Weight Loss Journey: Round 2

Hey Everyone!

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In one of my first blog posts ever (check it out!), I talked about my weight loss journey and how I overcame major back surgery and lost close to 50 pounds. That was a major accomplishment for me and I pride myself every day for how far I have come since giving birth to my son in 2013.

With my second pregnancy I didn’t gain half as much and I bounced back so quickly throughout my little girls first year of life. Of course, having a toddler in the mix helped tremendously, but I was so dedicated on what I ate and how often I worked out.

But I’ve slacked off lately, bad. With all the stress of raising two kids, holidays, and planning parties I’ve gotten majorly off track. I’ve started to pile up the excuses, but not anymore.

So! Here I am again, ready to start back up this fit mom mission again. I’ve gained back close to 20 pounds since before I met my husband, and I hate it. I can feel it in my everyday activities, and sadly, the back pain has recently started back up. Luckily, it’s not even half as bad as before, but I’m not risking the chance of going through another surgery. My babies need their mama and I can’t be out of commission for a few months healing from another major surgery. So, after a hospital visit, MRI, and visiting a few specialists, I’m going to a physician on Friday to receive some back injections to help alleviate the pain and get me back on the right track.

I’m going to share a lot of my progress on my blog, including my daily workout routines, healthy meals, and what I do to keep my head on straight while trying to still raise two little ones and keep a happy home. I enjoy sharing my progress and attempting to motivate others along the way. I also have a fitness profile on Instagram, where I enjoy posting a lot of my journey (follow me of course!)

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My big motivation isn’t the scale, it’s the progress photos. Be ready to see a lot of those. I’ve come to learn that the scale is junk. Yes, seeing the numbers go down is one fantastic feeling, but feeling great in your clothes (and selfies) is even better and mama loves her selfies. As much as I enjoy cardio also, I’m going to incorporate a lot of weights into the mix. I want to feel toned and strong, not just lean and thin.

We all want to be the best mother to our kids, and this is one way I feel the most confident as a mother. My surgery happened at a really young age, which is very uncommon. I constantly have the fear that I am going to be unable to keep up with my children due to this injury, so staying in shape is a big priority for me. I’m doing this for my kids so I can run around with them at the playground and be involved in all their sporting activities. I like to show that even with the setback that I had, anything is possible if you put your mind to it.

I’m excited for round two of this journey and to be the best mama I can possibly be.

I hope you stick around for it!

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Skinny Bang Bang Shrimp Mix

Happy Thursday!

This is one of my most favorite quick, healthy meals to put together and it only takes minutes! I’ve made this numerous times, and it’s just a skinnier version of the Bonefish Grill version. It’s a pretty popular recipe, but I just want to share for everyone! The serving size is about 4oz of shrimp. I usually just measure mine out with a food scale.

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Ingredients: 

  • 2lbs raw peeled and divined shrimp
  • 4 Tablespoon Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 2 Tablespoons Light Mayonaise
  • 3 Tablespoons Sweet Chili Sauce
  • 1-1 1/2 Tablespoons Sriracha
  • 1/2 Tablespoon Crushed Red Pepper (Optional)
  • 2 Tablespoon Chopped Green Onion (To Garnish Also)

All you have to do is mix up all the ingredients in a bowl, cook your shrimp and add to the sauce! If you just want to make one pound of shrimp, cut the recipe in half! I usually mix mine up with some organic brown rice, or you could even serve it over pasta.

I hope you enjoy!

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The Start Of My Weight Loss Journey.

One topic that I’m going to share a lot about is my weight loss journey. I am nowhere near finished from where I started and I definitely have my moments where I slack off (trust me, I’m eating a cookie as I write this, but it’s balance, right?). So, I wanted to let know you all know how it all began, and I hope you’ll continue to follow along.
I was never the skinny girl growing up. I had some meat on my bones, and I still do to this day. I don’t think these thighs are going anywhere. More toned? Yes. They will never be teeny though. It’s so funny how in high school you would always think you were huge. Now, looking back, you’d kill to have that body again. So why not just go for it?
About a year before I got pregnant I really let go of myself. I ate out constantly and drank alcohol quite often. I had no responsibilities, that’s what everyone my age was doing. I knew I was overweight but I never made an effort to change anything about it. I just figured wearing dark clothes and dolling my self up would hide it well enough. Then I got pregnant, and that made the weight gain even worse.
I used my first pregnancy as an excuse to eat as much as I wanted, whenever I wanted. Fast food multiple times a day, sweets and chips every few hours. I just figured it was good to feed the baby. Then at about 7-8 months into my pregnancy, I started getting excruciating back pain, to where my legs would give out on me and go numb. I could barely walk at times, and all I would do was lay there. I just figured once I had my son, the pain would go away and boy was I wrong. After giving birth, I still couldn’t walk sometimes, my legs would still go numb, the pain would radiate all the way to my toes, I’d almost drop my baby at times while laying him into his crib. Finally, I decided to seek some help from a pain management specialist to see what was going on. So of course the first course of action was to get a x-ray. The doctor called me a day or so later, and pretty much told me I needed surgery, major back surgery… at 22?! There was no way I was going through that. I had a 4 month old that I needed to take care of. I couldn’t be out of commission for 3 months to heal while I had an infant. So I tried anything possible. I went through physical therapy, back injections, I was even offered narcotics to numb the pain but I refused. I never really considered my weight to be part of the issue, so I continued my unhealthy eating and lack of exercise. I guess it was somewhat of a comforting thing since I was in so much pain.
In August 2014, about a week into starting my new job (before my sahm days now) and dealing with this pain for months (I was also probably my heaviest I’ve ever been), I went to use the bathroom and noticed I was loosing control of my bladder (gross, I know) and my legs went completely numb every time I sat down. I knew that wasn’t normal, so off to the hospital I went. They immediately admitted me and told me I needed an MRI immediately (which didn’t happen). Nervously waiting all night long, they decided that they were going to transfer me to another hospital since they wouldn’t have the proper doctors on sight, and I could get an MRI a lot sooner.
Let me tell you that was the most painful ambulance ride I’ve ever been on. If anyone knows the streets in Baltimore City, they aren’t the smoothest, and laying flat on my back on a stretcher didn’t help. Once I received my MRI, the surgeon came up to my room an hour or so later informing me that my back was as bad as an elderly person and that I needed surgery almost immediately or I’m going to lose complete control of my bowels, permanently. I couldn’t believe was I was hearing. Once again, I now had an 8 month old that I needed to care for, what was I suppose to do!? They told me I wouldn’t be able to bend, lift, or twist for 3 months. No holding my son, no helping him learn to walk, nothing. I was devastated, but I had to do it. The end result would be so much more worth it. I’d be able to play with my son with no pain.
Two days later, on a Saturday morning, bright and early I went back for my surgery. I had to have a laminectomy and discectomy of my L4-L5, L5-S1 vertebrae. It was a success (obviously, I’m still here!), and after five days later, I was able to come home and start my recovery. I will never forget the few words my doctor said to me right before I left. “If you get in shape and keep unnecessary weight off, you shouldn’t have to get a spinal fusion before your 30.” Two major back surgeries before 30!? Yeah, I’ll pass.
And that’s what started it all…
Once I was fully recovered, my first big outing was a wedding (pictured above). I found a cute dress, some boots, dolled my self up in makeup and was ready to go and I had the best time. Until, I looked back at the photos the next morning. I was huge, I looked disgusting, and for once I hated the way I looked. Those words my provider told me ran though my mind, and I was ready for a change.
I started by running in place while my son took a bath, or when he was playing in his pack and play. I had NO idea where to start with exercising, but as long as I was sweating, I felt some source of success. Then I started added weight training, then actual running, and man did I feel good. I cut out my fatty foods, chose lighter options, and really learned to cook at home for myself. I was making meals every night. Different flavors of chicken, healthy cauliflower sides instead of potatoes. I was so proud of myself. Pinterest was my life saver. I researched everything on there.
When I posted my first “Transformation Tuesday” post, everyone asked me what diet I was doing or what products I was taking. All I did for about 9 months straight was exercise until I couldn’t anymore and eat clean. That was is. Nothing special, nothing out of the ordinary. It’s something everyone could do if they put their mind to it. There was no secrets.
I was almost 50 lbs down, and still am to this day and I feel on top of the world. My back is stronger then ever. I went through a second pregnancy with no issues. I didn’t use my baby as an excuse to eat, or to be lazy. I still chased around my toddler as much as I did before becoming pregnant with my princess.
I’m still a long way from where I want to be, and I’m going to continue to post my weight loss journey on here, that’s why I thought it was necessary to tell you all why I started. Anything is possible if you put your mind too it, and I hope you all continues to follow this journey with me and motivate me along the way.
Please like and share my stories! I would love to hear your comments.