A year ago I started a new job, which involves traveling with lots of lunch meetings. It didn’t take me long to pack on 15 pounds. I’m tall so I can kind of pulled it off, but I was not comfortable at all. All my clothes were tight … if they even fit at
all. At first I struggled to keep my size 10s, but in the
end I was most certainly a 12 and sometimes a 14. It was really depressing. I would half-heartedly try to diet, but I would make it maybe a day and then just give in to stress or to the temptations of a lunch meeting where I felt I had to eat.
I was really getting sick of listening to myself whine so I decided to make a change. I have a good friend who mentioned that I would be welcome to join the group fitness classes she teaches. I never thought that I was much of a group fitness person. Because I’m with people all day, my notion of relaxing exercise is taking a walk with my dogs – that is if I woke up early enough –if it wasn’t raining –if it wasn’t dark out – if it wasn’t too cold and windy. Well, you get the idea! So, I started the classes, which were hard but fun. Every class I felt like I could push myself a little bit more. Soon, I was looking forward to the next class so much that I almost forgot it was supposed to be work! I really started to enjoy that “exercise high” – and for the first time in my life, I knew what it was.
After about a month of getting into an exercise routine, I also got into some healthier food habits. I signed up to do Weight Watchers online, and I really was meticulous about tracking everything. It’s amazing to see how much I actually ate when I wrote it all down.I also joined the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Montana “Wake Up Your Life” 12-week weight loss challenge at the beginning of the year. I have found the tools useful and the website tips inspiring. The classes offered by Anneliese Smith definitely push me even further, and though I leave sore, I also leave feeling strong.
Of course, I was still dealing with lots of lunch meetings. I’ve realized that many lunch meetings can be moved to be “coffee shop” meetings. For me, this means not having the temptation to eat out too often. My work life on the road has changed too. I still do look for a place to have a good meal, but I will eat something like fish and asparagus instead of steak and potatoes or pasta and cream sauce. Plus I have even taken exercise classes at the places I’ve been. There are options, but when traveling in the past I would just conveniently forget to see them. I really feel strong; I have my mommy pouch, but I also have these lines on my stomach, which I’m convinced must be some sort of muscles! I still want to lose more, but more than that I want to be stronger. I now weigh a couple pounds less than when I started my job so I’ve lost the 15, plus two. I’m an 8 now – one size smaller – so I guess muscle does weigh more than fat.
Oh, and one more thing—my dogs are really overweight now, but at least I’m not! Heidi O’Brien