I’m asked literally every day “how long it will take to see results”.
The truth is… it depends. It depends on where you are starting with your own fitness level… it depends on how intensely and INTELLIGENTLY you are training (length of time is less important than how hard you’re pushing yourself), it depends on how well you are eating, it depends on how much water you’re drinking, the supplements you’re taking, the amount of sleep you’re getting and how much stress you are allowing to effect you.
Want to see results in a short amount of time without going to harmful extremes? Here are my tips:
- Lift heavy weights.. or even moderate ones. If you want your muscle-building or “toning” results to take YEARS instead of months, by all means stick to the little 3 pound beauty bells. If you want results within MONTHS or in some cases even WEEKS, lift heavy. Challenge yourself. Start with a weight you can lift for 8-12 reps with proper form. If you can do more than 12 reps, the weight is too light.
- Eat CLEAN.. stop kidding yourself. I say that bluntly because many women (I myself am guilty) try to convince ourselves that things we do are ok or healthy. Those 100 calorie snack packs? They’re not good for you and they’re not doing your waistline any favors! Throwout the packaged, processed, junk food and stick to clean, natural, wholesome foods. You’ll feel energized, healthy, and your body, skin and attitude will GLOW.
- Drink about a gallon of water a day.
- Stop drinking alcohol! If you’re serious about your health and fitness, this won’t be an issue.
- Try to get your 8 hours of sleep.
- Keep stress levels low by finding ways to relax.. meditation, yoga, bubble baths… when you are stressed, raised cortisol levels contribute to abdominal fat storage and can make your health and fitness goals slow considerably.
- Stay positive, there will be bumps in the road. You will make mistakes. But every time you “give up” you have to start over and it just sets you back more time. If you mess up on a meal, fix it the very next meal!
So inspirational. This made me cry at work.
Thoughts on what I’ve gained from losing 116 pounds…
At the beginning of this weight loss journey, I wanted to become my own success story. I wanted to create my best life and my best self possible. I wanted to create my own sweet destiny. I’ve done those things - and so much more - because I finally lost the weight I’d been carrying around for so many years.
I started this blog and this new life on January 1, 2011. I started Weight Watchers on January 3, 2011 weighing in at 267.2 pounds. Tonight (Dec. 12, 2011) weighed in at 151 pounds. 49 weigh ins. 344 days. 116 pounds lost. I started at a pants size 22 (busting out of size 22…so close to 24). My XXL shirts were getting tight. Today? pants size 8. My medium shirts are getting loose.
I’ve gained a lot from losing big.
Simply put, I’ve gained my life back. A woman near me at weight watchers commented, “it’s two totally different people,” when seeing my “before” picture. That is so true. On the inside, there are many ways in which I am the SAME person. But, on the outside and on the inside, there are so many ways in which I am a DIFFERENT person.
I was “normal” sized and athletic as a child, through high school, and even through college. After college I went through a deep depression, and the weight started coming on. From January 2004 until December 2010 I packed on 107 pounds. Not all of those years were spent depressed, but many were.
I spent most of my 20’s overweight…..no, not just overweight. I was obese. I was leading an unhealthy life that was going to send me to an early grave. I was an emotional eater. If i was _________ (insert emotion here), I ate. I ate a LOT. My portions were out of control. It was typical for me to eat fast food for breakfast, lunch, AND dinner. I would go to two fast food places for dinner on a regular (nightly) basis for supper. I drank lots of dr. pepper. 6-7 cans A DAY. I didn’t exercise. My nightly routine consisted of getting food, sitting on my couch eating food, and watching tv.
I was unhappy, unhealthy, unmotivated, and apathetic toward my health and my life in general. I had little self-confidence. Most days, I didn’t like myself. My smiles were fake smiles. I hid from my friends, my family, the world. I frequently had chest pains and even took myself to the ER once because of them.
Enter Ben Davis, of Ben Does Life Fame. During the fall of 2010, I clicked on a link a friend had posted on FaceBook. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve watched his video and many of those times had tears in my eyes. I’ve read his entire blog from start to finish not once, but twice. I kept thinking, “He’s a real, normal person. No special pills, no special surgeries, no special diets. If he can do it, I can do it.”
Last winter break I spent about a week at my dad’s house. I spent a lot of time thinking and reflecting on my life - my past, present, and future. I KNEW it was time to change. I had tried countless times before to lose weight. I would lose 10-20 pounds and then gain it back plus some more. There wasn’t one event that made everything click. I honestly don’t know why THIS time it worked. I’m just thankful that this “perfect storm” of events - whatever those events were - finally came together and made this weight loss journey a reality.
Over the last 11.5 months, I’ve transformed my life and transformed myself. I’ve done things I NEVER thought I would do, let alone want to do and enjoy doing. I started exercising and running. I started lifting weights. I started water exercises. I’ve completed five 5ks, one 10K, one 15k, and two half marathons. I’ve ran and walked countless miles. I’ve spent countless hours at the gym. I started and am doing P90X. I don’t drink pop anymore. I eat healthy foods of regular serving-sizes.
Over the last 11.5 months:
- I’ve lost the voice that said, “I can’t” and gained the voice that say, “I can and I will!”
- I’ve lost the unhappy girl who didn’t like herself on most days and gained a happy, self-confident woman who cares about her life and her future.
- I’ve lost the feeling of, “I’m not good enough” and gained the feeling of, “I am worth it!”
- I’ve lost the feeling of “Losing weight is too hard” and gained the knowledge that, “Losing weight is work - hard work. But it is SOOOOO worth it and it’s rewards are soooooo good!”
- I’ve lost the lonely, boring life I used to hide in and gained a life I love and look forward to! I’m no longer hiding from my friends, family, and the world.
- I’ve lost the voice that said, “You’ll never be able to do it” and gained the voice that says, “I can do anything I work hard for!”
- I’ve lost the hatred of exercise and gained a love of running, exercise, and leading an active lifestyle.
- I’ve lost the lack of motivation and procrastination that plagued me and gained motivation, determination, and a “do it now” attitude.
- I’ve lost the mediocre teacher, friend, aunt, niece, cousin, sister, and daughter I was, and gained a desire to be the best person I can be.
Over the last 11.5 months, I’ve strengthened relationships in my life with those I love, and have become closer to many of my friends and family. I’ve fallen in love with running, exercising, tumblr, weight watchers, and my healthy lifestyle. I’ve fallen in love with my life and i live a life i love. I’ve found strength and courage I didn’t know I had in me by doing things I didn’t know if I could do.
And the girl who’s done these things - the one who used to not care much for herself and her life….
I’ve fallen in love with her, too.
Your book, Role Models, is about the people that you look up to. Are there any people that you look down on?
There are, but my specialty in my career is never saying negative things about people — it’s praising people that other people don’t like; that’s more my beat … It basically wouldn’t be worth writing a book about; people you don’t like, you just ignore. I’d say the greatest success that I’ve had in my life is that I never have to be around assholes anymore; that’s better than rich. And rich just means you can just afford any book you want without looking at the price. That, to me, is rich.
- John Waters - Oyster #94, September 2011
MY role model.
What a total badass.