MY WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY
On the left, I had put pants under my dress to hold my protruding belly in. 6 months later on the right, my body was no longer my prison ( I had dropped 40 pounds and kept it off for over 10 years)
I have always loved to work out but when I told people about my passion for the gym they would take a second look because I was big and did not have the toned and lean body of a gym enthusiast so I felt the need to slowly hold back and not share that part of me.
I grew up as a chubby child. In the African culture, that meant I was well-fed and taken good care of. Weight gain is associated to wealth. I come from a very big family, food has always been a medium for us to celebrate occasions and share some laughter. A healthy lifestyle was never anything I prioritized
In September 2004, I migrated to the U.S.. I was fascinated by the tasty food, the portions, and the options were endless. I was doing an evening MBA at that time and would come from school and go to one of the popular fast foods to grab my favorite order ‘fries and a burger with a milkshake’ and that was my last meal for the night during my late-night school days.
I was also working full-time and juggling late nights of school assignments. Soon after, I started having children. I had my first child in April, 2008. A true blessing, but I did not realize how I was embarking on a path of always feeling overwhelmed and stressed. I was a working mother, spouse, and student and never had time for myself. I was always tired and would eat whatever I find to fill me up or at times as I fed the baby would eat her leftovers with no time to prepare meals
After my first child, I thought the weight would come off automatically. I considered myself energetic, always on my feet and moving so thought this should help move the weight off. However, MY BABY WEIGHT DID NOT BURGE. I had gained over 40 pounds (20 kgs) during the first pregnancy and only managed to drop 10 pounds (5 kgs) after. Juggling life was becoming frustrating. Two years later, I was pregnant with my second child. And I was still carrying the stubborn baby weight from my first child. This is when I knew my weight loss struggles were becoming a pain
After my second child (son) was born, I did not like what I saw in the mirror.
>- I would put on sweaters to hide my fat.
>- I hated taking photos or selfies.
>- I avoided dress shopping as each time it seemed like I was going a dress size up. I could not fit into my old favorite jeans and dresses.
>- I had to put jeans under my clothes to hide my belly (photo below)
>- I was always tired, hungry and unmotivated
In October 2011 at a routine visit with my doctor, I was diagnosed as OBESE (photo on the top left). Ok, this was a SHOCK but a WAKE UP CALL. I always thought obesity was far from me and when the doctor looked me dead in my face and said ‘Bbira, something has got to change else I will start you on medication’ I realized I had let myself go and MY BODY HAD BECOME MY PRISON
One of the questions I had to ask myself was "‘How did I get here?” At a place where my self-esteem/confidence was so low. I was unhappy with my body, the drive for my career had dwindled alongside the emotional baggage I was carrying trying to juggle life.
The second question was “How do I get myself out of this dark hole?" Was there a weight loss routine I could stick to and stay motivated for long-term results?” I have always liked to work out so I decided to renew my gym membership and I immediately hired a personal trainer. This should do the magic, I thought.
He worked me HARD, it was 5 days a week of huffing and puffing. At the end of two months of working with him I had lost only 5 pounds.. NO WAY! I said to myself. I must be missing something. I fired my trainer out of frustration as I believed I was working so hard to see very little results.
I took a keen interest in weight loss success stories and what they are doing differently from me. I had tried it on my own, used a personal trainer and all this was not working. I then realized a theme in all these success stories.
I got an ‘aha’ moment. The food choices I was making were sabotaging the hard work at the gym. In my mind the hard work I was putting in the gym justified me being able to eat anything because I will “work it off”
"We are what we eat, not how hard we work out!"
If you’ve tried extreme diets, exercise programs, apps, and even gym memberships, but none of it ever seems to work. Don’t blame yourself.
Here I was working so hard training and blowing my efforts and in afew minutes, I would negate the efforts on my plate. FOOD IS EVERYTHING WITH WEIGHT LOSS. ‘You can not outrun a bad diet’. I educated myself more about nutrition, what it does to the body and why we eat the way we eat, behavioral habits around food and why we emotionally eat. I got certified as a Weight Loss Coach and used my lessons learned from my weight loss journey to create a program for women where they can eat their local foods and lose weight without working out. My program has helped alot of women make significant body transformations.
I am sharing my journey as I have walked in your shoes of feeling ‘defeated’ by the millions of fruitless programs out there. I first tried to lose weight alone and was never successful, I needed help from someone who had walked that journey and later found a group of women who became a huge support system..
Weight To (WTG) has helped very many women of diverse backgrounds lose weight while eating local foods and with no workouts. My program has helped women get off prescription medication, conceive, reverse pre-diabetes, boost confidence, drop the spanx (we all know that pain) but most importantly I see stories of women who adapted a lifestyle that is easy to maintain and created a body they love with their confidence going through the roof. We have also built a community of like minded women on the same journey.
This became my passion and I knew there must be alot of busy female professionals out there that can transform their bodies and change their lives with this. I I achieved the freedom of being in a body I love, dropped my emotional baggage along the way and I have never looked back. MY BODY IS NOT LONGER MY PRISON. Weight loss is doable with the right guidance. Let me hold your hand and help you walk a journey that will transform your life!