.....and this is my family.
My husband Michael (age 34....I'm being VERY open with you ladies on this blog!!)
That's me in the cool shades (35...shhhhhh! I married a younger man!! I Know!! GO ME!!)
And in case you can't tell......they are so very beautiful! Inside and out!
After 11 years of marriage and 5 kids, my body had gotten abused. This was partially due to quick meals, cheap snack foods, and lots of sugar. Sugar and caffeine were how I kept my energy up during the day.
Our family moved to northern Portugal in February of 2008 and the following months I was able to loose a little weight, but only because there wasn't a Krispy Kreme case in every gas station, McDonald's, or Little Debbie Zebra Cakes. Once I shed those few pounds, I couldn't seem to loose anymore. Even with the help of diet pills and cellulite cream, my legs still looked like bags of cottage cheese!
When I got married I weighed about 155.
After 5 kids, I had gotten up to about 195.
My bone structure is larger than most and I'm almost 5 foot 10 inches tall...but I in NO WAY could pull off being 195!!!
Here are a few photos from the first week after we moved to Portugal.
(My kids laugh when they see these pictures now....saying they can't believe what a difference loosing weight made in my rear.. I don't look at my rear end very often, so I'll take their word for it!)
Anyway, after being in Portugal for almost a year, I gave in and made that decision to DO SOMETHING for myself. Not for my husband, or one of my 5 kids that seemed to take all of my time....but actually do something FOR ME.
My kids had taught me well. With each birth of another child I became less selfish. Learning more and more that it wasn't always about "me" as it had been in my teens and early twenties. I learned to give of myself for others....and in doing so I found great joy. However, my priorities got a little out of whack and I not only neglected myself, I was harming my entire family by not being the best Mom I could be, spiritually, emotionally and yes....physically.
I wasn't as active with my kids as I wanted to be. Loosing my breath quickly and fatiguing just thinking about playing kickball in the yard. I wanted a healthier lifestyle. I wanted to play, sit on the floor to work a puzzle and get up without having to be pulled. I wanted to wear attractive clothes that would make my husband proud to be seen with me. I no longer wanted to use the excuse, "I've had 5 babies in 7 years." I was tired of excuses.....
Me and my Love when I was at my heaviest weight....
This was us a few months ago.....(having a tan helps, I know...but my face, neck and shoulders are much slimmer too)
This picture was taken with my mom a few months after arriving in Portugal and I had already lost a few pounds....but still very thick through the middle.
And one of me in my famous "stretchy" skirts....I was all about comfort! What was I thinking!?
So...this brings me to today. The end of October 2009. After finally making a decision to do something for myself in January, I've lost about 30 pounds. I started with Weight Watchers online. Used it for a few months until I got a hold of what a healthy meal consisted of and until I was reminded how to prepare foods that are healthier and maintain their vitamins and nutrients. Then I went solo. Watching what I ate, joined Curves, and took time to maintain myself. To do something for me.
It wasn't being selfish at all....I was actually doing something beneficial for myself as well as the rest of them.
Now I try to avoid deliciously fattening foods like these.....
Even though I am a cook at heart.....I have to be careful...very careful. (For example..I made 50 red velvet cupcakes today for my daughter's classroom....and I ate 2 of them. The guilt I have is horrible, besides the headache from all the refined sugar...it's not worth it ladies...take my word on it.....a sweet pear from my fruit dish would have been so much more pleasant to eat...and I could have eaten two pears or even three for what calories I consumed with one cupcake.) After 10 months you'd think I'd know that by now.....I DO know that, I just forget at times... :)
That's me in the red.....another rear end shot. This was taken a few weeks ago. I still have quite a bit of "back" however, there is still a significant difference from the first photo I posted! Praise The Lord! (I've always had a big booty...even when I was my in my teens....there's a story behind my "behinny"...I'll share with you one day...I know...you can't wait...)
Me and Faith pole fishing this summer.....
Getting a "girlie hug" from 3 of my daughters.....
Life is much sweeter these days....and I am very thankful to my Lord for His help, strength and encouragement over the last 10 months. I couldn't have done it without Him.
I still have 3 kilos left to loose. (about 6.5 pounds) so I will be doing the Christmas Crunch with you all. I just wanted to post about where I've come from to help encourage you along your journey.
I hope to make regular appearances on this blog and give you a recipe, or food idea. Maybe even some ways to get active, without even knowing your exercising! (I'm talking about the bedroom ladies!!! Now that's where exercising is the most fun, right!!)
;) Praise the Lord for a girls only blog!!
So anyway.....getting my mind out of the gutter and moving right along.
We all need encouragement. That's what we're here for. Pray and give it to the Lord. Then put feet to your prayers and do something about it!!
YOU deserve it!