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How I Lost Over 40 Pounds


Recently I have had many people
ask me to share

how I lost over 40 pounds

and
just as importantly
kept it off.


There was no easy fix.

But I did figure out how to 
make sustainable
life changes
that added up to the successful
weight loss I was after.
I think of them as my
building blocks .



The changes I made 
 came out of one of the lowest points
of my life.
Sometimes if we are able to harness our pain
it can become the impetus for the change we seek.


I only share that
because if I wasn't in a deep dark pain
I probably wouldn't have put 
in the tremendous effort I needed to really change.


I remember wondering at the end of 2020
when I started
if there would come a time
I would be 
grateful for the pain
as an impetus for change.


I am.
But it was a long and uncomfortable road.
As true life changes 
usually are.




There had been so much loss and sadness since November 7th, 2017
weight gan over the three following years 
was literally the least of my problems.
Even coming across this shocking to me picture
from May of 2020
didn't kick in any change.


I was in a continual state of what felt to me
 of surviving and coping.
And I thought chardonnay was my best friend.


I drank to forget I was more overweight than I felt acceptable.
I drank hard a couple  of those years to drown out a broken heart form a marital infidelity.
During that time my mother's health was failing.
During an eight month span 
she had a broken back,  broken hip, pneumonia, another broken hip
and 
more respiratory problems
until her little body just gave out.
I drank because of my Mom dying.
I drank because of my oldest son 
 once more decided to  estrange from the family.
I drank because on January 22 of 2020
 my husband was let go from his executive job 
of 25 years
out of the blue.
I drank because I was so scared
while my dad was in the ICU for months during  COVID
after complications from what was supposed to be a simple surgery.
I drank more when he died.
I drank because my youngest moved with his family to Texas.

But mainly  I drank 
because I felt like a life failure.



I continued to drink (a lot) until
Christmas Eve 2020
I woke up in the middle of the night
literally realizing 
there wasn't enough alcohol in the world 
to ease my pain.
I remember feeling if I didn't wake up in the morning
I would be OK with that.
Everything
just felt like too much.


And 
if I did wake up
I would have to make  some drastic changes
in my life.
This way was way too painful.



It took me a couple of days to come up with a plan.






First off was to do a painful breakup
with 
Chardonnay
Maybe it wouldn't be forever
(it wasn't0
but I knew it would have to be at least 

30 Days Alcohol Free

I wrote about my story HERE


My  friend Adrienne Shubin
had shared her no Alcohol story
and
 had mentioned the book 


I bought all the Quit Lit she recommended.

is Adrienne's blog link



The next 30 days
were awful
and 
I hard 
 so many pity parties 
feeling like I was giving up the only source of joy
I allowed myself.


I never really thought I would be successful with
 changing my relationship with wine.


But I did.
And that  was 
life changing.


I realized what a daily habit 
having wine had become.


I drank as a reward for accomplishment
at the end of the day.

I drank if I was sad.
I drank if I was happy.


I realized how stunted my
 coping strategies 
had become.
And just how habitual.


I realized how
 limiting my own 
Self Belief 
had become.


Slowly I began to make other changes
as I could step back 
and
observe bad habits
and 
self defeating coping strategies.


2020 vs 2021



Again I followed Adrienne's advice.
She had shared how 
Intermittent Fasting 
had also helped her in losing 90 pounds.


I was in.
But carefully.


Because I had suffered from an eating disorder
for too many years to count.
Bulimia had been a part of my life
a big, big part 
at one point
before I had children.

Intermittentant Fasting
works for me, surprisingly.

It lets me feel more in control of what I eat
and
 when.
The added benefit being that I sleep so much better too!


I started out slowly
and
 then began getting down to 
a six to eight hour window of eating.


I'm not recommending this to everyone
but with my past and history
it works for me.


The other part of  my success with

Intermittent Fasting
is being

Calorie Deficit

which is simply eating less calories
thank my body needs 
in order to loose weight.


That really is the bottom line of the weight loss
There are just a lot of 
supportive components 
to make this doable 
and 
more importantly
consistent.






The next building block was to up my physical activity.
I have always worked out.

Just as much for mental health
as 
physical health.

I increased my hike from 2-3 miles a day
to 5-6 miles last summer.

I average about 3 miles a day
5 days a week now.


We are very fortunate to live in an area
with spectacular hiking opportunities. 
Jeff and I have made them part of our 
healthy lifestyle.


They are a gift I am always 
Grateful 
for.


Hiking in Nature
is what I do for my
Mind, Body and Soul.

I also weight train 3 days a week
with yoga and Pilates rounding out my work outs.




I think there are so many different ways to lose weight.

But I think
 one of the most important building blocks
is replacing
self sabotaging habits 
with 
healthier, successful habits.


Simply said
 new ways 
to find joy!


One thing that has really helped me

My Gratitude List.
I write it down 
every morning
right next to my to Do List.


It really helps me focus on all of the good
in my life.


It also helps me stay positive
with my progress
which sometimes felt incredibly slow.


But trust me
a lot of little changes
carried out consistently
really do make a difference.





I believe I was able to make changes
because I was at a point
not to change 
was just too painful.




And now I know
it really isn't about 
the weight
or 
drinking or not drinking.

It's about developing
a good relationship
with my self.

It is really about learning to trust myself.

To have compassion for myself.


To realize
I might not have always gotten it right
but I know I was always
trying my best.


I just needed learn more successful 
coping strategies
when it got down to it.
i needed to get to a place
where I allowed myself to succeed.


To find new ways of coping 
that don't 
Self Sabotage
the things I am working on
and 
hold important.



Better 
healthier 
ways for me
to find joy.



And little by little
learn to see myself
more lovingly.




One thing the last four years 
have taught me is

 life is hard enough
without being at 
war with myself.





 

And when we know better
we do better.

True personal change
is a process.
And it can come out of pain.
There really is no perfect time
to decide to change your life for the better.



I started my process with one step
and 
continued to add the others
as I got solid with each building block.


~ Changing my relationship to Alcohol
~ Intermittent Fasting
~ Consistent Calorie Deficient
~ Consistent and Sustainable Work Outs

and 
most importantly to me
I added
 new to me
~ Successful Coping Strategies
to my self discipling
so that I could sustain
the process of change!


A process that needs
all the 
Self Compassion
you can find.




As always my friends

I wish you love and joy
as you style your life






39 comments:

  1. My friend, we share so many similar challenges & struggles....but today it hit home...thank you for that
    You are beautiful!

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    1. Bridget you are so welcome darling! Thank you for reading and commenting!

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  2. Thank you for your transparency, for courage in your journey, humility sharing struggles, resourcefulness reaching out to learn new skills, personal discipline to keep moving forward even if there's set backs, hope for a better future, honest self evaluation, resilience in adversity and a deep desire to thrive. These character qualities are gems. As a result, your sparkle glows brighter! ♡

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    1. Why thank you ever so much Denise, for your lovely gift of thoughtful words! I so appreciate them! XOX

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  3. Thank you so much for being Transparent. I lost 45 lbs in 2020, l've gained 30 back😔 l'm in the process of regaining control of my mind and my body. You look amazing. I'm proud of you. Depression Sucks. God Bless you 🙏🏾 ❤

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    Replies
    1. Good for you darling! Sounds like you are well on your way!! Thank you for reading and commenting!

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  4. Thank you for your honesty here. I can relate to so much of your journey. You have been through so much and I admire your strength and fortitude. I am so proud of you and appreciate you sharing your experiences. XO, Adrienne

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    Replies
    1. Why thank you ever so much Adrienne! I really appreciate you and all of your encouragement! XOX

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  5. What a “life success” you are. Brava

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  6. Your beautiful soul shines through in your rare honesty, Tamera. So many awful things have happened, and you have strength and resilience to carry on and made a plan when the time was right. I can relate to the situation of having loved children and grandchildren far away in another State - it tears at one's heart. We are so happy to have ours move back here and we adore our time with the little ones. Thank you for sharing your journey and the fabulous photos. You know, I never even noticed your weight! xoxox

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    Replies
    1. Patricia thank you so much for your beautiful and encouraging words! I so appreciate them! I am so happy your little ones are back in your area! XOX

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  7. Thank you for sharing your story. You comment about life being hard enough without being at war with oneself particularly resonated. It's interesting how we can observe someone else from the outside and think their lives are so wonderful when the reality they are internalising so much pain. Stay strong and keep inspiring us all to live our best lives. All any of us can do is to focus on those things that we can control and leave the rest to fall where they may.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for reading and your beautiful, encouraging words! I so appreciate them! XO

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  8. Thanks you so much for this post Tamera! I can relate to so much here!! I had lost 15 pounds several years ago...then gained back 20. :( I'm determined to reconnect with myself and get my good health back. Thanks for your thoughtful post....I've read it over several times, so grateful for your openness here.

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    Replies
    1. Roxanne thank you so much for visiting here my dear! I have no doubt you will reconnect with yourself and get your good health back! XO

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  9. Congratulations, and thank you yet again for the honesty.

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  10. Your post is so honest and open Tamera, you have achieved so much not just your weight loss ( and that is amazing) but addressing the underlying causes. You have had more than your fair share of heartbreak over the last few years , may your future be calmer . Thank you for the inspiration to make some changes in my life too. Jill Jamesxx

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    1. Jill thank you so much for visiting here and your kind words! I so appreciate them! XO

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  11. Such an inspiring story Tamara! Congratulations on your becoming a healthier you! Thank you for sharing your challenges and thereby allowing me greater insight and understanding into my own struggles and how I may rise above them. You are a shining light in the world!

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    1. Ginger thank you so much for visiting here and your encouraging and supportive words! I so appreciate them! XO

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  12. Tamera, you have proven to yourself that you are strong and resilient. There is little in life that can't be faced with those two qualities. Add a beautiful soul willing to share your trials and you help us all face our own issues. There is so much we can learn from each other. I have loved your beautiful posts for years now. You grow more beautiful as the years pass. Thank you for sharing yourself with us and making our world more beautiful everyday.

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    1. Strength and Resilience ... you are so right my dear! I have come to see that both of these qualities have shaped some of the women I admire most. Thank you so much for this gift of heartfelt and encouraging words! I so appreciate them! XO

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  13. HERE WE GO AGAIN AS YOU KNOW I TOO HAVE LOST A BUNCH OF WEIGHT OVER THE LAST THREE YEARS DUE TO MEDICATIONS THAT DIDNOT SIT WELL WITH ME.I also gave up the wine three years ago as I had NO TASTE FOR IT ANYMORE!PLUS, IT WAS NOT RECOMMENDED with the meds!I GOT SO THIN I WAS REALLY WORRIED AS I HAD NO APPETITE!HAPPY TO SAY I HAVE A LITTLE TUMMY NOW AND THAST A GOODD THING AS IF WE GET TOO THIN WE LOOK A LOT OLDER THAN OUR YEARS..........on another note Juliet from MAKE MINE A SPRITZER I Believe does the interM fasting!For another one to talk too.......I am SORRY to hear about your husband and his JOB!Life just is not FAIR a good amount of the TIME!I am devastated this morning of the passing of ANDRE TALLEY... EX-VOGUE EDITOR AT LARGE!Have you read his book in THE CHIFFON TRENCHES?YOU MUST!
    WELL, CONGRATULATIONS ON ALL YOUR HURDLES............KEEP ON STYLING!!!
    XOXO

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    1. My dear, you certainly have had so many health challenges the last few years! i can only imagine how scary and upsetting they must be! I'm glad to hear you have been able to put a bit of weight back on! I so agree with you on mot getting too thin, at our age. Thank you so much for visiting here darling!! Sending you big, big hugs my friend!! XOXO

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  14. Tamera ... always fearless and forthright. And I love this about you. Your willingness to share difficult times and experiences in order to inspire and encourage others is amazing. You shine brighter and brighter. xo

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    1. Thank you ever so much Juliet, for your gift of supportive and encouraging words! Always gifts to my soul they are! XOX

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  15. Tamera, I have periodically checked in to catch up on your blog over the years and always enjoy it. Your honesty and vulnerability are so inspiring. Especially when so many in social media, influencers, etc. attempt to portray a perfect life. Nothing is perfect. Your idea of a gratitude list along side the to-do list is the best!! Starting it tomorrow. And today's post made me subscribe so I never miss out again. As far as a weight change, who would ever notice with that face!!! You are gorgeous! But being healthy is of utmost importance. All the best, Cathy

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    1. Cathy thank you so much for visiting here and your sweet and supportive comment! Your words mean the world to me, my dear! Let me know how the gratitude list works for you! It's been a big game changer for me! All the best!

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  16. Tamera, It's so brave of you to share the whole story of your journey the last few years and your struggles. You have been through a lot and to come out on the other side stronger takes will. I so admire you doing this. You look amazing, but most of all seem happy and content. Thank you always for the positivity you share with the world from your little corner. You have inspired me to do better this year- and start putting myself and my health first too. xo

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    1. Kim how wonderful to see a visit from you,
      here! Thank you so much for your supportive and encouraging words my dear! I so appreciate them! And kudos to you for starting to put yourself and your health first! Well done darling!! Big hugs my friend! XOX

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  17. I absolutely love that you write and share from your heart. Thank you for sharing this story. My favorite part - "One thing the last four years have taught me is life is hard enough without being at
    war with myself."

    What a wonderful quote I will remember.

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    1. Loretta thank you so much for reading and your generous and encouraging words my dear! Much appreciation! XOX

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  18. So inspiring, Tamera! I've noted your quote "life is hard enough without being at war with myself" as a reminder. Thank you for your honesty and vulnerability.

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    1. Thank you so much for visiting here and kind comment my dear! I remind myself often of that quote, I'm happy to hear it resonated with you as well! XOX

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  19. Thank you for this. So helpful. You are #goals!

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