Can you guys believe it’s been six weeks since the REAL Stories series started!? It’s been a great six weeks of posts and today I’m bringing you the final piece from Courtney of Treadmill Runway.
I came across Courtney’s blog quite a while ago and I was immediately intrigued by her inspiring weight loss story. I really wanted to include her in this series so she she could share it with you.
Courtney lost a lot of weight and she did it the right way, with a great attitude, a lot of learning and slow, healthy progress. She’s accomplished so much, completely changed her life, found a passion for fitness and now enjoys a healthy, balanced diet – just what the REAL Stories is all about! I love this post and everything she has to say, so enjoy!!
Hello! I’m Courtney from TreadmillRunway.com. My R.E.A.L. story starts just over 2.5 years ago, December 28, 2011….actually the prequel to the story started in October 2008, when I found out I was pregnant with my first child.
Weight has always been a struggle for me, at the time I found out I was pregnant I had just joined back, for what felt like the millionth time, to WeightWatchers and I was finally seeing some progress, I was down to 190 lbs.As I look back today I have no idea why I felt the need to quit the program simply because I was pregnant!
The first couple months I managed to keep things under control, but within the span of 9 months I gained OVER 100lbs! On the day I delivered my son I asked them not to tell me my weight for fear I’d never recover from hearing that number. If I had to guess it was around 320lbs. Time went on and I re-joined WW and lost 50lbs only to find myself expecting our 2nd child shortly after! My 2nd pregnancy wasn’t much better, on delivery day I was back up to 300+lbs.
My children are now 4 & 5 and as I reflect back I’m thankful I woke up when I did. I missed so many of the “firsts” because I was too big to participate and didn’t want any photos taken of me and the kids because I was afraid to see what I had become.
In December of 2011 a friend asked me to join WW with her, yet again, and I haven’t looked back since. Apparently I’m a little competitive and I wasn’t going to be the one to fall of the “wagon” first.
I found a local small boutique gym that was having a challenge and offering a boot camp. They took me in and welcomed me with open arms. It was at that gym where the “switch” seemed to flip. In just over 2.5 years I have lost over 150lbs and gained an entire new lease on life.
Want to know my weight loss secret? Hard work, REAL food, and TIME.
Yes, that’s right, time. Weight can pile on quite quickly – I was able to gain 100lbs in 9 months. Technically you could lose that in 9 months, but I preferred it never to come back so I took the slow and steady approach. If you average out my weight loss it’s about 1-2lbs a week over my journey. Yes, there have been periods where it’s been more and then weeks where there is nothing at all.
Consistency is key. Even if the scale stops moving, keep your body moving, the scale & the inches will catch up eventually!
Over the course of my journey I’ve experimented with many different ways of eating & exercising. What I would have considered healthy at the beginning of my journey I wouldn’t touch now.
I’ve spent hours upon hours researching and watching films about food and exercise – education is key! I’ve counted calories, macros and tracked just about everything you can track. Since switching to real whole foods it’s become much simpler. I listen to my body and feed it accordingly and I’m teaching my children to do the same.
Here are top tips for realistic, healthy weight loss:
1.Start by changing just ONE thing at a time. Is diet soda your vice? Start there. Slowly, as you feel ready add another change, perhaps it’s exercise, or swapping out process treats for some of the amazing treats here on RORF!
2. Get over the term “cheating”. This is not a math test, there is no cheating. There are however, cookies, brownies, and tasty things. These are called choices and with each one we make we’re a step closer our goal. The term cheating implies you have done something wrong, which attaches feelings of guilt. It’s taken me a while to get to this mind set but if you eat quality food you’ll be alright!
3. Find your fitness passion. If exercise isn’t your thing that’s OK. Did you play a sport when you were young that you loved? Look for an adult league. Start small, soon you’ll be craving fitness in your daily life. Remember, fitness doesn’t have to take place in the confines of the gym walls. GO PLAY OUTSIDE!
4. Food doesn’t have to be overly complicated to be healthy. If you browse my Instagram feed, you’re not going to find 5 star looking meals, but you will see whole foods that fuel my body. Keep it simple.
5. Weight loss is not all roses and sunshine, despite what you may see on the internet. Yes, it’s amazing, but there are things you’ll deal with along the way, such as plateaus, loose/excess skin, body image, losing friends (as your old habits change) etc. I found the internet to be an amazing support along this journey. Find a buddy that you connect with and share your success and struggles.
6. There is no one size fits all way of eating. Research, try things out, see what works for YOU. Take little pieces from each lifestyle and create something just for you!
7. GIVE IT TIME. There are no pills, potions, etc that will give you long term results. Do the work. Reap the rewards. Believe in yourself, trust the process, change forever.
Did you miss parts 1-5 as well as my contribution to the series? Find them here:
Part One – Amy from The Little Honey Bee
Part Two – Christal from Nutritionist in the Kitch
Part Three – Angela from Eat Spin Run Repeat
Part Four – Sarah from The Balanced Babe
Part Five – Lindsay from The Lean Green Bean
REAL Stories: Weight, Body Image and Food Freedom on The Little Honey Bee
Now that all six posts have been shared, what did you guys think of the series? I’d love it if you posted it below on a few topics so we can keep the conversation going! Post to the comments below or on social media with #weareREAL.
What does real health mean to you?
What does a real food diet mean to you?
How have you developed positive body image and a focus on health, rather than size?
How did you find a passion for fitness?
I must send out a huge thank you to the six relatable, everyday, amazing ladies that contributed to this series for me. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! You guys are the best and I’m honoured to call you all friends. I love following your health and fitness journeys and you inspire me to continue on with my own. Keep it REAL, ladies! Thank you.