If you haven’t read part one, go here first.
In December of 2012, Chris and I decided we wanted to have a baby. Getting pregnant came easy and in January of 2013 we found out that we were expecting. We were over the moon excited! Unfortunately, our joy was cut short when I miscarried in March. Total devastation. The doctor assured me that there was nothing I could have done to prevent the loss, but I felt so guilty. I just knew, right or wrong, that if I were healthier and had better habits then maybe our baby would still be here.
I used the loss as motivation. Chris and I started eating clean and going to the gym. I was determined that when we got pregnant again that I would be healthy so I could carry a healthy pregnancy to term. I had lost 20 pounds and was finally feeling good when I injured myself at the gym by dropping a 40-pound weight on my foot. Bam! All progress was halted. It became easy to use that as an excuse to not workout, which led to less of a desire to eat right. Once again, I was on the weight rollercoaster. The time continued to pass, and the longer we went without getting pregnant again, the less I cared about my own health.
In December of 2014 I was at my heaviest weight ever. I’m only five feet tall and was weighing in at 186 pounds. It was at this point that I stopped even getting on the scale because I didn’t want to know anymore. I gave up wearing jeans because they didn’t fit anymore, and I refused to buy a bigger size. I lived my life in yoga pants and sweats. The stress of trying to get pregnant was all-consuming, so Chris and I decided to just get away from everything and take a vacation back to the place where it all started: Disney. Apparently it was just what we needed because we found out that I was pregnant again 5 days before Christmas.
I was terrified. If I was 60 pounds overweight to begin my pregnancy, how bad was it going to get in 9 months? Could I even have a healthy pregnancy at my weight? My doctor advised me in the very beginning to be very careful about how much weight I gained, but my biggest scare came when I failed the one-hour glucose test for Gestational Diabetes. Knowing that I could predispose this innocent child to a lifelong disease just because of my poor choices was heartbreaking. From that point on during my pregnancy, making good choices was easy. It was one thing when I was harming myself, it was a completely different thing to know I was harming my unborn child. Thankfully, when I did the 3-hour test, the results were negative, but the initial scare was still enough. I gained less than 20 pounds throughout my entire pregnancy; however, that still put me over 200 pounds at 9 months pregnant.
Aurora was born in August of 2015 weighing in at a whopping 9lbs 10oz. Due to her size, I had c-section number 2. I came home from the hospital at the same weight that I was before getting pregnant, yet everything was different. Any mother can tell you, having children changes your body, so even though I weighed the same, I didn’t look the same. Having already been unhappy with my pre-pregnancy weight, the body changes were especially hard to take. I looked in the mirror and didn’t recognize the girl staring back at me. And in the back of my mind, there was that voice, the voice that I had blocked out so long ago. “You’re worthless. You’re fat. You’re ugly.” Even though Chris is AMAZING, and loving, and tells me all the time how beautiful I am, and how much he loves me unconditionally, the scars are still there, and the bad stuff is easier to believe. I became withdrawn and depressed. I would cringe when my sweet husband touched me, because all I could think about was how disgusting it was for him to touch my fat. All he wanted was me, and all I wanted was to hide.
In June of 2016, I hit my breaking point. Our daughter was getting ready to turn one and I wanted to be able to have the energy to play with her while she was still young. I wanted to feel pretty again. I wanted to enjoy my marriage again. I wanted to enjoy life again, but most of all I wanted to find ME again. I reached out to a friend who had been posting about positive changes she was making her life on social media. It was then that I found Beachbody. My friend recommended starting with the 21 Day Fix and Shakeology. The day that I made the commitment and ordered the products to get started, I felt genuine anxiety. I was so afraid of failing again. I was so afraid that it would just be one more thing that I tried that didn’t work. Chris and I talked about it, and he agreed to be my support system and partner. We would work as a team to achieve the goals we wanted together.
We decided that the best way to get the results that we wanted was to share our journey publicly, so our friends and family could help hold us accountable; and if by doing so we could inspire just one person to make the changes for a better life, it would be worth it. We are 6 months into our journey, and the results have been amazing. Have I lost weight? Yes, absolutely I have. I am almost back down to the weight I was on my wedding day, but that has not been my greatest success. Along my journey, I have found myself again. Chris and I have found not only physical strength through our workouts, but we have strengthened our marriage by having something positive to do as a team. I’m enjoying the way I feel, not consumed by the number on the scale. We are creating a healthy example for our children, and that in and of itself is totally worth it. But now, we have decided to take it one step further and pay it forward to help as many people as we can achieve their health and fitness goals. We want to let them know that it can be done. We’re just two regular people who made up our minds that we were going to do this, and if we can do it, so can you. Here’s to never going back!