Can I just start off by saying that I tend to dislike New Years Resolutions. Often they are categorized as dreams that never cultivate, strives that never conceive, and goals that get placed on the back burner. One year, I decided that I was not going to make any New Years Resolutions – that I was good enough as is, and that I didn’t need to strive for anything new. Luckily, that Sunday morning service addressed the problem in my heart. Scott Neal spoke about always striving to make changes and to improve on our lives – physical, emotional, and most importantly…spiritual. That’s when I decided that New Years Resolutions were an important part in welcoming the new year; there is always at least one area of my life that needs improvement.
Spiritually, I knew that I needed to spend more time with God every morning. My studies have recently caused me to fall out of this habit. For a while, I put Bible readings on the back burner, knowing that if I had accomplished the assignment for the day that I would visit God when I had the free time in the afternoon or the evening. But really, I knew that I needed to make God my first priority every morning, and so far – He has been. But I also know that I need to be kept accountable for this desire…so don’t hesitate to ask me how my morning devotionals are going!
Emotionally, I find that I am quick tempered, hot-headed, and impatient. I think my husband can attest to this! So my goal is to be more kind with my words, gentle with my tone, and patient with my responses. And the hard work begins…
Finally, let’s get down to what this blog is all about – my physical changes. I have to admit that the last three weeks have been a hard, uphill battle – but I am finally seeing the physical results that I have wanted…and within a couple of scrolls, you will too!
After the holidays, I put on so much weight that I think my jaw dropped when I stepped on the scale. I had never in my life seen the numbers I was staring down at, and I knew at that moment I had to make some serious changes. Let me share with you how those changes started…
Healthy meals (low carbs, low fat, low protein, low sugar), Workouts (yoga in the morning and either befit or cardio/strength training circuit in the afternoon), my new found love and obsession with my Fitbit (if you have me on snapchat – tifferr09 – you know), and lots of discipline.
My dinners often resemble something like this (pretty much was this for the first week). Small, but filling, especially because of the 1/2 avocado! For breakfast I eat low fat Greek yogurt with apple and almond slices (honey and cinnamon for sweeteners) or Gluten Free Corn Flakes with half a banana and 4 prunes (diced) for flavor. Lunches consist of 2 rice cakes with fat free humus and sliced tomatoes or sliced cucumbers on top. Again, this was surprisingly sufficient.
As the second and third week progressed, I branched out a little. I had meals like this delicious salad with a balsamic and olive oil dressing. BTW – Coconut oil is my new favorite thing to cook with…so healthy!! However, I have to be honest, I cheated a bit in the last two weeks…red wine, a half pint of cider, a couple cookies, and one of my very favorite snacks when your craving something sweet – some chocolate chips and a tablespoon of peanut butter melted in the microwave…cut up a banana, throw it in, and enjoy!
Yes, I was occasionally naughty, but what I found was, if I ate everything in moderation, I still got the results I was looking for! On another note, one of the things I found to be a fantastic assist in these body changes was a natural pill called Grenade that helped fuel my workouts and slightly curb my appetite. I bought 100 pills, and although it calls for four a day, I only take two – one in the morning when I wake up, which I take with a pint of water (yes…drinking tons of water throughout the day was incredibly helpful with my hunger pangs), and one in the afternoon before my workout. Again, drinking a ton of water is necessary – and if you take this pill without a decent diet in place or a workout plan, the pill is useless!
These are the ingredients for the capsules – again everything is natural. It’s essentially like drinking a couple shots of espresso before doing your workout, except you don’t feel like barfing it up when your pumping out those mountain climbers 🙂
Okay, okay…so now I know you want to see the results – but before you do, please know that posting these pictures was a big step for me. I was bigger than I had ever been, and I’m still not where I want to be, so be gracious when you view my progress and know that I’ve worked hard for this body.
On the left was the body that showed no self control over the holidays; the body that ate what it wanted, when it wanted, and however much it wanted. On the right is how I look now…three weeks later. what I love about pictures is that it shows not only the weight shed from my midsection, but also my legs, and it allows me to see the progress I’ve made; the progress that doesn’t seem so visible from day-to-day.
This is the same progress in my back side. Again, I’m not where I want to be, but I am happy with how far I’ve come over three weeks. I think overall success is found in the weight that was shed across my whole frame. I decided to take pictures because I do not have a scale and I wanted to be sure my efforts were revealing results. Taking pictures is scary, because I woke up thinking that I probably hadn’t changed at all, worried that all my hard work was for nothing – but this is clear evidence that diet and exercise work!
This is my progression picture….starting from the left: week 0, week 1, and week 3. There is steady progress in each of the pictures, but I love how in one week I was already feeling better and seeing the change. That was just diet and discipline…the grenade pills didn’t come till week 2.
Anyway, with all this to be said, I want to be an encouragement to those of you who think your beyond making the changes you want. I felt awful when I took the first picture, but seeing my body like this gave me the motivation to make the changes I wanted. The way I see it, you only have one body in this life time; and the Bible tells us our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 6:19)…we need to respect our bodies as a gift from God, and use self-control when determining what we put into them. I’m not saying this as a challenge to you anymore than I’m saying it as a reminder to myself. My hope is that I will always value the way I feel now, and maintain this healthier lifestyle through every stage of life. It’s not about getting ripped or competing to be the thinnest, most attractive body around – it’s about being healthy and happy. I hope my journey has been as motivating for you as it has been for me!