Before … after … and now

before-after-now

BEFORE: In June 2006 (bottom left) I was standing in front of the Pope Mobile at almost my highest weight. (I started Weight Watchers in October 2006.) AFTER: In July 2007 (bottom right) I had hit my goal weight and displaying the same outfit as June 2006. NOW: I was striking a yoga pose (Virabhdrasana II–Warrior 2) in July 2016 for my photo shoot for Yoga in the Park.

For about the past year to year and a half I have been the healthiest I have ever been. Not the smallest or thinnest, but the healthiest.

I turn 42 in one month and I feel amazing. And I think I look pretty good, too. I know that’s not what it is all about. It’s about being and feeling healthy. But I’ll be honest, it feels good to look good.

I work hard at being healthy. At times it is easy. And other times it’s so so difficult.

But I haven’t always looked the way I look now.

When I was younger I was considered skinny. (I seriously hate that word and all that it implies.)

I could basically eat and drink anything I wanted and not gain weight.

Then I turned 25. I had a sedentary job. I worked second shift and ate a lot of my meals at my desk, which weren’t actually healthy and usually came in some sort of wrapper (as in fast food).

Over a seven year period I gained 30 pounds.

I hated shopping for clothes. I lacked confidence. It was difficult to go on hikes with friends.

One day a friend and co-worker asked me if I wanted to join Weight Watchers with her at work.

Seven months later I had lost the 30 pounds.

I didn’t take official before (losing weight) pictures. But I went through old pictures and found a few that would work. After I lost the weight I took photos in the same outfits as the before. Check out the photos here.

Besides losing the weight and gaining confidence I learned how to eat better and make better choices. I started to exercise regularly. I had to buy pretty much a whole new wardrobe.

Since July 2009 I have pretty much kept the weight off. (It can fluctuate a little.)

I still need to pay attention to what I eat and how much I exercise.

Now that I am a cycling instructor and yoga teacher I keep the weight at a healthy level and I have become stronger, leaner, more toned with definition. I have more muscle mass and I am healthier and happier.

Even though I burn a lot of calories on a regular basis I still have to be mindful of what I eat and drink.

I love to eat (which was probably my initial problem when I started to gain weight). But I try to take everything in moderation with food, alcohol and activity.

Here’s to turning 42 as the best me I can be.

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