My Journey…

January 2010 198 lbs.

Inspired by a fellow photographer, I decided to share my weight loss journey with all of you. No matter what your size or age most women struggle with weight. I am no different.
Now, I am 5’8″ tall so whenever I was at my biggest I still didn’t see myself as “big” due to the fact that my weight was proportioned properly…well that’s what I told myself.

I didn’t really start to notice a huge gain until three years ago. My weight kept going up, closer and closer to 200 lbs…it was not good. Then…I got pregnant.

I had the mentality that “I’m pregnant I can eat what I want, I’m eating for two!” and I did. This was not a good concept to have. My doctors repeatedly told me to exercise more and watch what I was eating. I ignored them.

The day I went into the hospital to give birth to my Son, I was 227 lbs. Granted immediately after having him I was down to 210 lbs. That was still entirely too big. I knew I had to do something, but I have TERRIBLE will power when it comes to food.

I kept eating like I had before (when I was pregnant) and got a Wii Fit. My OBGYN had told me that another patient of hers lost 30lbs using one. I was game! I used it every morning before my Son woke up for months and I lost 12 lbs by the beginning of 2010. Then my loss stopped. I knew I had to do something about my diet.

I have tried many diets throughout my life. South Beach Diet (my sister lost a lot of weight using that one), Atkins (I love meat, sounded like a good plan) and trying to just eat salads. None of them worked for me. I then researched  Weight Watchers.

Portion control, filling foods, and healthy grains. Slowly losing weight to keep it off. I do the online program where I log all the foods I am eating on my own points tracker. At first it was hard. I would lose a couple pounds and gain one. I stuck with it, and within the first six months I lost 20 lbs!

I started to feel good about myself and was able to get back into the jeans I hadn’t been able to wear in a couple years! Weight kept coming off slowly but surely and I was still eating what I was feeding my family. The difference was how much I was eating. In the past I would eat two soft tacos on taco night, now it’s a small one. Fresh fruit, veggies, low sugar cereals and low fat milk. Egg whites instead of a whole egg. It sounds so easy, and it is!!!

January 2011 160 lbs

Now we are 18 months into my journey, and I am the smallest I have been in five years! Since walking out of the hospital on my Son’s birthday, I have lost 55 lbs. Since starting Weight Watchers, I have lost 43 pounds.
Of course it isn’t JUST the diet that contributes to my weight loss. I jog when I can, take walks twice a day with my Son when I can, ride horses, anything to keep me active.

I know people look for a “quick” fix and to drop weight fast. For me, that wasn’t the answer. I am able to eat whatever I want now, ice cream, pizza, beer, and keep my weight the same. I would like to lose five more pounds, but I’m not going to beat myself up if I don’t. I feel fantastic about myself right now, and wouldn’t want to change a thing.

I am now a size 9, and can run around the yard with my Son and not feel winded. I can ride three horses in one afternoon and my legs don’t feel like they want to fall off. Life is good!
I now know when and if we decide to have another child, to moderate what I eat. I want to give him/her the nourishment they need, but keep myself healthy as well. We shall see when we cross that bridge.
I didn’t write this to endorse WW, or to say that large women aren’t beautiful. It’s about how you FEEL inside FIRST. I didn’t like myself when I was big, I couldn’t get on my horse without assistance! I just wanted to feel good about ME. To hell with what anyone else thought, this is MY journey and it is a good one!


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Shields Valley Montana

Kyleen Olson is a  Shields Valley Montana Wedding and Portrait Photographer that specializes in capturing the imperfect moments of life. She loves helping her clients to find the authentic moments and spending her Sundays with her family.

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