That’s me at my heaviest, 295 lbs. It was also the year of my wedding, 13 years ago, probably about three months before my wedding. I found this a few weeks ago, it’s a Polaroid, and at first, I was going to just put it back in the photo box from whence it came, and forget about it until I found it again. And then I thought, no.

No, I want to be reminded of how far I’ve come. I wanted to be reminded of the challenges I have had to overcome. I want to be reminded of the changes I have made in my life to be healthier. I want to be reminded that I have the power to change ME. So I put that sucker on my fridge. And every time I go into the kitchen, open the fridge, or see it from the living room, I smile, I make a better choice, and I desire to be better.

When I found that photo above, about three weeks ago, I decided I needed to get off my duff, and back to work on ME. I found it on a Sunday, and I started the next day. I didn’t jump back into my full workouts, but I focused on my eating. To be honest, that is where I struggle most anyhow, and my body was still fighting to be back to normal after being sick for about half of May, lol, so I wasn’t going to push it.

I weighed myself, took my measurements, and I took my before photos. I wrote everything down in one of my notebooks, and I keep weekly stats going so I can see the difference. I haven’t done photos again yet, I will do that at the end of August.

Since then, I have completely been off chips (one of my guilty, salty pleasures!), with the exception of the occasional handful of baked tortilla chips with homemade guacamole fresca. I’ve substituted chips for baby carrots. So if I have a half a sandwich for lunch, I pair it with 10-20 baby carrots.

I’ve also been eating three steady meals a day, everyday, with a couple snacks a day, usually one between lunch and dinner, and the last after dinner to help keep my blood sugar from dropping too low overnight.

I do a weekly detox drink, which consists of 2 liters of water, with one medium cucumber peeled and sliced, one lemon peeled and sliced, and one lime peeled and sliced. I put that together after dinner on Sundays, let it steep in the fridge overnight, and that is what I drink all day Monday until it is gone. I feel lighter, more refreshed, more alert, and my skin has been nicer, too.

I have been drinking more tea. I start every morning with my breakfast, and a cup of English Breakfast Tea. Throughout the day, I will have another 3-4 cups, and what flavor just depends on my mood. I like green tea, green tea with lemongrass, spiced chai, cinnamon apple, or just black tea.

I quit buying creamers from the dairy section. You know which ones I’m talking about. The ones loaded with sugars and bad stuff. Now, when I have coffee, I use half and half, Truvia, and if I want a flavor, I find a natural way to flavor it. For chocolate, I use Ovaltine. It’s pretty delicious, and just 1 tsp. is enough, and when I use Ovaltine, I skip the Truvia.

Today was the beginning of week four, and guess what? I have still yet to start an actual workout regimen. What I HAVE done as far as any type of workout, are stretches after I wake up and before I go to bed, and some light weight lifting, mainly in my upper body to build up my upper strength. Don’t worry, I trade off days and do squats, too. But…THAT’S IT!

Ready for the results?

After three weeks of focusing on my eating, not eating seconds, and working on portions, I have lost 1 lb., and 3.25 inches form my chest to my hips. All from primarily watching what I eat.

I’ve got one more week to master this challenge for myself, and then it’s on to the next phase, which is getting actual workouts in. I didn’t want to rush myself back in to anything. I needed to take it one step at a time so that I could make sure I didn’t overwhelm myself.

If you need a support system, people to encourage and support you on your journey, please join me in my private group, Healthy Starts Here, and let’s get started on turning things around. I’m not talking just about food and exercise. A healthy lifestyle is about a healthy mind, spirit, AND body. And sometimes, it’s just nice to know that there are other people in the same place as you, struggling like you, wanting better, just like you.

What is your first step? What will make you take back your life? What will push you to make changes for the better? What will make you, choose YOU?