By the time I was twenty-four, I weighed 260 pounds; even now, I cringe to actually write the number. Then, over a two and a half year period, I lost 130 pounds and have kept it off for six and a half years. When people ask me how I did it, my flip and short response is, “Diet and exercise.”
But the truth is much more complicated and deeper than that. It also involves lots of questions that people rarely ask. How and why did I gain weight to begin with? How did it feel to be an overweight adolescent and young adult? What prompted me to lose weight when I finally did? Did I have a support group? What was the experience of losing weight like, and what is it like now to maintain it? How do I handle being in situations with lots of food and social expectations of eating? Have there been any negative results of losing weight? Is being thin what I expected? What other things have changed in my life as a result of weight loss?
Those other questions are equally, if not more, significant, particularly as they are addressed so infrequently. That is why, in an effort to answer those and more, I have begun writing about my journey and experiences with weight and food, referring to old journal entries for chronology and to remind myself of what it was actually like at the time.
This blog will be an account of this process of re-discovery, as well as some of my current thoughts about food and weight and exercise. It is a reminder, as well, that while I might have won the losing battle, it is one that many others struggle with. I would like to think that sharing my story might offer them useful strategies and, more importantly, hope and understanding.