WHY I STARTED
I started these BLC challenges almost a year ago. I mostly wanted to lose weight because I was done with feeling terrible and tired all the time. I knew I needed to quit sugar. I also found a very supportive doctor who is like no other doctor I've had. When *I* mentioned wanting to lose weight (rather than him telling me I should), I paired it with "someday" or similar words, and he said, "What if we made 'someday' now? This year? Or the next couple of years?" And he was SERIOUS. He looked at me intently and kindly; he was clearly on my side, he seemed supportive. (I've written more about that too.)
So somehow it was the double whammy of: 1) being sick of being exhausted all the time (and sore joints, etc.) and, 2) having a doctor who was going to gently help keep me accountable, that led me to find these challenges on spark.
And the challenges really worked for me. I'm a little competitive, and I love supporting others reach their goals too, so it was a really good fit for me.
WHY I WON'T GIVE UP
I've lost over 45 lbs (and made it through a VERY stressful summer without gaining -- I actually lost 6 lbs). So I have actual EVIDENCE that I CAN IN FACT DO THIS. I really can! And that's amazing to know.
I also know I feel better when I drink plenty of water, get in several really good workouts a week and eat "clean" (more veggies, less or no processed foods, and NO SUGAR -- I've gotten lax on that last one of late but no more, I'm starting that one over again). :)
I still have quite a ways to go, but I got here (45 lbs down) by focusing on baby steps and healthy goals; just focus on today, plan for tomorrow and the week ahead, and just lose 5 lbs at a time. I feel comfortable now thinking in terms of 10 or 20 lbs (mostly because I'm SO excited about reaching "ONEderland" soon (about 20 lbs or less and I'll be at 199).
I have specific articles of clothing I can use to measure my progress (in addition to the weekly weigh-ins for my spark teams), and that's VERY motivating. It's AMAZING to be able to fit into clothes I haven't been able to wear for so many years. I have a bag of bigger clothes I slowly keep adding to so I can give those away.
I'm doing it slowly this time so it stays PERMANENT. I'm retraining my body to accept a new set-point. I don't want to lose a lot of weight quickly, only to just as quickly gain it all back and MORE (been there, done that; it stinks). I'm learning to plan meals around veggies; I also finally was able to give up soda altogether (especially including diet, which used to be the only soda I would drink).
I can't wait to see what's next and to help others achieve their goals too. I've been so inspired by so many people on spark who've done some amazing things and lost an incredible amount of weight. It finally seems doable for me too. :)