I have always struggled with emotional eating. I would eat when I was happy, eat when I was sad, and eat when I was bored. Food has always been a comfort for me.
At age 32, after having my children, my weight went up to 240 pounds, and it remained roughly the same for 11 years. I’d tried to lose weight many times, but the most I ever lost during those years was around 20 pounds.
About a year ago, I learned I had prediabetes. That was exactly the wake up call I needed.
My father has diabetes, and I told myself there is no way I would allow that to happen to me. I would do everything in my power to prevent it. I would not head down a path toward disease. I began to have serious talks with myself, as silly as that sounds, and I told myself that no matter how long it takes, I won’t stop working on my health.
Shortly after learning of my prediabetes, I was back at the doctor, and this time I was informed that my blood pressure was sky high. I was prescribed medication but I was not willing to accept my current health condition. I knew that my children needed a healthy mother, and I needed to be a better example of how to love yourself. So, I decided to start caring about me.
I was turning 39, and I told myself that I’d be fit by 40. I turned “Fit by 40” into a little motto.
In September 2019, I started my journey and got back to the gym and changed my diet. I gave myself one year and a realistic goal of losing 50 pounds.
I define my eating plan as low-carb, high-protein. I began by counting calories but realized quickly that it didn’t work for me. While counting calories does absolutely work for some people, counting carbs worked better for me.
I started eating about 150 grams of carbs a day then slowly reduced my carb intake to about 30 to 80 grams. I started using the MyFitnessPal app to help me track my food, and I don’t think I would have been so successful without tracking. You don’t realize how much you are actually eating until you start tracking it.
Counting carbs helped me dramatically cut back on sugar. Sugar is so addictive for me, and I would crave it all the time. I was completely hooked on soda as well, and I would suffer migraines without it. I also craved starchy foods constantly, like French fries and bread. The low-carb diet took those foods off the table as an option, and after a few weeks, I stopped craving them. To be clear, Ieat those foods every now and then, but food doesn’t control me the way it once did!