Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Plateaus are for the birds...I'm ready for the next mountain!

Hello blog buddies!  Yes, it has been almost two months since I have posted, but as I said, I wasn't going to set a schedule for when I would post.  I think blogging is more natural when you have something that comes up, compared to forcing out a blog per day.  That being said, I have lost 31 pounds since May 15th.  Yes, that's great, but it's not where I want to be, so I'm moving forward.  During this time, I have plateaued twice, and it's starting to get annoying.

If you read my previous posts, I have mentioned that I don't have a bit of patience.  I get this from my mother, and we discuss it often.  This is the main reason why being stuck at a certain amount is killing me.  I get a rush on waking up every morning and seeing that number on the scale get smaller and smaller.  When it doesn't, it really pisses me off.  Needless to say, having been stuck on the same weight for a week and a half, I am in desperate need of a punching bag!

This doesn't mean that I am going to stop what I am doing.  I'm very happy with the 31 pounds I have lost so far, but my mail goal is 75 pounds by the end of the year.  I need to average about two pounds per week for this to happen, and if I have more weeks like these last two, I'm having my doubts.  I know that weight is just a number, and it depends on how healthy you are.  I can tell that I am getting smaller, because my clothes are getting more and more loose, and in some instances, falling right off.

When I set my mind to something, I really get upset at myself when it doesn't work out.  I guess I need to quit being a Debbie Downer (wah, wah, wah...) and just go with the flow.  With the sacrifices I am making regarding food, I know that the weight will start coming off again, but when?  Any ideas on how to get over a plateau?

Well, I am rambling now, so I'm going to wrap this up.  Feel free to follow me on Twitter @mtgrad06.

P.S. congrats to all the newly married couples in New York!  Equality and social justice for all is on the horizon, and you have nothing to be ashamed of.  Remember, God doesn't make mistakes!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Burgers, Biscuits, and Birthday Cake

So, every time I have tried to lose weight, it's basically been a crash diet that I haven't been able to stick to.  As I said before, it's all about changing your mindset, which I never did.  27 years is a long time to be set in your ways.  This time, however, it has been different.  I'm not sure what it is, but it's just been easier.  Granted, I'm only a little over two weeks into this transformation, but so far, I've lost 11.5 pounds, which I think is pretty good.  I know things are going to get harder the longer I stick to this, but in the long run, I'm going to be better off.  That is, as long as I don't have many weekends like this last one.

I honestly picked the worst time of the year to start losing weight; two weeks before my birthday, which also happens to be Memorial Day.  There are certain holidays where diets should be outlawed, and this is one of them.  I started dreading it the moment I lost my first pound, because I knew what was coming on that four day weekend:  burgers, biscuits, and the biggest threat of all...birthday cake!  (Just a little background, I have the same Devil's Food birthday cake every year, and I look forward to it from the minute the last one is gone.)  I knew I would have to set boundaries for myself all weekend, because now is not the time for me to fall off the proverbial wagon.

Since my family typically has a cookout for my birthday, with several of my life-long friends coming over, I knew I was in for it.  We had to have food, and not everyone is on a diet like me.  I would be the one to have to acclimate and prepare myself for all of the food that was going to be in front of me.  My parents were great, however, in that they had lots of vegetables and low-fat foods for me to munch on.  I knew though, that the birthday cake was waiting in the wings.  I could hear it screaming my name, telling me to cut into it.  So, I did, and let me just say...IT WAS THE BEST CAKE EVER!  I was dreading the feeling of guilt that would come over me as soon as I finished the piece I was eating.  I was surprised though, that it never came.  I realized, there was nothing to feel guilty about.

You have to reward yourself for a job well done.  My reward was that piece of cake.  I knew that one piece would not kill me, nor get me into my old mindset.  That was when I knew that I was changing, not just my body, but my mind as well.  I'm proud to say that I didn't gain a single pound the entire weekend (I didn't lose any either, but we will just keep that to ourselves.)  Now that the weekend is over, and everything is back to normal, let's get this show on the road again.

Follow me on Twitter @mtgrad06

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Soul on a Soapbox

When I was between the ages of 12-17, I seriously thought about suicide.  It's a personal struggle that had me in it's grips for a long time.  It's a statement that I haven't told a lot of people in my life, including my parents.  The reason behind not sharing this is because I got through it by myself, so I didn't feel the need to involve them in something they couldn't fix or assist me with.  Thinking back now, I still remember the feelings that caused me to get in the state of mind; I thought that because I was fat, I didn't belong, and never would. 

The ages I referenced are a very difficult time in a person's life.  You are starting the discover yourself in new and different ways.  You are starting to be interested in the opposite, or for some, same sex.  Puberty is setting in, and the hormones are raging.  With this onset, one starts to, in my opinion, really pay attention to the peers around them.  Kids are mean, plain and simple.  Vicious and cruel are other words that could describe youth at these ages.  At that age, being an outsider looking in can be the lonliest place in the world, which can uncover feelings of inadequacy are that often accompanied with feelings of lonliness and unworthiness.  Words aren't just sticks and stones, they can hurt!

As many of you have probably read or heard about, bullying has been a national topic of conversation for some time now.  Every day, kids and adults are deciding if whether or not they can go on with their lives, due to whatever reasons or events they are facing.  It's an epidemic that needs a vaccine.  I was bullied all through Elementary and Middle School, by both students and teachers.  (It was a hot day, and I remember asking my 2nd grade teacher to turn up the air conditioner in our classroom, and she said something to me that I will never forget as long as I live:  "You're fat, that's why you're hot!")

Even though I was bullied, I always put on the brave face and got through it.  I kept telling myself that it will get better.  It did.  Here are just some words of advice from a person who has been in this situation, and got their way out:

1.  Tell your kids that you love them, every day, and actually put feeling behind it.  Don't just say it to say it, say it because you mean it.  Trust me, we know the difference.
2.  Teach your kids to be accepting of other races, genders, sexual orientations, or religions.  If you aren't as accepting, open yourself up to learn more.
3.  Teach your kids that no one is better than them.  Yes, they will not get along or be friends with every person they meet in their life.  However, every person deserves that same respect that you want for yourself.  This can also be for us adults too.
4.  If you or your child is different, it's okay.  Teach them that the differences in us all make the world a better place.  God doesn't make mistakes!
5.  Religion is an important part of life.  It helps each of us in our own way.  If you child comes to you with different ideas or interpretations, talk with them, don't dismiss them.

Let me just say, these feelings had absolutely NOTHING to do with my parents and their love for me.  They told me multiple times a day they loved me, and I never once doubted it.  Sometimes, however, it's not enough.  Thank God, it was for me.  I cannot imagine not being around for the things I have seen and experienced in my post-teen years.  I have great friends, and an amazing family, that builds me up on a daily basis.

I know this post had little to do with my weight loss journey, but I feel that in order to change a mindset, I need to be open and honest about how and why I became the person I am today. This will only help me in the long run ahead.

To learn more about anti-bullying in schools, please visit and

Follow me on Twitter @mtgrad06

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

I think I can, I think I can...

"I think I can, I think I can, I think I can..."  I keep replaying this over in my head.  If the Little Engine could get over that hill, why can't I?

I have always had the mindset of "If I can't have it now, then I don't want it at all."  I have no patience what so ever.  My Mom and I have talked about this numerous times over the course of my life; when God was handing out the genes to me, the "no patience" gene came from my Mother.  We are so much alike, it's really not even funny.  I am definitely a Momma's boy, and I wear that badge proudly.  However, one thing about my Mom that I would change is that she tried to fix everything.  While talking with her last night about trying to lose weight again, she mentioned that she takes responsibility for my being fat.  I quickly told her that was not the case, and that she didn't force food down my throat.  My family, like every other family, was busy.  I had activities after school, as did my sister.  We had basketball, baseball, and softball games almost every night, all while getting homework finished, bathed, and put in bed so my Mom could catch up on grading papers and getting her lesson plans ready for the next day (in case you didn't catch it, my Mom was an 8th grade American History teacher for over 30 years.)  My Dad was working at night so he was rarely there to help my Mom with the nightly routine.

How I was raised definitely helped shape me into the person I am today, both good and bad.  As I have said before, in the South, everything revolves around food.  This fact, in my opinion, is a main reason why the South has such an abundance of fat people.  Historically, the Southern culture has been defined by the farming; the same family working the same farm through generations.  I don't consider myself a farmer in the slightest way, but my family has always had a backyard garden where we grew fruits and vegetables such as squash and tomatoes.  Even with our small garden, I know how much it took to work that small plot of land because I saw it on my parents faces.  Now, imagine several hundreds of acres where this same work is required.  You are going to want a big, hearty dinner when you are finished in order to get ready for the next day.  Today, we still eat the same food, but not everyone puts in the same work.

Losing weight is about changing a mindset, not just eating habits.  That is going to be my biggest struggle.  It's been in my head since birth, and honestly, it's in my genes.  While it may not be an easy thing to accomplish, I think I can, I think I can...

Follow me on twitter @mtgrad06

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Where do I start?

From as far back as I can remember, I have been fat.  It's just natural to me.  Growing up in a typical Southern family, everything revolves around food.  A wedding, there's food.  A funeral, there's food.  Church, there's food.  I think you get the picture that literally, everything involves food in some way, shape, or form. 

As a fat person, the older you get, the more in tune you become with yourself, and just how different you are from the rest of the population.  I get that the statistics say that more than half the country is obese.  However, when I go to the mall or out to a restaurant, I only see the "beautiful" people, as I'm sure many of you do as well.  Also, again, maybe it's a Southern thing, but why is fat "cute" when you are young (i.e. a plump little baby with pudgy cheeks), but the older you get, the more being fat becomes like a virus that no one wants to catch?

So, what happens after the fat?  Since this is my first blog, I don't know.  I haven't got there yet.  I am resigned to the fact that I will never be "thin".  It's okay, I own it.  I just want to be healthy.  So, here it goes...I went to a nutritionist yesterday, and I weigh 337.5 lbs.  I think this is the first time in my life that I will actually tell people what I weigh, and its a big step.  However, it's a step that needs to be taken.  She said that I need to set realistic goals for myself in order to start the process of losing weight in a healthy way.  This blog is one of those goals.

I can't change how I grew up, and how I got the way I am now.  I can only go forward.  In a perfect world, the road ahead would be flat and I would reach my goal the easiest way I could.  But, what would be the fun in that?

I'm not going to setup a schedule on when I should blog.  If the mood hits, I will write, because then, nothing is forced and I am letting out my real emotions. 

Feel free to follow me on twitter @mtgrad06