I was born in a small town in south west Florida. I was always an athletic child and active. I pretty much ate whatever I wanted. Puberty hit early for me. Probably around 10 or 11 years old I started filling out more. I got a little chubby for about a year then eventually got taller and thinned out somewhat. I was always a thicker girl as a teenager about a size 14. I ended up getting into a relationship with this one guy Ashton * around age 15. He was verbally and physically abusive. I ate for comfort. I ate out of boredom. I am Italian and we like to eat! He would call me fat and I will never forget the time I was eating ice cream and he called me a pig and smashed it in my face. At that point I decided I was going to try to dramatically alter my body. I started not eating much and sticking to a low fat low calorie diet. The pounds came off fast and before you know it I was down to a size 8 and very thin looking. My ribs used to stick out of my stomach. I was being very unhealthy. Well needless to say I dumped Ashton* and eventually gained the weight back. Years went by. I was able to maintain my weight for a while. I was staying around 200 pounds but I was very active walking several miles a week because of my job at a dog kennel.Proof that you don't have to be skinny to be healthy! Then I met my oldest daughters father and before you know it I was pregnant with my first daughter. I was lucky enough to only gain 23 pounds the whole pregnancy which quickly went off as soon as I delivered. That's when I decided to go on the birth control shot and gained a whopping 50 pounds. I was tired all the time and feeling very lazy. I ate only junk hardly ever ate fruits of veggies and live on fast food. I was with my current husband at that point and I guess maybe I was comfortable at that point to let myself get so big untill finally I had enough. At that point I got strict and lost 45 pounds again in a not very healthy way. Well don't you know as soon as I dropped all that weight I got pregnant with my second daughter. I started eating everything in sight. By the time I delivered I was up 50 pounds! After I delivered I only lost about 20 to 30 pounds of it. I kept telling myself I was going to lose weight but I loved food to much to give up anything.I guess when you have a young child its just easier to go through a drive thru or get something fast then try to prepare actual meals.This continued on. I continued to get bigger and bigger. At this point I was going into a size 24. My joints always hurt, my back always hurt. I was constantly tired. I had to get my blood drawn and they told me my triglycerides were very high. I always tried to tell myself I was happy at that size but inside I knew I wasn't. I ended up going on vacation in October of 2008. We went to an amusement park and I remember being afraid I wouldn't fit in the seats. My oldest daughter was asking me to ride rides with her and I was afraid of being humiliated by not fitting in the seats. When I did finally ride one the bar was really hard to get over my stomach. When I got home I had enough. It was time to do something. I always wanted to maintain a curvy shape and I knew I would always be a thicker girl but I knew I had to lose some weight for my health. Then on October 14th, 2008 I started my weight loss journey with Low carb. I made it through the day till dinner then I ate all kinds of licorice and candy. I felt like a total failure. I vowed that I would start again the next day and stick to it. That next day I woke up with a positive outlook on things. The first few weeks was hard. Trying to switch my body over to not having carbs anymore. I started to see the weight coming off very fast. It has now been 4 1/2 months and I am down a total of 61 pounds. I went from a size 24 to a 14/16. I am still not done I would like to lose about 15-20 more pounds and get down to about a size 12 but I want to make sure I always stay curvy because curves ARE sexy. Softness on a woman is sexy. It has been hard to see myself in this new body. I keep thinking I am my old size. I guess it is because the weight came off so fast my brain can't catch up. I get a lot of criticism for my diet but I eat better now then I ever did. Before the low carb diet I NEVER ate vegetables and now I eat around 3 to 4 cups a day.I think people don't truly understand what it means to eat low carb. People think it means just meat and eggs and cheese but it is so much more than that! It really is a new way of life for me. I will probably always eat this way. Don't get me wrong I will eventually indulge once in a while but I am happy with the way I feel when I eat this way. My triglycerides went from 280 to 120 which is fantastic and I feel better than ever. If being heavy is what makes you happy then by all means be heavy! Just be healthy! If losing some weight will make you happy then you can do it. If I can do it anyone can. It really has changed my life. I am excited about life.I can't wait to go hiking and camping and back to the amusements parks and ride all the rides with my kids. I am excited to be active and to do things with my children and husband. I got a brand new lease on life!
- Written by Jennifer Evans
* name changed