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1 year post-weight loss, still at 150 pounds!

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My after picture.... 61 pounds lost, at 150 pounds, my goal weight.

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Thanksgiving 2007 on Waikiki Beach, at my largest, 211 pounds.

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My name is Kristin, but lots of people call me Quis (a college nickname that stuck), and I'm a left-brained science gal. I am currently a 5th-year graduate student in the chemistry Ph.D. program at Penn State University, earning my degree in bioanalytical surface chemistry. I am very familiar with the roles of food in body chemistry, and I am always trying to learn more.

In January of 2008, mid-way through my third year of graduate school, I decided that enough was enough. My weight was up to 211 lbs., and I was sick of looking in the mirror and not liking what I saw. I also figured that losing weight would help my health; though there was nothing wrong with me then, there very well could have been in the future if I had continued down that path. In a year and 4 months, I managed to lose 61 pounds, and I have also managed to keep it off since April 2009.

How I lost 61 pounds in 2008/2009:

1) I didn't deprive myself.
That's not to say that I ate cookies constantly. But if I wanted a piece of chocolate, I had a piece. I have been known to go out in snowstorms because of my cravings for chocolate. I logged it into my nutrition tracker and planned around it.

2) I rested.
I work out HARD, because I have a lot of fun with my workouts, get overzealous, and lift weights that challenge me. As such, I sometimes experience Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS). When a severe case of DOMS hits, I tone it down and rest for 1 or 2 days. There's no shame in resting. If you don't rest your sore muscles and let them repair, you could injure yourself. No good.

3) I ate within Sparkpeople's calorie range for me.
For the amount I work out, SP has set my calorie range (for a 5'2" female, mind you) at 1660-1960 calories. I saw that, and mentally went, "WHAT?! That's way too high!" Yet somehow, I ate in that range, and the weight came off. It's all in how much you work out. I work out a lot, so I have to eat a lot. Eat in the recommended range, or else you could run the risk of malnutrition, and that could lead to your body going into starvation/metabolic shutdown mode.

4) I realized I wasn't going to lose it overnight.
It took me a long time to get big, so why would I expect to get small quickly? Losing weight is a lot about attitude. From the get-go, I was prepared for a long, gradual haul, which is just what it's been.

5) I am not on a diet; I eat healthy.
When people ask me what program I'm on, I say, "The Quis diet." I can eat anything I want, though I definitely put an emphasis on fruits, vegetables, low/nonfat dairy, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy soups. Restricting/depriving yourself can put a nail into a weight-loss program's coffin.

6) I didn't restrict myself socially.
"I can't go out to eat; I'm on a diet." I have never uttered those words (plus, diets don't work!). As grad students, we love to go to cheap eateries, and my college town is full of them. If you eat/drink smart, you can eat/drink out. My personal favorite thing to do is split my meal in half and eat half there and take half home. You will need your friends and social interactions throughout this journey, even if (like my friends) they're a bunch of skinny boys who will never need to lose weight. If they're friends, they'll still support you, even if they don't quite understand the journey.

7) I took breaks.
I was in a week-long wedding in August 2008. Did I eat what I wanted? Yup. Did I log it? Nope. Did I still post a weight loss for the month? Not as much, but yup. From Thanksgiving to New Year's, I decided I also wasn't really going to try to lose, and I posted a weight loss of 1 pound for 6 weeks. That in itself was a victory. Don't be scared to lay off the weight loss to let your body just be at a certain weight for a while.

How I've kept it off since:

1) I've tried different things with regards to food.
I've learned about some things that have worked for me (Greek yogurt!), and some things that haven't (pita chips-- I'll eat the whole bunch!). When something hasn't, I know I can always depend on my hardest workouts to get me back down to 150.

2) I didn't stop working out.
I would be dead in the water without exercise. I have a slight addiction to feeling strong, so I've progressed to larger weights and more reps.

3) I stepped outside of my comfort zone.
Now that I'm a skinny-minny, I find I can do more things and join the rest of the in-shape world. Sometimes I feel like a johnny-come lately impostor, but I deserve to be there as much as anyone else. Some things I have tried include running at the park, snowboarding, ultimate frisbee, and wearing a bikini.

4) I let my body change.
My poor body.... losing weight probably freaked it out. The first year post weight-loss, it had some time to equilibrate, and I was fine with letting it. Overall, it tightened up in terms of loose skin and redistributed some of its lingering weight so that I didn't look so top-heavy.

5) I let myself be scared, scared, SCARED.
Not many people achieve sustainable weight loss. I don't have all the answers. Far from it. I'm still scared of doing things, but I work through it with the help of friends or by myself to get through.

It would be incredibly insensitive of me not to mention all the friends who have helped/are still helping me along the way to my goal. You people are amazing, and I am honored to know you and call you comrades.

Member Since: 6/1/2008

Fitness Minutes: 31,087

My Goals:
To get under 30% body fat would be really nice and is, I believe, attainable.
**GOAL MET!*** 4/3/09

Now, to get under 25% body fat!

To get to 150 pounds.
**GOAL MET!** 4/20/09

My Program:
Your basic low-fat, low-calorie, high-fiber diet. There are a certain few things I refuse to give up, namely bread, real butter, and indulgent coffee creamer. Also, lots of different types of exercise, 5-6 times per week.

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    I was browsing through spark pages trying to find someone at their goal weight and relatively the same height as me... and I came across your page, and I am SO glad I did!

    My original goal weight was 120lbs.. being 5'2"ish, it made sense. But then I tested my body fat and realized 120lbs would be ridiculous...and another fellow sparker suggested I change my goal to 150lbs. I was standoffish about it at first because it was so much higher than I originally was working towards.

    But now seeing someone else at my height at 150lbs, I feel confident that I can look hott too @ 150lbs! It is really all in how you carry the weight and how much of it is muscle!

    Thank you so much for being such an inspiration to so many!
    3846 days ago
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    Today is 'THINK THIN THURSDAY' on the (((( Sending SKINNY Vibes! )))) Team!

    I am sending you (((( strong, positive, thin, healthy, SKINNY Vibes! )))) today!

    Feel the power of the positive energy headed your way!

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

    Have a great 'THINKING THINNER = I AM A WINNER' Thursday!

    http://teams.sparkpeople.com/skinnyvibes -- please feel free to visit and/or join! We love to have positive people on our team!
    3985 days ago
    Congrats on being Spark Motivator of the Day! You look beautiful and strong. Great Job!
    4025 days ago
  • v REJ7777
    emoticon Congratulations on your success! emoticon Thank you for telling us how you did it. emoticon Congratulations on maintaining your goal weight. I've lost a lot of weight, but regained most of it. This time, I want to lose it for good. I find your post very motivating. Keep up the good work! emoticon
    4025 days ago
  • v JIBBIE49
    emoticon How wonderful to see you as THE MOTIVATOR OF THE DAY!
    4025 days ago
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