Thursday, August 8, 2013

Fabulously Fit Friend: Nicolle Lost 117lbs!

I have this friend that has always been in my life for almost as long as I can remember.  My first sleepover was at her house.  Her dad and my dad were in a couple different worship bands together.  We have gone to church (three...maybe four...completely different churches) together most of our lives.  In the last few years I noticed she was shrinking.  She was eating healthy and making changes in her life to improve her fitness.   She strived to keep the right spiritual mindset throughout this journey.  Nicolle is truly an inspiration!  She lost a total of 117 lbs.  Here is how she did it!

How did you begin your weight loss journey?  What made you desire change?

I was honestly pretty overweight my whole life and I was never aware how obese I really was. Occasionally people would bring up dieting and eating healthier but I attributed my size to bring big boned with slow metabolism since a lot of my family are the same way. When I was 19, a coworker suggested going to curves because she had been really wanting to lose and asked me if I would be her accountability partner. Honestly, going to the gym never had crossed my mind previously because again, I attributed my size to just "how God made me." I was shocked when I went to curves and was weighed and measured for the first time in a LONG while at a whopping 261 lbs. I'm so thankful for God blessing me with that coworker who challenged me and made me aware of how unhealthy I was.

What changes did you make to start to see results?  Did you set goals?  If so, what were they?

I signed up for curves the same night I was weighed and measured. It was really helpful having an accountability partner to start my weight loss with. I had no previous experience with exercise or eating healthy but at first it consisted of going to curves and having Lean Cuisines for lunch---but no other changes. The weight started coming off pretty quickly at first probably because I had so much to lose and my original goal was being under 200 or no longer being a plus size.

Where did you look for encouragement and help when you needed it?  
 The coworker I had was again such a blessing and she really was turning me to scripture. She made me aware of gluttony being a sin and not taking care of myself was not bringing God glory as my body is a temple to the Lord. God definitely provides strength during the times I needed it most.  At one point, I started to take weight loss to the extreme and working out became and idol. It was important for me to remember "Train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come." (1 Timothy 4:7, 8 ESV) I had to be in the Word and not sacrifice my prayer time and time with The Lord for exercise because that was not God glorifying
How long have you kept it off?  How are you keeping it off?

It's been a long time. Since I started losing I haven't put any back on (with the exception of 5 lbs here and there) I no longer go to curves or eat Lean Cuisines but I made staying fit a lifestyle. I have to make conscious decisions to stop when I'm full and not have cake every single time someone offers it. At work I go walking around the building every break. I pack my own healthy lunches and snacks instead of eating out. I go out hiking with friends or do workout videos at home. I try to stay active and am much more aware of my body and the decisions I make with food. 

If you could give the readers three tips for getting healthy, what would those be?

1. Remember that our chief end is to glorify God (and enjoy Him forever) and that aspect applies to your healthy lifestyle too. Don't forget to honor The Lord in your habits and seek Him for the strength you need.
2. Make a lifestyle change. You can't fad diet just to go back to eating bad every day after you lost the weight.  You are going to gain it all back if you do. You need to make conscious efforts to have self control, make smart food decisions (but also be realistic and realize you still can have pizza or cake sometimes too).
3. Be active. You don't have to be in a gym for 3 hours a day, but work it into your schedule. For me, it's walking on breaks at work, hiking with friends, workout videos, or for days that I'm so busy and I dont have time to set aside to exercise, I will honestly dance while I'm cleaning the house. Find something to do to stay moving even in small ways.