Written by Dare to Lose participant, Keri
Eleven weeks ago I was given the opportunity of a lifetime to be a part of the Dare to Lose Challenge and it has been an incredible journey. It was an answer to what I had been searching for because I just couldn’t find the motivation within myself that I desperately needed in order to get out of the rut that I had been in for so long. I had zero energy and zero motivation to exercise. I was eating whatever I wanted and didn’t think twice about what results or consequences it would bring because I truly did not care about myself and I was sad because infertility had taken over my spirit. I was feeling extremely uncomfortable in my clothes and my surroundings, I became so self-conscious about how I looked and felt at 255 pounds. I had really let myself go too far. I knew that I needed to find something to change my attitude towards my body and my future. That’s when I heard about Dare to Lose challenge. What a blessing it was to be chosen and to have this opportunity to make a difference in my life. Innately, I knew once I got back into the habit I would be right back on track and I am on fire! I love the feeling that I have every time that I step into the gym and the feeling I get when I leave having accomplished what I had set out to do for that day.
I now make fitness a part of almost every day of the week, giving myself a break once a week. It’s been a very long time since I’ve worked out six days a week. It’s not a hassle, it’s a habit. It is hard work, but you know what? It feels so natural to me now and it’s not that difficult once I make up my mind and give myself the push that I need to just do it. I look forward to and have a plan for each day so that I am prepared. It’s making sure that I have no excuse not to get to the gym.
I have changed the way that I eat and view food as a source of power and nutrients to keep me going and giving me the energy I need to feel alive. Before the challenge, typically my first meal of the day was a late lunch and by that time I would eat anything that had substance, healthy or not. I would start my day with a soda instead of a good breakfast. I am logging my food and making sure that I’m sticking to a consistent caloric intake. When I really start to look at the food options around me, I definitely see food and what we get from it in with a new perspective. It takes effort, discipline and creativity.
Looking back on how I let myself get to the point before the competition, I know and realize that I had let the emotional stress of infertility and the sadness of not fulfilling my dreams of having children destroy who I am and who I want to be. It is very difficult to be open about where I’ve been for the past four years but it is a part of who I am now and it is my story. I can never and will never give up on myself again because I am stronger than my disease.
Everyone who knows me and loves me has noticed the change. They have said that since I started this competition I am happier, I smile more, I am less stressed and my countenance is brighter. I am less focused on my inabilities and more focused on what I can accomplish. I am focused on being the wife that my husband is proud of because not matter what, I have to live for myself and for him regardless of how big our family is. All I know is that the results are showing and my hard work is paying off. When it comes down to it, I realize that I’ve worked so hard but on the other hand, a little effort has gone a long way. With one more week to go in the Dare to Lose challenge, I’m not even close to being done. I’m just getting my feet wet…