I weighed once a week. On Thursday morning, naked. :) It was a good day for me. If there is going to be a time when you are going to eat "out of the norm" stuff, it is the weekend. And even if you stay in your calories...sodium can wreak havoc on the scale. By giving yourself a few days to get it out of your system...you are going to have a more accurate weigh-in. BUT, the scale is a horrible way to determine success. It's just not a good way to tell how you're doing. Every little thing can make you gain or lose. And it just messes with your head.

    Water. I drink at least 72 ounces a day. Generally more. I start my day with 24 ounces. I sip it while making coffee and doing a few things. I basically earn my cup of coffee by getting the water down first. And it sort of set the tone for the day. And not only does it help you feel full (when you think you're hungry), but it gives you an energy boost and makes your skin glow. Sometimes in the afternoon, an apple and a bottle of water is all it takes to give you energy, satisfy you and keep you going until dinner.

    Get creative. Learn new recipes. Try new things you might not think you'll like. By branching out, you will stay interested and not get so bored with the same old thing. That being said, having certain staples around is helpful. Find what you like, keep it around but don't be afraid to try other things. I know people who said "What is hummus??"..who ended up "OMG, I LOOOVE it!!" It's a good source of protein too. ;)

    Most importantly....give yourself a break. Don't put such high expectations on yourself to be perfect right away or not to mess up or do something you wish you didn't. The important thing is to not let it derail you. Just say "Ok..that's ONE day..not my life. I've got this!" Also, take it a day or week at a time. Don't focus on the bigger picture so much. Focus on the small, healthy losses. Trust me, they add up much faster than you think they will.

    If you ease into this, give yourself a break, educate yourself on food, exercise, metabolism, body chemistry....pay attention to your body and just be sensible...this can become as normal to your day as brushing your teeth.

    Hope this was helpful! :flowerforyou:
    -Tam
  • skinanc
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    Hi, I am just in the process of getting to know this site. I have 100 pounds to lose and I am so overwhelmed with the prospect that I often give up before I start. Your story has really inspired me. I think that maybe my fitness pal might be what I have been looking for and for once it's not costing many $$$$. What's the best way to get started using this site?
  • crlyn324
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    sexy mama!!! You look awesome!!
  • ltlhmom
    ltlhmom Posts: 1,202 Member
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    You look SMOKING HOT!
  • CallieM15
    CallieM15 Posts: 910 Member
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    Wowww. Amazing :]

    If you dont mind sharing, did you have stretch marks before? Do you still have them noticeably? I have them on my tummy, and HOPE when i loose more weight they will become less and less noticeable.

    Callie
  • dan323
    dan323 Posts: 271 Member
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    WOW , What a differance. You look great.
  • raqattack8
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    wow what an inspiration... thank you for the posted pictures and your 3 approaches.. that is wonderful to see.
    thanks
  • freeflower3
    freeflower3 Posts: 39 Member
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    Super job! Inspirational! Thanks for the great how-tos!
  • costil83
    costil83 Posts: 25
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    Wow! Thanks for sharing! That's an amazing transformation! You are my hero lol!
  • smarston
    smarston Posts: 78 Member
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    All I can say is WOW! Way to go! You look amazing! Congrats on your baby! Boys are great! I have 4 myself 7, 5, 4, 1. My youngest was actually born on Sept 3rd '08. :) Thanks for sharing now my 20 lbs left don't seem like so much.
  • xDeannaGarciax
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    THAT'S AMAZING! Thank you for sharing!
  • MikeEstrada
    MikeEstrada Posts: 39
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    WOW, You look fantastic. Congrats on the weight loss. You give me hope. Keep up the good work.:smile:
  • JosieMomGramma
    JosieMomGramma Posts: 727 Member
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    Thanks for the incouragement! I also started out in the 270's. I would like to know what you did for exercise at 270 when you started? Thanks for sharing your success & pictures!
  • blackchick85
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    Thank you so much for this story.. you just made my day alot better and encouraged me even more..which i thought was impossible
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