We all know the healthy habits that successful Sparkers do to lose this weight and keep it off! Although each person is different, we know that they all most likely have the following things in common:
Watch their food intake (whether it's tracking, counting carbs, portion control, etc).
They exercise or stay active.
The drink their water.
They keep track of their weight loss success (Either with weighing, measuring or knowing how clothes fit).
And they may or may not:
Blog or post on Spark for accountability.
Have a weight loss buddy.
Every person and journey is different... but at the end of the day we know how important the basic healthy habits are. Water, monitoring food intake and activity are all pretty much a "no brainer" when it comes to successful "losers".
When I first started Spark in 2009, I found several people who had lost 50, 60, or even 100+ pounds. I thought to myself "I want to do that, I want to be like them!" The thing of it was, I put them on a pedestal... and rightfully so might I add! Anyone who can lose any amount of weight has done something amazing. If they can keep it off that is even more spectacular! I still have my Spark Super Heroes to this day!
Whether they are still losing or already maintaining, they are great role models for us all!
But one of the things I thought way back then was that they must have been PERFECT to have lost all that weight. I mean really, 100 pounds?! They must have never eaten something they shouldn't, or skipped a workout to achieve something that amazing.
I have never really considered myself a "successful loser"! I always felt like to call myself that, I would have to be at my goal weight. But I have learned from all you fine people that I am already successful.
I have officially lost 90 pounds, and that is something to be proud of. I also have to say that now that I am one of "those people" that have lost a good chunk of weight... I realize how wrong I was to think that they must have been perfect.
So I can not speak for everyone who has lost the weight, only for me. But for those starting out or with a long weight loss journey ahead of them, I wanted to say this:
I have lost 90 pounds, I have had so many ups and downs, gaining back 10-15 pounds several times, weeks and months off track, but I always caught myself and never threw in the towel.
I have lost 90 pounds despite the following:
Overeating many times over the 2+ years of doing this!
I have had way too many couch potato days!
I have had days where I ate nothing but unhealthy food!
I have skipped workouts!
I have had to pull out the size 20 jeans when I was down to a comfortable size 18!
I have felt defeated at times!
I have sabotaged myself!
I have lost to the Binge Monster on MANY occasions!
I have been too hard on myself!
I have fallen into the pit of despair and had trouble climbing out!
I have had that awful voice in my head that tells me I will always be fat!
I had self doubt, and even had others doubting I could do it too!
I have had times where I told myself I didn't care about this journey and wanted to quit!
I could go on and on, well, I already have!
But my point is that no matter who you are, nobody is perfect! We all make mistakes, we all eat too much or something we shouldn't, we all skip a workout, but at the end of the day it's persistence and consistency that is going to get us where we are going!
We need to believe in ourselves... I can tell you there was a time where I didn't believe in myself. When I started this journey in 2012, my ORIGINAL goal weight was 180. It is not because I wanted to weigh 180, but it was because I didn't feel like I could truly do that. With a starting weight of 272, the idea of losing 100 pounds seemed IMPOSSIBLE. I didn't even want to TRY to do that. So I went for 180, not even truly believing I could get there. Now here I am, around 181, almost to my "initial goal weight"! Not only that, but as my journey went on I changed it to 170 and eventually to 160. One day I might even find the scale sitting in the realm of 150, but the difference between then and now is that I believe I can do it!
Believing isn't enough to get the weight off, and it's a shame believing doesn't burn calories! But if we get our mind in the right place, we can then work on the habits, putting in the effort and getting the job done. So even if you don't fully think you can do it NOW, you can still try. The more you see success with your weight loss, the more you will believe and eventually KNOW that you can do it!