Tuesday, October 15, 2013


So, today marks a SPECIAL day. Today marks the day I took control of MY LIFE and vowed to make tomorrow better. Last year on Oct 15, 2012, I made the best decision ever. I went from living a life of unhealthy habits to forcing myself to want to be a better me. When I stood on the scale that dreadful Monday night and could not see my weight, I forgot about all the confidence I had as a plus size, size 26 diva and realized I had two choices: get right or die!

As I think back to that day, I realize I was NOT happy with myself. I became so angry and upset with myself once I realized I had lost all control. I cried and cried because I let myself down. The reality was real - I was over 350pounds... Almost 400 pounds! When we are confident, we overlook reality. I used to go out and did not care how people viewed me because I knew I was beautiful and I loved myself. But, when the reality of being almost 400 pounds at the age of 28, I no longer wanted to be that person!

But, that was then. 365 days later I am a changed woman. No more am I the emotional eater, heavy snacker, lazy bed potato (I hardly sit on the couch), or the fast food queen. I saw life differently prior to that night. But, once I stopped crying and being angry with myself, I had to make changes; I didn't know how I was going to lose the weight, but I knew I had to. Since I tried so many methods and programs in the past, I knew I had to find what worked for me.

So, from that day forward I changed everything. That night I threw everything unhealthy out my house. It was like the ex I had to get rid of - permanently. I added more vegetables, lots of fruit, little to no fried food, hardly any white bread, mostly water (60-100 oz) daily, and I planned my cheat meals. It was hard, but I had to reprogram myself. I never looked at this as a diet, and I enjoyed what I did. Cooking became fun because I was inventing new meals for myself. I did not make overly complex meals, but sought out easy quick meals that were healthy, yet delicious. After about 3 months I was on track.

One thing I started to do was make smoothies - fruit and vegetables to increase my fiber intake. That really was fun because I ate things that I wouldn't normally eat, like spinach. The funny thing is I still will not eat spinach, but I put it in my smoothies everyday. This definitely had a lot to do with my success because I started to make smoothies for other reasons - detox and even when I was sick. It became easier to just mix a couple of ingredients and it filled me up or help my digestive system.

The other exciting part of this year was the number of people I impacted. In May 2013, I started my own program, Success Weight. My healthy living program is designed to help individuals to identify their inner strength as they seek their own success. My goal is to reach as many people both locally and afar as they embark on this journey. Since I've lost weight, I've met people who have had weight loss surgery and they told me they wish they met me before they had the procedure. Now, I went for surgery twice, but was denied. I recently sent an email to the surgeon because of him not appealing the decision, he gave me an opportunity to get out my own way and lose the weight the way that was best for me. I want an opportunity to reach people and ask them to give me a chance at helping them before they go under the knife. I know people who had the surgery, and they had horrible experiences because their stomachs were physically smaller, but their mind sets were the same as before. I know someone who lost her friend due to complications after weight loss surgery. I know someone who has gained the weight back. So, in the end it is a mental game and you must be strong enough to overcome that challenge regardless if you are getting surgery or attempting to do it naturally.

So, here I am a year later and 100 pounds lighter. To think this day last year, I was unable to even read my weight on a scale – AMAZING! What's next for me? LIVE! Well, I want to lose another 45-50 pounds. I have no desire of being skinny, but I do want to be healthier.  In 2014, I plan to do a 5k and a half marathon. I'm in love with the idea that I'm able to do things I never could do before. I can run up the subway stairs. I look forward to exercising. I am just in a better position overall. I was called an inspiration, but to me I just know I'm capable of touching lives for the better. I do that already as an educator, but this is definitely a notch further and very rewarding. When people tell me they need my help and they contact me, I feel like I've found my purpose. The grand purpose of my life.

My mom asked me a few times, "did you think you would accomplish this?" My answer is no. I never imagined I would be able to say I've lost 100 pounds on my own. The truth is, in the beginning, I would say out loud that I wanted to lose 100 pounds, but I didn't think I would actually do it. To me if I could have lost 30 pounds I would have felt great. But, I lost more and I am proud of myself for that. Now, I just have to keep it up, and continue to spread the message to as many people as possible!

 Are you ready?