success story: melissa
Hi everyone! Hope you are all having a magnificent Monday. I had a hectic weekend moving from our apartment to our first home, and boy, is it exhausting! We are still far from being unpacked and set up, so today’s post is brought to you by Starbucks’ wifi internet!
I am super excited to debut The Fit Chronicles’ very first success story! I would like to introduce you all to Melissa, a woman who has overcome health hurdles and lifestyle challenges and lost over 80 pounds. You have to admit, she looks pretty sexy in her after shot! Now I will let her take it away and tell you all how she took control of her life and is happier than ever!
I was chubby in high school and college but never really gave it much thought. However, I had a feeling something wasn’t right because I really didn’t eat a lot or as much as the skinny people. Thyroid issues run in my family, so I got my thyroid checked a few times. It always came back okay. Finally in 2004 I got diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome. (If you’re not familiar with it, it’s an endocrine disorder that effects the ovaries and many times causes insulin resistance.) Almost everyone diagnosed with PCOS has weight problems, so I finally had some answers! I wasn’t sure what to do about it though, so I just took the medicine they prescribed to treat it.
Three years later, after a break-up, I rediscovered my single, party-girl side and began gaining a lot more weight. I saw a picture of myself at 27 years old and all I saw was a huge, swollen, miserable woman. I had lost 60 pounds years ago, so I knew I could lose weight, but it was going to be much more challenging with my PCOS. I began my journey in January 2007. I learned a lot about PCOS–carbs and sugar were my enemies. I began to cut the bad carbs, sugars, and juices out. I had worked out on and off over the years, but this time I went all in and I worked out like crazy.
I still remember the first 10 to 15 pounds, and then 30 pounds. I started blogging about my weight loss on myspace since that was “in” at the time! The weight was coming off, the shopping trips for new clothes became more frequent, and friends and aquaintences were noticing. I was really happy. Six months after I began my journey I was 60 pounds lighter, happier, healthier, and fit.
That summer I met my husband. He had no idea I was ever heavy, and he didn’t care! We moved in together a year and a half later. While dining out and tasting heavier meals with him the weight crept on that winter. I quickly nipped it in the bud and lost it! We got engaged in 2011 and I knew that I absolutely wanted to look my best on my wedding day. I trained, ate a cleaner diet, and toned up as best as I could while working full time, going to school, and planning my dream wedding. It was hard work but I lost another 25 pounds. You can’t ever go back to your wedding day and re-take those pictures, and I knew I would regret it if I didn’t get into my best shape. Now I am so happy I put in the hard work! I still find myself chasing a better, slimmer body everyday, and I don’t know if I will ever be truly “done”. I continue every day to try my best, eat well, and get my butt to the gym after a long work day.
Isn’t she awesome? I wanted to ask Melissa some questions about her daily regimen, her health, and some fun facts…
Are you still dealing with your PCOS, and if so, how does it impact your fitness efforts? They say you will always have PCOS, but losing weight will dramatically effect the impact it has on your life. I know it’s still there because I gain weight easily and really have to be cautious with my favorite sweets. I put in extra workout time. But from what I’ve heard, the PCOS would be so much worse if I was heavier.
Do you have a favorite moment from your weight-loss journey? There are so many favorite moments throughout all of this! This might sound catty but some of the people that called me fat back when I was younger see me now and are shocked! Their mouths drop and they beg me to help them lose weight because now they are heavy. It’s pretty ironic.
What does your diet look like on a normal day? I maintain a mostly lower carbohydrate diet. Lots of veggies, lean protein, dairy, and fruits. Breakfast is usually grapefruit and greek yogurt or steel cut oats. Lunch is salad with lean protein or turkey and cheese roll-ups. Dinner is usually fish, steak, or chicken with lots of veggies, half a sweet potato, or brown rice/quinoa. Snacks are apple with natural peanut butter, almonds, cheese sticks, or gluten-free KIND bars. I have quite the sweet tooth, so I have some dark chocolate or sugar-free Jello or pudding almost every night. I always have a cheat day once a week (or sometimes the whole weekend) and then get back on track on Monday.
What is your current exercise regimen? I go to the gym around five times a week doing about 60-80 minutes of cardio each day, between kickboxing, body burn, and triple fat burner classes. I also do about 30 minutes of weight training three to four times a week.
What would your dream workout be? OMG training with Gunnar Peterson! I would love to be trained by a celebrity trainer. Celebrities look amazing and I wish I was one so I could get the top training out there.
If you could have any cheat meal, what would it be? I would rather eat dessert than a meal. I would have chocolate molten lava cake!
What advice would you give to someone starting their weight-loss journey today? It takes time, but I guarantee you it will be worth it! Some of us just have to work much harder and it does suck sometimes. Do you think I think it’s cool that some people can eat macaroni and cheese and brownies every day while I’m doing burpees five times a week at the gym?! Burpees are no fun!
Thank you to Melissa for sharing her story! I particularly love her rational mentality when it comes to weight loss. She knows it doesn’t happen overnight, and she works twice as hard to counteract her health condition. I couldn’t have had a better person to kick off our success stories.
Do you or someone you know have a success story you’d like to share? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll talk!