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Swimming away the pounds

Friday, April 12, 2013

For the last 4 months I have been taking my 300 lb plus body to the pool.

I didn't want to. I was horrified at the thought of putting on a swimsuit and getting into a pool -- I assumed that everyone would judge me.

The first day I put on the swim suit and nervously walked out of the change room and over to the "kid" steps (I had checked to make sure that there was an alternative to getting in and out via a ladder) I weighed 328 pounds.

Today, I weigh just over 300. I've lost weight much faster in the past, but I haven't been counting calories this time around. I added things in--like 5 vegetable portions a day--and stopped buying pop, lunches and snacks from my work cafeteria and any food that came in a package (like chips, cookies, etc.).

I'm averaging a bout 1.6 pounds a week, which is pretty good. Keep that up and, in two years, I'll hit my goal weight.

Swimming is a huge help--maybe not so much in the calories, but in making me feel good. It's also had the benefit of strengthening almost every group of muscles in my body. A few weeks ago, when I went on holiday with my husband, I was thrilled to find myself able to walk at a good clip and stand all day, even though I hadn't been doing any walking or standup exercises for almost two years. Last summer, he hated walking with me, I was so damned slow and my breathing scared him.

Because swimming has built my core muscles, stuff like getting out of a low couch or getting in and out of bed has become easy. And so has shaving my legs (sorry, guys, but us 300+ gals can have a tough time lifting our legs to get to the back of the leg, etc.). I got into a friend's Hummer last week and he commented how fast I was now. The last time I got a ride with him was around Christmas, and it was hard to haul myself in.

I can run for the bus, go up a hill without panting, and I have MUCH less knee, hip, and ankle pain. All this because I was able to overcome my fear of getting in front of people in a swimsuit.

Oh, and those pool regulars I thought would judge me? A couple of them were extremely welcoming, most of them just ignored me (lost in the world of ear plugs, nose plugs, and goggles). I could swim a very slow 15 minutes when I started. Now I swim for 45 and I've event started to overtake some of the regulars!

My 4X swimsuit is falling off me, and tomorrow I plan to treat myself to a 3X. One without a skirt, because who cares about my giant thighs? I want less drag so I can swim faster ;0!!!

If you are 300 plus and it hurts your joints to exercise, get your asterisk down to your local pool. You'll feel horribly self-conscious the first couple of times and then you'll feel AWESOME!
And I haven't even mentioned one of the best parts--feeling light. It's lovely not to feel the dragging weight of your pounds on your knees and feet. When I get out of the pool and gravity reasserts itself, and I feel my weight again, I use it to encourage myself... some day, I'm going to feel this light because another 160 pounds have been used up and aren't putting pressure on my body.

NOTE: I was delighted to find that prescription goggles (roughly your prescription) can be ordered very cheaply online. Less than $20, which is a big deal for me as I am almost blind without my glasses.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • 46SHADOW
    emoticon You're so positive! Its great.. keep up the great work!
    2922 days ago
    Thanks for sharing. I recently started walking again and a great deal and my hip began to hurt so I haven't walked in over a week. I would love to find someplace to swim and would need to learn to swim. I grew up going to the swimming pools but never learned to properly swim. I once loss some weight deep water running. BTW where did you get the glasses?

    Congrats on your success so far and overcoming your fear! slow and steady wins the race. emoticon emoticon
    2973 days ago

    Comment edited on: 5/2/2013 3:27:50 PM
    This is awesome! I wish I had access to a pool like this.
    2991 days ago
    Congrats!! Now keep up the good work!!
    2993 days ago
    I think swimming is one of the best workouts, you barely feel like you get tired but you are. It's so great how much weight you've lost already. Don't care about people around you - focus on doing great and you will reach your goal in no time! xx
    2993 days ago
    Great work and attitude. I agree with everything you say about the swimsuits, pool and water. I began my journey to lose 160 lbs in the water. I am now down 100 lbs net - recently added 20 lbs but doing all the right things to reverse that trend. I am a new person and I give exercise all the credit. Keep on keepin on!
    2993 days ago
  • no profile photo CD12304151
    perscription goggles Ill have to look into that thanks for the idea my swimsuit fits too and almost blind without my glasses
    2993 days ago
  • no profile photo JEANNETTE59
    emoticon Love it! emoticon emoticon
    2993 days ago
    emoticon emoticon
    2993 days ago

    Comment edited on: 4/12/2013 12:02:57 PM
    emoticon emoticon on showing everyone how it's done!! It's not easy to face the public but look at your results!! You are ROCKING it!! Or should I say swimming it emoticon
    2993 days ago
    Way to go on overcoming a fear and the weight loss. Having been 310 lbs at one point myself, I can completely relate. I love to swim also and have used the pool in my fitness. I still use the pool and will be looking forward to the warmer weather to come. Thank you for sharing your blog. Many of us are in your shoes sharing the hesitation. Keep pushing forward!!! You can do it!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    2993 days ago
    Congratulations to you!!!! What a remarkable show of bravery and determination. Rock on! emoticon

    2993 days ago
    I love this blog! What an inspiration you are to many other women who are nervous about going to a public place in a swimsuit (me included)! Have fun picking out a new suit:).
    2993 days ago
    You are so awesome! What an inspiration you are to me! I wish I could swim, but I never will, I am afraid of the water. I understand your hesitation with the swimsuit deal, but I find to most people, overweight people are invisible most of the time. You are doing so good, I am so proud of you!
    2993 days ago
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