If you haven't had a chance to meet Joan yet I hope you get to soon. This lady is a huge inspiration at Downsize Fitness and an all around lovely lady to chat with. She walked into that gym many moons ago and owned her journey! Thank you for sharing Joan, and thank you for being a positive force in the gym. We love you!
Joan's Story (Written by the lovely lady herself :D)
I am great at losing weight, unfortunately, like most of us it repeatedly finds me! I have been a yo-yo dieter my entire life. I was on my first “diet” at age 6 which included diet pills! My mother struggled too and through my teen years and into adulthood, if a new diet book came out. One of us owned it! Different exercise groups, video tapes (yes I am that old), gym memberships came and went. As every “big” birthday approached I promised myself I would be in shape by the time it rolled around but it never happened. One day I met a personal trainer. I circled the idea for awhile, meeting with her on 3 separate occasions before signing up for twice a week on a monthly basis. I was ready to commit and I did. After a few months and despite the belief there would never be a day again, I wouldn’t have some muscle aches I added a third day a week. I went down two clothing sizes but only 10 lbs.
I was happy feeling stronger than ever had, eventually I could claim I now had buns of aluminum but I wanted some of the weight to disappear. Paleo was the latest and greatest eating plan. I stuck to it for about a year with success and then along came the dreaded stall. Anyone who has ever been on a weight loss journey knows the longer the plateau, the more likely you are to jump off the cliff! At the same time my Dad died and my trainer moved away. No problem, I would get back on programme and go to the gym myself. Bit by bit old habits resurfaced. The slightest ache or pain was an excuse to skip the gym. Then came the bargaining.
You gain 5lbs and think, no sweat, I’ll get rid of that. Suddenly it is 10lbs and you promise yourself you are going to get back on track, right after your birthday, Christmas, Canada Day, you name it. Oops, now there’s 20 and you purchase new clothes and those can stretch out another 10-15 and thus goes the slippery slope.
Next, comes the rationale of maybe this is just who I am, I am tired of watching everything I eat but I will continue going to the gym, so that’s good. In my case, I became a bit rudderless and before I really faced up to it that 60lb loss had become an 80 lb gain.
There were a lot of Mondays along the road to Downsize as I was trying to find my inspiration and personal motivation. I bought and read The Diet Fix where author, Dr. Yoni Freedhof talks about the chronic dieter as having a kind of PTSD from being on so many failed diets. That spoke to me and made me want to try again. I confess that even as I signed up, I was happy with the out clause because I really didn’t trust myself but I promised myself since it was August, I would go until Christmas and I would give as much as I could, train twice a week and maybe come to an occasional class. I chose to just watch calories really not wanting to give up anything but willing to be more mindful.
Nothing is more motivating than achieving results and I did that by Christmas and here I am a year later, not letting the last stall undermine my goals. I have only missed my training during vacations and one snow storm. I switched to LCHF in August and am back to being a loser - the good kind! My commitment to myself is no longer a few months but in the next two years to get to a comfortable weight and maintain. With the support of Martin and Brie and the whole Downsize family I know it is never too late!