I am going to repeat this from the My Frump to Fit: Size 24 to Size 6 blog because I feel that this is a very necessary statement.
This is only my journey. This is what worked for me. This is not what I recommend or suggest but simply telling my story. We are not in a one size fits all world. We are in a world where we all have to find what it is that will work for us. I do not bash people who use a program, a surgery or any other healthy option to try to find a way to love their bodies. It is simply about finding your way to your journey and learning to love where it takes you! This is me and my journey…unfinished and perfect.
Overall loss from where my story began: 98.5 lbs
Body Fat Loss: 24.5% (since 8/2012)
Total Inches Lost: 54.6″ (since 8/2012)
BMI from 39.2 (morbidly obese) to 23.4 (normal)
Now how I got to that. First off let me answer some base questions for you.
No, I was not a skinny kid. I was a normal kid. I played. I took dance for tap, ballet and jazz. I was a brownie in the Girl Scouts. I was just a kid. My parents did not under feed me, over feed me or have a crazy amount of fried or fast food around. We were a meat and potatoes family. We ate normal food.
Did I get heavier?
Yes, I did. My parents were not to blame for this or any other reason beyond I was not as active and I liked to eat. I liked to eat when I was happy and when I was sad. I liked food. It was at this point my family members started to be vocal regarding my weight. Some were kind about it and some were not. I had a few mean spirited cousins. I still cry when I think about all the times I would be at my father’s house and they would make comments about how an elephant must have been stampeding through the house because I was coming. Or how they should get me a bone because I probably already ate everything else. My father and his girlfriend never stopped them. Instead they thought bringing me to the gym with them and forcing me to do cardio would fix it.
Yes, I did “thin” out during puberty. But it was not just puberty that did it. I had started to be more conscious of what I was eating and doing on a daily bases because I was tired of being the chubby girl. I began to look at calories, drink 8-10 bottles of water a day, play basketball outside and even tried to walk/run up & down the street. There was an issue with this though. I was not ready for this. I did not have the support for this. I began to eat a couple carrot sticks and a couple celery sticks. Maybe I’d have a piece of grilled chicken. During lunch at school, I’d pick at a turkey sandwich and then in the class that followed try to throw it up. I never did I think that I was doing something wrong but needless to say I got “red flagged” by the nurse. When I was confronted, I crumbled. I went home and told my mother that day. This is a scar of mine, I try to never forget what got me there. It was an obsession to fight everything that had ever been said or done. I was 133.5 lbs at 5’6″ and 16 years old. And it was all in the worst way.
Now… fast forward through some trying relationships and moves. They were times of more emotional happiness and disaster. Food and I were good though. We were always good. Food had my back…literally. If I was upset over a break, a 2 liter of fruit punch, bag of cool ranch doritos and a 12″ wawa hoagie could fix it all! I mean I was a waitress from 18 years old until 22 years old! Food and I were close…like BFFs. The only perk I had found with waitressing was that I made friends to go out dancing. I may have kept eating the way I always had BUT I was slimming down again because I was never off my feet! Those years were great but all things. I started to slow down when I got my first full time office job. I started to go to massage therapy school. I had met someone. We were moving in together. It was a time of new beginnings. It was a happy time.
September 13th changed that. A car accident changed everything. I was in the front passenger side of the vehicle that was hit perpendicular on the back passenger side. There are so many more details to it that I do not even remember now. I do remember the 3-4 disc herniations and the 3-4 disc bulges that are up and down my spine now. I do remember the TMJ, the knee pain, the shoulder pain, the migraines and the panic attacks from the anxiety of being in a vehicle. I returned to what had always been right while I was healing. Over a year and half of various appointments, doctors, injections and bills, I was making my way to my worst.
During this period, I had been fitted for a bridesmaid’s dress…size 22 top and size 24 bottom. That was a very sad day. I had not owned a scale. I had just worn my old clothes. I thought I fit them. I did not want to be honest with myself. I knew how bad I was but I looked around and my friends never judged me or said anything. They told me I was amazing and beautiful. They were everything I needed them to be especially with yet another life change coming. I left my husband and left the house we lived in. I filed for divorce. I picked myself back up the way I always had. I cried a lot, grabbed my foot long 3 cheese wawa sub with mayo & a bag of cool ranch doritos and drown my sorrows. My life was what it was. I made due.
Things began to change when I met my best friend and love of my life. We began dating and fell in love. He was stationed at Miramar in San Diego then. Before I knew it we were expecting and I was Marine Corps Birthday Ball gown shopping. I believe that dress that I hated and called “my tent” was a size 20 or 22. Now on to the better stuff!
2008 – Had my beautiful baby boy! During my pregnancy with him I had an aversion to fast food and greasy food. He actually did all the hard work for me! The day that I actually remember being weighed in during the first appointment, I was 227 lbs. The day I went into the hospital with him, I weighed in at 243.5 lbs. After he was a month old, I was down to a size 16 in women’s clothing. Sadly, I went back to the bad eating though.
2009 – I had been staying steady between 16 & 18 when we discovered I was pregnant with Lilli. …WORST SICKNESS EVER!!! I literally ate Ellios pizza for the first trimester because nothing else would stay down. I ate horribly but I was active! Chasing Aiden that is. When I weighed in to deliver Lilli, I weighed 225 (I think). I had only gained 19 pounds or so. Ran the risk of gestational diabetes again…
2010 – Lilli was born! One month later in my 16s again and back to 206 lbs! Another thing was born shortly after…Nicole Michelle’s Creations. I was a busy woman! I had a 2 year old, a breastfeeding baby and a sewing business! Enter in nutrition of coffee and m&ms. Yes, I did that. Got down to a 14 with that diet of coffee and chocolate. I believe the scale touched 190 lbs before the anxiety monkey took hold of me again and I gained the 16 lbs back just from trying to deal.
2011 – Our first big move from NC (where I finally felt at home) to California. Halfway through the move…pregnant with Isabel. By the time we got to our destination I had already gained 16 lbs…by 12 weeks. CRY!!!!
2012 – Isabel was born! I weighed in the day of her delivery at 232 lbs, I believe. And afterwards…size 18 maybe bigger. I didn’t really want to wear “normal” clothes then so my Old Navy stretch jeans said 18 and that’s what I’m going by.
- Moved into our home in Jacksonville, NC.
- Foot down! No more junk food on the grocery list.
- No more soda on the grocery list.
- No more candy.
- Searching for healthy recipes… Still searching.
- And began blogging about it all 🙂
July 2012 Fell off the wagon. http://nicolemichelles.com/2012/07/28/weight-loss-fell-off-the-wagon/. Yes, my efforts were that short lived. It was too hard. I mean I’m a mom. I have 3 babies to worry about. No one has time for healthy eating and exercising. Bah!
- August 3, 2012 – BACK AT IT! (This picture is what did it! This is “the picture”. That one that everyone says to you, “Oh one day I looked a picture that my friend/family/someone took and I said oh my goodness!”)
- Friend contacted me about Advocare for support on my new defined journey.
- Prepared cabinets for clean eating.
- Downloaded MyFitnessPal.
- Broke down and began counseling for the beginning to everything. My goal for a fit mind, fit body & fit soul. I was working on me. My past, my present…my body image.
- Began using the xBox Kinect.
- Began to listen to the free lessons to help with over or emotional eating from www.TooMuchOnHerPlate.com
- Found Blogilates. So much easier to do youTube workout videos that are short during nap time!
- Began to work on proper posture. My abs killed!
- One ice cold water first thing in the morning!
- 80/20 food rule. 80% of the time eat healthy and 20% of the time indulge. http://wp.me/p2UQlt-As
- MOST IMPORTANT STEP EVER! I went to the doctor’s office for a check up and full testing. Cholesterol, blood pressure, diabetes, hypothyroid…all of it. I needed to know where my base line was.
- Went for a fitness group meeting to talk about goals
- September 8, 2012 – I went outside and walked 2.08 miles at 20:11/mile
- Found a protein bar I loved for a more healthy convenient source of fast food
- Printed my skinny me and chubby me pictures to display. Needed a reminder of where I’ve been.
- September 19, 2012 – Started a C25K program.
- Found SkinnyTaste!
- September 26, 2012 – Started the Visalus Body By Vi 90 Day Challenge.
- Found my favorite blog read EVER!!!! http://flintland.blogspot.com/2012/05/hey-fat-girl.html
- Became a Body By Vi consultant http://nicolemichelles.com/2012/09/24/the-why/
- Fell in love with these recipe websites; The Fit Cook and He and She Eat Clean
- Started using the Gold’s Gym Waist Trimmer
- Grew a serious goal. Prom Dress for Marine Corps Ball…not 2012 but a MC Ball.
- Got a FitBit Zip from a dear friend who said I inspired her *heart*
- Always remember Fresh > Frozen > Canned veggies
- Got a foam roller to help with muscle stretching!
- Joined Stroller Warriors
- Bought new sneakers just for running as well as a single jogger. The Hubs is going to train for C25K with me. Not that he needs to but he’s my moral support 🙂
- Love this blog! If you have the time, read her weight-life transformation! http://www.canyoustayfordinner.com/2012/09/26/how-often-do-you-weigh-yourself/
- Bought Gold’s Gym Thigh Slimmers BUT I walked out of them literally! SOOO I put them on my arms 🙂
- Thyroid issues 🙁 My genes are catching up to me http://nicolemichellesblog.wordpress.com/2012/10/16/my-genes-are-catching-up-to-me/
- Great read sent by HERFitness. http://www.builtlean.com/2012/09/24/body-fat-percentage-men-women/
- Been trying the theory to Chris Powell’s carb-cycling.
- Trying the Jillian Michael’s cleanse.
- Blogilates‘s Arm Challenges!
- Friend of mine sent an It Works wrap – Results: 2 1/2″ down and my skin looks a lot better. It helped pull it back up!
- December 9, 2012 – Ran my first 5K! And pretty fast too! It has since been my PR. I guess it helps when you’re running with super speedy and encouraging people. Not that was not the hubby…he hauled butt lol!
- 20 “girl” push-ups, 40 tricep push-ups, 40 crunches and lots of stretching
- Started the C210K program while on Christmas vacation in Louisiana!
- Body by Vi shakes for breakfast and lunch still!
- Results from Body By Vi 90 Day Challenge http://nicolemichelles.com/2012/12/28/you-me-and-a-cup-of-vi/
- Doing 3 different tummy crunches 50 each a night
- Using elliptical on off running days. This started with the freezing cold started ushering in.
- It was either in January or February that we bought a treadmill for the house. I needed a way to get my running in even if I couldn’t leave the house.
- Adrian had also started running more with me when the weather wasn’t too bad.
- Pregnant! it was a big surprise to us! Adrian and I talked about everything that we had planned and I had been training for. The decision was as long as my doctor approved, I was going to keep going. I have been lucky to not have any big risk issues with my previous pregnancies.
- Finished 10K program
- Started running on the treadmill a lot more for safety of being at home. I had experienced dizzy spells here and there before. Better safe than sorry!
- After a pre-natal visit, my doctor decided to start me on a thyroid medication to help get the hormones under control during the pregnancy. I was experiencing an excessive amount of sleepiness. The interesting fact here… I could have always needed this during my pregnancies but since I had never been tested for my thyroid until this entire journey, I’ll never know.
- Half Marathon training. This was a little difficult for me. I had been diligently running all the way through the C25K program and then the same for the C210K program. I was on the high then but now I was pregnant, tired and morning sickness! I pushed through the workouts I could. With the help of the hubby, I completed the final three long runs. We pushed the strollers down the rails to trails on the weekends. That was that. I was running that half marathon.
- Started taking spin class two days a week for cross-training. My running was tapering down due to the heat coming in fast here, so I needed a way to keep up my training for the big day.
- 30 day squat challenge started!
- Push-ups every night still as long as the belly vs arm length ratio allowed.
- Ran a half marathon!!! We went to the Myrtle Beach Divas Half Marathon and I did it! I finished it in the time I set which was just under the time limit. I didn’t want to pressure myself. I ran it. I ran it strong. I ran it alone. I finished it.
- Beach running! I was not ready to ease up my running yet. I had to start training for the Sand-Sational 8K…almost fully beach running.
- Wrote about my journey to a half marathon http://nicolemichelles.com/2013/05/15/my-journey-to-a-half-marathon/
- Completed the Run for Warriors 10K pushing Aiden in the stroller! This was another special day for my family. This was Adrian’s first half marathon. We figured that he had done all of the training so why not get a medal for it!?
- Lots of yard work!
- Only wearing maternity tops by week 24 🙂
- Blueberry Festival 5K and lots of taste testing of all of the blueberry baked goodies afterwards!
- Starting to slow down a little bit. The belly was definitely catching up to my lung capacity.
- Stroller Warrior’s “I ran to Afghanistan” campaign
- We started menu planning
- Sand-sational 8K
- Ran the Run to Remember Sgt Pyaett 5K! This was the last race of the pregnancy for me. It was a special one for the 2nd Rad Bn family. The heat and the belly pressure were too much. I scaled back to walking almost the whole thing. No shame in that! I was still out there and pushing a stroller!!
- After I limited my exercising to the nesting and walking in the neighborhood.
- My fitbit steps lowered down to about 5,000 a day.
- Started to do the pre-labor/third trimester yoga in preparation for the big day!
- Backed off of the Boots on the Run 5K due to the pressure.
- Adrian still made it out to the Marine Corps Half Marathon but I did not even make it to cheer him on due to the heat.
- September 23rd – Hannah Clare was born!
- Back home by September 26th and nursing Hannah solely.
- Blessed by friends and Adrian’s co-workers for meals but we were definitely ready to start eating cleaner again.
- By the 7th, normal clothes again! It took a little bit for me mentally but…I just had a baby!!! I think that’s the hardest concept to deal with right afterwards.
- Cleared for exercise!
- Started to work in some push-ups and planks.
- Attempted to start a 30 day Guns, Buns & Abs challenge but I was still not ready for it.
- Started the Fit Foodie blogging! I had enjoyed all of the menu planning during the pregnancy that I wanted to keep it up but with “getting my body back” meals.
- Mini NSV – Size 10 skinny jeans! The picture was a comparsion from 2006 but I was just in such joy for how far I’ve come.
- Hampstead Turkey Trot 8K… This was my first race back and was I ever sore! No sore is not even the word to use. I felt like I had ran my half marathon all over again!
- Yoga class once a week at the community pool house. This was a first for me. I had never thought about taking yoga but maybe it was the better, less-impact way to get back in the swing of things.
- Jillian Michael’s Ripped in 30. I didn’t last much beyond a week. It was hard to have the time aside to do it with the kids and a nursing baby.
- Santa Shuffle 5K! This was another big milestone for our family. Aiden and Lilli asked to run it. They just wanted to have numbers like mommy and daddy. That morning they were not really feeling it but hey, they ran across that finish line and enjoyed the food at the end! LOL!
- 30 Day Plank Challenge. This did not last long either. My core simply was not ready yet.
- Again a picture comparison from 2006. I needed these pictures mentally to keep myself going on a “body loving” campaign.
- Marathon training!
- Completed the Stroller Warrior’s “I ran to Afghanistan” campaign for 250 miles!
- Jump Start 2014 Fitness One Week Challenge http://wp.me/p2UQlt-1ky
- Shoe fitting!
- I made it to under the pre-pregnancy weight of 177 lbs before the years end but now something had changed. The pounds were seriously falling off!
- Mini NSV again…socks! I was able to actually fit normal socks over my calves!!!!
- Refrigerator makeover! http://wp.me/p2UQlt-1m3
- Started a new fitness group on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/566678520087780/
- Been searching for a new protein powder…decided on Jay Robb Whey Protein!
- Bars…I’ve been testing tons! Love love love Think Thin Brownie Crunch and Pure Protein Chocolate Deluxe
- New sweets quencher – Luna Protein Bars Choc Chip Cookie Dough & Peanut Butter
- Got a caliper and finally had a good measurement!
- Doing a short tummy workout and butt workout plan in the mornings before eating any calories.
- Glass Slipper Challenge! Enchanted 10K & Princess Half Marathon!
- Been earning money for my good habits on the app Pact
- Adrian and I ran the Shamrock Anthem Half Marathon in Virginia Beach, VA together. It was both our 3rd half marathon and our 1st that we actually ran together.
- The hubby and I went over to the Cherry Point Half Marathon 6 days after the Shamrock. I PR’d! Finally under the 3 hour half marathon!!!
- 30 day easy squat challenge
- Started seeing a chiropractor to help with old spine issues from a car accident. I could see that my posture was not correct in a picture and I believe that my post baby body was having difficulty adjusting back to a good running gait. I started to have brutal hip pains, shin splints and tendinitis.
- NSV! Size 4!!!!!!
- Run training was scaled back as I was having the chiropractic adjustments done. The pain at first was simply too much.
- MARSOC Mud Run! This was a promise I had made to the hubby. He stuck it out with me in all of those training and race day runs, so I got in the mud for him.
- Guns, Buns & Abs 30 day challenge
- Run For The Warriors Half Marathon! This was another feat for the hubby and I! Although there were issues with the actual race route, we kept it honest and ran the missing mileage. This was my first half marathon back since all of the chiropractic care. He got me to PR again! Under 2:50!
- Little Black Dress 30 Day Challenge
- The hubby and I also made huge progress on our home gym. It was simply becoming too hard with the four little ones for me to make it out of the house so we brought the gym to our garage! Naptime workouts!
- NSV AGAIN! WHA?!?!?!?!!? Size 2!!! OH MY GOODNESS!!!!! And to ease my woman mind…I made sure to try on other brands and find my sizes. I needed to know that I was really seeing this all the way it was. I went into the juniors’ department and put on a pair of size 5 Mudd super skinny jeans!!!! AHH!
- Tried out some Verve & Bod-e from a friend!
- Started a total body weight training program!
- Bought two great books this week! The Feed Zone Cookbook and Marathon: The Ultimate Training Guide
- Attended a restorative yoga class!
- Attending yoga regularly again.
- Got pretty new shoes! ASICS Women’s GT-2000 Running Shoe
- July 4, 2014 – Started OBX marathon training with my running partner, Shannon. There are three of us doing it together but Marisol was on vacation. This is my second attempt at marathon training and I must say it is much better. We all have walked into this joking around that we must be crazy but that’s just it. We probably are BUT we are also super supportive and ready to take this thing on.
- Marathon training under the Hal Higdon’s Novice 1 program has been going well!
- Doing a 30 day Yoga Challenge through Do You Yoga’s YouTube channel.
- About halfway through 30 day planking challenge
- About to finish out 250 miles for the year for the Stroller Warrior’s Ran to Afghanistan 2014
- Preparing for the second year with the Pyeatt Run 5K next weekend, Marine Corps Half Marathon next month, Remembrance 10K in October, SW’s Have 2 Half in October, Battleship Half Marathon in November and the OBX Marathon in November.
And…15 years later…this girl is wearing her prom dress!
I am unfinished and perfect.