Reversing 25 Years of Unhealthy Living

Let’s start with the obvious, shall we?

If you have ever met me, you know I am overweight. If you follow me on social media, you know that I am so done with being the fat chick and am working my ass off… literally. But many of you don’t know my fat history, so here we go…

babymeBaby Fat

My first memory of learning of my obesity was in the 5th grade. The school brought scales around and every student had to step on it in front of the class. I avoided it all costs, stood at the back of the line, and threw a fit. Even at the age of 10, I knew I weighed more than I should have and didn’t want to come face-to-fatface with it (oh LittleMe, you had no idea you’d do that for the rest of your life, huh?). Well, the teacher took the scale into the hallway, dragged my traumatized self out with it, and coerced me to step on the scale by threatening to lower my grade (typical lol). 181.2 LBS. That is what the scale read.. at age 10. I was devastated, but obviously I didn’t turn my habits around or we wouldn’t be discussing this now would we? I honestly think it was at this age that I decided that if I couldn’t be the best at this whole “health” crap then I would just make sure to be the best at everything else… and to make sure you knew it, too.

Fresh Meat 

9th grade.jpgFast forward to freshman year in high school. By this age, I am already all too familiar with bullying and ridicule. And I have already been subjected to fad diet programs and embarrassing doctor’s visits (both staples in the life of an overweight child). Even though I was an active kid in cheerleading, baseball/softball, and SCUBA diving, I had somehow reached a total of 314.6 LBS by the age of 14. FOUR. FREAKING. TEEN. (That is a gain of 133.4 lbs for those that can’t math out there.) BUT, it was then that I discovered weightlifting. Oh, how I loved weightlifting. FINALLY, I had something concrete to prove that I wasn’t just rolls and cellulite. I was a NATURAL at it, and became the first girl to go to state-level competition for my high school (along with a close friend on the team as well).

Oh, FFS.

Between freshman year and senior year, I dropped down to under 225 LBS! I was running two miles a day, went to state for weightlifting, was a district qualifier for shotput & discus, and strong AF. For the first time ever, I loved my body. That amazing progress all came to an abrupt end when I was injured in an all-star flag football tournament right before graduation in May 2009. (Still haven’t forgiven the two douchecanoes that TACKLED ME in that game.)
[PS: If you knew me in high school, my bad y’all. I was an insufferable little twat sometimes].

Here’s to the school we love!
*cue Asher Roth’s “I Love College.”*

troyFall 2009: College at Troy! Time of my life. Out on my own (deuces fam), away from those who bullied me growing up, discovering new things. Oh, and unlimited food at Saga (Troy’s old dining hall). By the end of my freshman year at Troy, I had found myself a *lovely* man (barfs) to date – we’ll name him AssHat from here on out. AssHat was both mentally and physically abusive and was the cause of a lot of heartbreak and failing friendships during that time (we’ll save that story for another time). Finally got out of that toxic relationship by the beginning of Sophomore year and shortly after started dating an actually lovely man. He was wonderful. But as any Southern woman knows, ya gain weight in good relationships because we just can’t help it but to show our love through cooking – bless our diabetic hearts.  This break-up was devastating and so what did I do? EAT ALL THE THINGS!!! And like any typical college student, my interest in alcohol/partying was peaked. So much so that I developed a problem with alcohol. What comes with excessive drinking? Nothing good.

*Disclaimer: my previous issues with alcohol and other substances will be discussed at a later time, but know that they have not been issues for a long time*

What’s “adulting”?

fatness

By 2014, I had creeped up to over 430 LBS. That is almost double what I weighed 5 years prior. The last weight I remember on the scale was 428 lbs, and then I stopped weighing myself because I just didn’t want the disappointment. After a very real doctor’s appointment regarding my physical health, my mental health began to decline as well. By the age of 23, I was battling diabetes, arthritis, breathing problems, edema, sciatica, depression, and suicidal thoughts. If it weren’t for a few specific people in my life, I wouldn’t be here today. I would have let all of that weight, literally and figuratively, kill me (again, topic for later). This picture is actually not a pic of me at my highest weight, because I stopped taking pictures for fear of facing what I looked like (s/o 5th-Grade-Me for being brave enough to face that fear, though).

Are we there yet? 

whitecoatIn May of 2016, I moved to the island of St. Vincent in the Caribbean to pursue my dream of becoming an MD. Since moving here, I have FINALLY gotten into a routine and am successfully getting this weight TF off me. This journey sucks. It is not fun. It is not anything I would ever wish on anyone else (except maybe AssHat, the two douchecanoes, and people who don’t put their buggies back in the buggy rack when they’re done shopping). On other social media, I can make it look glorious because I only post the positives, which are few and far between. But reality is, this is painful mentally, emotionally, and physically. I HATE THIS PROCESS. It is the literal worst. But it has to be done. Reversing 25 years of unhealthy lifestyles has to happen to make sure that I don’t pass these habits on to my [totally hypothetical] children. I have to turn this part of my life around in order for me to see 30, to live long enough to see my nieces and nephews grow up or to have a family of my own one day, and to become the healthcare professional I want and need to be. Although, I am still quite convinced that I can smell food and gain weight.

Lord that took long enough… 

Me, today, Aug 19th, 2016: somewhere around 375 LBS which is about 50-55lbs from my heaviest weight. I also no longer have any of the previous medical conditions or mental illnesses listed above (I guess not stuffing my face pays off? Whodathunkit?) This makes the first time that I have posted my weight on a public forum. But I finally feel mentally strong enough to admit it publicly. So, there ya go. Thanks for sticking around through this long ass post. Hopefully, now ya have a better understanding of this journey I am on. Got a long way to go, y’all. It’s gunna be entertaining for sure.

[For real though, y’all, learn proper nutrition so that you and your children don’t have to grow up like I grew up.]

Love, Rae.081916

 

 

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8 thoughts on “Reversing 25 Years of Unhealthy Living

  1. I admire you SO much!!! Thank you for sharing your story. I too battle my weight (more so now than in my younger years). It;s not fun!! I even teach Nutrition. Eating Smart Being Active is a way of life and an acquired lifestyle. It is a MUST if we want to live a productive and happy life. It’a a choice…a choice we have to make many time every day. You are a true inspiration to me and to anyone reading this. I know you are on a good path and you will succeed. You are a very motivated well as motivating person and I think you are GREAT!!!! I look forward to following you on your journey of success. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m proud of you. I loved having you in the band, and I enjoy watching you grow and enjoy your success. You will do this, and anything else you want to do. You’re a strong woman and you’ll achieve your goals, I have no doubt. Keep up the great work, and know that I and others are rooting for you.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Rachael, you know I love you no matter what. I’m not sure I’ve told how proud I am of you nor how lucky I am that you were made a part of my life. I am so sorry for the pain you went through at Troy. You know what I wanted at rat time. God had different plans though. I am still thankful for the friendship we have. I know this has been hard for you to take this journey and I admire you so much for taking it and letting others know because it could change someone’s life. I am going to look to you as my inspiration because you know I need to lose some of this fat. I love you and support you 100% on this journey. YOU CAN DO THIS!

    Like

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