Welcome to back for another Transformation Tuesday series! Today we’re hearing from Tyra, a friend of Amy’s who has gone from overweight to running half marathons! Check out her story:
Q: When did you realize that you had a weight problem?
A: My Senior year of High School. I was a gymnast and I was very fit until my Senior year. I won’t go into the details but I developed an eating disorder. I started hiding food and binge eating. Once I graduated HS, alcohol and a lack of exercise played into the majority of my weight gain.
Q: What made you decide to do something about it?
A: I was just tired. My clothes didn’t fit, I was depressed and I hid away from the world. Also, I knew that I needed to create a healthy environment for my kids
Q: When did you start?
A: Years ago, I joined Weight Watchers. My weight fluctuated over the years as I would get lazy and slip back to my old ways. I also wasn’t exercising. This was the puzzle piece I was missing. I quit doing anything for several years, and in January of 2010 I joined Weight Watchers again and the gym. I took a 5 a.m. cycle class (because I knew it would be dark and there wouldn’t be anyone there) I got in and got out.
Q: How much weight have you lost?
A: Overall, I have lost 40 lbs. BUT… The scale is not how I measure my success. I have gone down several sizes. I am replacing fat with muscle. In fact, in the past several months, I’ve only lost 2 lbs but people have noticed a change more in the past several months then in the past when I was losing more actual weight. I am a work in progress!
Q: What is/was your goal?
A: My goal is to be as healthy as I can be. My goal is to live my life not tied to the scale. Not letting food control me. Feeling good about myself and the healthy habits I have created. If I have to put a number on something, it’s on my body fat percentage. That number is slowly lowering and I do have a number in mind I’d like to be, but that’s for me to know and everyone to see when I get there. 🙂
Q: What weight loss program or eating modifications do you follow?
A: I follow a somewhat “clean” version if “IIFYM” (If it fits your macros) AKA “Flexible Dieting”
Q: Can you explain your basic program?
A: Yes. I don’t count calories. I count Protein, Fat, Carbohydrates and Fiber. All of which add up to calories. If I hit those numbers, then I will hit the calorie number I should be at for my goals. With this, I also lift heavy weights and do a little cardio and/or HIIT each week. Lifting heavy allows you to maintain muscle while you’re in a calorie deficit or at maintenance. I meal prep every week and also use My Fitness Pal to track everything I put into my mouth.
Q: Do you exercise?
Q: How often and how much?
A: Every day. I lift weights typically every week day morning. I do cardio a couple times a week unless I’m training for a half marathon, then I add more cardio (running and/or elliptical)
Q: Where and when do you exercise?
A: My day starts at the gym at 5:45(ish) for 1 hour of lifting weights with my husband. Monday – Friday. Saturday and Sunday, I typically have some type of activity, but it’s more like active rest.
Q: What exercises work for you?
A: I love to lift. I used to be so intimidated by the free weights in the gym. Not anymore! I also run half marathons, so I do train (as little as possible) for those. The actual cardio I do in the gym is 2 x 30 minute elliptical sessions or cycle sessions a week, max. Wednesdays, we sometimes do a HIIT program in the morning in place of lifting. I also do the Susan G. Komen 3-Day walk, so am constantly walking (long distances) to train for this.
Q: What are your trigger foods?
A: Ice cream. But I’m able to enjoy some every day as long as it fits into my macros.
Q. How do you cope with temptation?
A: That’s beauty of my food plan. Because nothing is off limits, I don’t have a lot of temptation. I use Myfitnesspal to track everything. I enter all of my foods in the morning or the night before so that I know where I’m at. I have a bowl of ice cream pretty much every night so that it doesn’t become a temptation outside of my goals.
Q: Have you ever gotten discouraged? What do you do about it?
A: Often, to be honest! Since I am focusing on not using the scale as a measurement of success, I take a lot of progress pictures and look at old photos for encouragement.
Q: How did you feel about looking at photos of yourself? Has that changed?
A: I am getting more comfortable. Some days I see the “old” me. When that happens, I pull out progress photos. Some days I “feel” like the “old” me and when I see photos, I am shocked. (In a good way!)
Q: What is the best benefit of losing weight for you?
A: More energy. Feeling better about myself when I look in the mirror. Knowing that when I’m older, I won’t be uncomfortable doing simple things.
Q: Do people ask you for advice? What do you tell them?
A: Yes, all the time and I love it. It makes me feel like I’m really living the life I’ve set out to live! Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I’d be known as the “girl that meal preps every week” and the “girl that runs all those half marathons” or the “girl that goes to the gym all.the.time.” — It blows me away and makes me feel proud of myself that I have created these great lifestyle changes and that hopefully I’m inspiring someone else to do the same!
Q: What have you been able to do that you couldn’t have done before?
A: Walk into a gym, head back to the free weights and not be intimidated! Lift heavy weights. I deadlifted 225 lbs the other day and felt like a BOSS! Also, I have been able to run half marathons. 17 to be exact. Look into the mirror and like what I see. Control food instead of it controlling me. That is probably the biggest one for me.
Thank you, Tyra, and congratulations on your success! We’re glad you were willing to be be a part of our Transformation Tuesdays, and hope your story inspires others! Just like us, now you’re another person who’s been there. 🙂
Follow Tyra’s journey: