I found out I was pregnant with Aidan about a week after that picture was taken. And as usual, I gained a ton of weight during my pregnancy. After Aidan was born, I went back to my normal (not working out, not eating right) size 12. When Aidan was 5 months old, my dad passed away. Coping with my dad's death was really difficult for me, especially having a new baby and a two year old. Plus, I took over Women's Ministries and the Church Nursery around the same time. Needless to say, I wasn't focused on eating right and exercising. Instead, the stress and grief were causing me to turn to food, and so I put on more weight.
I reached my highest non-pregnancy weight last summer. Here is a picture of me visiting the cemetery on the one year anniversary of my dad's death. I was a size 14/16, and absolutely miserable with the way I felt and looked.
Last fall, I started running again and actually ran a 5K on Thanksgiving day. I didn't really change much about the way I ate, so I only lost about 10-15lbs, and then put a few of those back on during the holidays hovering between a size 12 and 14.
About 8 weeks ago, I finally got myself in gear. I started with the the 10-Day Master Cleanse, and have been eating raw/vegan ever since. I began working out gradually and I am now running 5 days a week, doing circuit training 3 days a week, and yoga 3 days a week. I have lost about 25lbs so far, and am currently in a size 10.
I would still like to lose about 10-15 more pounds to get back into the size 6/8 that I was in 2009. And beyond weight loss goals, I have my sights on some pretty big fitness goals. I really want to run a marathon in 2013, as well as increase my abilities and endurance in both circuit training and yoga.
I am so grateful to my sister Jenny, who has been such a source of encouragement and inspiration to me throughout this process. I would still be where I was last July, if she hadn't given me the push I needed. And I am so proud of my husband as he has started his own journey and has become an inspiration to me as well.
It's kind of embarrassing to put my "before" pictures up here for everyone to see, and be open about my struggles with weight. But I find a lot more encouragement in seeing real people transform their bodies, than I do from any magazine or celebrity. So I am sharing my journey with you in hopes that I might be a source of inspiration and encouragement to other moms out there who are unhappy with the way they look and feel. I remember being so miserable at my 31st birthday last year, because I was so very unhappy with myself. Now I am looking forward to my upcoming 32nd birthday, because age is just a number. What matters is how young you feel, and these days I feel like I'm in my early 20's!