Wednesday, August 15, 2012

40 Pounds Less of Me!

This is real stuff. Like, bearing my soul, talking about weight, the numbers and all. Hard stuff for me to write about. Just keep that in mind as you read this.

I just realized the other day that it's been a while since I've done a weight-loss update. I apologize if you've been looking for it. I'm not full enough of myself to expect anyone has, though, but just in case.

I am basically where I want to be, and have been at the maintaining stage for almost 2 months now. There are still just a few stubborn pounds I'd like to lose, and they can be lost just by moving more and toning up. All in all, I'm VERY satisfied with my current weight/size and am pretty proud of the work I've done to transform my body in just a few months. It has not only been a body transformation, but also a mind transformation. I think about food completely different now. Don't get me wrong, I still love my cheeseburgers, fries, and desserts. BUT, the frequency in which I consume those is much much less than it was back in November. If I enjoy a treat, it's only after going days or weeks eating really healthy and being disciplined. I think we all need a reward every now and then. And I believe food is meant to be moderation. All things in moderation! Before I started my weight-loss journey, I was not committed to it. I'd give it 30%, at most, then give up in a few days. This time, I went into it a full 100%, mind, body, and soul and THAT is what made all the difference. It also doesn't hurt to see bad picture after bad picture of yourself to give you that kick in the pants you need to get started. 

As most of you know, I used this to help me start my weight-loss plan. She had some great ideas and did it the healthy way, and if you look at recent posts on her blog, you'll see she's maintained it. (while enjoying food and life!) The weight started melting off, which really helped me stay focused and encouraged throughout the process. Once I lost about 25-30 pounds, I eased up on the diet a little bit, going away from the Smart Ones meals and eating more "real food". Let's face it, you don't want to eat a frozen dinner for the rest of your life, so you have to learn how to eat healthy on your own, with real food. I eat a lot of salads. Salads packed with protein, some cheese, fruits, and a healthy vinaigrette of some kind. Low sodium soups are an easy way to eat healthy also. Pair either of these with a lean turkey sandwich full of veggies on whole wheat bread and you're good to go! I've learned to READ THE LABELS!!! Read EVERYTHING you're even thinking about putting into your body or buying from the store. Check all the nutrition facts, not just the calories and serving size, but also the fat grams, the SODIUM, the carbs, etc. It's all important when you're trying to lose weight. 

The absolute most helpful thing to me during my journey......CALORIE COUNTER APP!!! There are a TON of calorie counter apps for the iPhone and they made it so much easier. 

OK, to the stats. This is the part I've been dreading! Telling you how much I weighed then and how much I weigh now. I have to admit, I do get hung up on numbers sometimes. But I'm happy to share where I am now!

When I started in early December, I weighed in at about 170 lbs!! Mind you, I had lost 33 (of the 45) of my pregnancy pounds by then. (Had Hudson in April '11, dropped 30 lbs in less than 2 weeks and pretty much held steady for several months.) Yes, you can do the math and figure that up. It's embarrassing, people! I'm a nice 5'8", just for those wondering. I can carry my weight pretty well and hide how heavy I really am because I'm long. I was wearing about a 10/12, still in a LOT of pregnancy pants, because I couldn't fit into the size 8s I wore pre-pregnancy. I was so busy being a new mom, trying to figure out how to balance motherhood with being a wife, a cook, a maid, and everything else. I didn't care about taking care of myself. I ate whatever, whenever. It was absurd. When I look back, I realize just how absurd it was. I will NEVER allow that to happen again. I remember being SO down and unhappy with myself, but of course I was so happy being a wife and mom to my sweet boys so I just put it out of my mind. I finally saw a picture of me from Thanksgiving, disgusted at what I saw. It just wasn't me. Didn't look one bit like me at all and I said, "This has got to change, starting today!" It's exactly what I needed. It was my ah-ha! moment and it's where it all began. I think we all have to have that moment before we finally commit to make the changes we need to make. I don't regret one minute of the sacrifices, changes in eating habits, and life changes I've made over the last 8 months. Not one bit. 

I am proud to say that I've lost about 40 pounds, am now weighing in at around 130 lbs and am in a comfortable size 4. I am at the weight I was at when Joseph and I married over 5.5 years ago!! I wish I could explain how good it feels. Not only does it feel good to be thinner, obviously. But it's more than that. I feel so much better about myself, with my confidence back. I feel like Lauren again. And that's the best part. I kind of lost myself over the last few years as I started putting weight on, and not because I gained the weight, but because I somehow lost my commitment to being healthy, and living with positive habits. I am so glad I found myself again. I'm comfortable in my own skin and that's what it was all about. 

At 170 lbs.....

August '11

November '11
The picture that started it all!!

And today....40 pounds lighter!

I know a lot of people want to take their own weight-loss journey but aren't sure where to start. It's not easy to fully commit and set your mind to doing it. It takes will-power, hard work, and dedication. But I am here to say, if I can do it, ANY of you can do it! You just have to truly want to make a positive change in your life. I am happy to answer ANY questions you have and be of any help I can. Please feel free to comment or contact me. I hope this inspires someone, even if just one person, to take that step you've been thinking about taking.

Live well, love yourself, and be happy!!!


  1. Thank you so much for posting this! This is the kick in the pants that I know that it actually works! Thank you for putting this out there, because you are helping so many women understand that it CAN be done! :)

  2. Oh my goodness, you are SO welcome!! I was really apprehensive about posting all of that, but I knew that if it inspired just ONE person, it'd all be worth it. For me, it's not about glorifying myself, but showing others that it IS possible and to not give up! Thank you for taking the time to comment, it means so much. Good luck with your journey. :-)

  3. Lauren, you look great and you seem to feel great (as you should for reaching your goal)! You are always so beautiful, but I must say accomplishment looks stunning on you! :)

  4. Lindsay, you are so precious! Thank you so much for saying that! I do feel great, and that's the best part of it all!!! :-)

  5. Lauren, congratulations on writing about what is such a touchy subject. You look fabulous, although, I thought you always did. But, I understand, it's really how you feel about yourself. I met you only a couple of times in the Pelham office, but I've enjoyed reading your blog (I originally knew Joseph through the Chamber. I, too, have a son named Hudson!

    1. Gabrielle, thank you so much for your kind words. They mean so much. It's great to be at the point where I feel good about myself again. That's what it's all about. Once you feel good about yourself, everything else falls into place! Thanks for reading the blog and for taking the time to leave a comment. I always enjoy hearing from people! :-) Hudson is a great name, isn't it??!! I'm sure yours is just precious!

  6. Lauren, thank you for being so open with your stats, it's really helpful when someone puts real numbers with their weight loss to put things in perspective. You should be so proud of your accomplishments because if this was easy everyone would look good, right!
    I had a baby 5 months ago and I gained 38lbs during my pregnancy, I too am 5'8" and was content at my pre-pregnancy weight (162). I was pretty active prior to my pregnancy but I had a high-risk pregnancy and was afraid to maintain that type of activity, at any level, while I was pregnant. So, even though my weight gain wasn't too far from normal range, I really lost a lot of my tone and noticed the majority of my weight gain in my tummy and hips. I now weigh 187lbs 5 months after giving birth and have felt really unhappy with myself and completely discouraged because I really thought I would have "bounced" back by now. And like you did I just don't feel like myself, and don't recognize my post pregnancy body. It's especially hard because I have a couple of girlfriends who had babies around the same time as me and have already returned to their pre-pregnancy form and don't even look like they ever had a baby! I know what I need to do, but I didn't know it would be so hard to return to my previous healthy eating habits and exercise routine. Finding time to exercise has probably been the hardest, I own my own business and by the time I get home all I want to do is relax and spend time with my baby. The worst part of all of this is that recently a friend of a friend that I met for this first time congratulated me mistaking me for being pregnant! And eventhough she backtracked saying she mistook my name for someone she thought our mutual friend said was pregnant, and reassuring me I didn't "look pregnant", I couldn't help but wanting to crawl into a deep dark hole!!
    How did you find a balance, and find time to exercise? Or did your results come primarily from healthy eating? Is there a realistic timeframe I should be setting for myself after having a baby to lose the weight?

    1. I am so glad you found this helpful. That was my sole purpose in writing it. I know how inspiring and helpful it is to read what REAL women went through, and how they went through it. It definitely was not easy being so open with my stats, but sometimes it helps to just say it out loud, too. It helps me realize how very much I don't want to go back there. Pre-pregnancy, I was at around 158, but I was not very active so it sounds like even though you were a few pounds heavier when you got pregnant, you were much more physically fit and toned than I was. I will go ahead and tell you, I am not very active now, but being a full time SAHM, I am certainly not sitting much and am always on the go in some way. Just lifting a child every day (especially before he was mobile) toned my arms like they've never been toned before..which was not much at all! HA!) My weight loss pretty much came solely from my diet. And during some of my weight-loss journey, I was breastfeeding!! Well...pumping full-time. I had that going for me, too, but it wasn't enough to really aid in too much weight-loss. I pumped for months before I started the weight-loss journey too, but held steady at 170 for a good while, so I don't think doing that really helped much. Did that make sense? I feel like I rambled a lot there. :)

      I know exactly how you're feeling, and it's hard to understand unless you've been there. Having a child is one of the most amazing and beautiful things we can go through as women, but it sure can wreak havoc on our bodies. I, too, would find myself comparing my post-partum body to that of the lady in the grocery store, or in Target, or in a restaurant. I could clearly see their babies were about the same age as mine, and they looked amazing, with their flat tummies and tight glutes. I really do think every woman's body just responds differently to things and while some bounce back in a matter of days or weeks, it takes some of us months or even years to get back where we were. It's not fair, that's for sure! I don't know how you've been eating, but consider cutting back on certain things or cutting them out all together, counting calories, and cutting portions down. Try reading the blog I linked to in the post, and look at the things she did. It's very structured and becomes a habit, which I think is what really helped me. Then, once I got in that committed mindset, it became a lifestyle and I was able to branch out and do it more on my own.

      I would really like to say I exercise regularly, but I don't. I would like to start doing some activity, and I do every now and then at home when Hudson's napping, but I'm not consistent. Since you're more used to physical activity, you should be able to see some great results if you combine that with a healthy eating plan. For me, weight started falling off pretty quickly. Once I hit 20 lbs, it slowed down a good bit. I'd say it took me about 2-2.5 months to lose the first 20, then probably about 3.5 months to lose the second 20. Like I said, if I had been exercising along with eating healthy, it would have helped a lot! I did get pretty strict on my diet there toward the end, once I was done pumping....had to get ready for upcoming weddings and Summer! ;)

      I hope I helped a little bit and answered your questions. I understand what you're going through, but I believe if you implement the right eating/exercise plan, you can get back where you want to be. Please let me know if I can help further, or answer any other questions. Best of luck on your journey! You got this!! :)

  7. Hi, Lauren.....Thanks for adding this post. I am there now with looking at a photo and thinking who was that? I don't remember that person being there and then realizing it was me!!! I am starting the advocare 24 day challenge this week. I am also new to blogging and welcome you to stop on by my corner!

    Congrats again on the weight loss!

    1. Hey there, Amanda!! If there's any way my experience can help others, I am so happy to put it out there. I know how hard it is to get started but once you have that ah-hah moment and make the decision to make the changes you need to make, you can do anything. I have no doubt you can do what you need to do to get where you want to be too. Welcome to the blogging world! It's very fun and great to meet fellow bloggers.
      Thanks for stopping by, and I'll be sure to stop by and check out your blog as well.

      Good luck with your challenge! You've got this!! :)

  8. Thank you so much Lauren for sharing this. I am so proud of you. I have always thought you were so beautiful, from as early back as our kindergarten years at Bellevue!! This is so inspiring to know that there are ones who are motivated from within and coose to lose weight the hard, more realistic(long term) way other than resorting to fad diets, drugs/pills, or other methods that all end in regain in the long run. My sister(phd in nutrition science).....and says it just like you did "everything in moderation". Aside from this I want you to know how joyful it makes me to know that someone is so happy and content with their size. Just amazing. Acceptance with our bodies as women, has become a difficult taks in today's media world if you know what I mean. This really has been inspiring to me and your statement "I didn't care about taking care of myself. I ate whatever, whenever. It was absurd. When I look back, I realize just how absurd it was. I will NEVER allow that to happen again. I remember being SO down and unhappy with myself"..... really hits home but in a different way. I am interested in starting my own blog, so I could share a little with others(and because I feel I could benefit from it), but am not sure how to go about it.
    Thank you so much. Peace.Be still, and have courage.


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