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ebby’s journey

not afraid to start over

WOW – here we are, 2015 – New Year, New Things…right?

Well, for me 2015 is a year of “starting over.”

My weight loss journey went on a complete halt in 2014.

Between relocating to Atlanta, starting new jobs and balancing life in a new city, I had a lot going on. PLUS Atlanta has toooooooo many fabulous and delish eateries…and being the foodie I am…well, you already know (just being honest!)

When I first moved to Atlanta, I started a fitness group on Meetup.com as a way for me to get out of the house, explore the city and meet new people while finding some fit friends aka “accountability partners.” The group was super fun and going well but I grew tired and weary.

So, after going through some things, the scale started to creep back up. Thankfully I’m not back to square one BUT I am trying HARD to hit my first goal all over again; to get UNDER 200 pounds! With a frame of 5’3″ I should NOT be anywhere close to 200 pounds SO I feel obligated (and in need of accountability) to once again, document my fitness journey for both accountability and the hopes of inspiring you.

This time around, I am going to do some things differently. Wonder what they are? Well, here goes.

1. Enjoy where I am right now. When I started my journey in 2013, I was so discouraged with the scale not moving quick enough. I was aiming so much for the finish line that I did not enjoy or appreciate my “present” moment and totally missed out on small victories (clothes getting too big, face looking slim, shopping where I wanted to even though I do that now #smiling) It got to the point that I honestly was ready to throw in the towel and say forget it because I hit a plateau and that darn scale would not budge!  I think it’s very important for anyone who is on a health/wellness journey to enjoy where they are in the “now” while striving towards the ultimate goal. Realize and understand that this is a LIFESTYLE change and not simply a FAD diet to get into a cute dress.

2. Chill out with the “EXTEME” behaviors. I was totally dependent on Weight Watchers…no, seriously! If I could not count the points in something I was putting in my mouth, I would spit it OUT – literally. I was truly obsessed with my weight loss and if I didn’t see a change I would be ridiculously upset. This time around, I am going to teach myself how to BALANCE my life (as this is a LIFESTYLE change) and learn how to eat. I purchased “The Skinnytaste Cookbook” and I’m well on my way to learning how to eat clean and enjoy my food WHILE keeping balance.  I’m not about that baked chicken and bland broccoli life – didn’t I say I as a foodie!

3. Do not be afraid to share my downfalls. Listen, I am NOT perfect. Nothing about me or my life is perfect, not even my eyebrows :). I’m a foodie and I LOVE TO EAT but I love myself more and my health is very important to me. Therefore, I am not an extremist, I’m a realist SO if you see me post a pic of a cup of my deslish Yoforia or a glass of wine, please don’t judge me. I think it’s important to show a real documentation of what really happens in someone’s life when they are on a journey to better health. The struggles, the downfalls, the victories, etc. – it’s all real and all very relevant!

So, here we go and CHEERS to a very prosperous, SLIM and FEARLESS 2015!

be inspired.

 

How are you losing weight?

I’m always asked…”ebby, How are you losing weight?” 

Funny, I remember I would ask people that same question before I started my journey and do you know what they would tell me? They went on some crazy diet, they ate no carbs, they starved themselves, they drank water only with no food for a month, they ate string beans only. Seriously, and you didn’t drop dead yet?

…and you wonder why I didn’t start this journey any time sooner? Go figure. 

Their ways was not appealing to me in the least so weight loss was never of interest to me AT ALL! Starve myself? Yeah right, I LOVE TO EAT and I love to eat…GOOD FOOD!

Well, let me keep it very REAL with you. I am not starving myself, nor am I depriving myself. That is not the way I’m doing it-NO WAY! Cutting out what I love wasn’t and isn’t an option for me so I had to figure out another way to permanently drop these pounds. 

I love food entirely too much to crash diet SO I had to find my own “recipe” for losing this weight for GOOD. I wanted to adopt healthy eating habits and keep this weight off for the long haul. No trying to squeeze into a size 2 over here, give me “healthy” and I will be happy.  

So, here is my personal “recipe” for weight loss…

Ingredients

– 1 heart ready to change for the better
– 1 made up mind filled with infinite measure of determination, willingness and a dedication 
– Prayer
– Perseverance

Directions
Changed my mind.  My weight loss HONESTLY started in my mind. It’s a journey I had to mentally prepare for. All sorts of temptation happens but I have to mentally PUSH and FIGHT for my change on an every day basis. Do I mess up? I surely do (didn’t you see my love for food) but I try not to beat myself up about it. I just keep going and remember my goals at hand.

I refuse to be stuck in an unhealthy body so every day I fight for my change, push for my breakthrough. 

Everything in life that requires a change starts with a change in your mind and then in your heart. Once you change those two components, your determination and motivation will follow. 

Lifestyle change. I don’t deprive myself of enjoying the things I love but now I’m more aware and more conscious of what I eat and drink. Before I would just eat with no regret, but now if I eat something “not so clean” I have it in my mind that I need to work out and possibly follow my next meal with something “cleaner.” 

Managing my portions. During the holiday season we visited family and our families LOVE to cook and we LOVE to eat so I had to figure out how NOT to gain 20 pounds in two weeks!  It’s tough managing your diet when you’re away especially when everyone around you isn’t on the same plan! 

One delicacy (smile) we love to eat is grits. I mean we eat grits with fish, shrimp, sardines, bacon, liver, etc. LOL, we love grits. At home, grits isn’t something we eat too often. It seemed that on vacation we ate grits quite a bit. If you know anything about grits, you know that grits STICK! 

Well rather than not eating them I watched how much I consumed. Before I would just pile them on my plate, but this time I literally would eat a spoonful (serving spoon) and that’s it. 

For Christmas we traveled and BOY did my aunt have a spread. Rather than piling my fav dishes like stuffing (I love stuffing) on my plate, I used one of the plates that have the sections divided and put my stuffing in the smallest section. My larger section was filled with veggies and protein and little starch. I enjoyed everything I loved but managed it appropriately without over doing it. You can enjoy what you like, just be conscious of how much of it you’re eating. 

My habits. Bad habits can cause a wealth of harm. I had to really dig in, look at myself in the mirror and face my habits. I had to acknowledge them and be willing to change them. Bad habits are hard to break but when you realize it’s those same habits that have held you back which causes you not too move forward- then slowly but surely you will strive to break them.

At the end of the day, the most challenging part of this journey is remaining consistent and motivated. Getting healthy and fit is an every day decision that you make. It’s one that I make on a daily basis. Praise God for Classy Fit Gals and everyone that supports my vision with this movement. If it wasn’t for my supporters I probably would have quit and/or slacked up a long time ago. 

I had to realize that it’s not going to happen over night! As my mom would say “you didn’t gain it over night and you won’t lose it over night.” 

Truly, weight loss is a lifestyle change. You’re taking off the old and replacing it with the new. You can’t put new wine in an old wine skin. This lifestyle change is a daily walk in which every day you take different steps to reach your destiny. 

When you fall on the steps, don’t stay down and beat yourself up. No, get back up and keep moving. You fail when you 1. Do NOT try and 2. You fall and never get back up. 

 If you keep going and keep pressing, slowly but surely you will reach your destiny. 

i need motivation, too!

Disclosure: This is my “keep it real ebby.K” moment so please bare with me as I get my feelings out on this blog – thank you!

The Motivation
It’s so easy to motivate everyone around you but when it comes to self motivation, that can become a major struggle; at least for me it can be.

By the grace of God, I started this wonderful movement – #classyfitgals – with the hopes, passion and vision of inspiring women to become FIT spiritually, emotionally and physically.

Publicly sharing my weight loss journey is not an easy task because there are times in the background when I’m crying, praying, asking for grace and strength to keep doing what I know I need to do for ME.

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finding happiness in life

It’s quite evident that their is an epidemic going on – I call it the “I’M TAKING MY LIFE BACK” weight loss epidemic. Women across the globe are taking their lives back and loosing weight – isn’t it quite obvious!

In that, you probably look at yourself and start to wonder – “What on Earth am I doing?” OR “Why on Earth can’t I look like her?”  Then you start digging asking her “Girl, what did you do?” or “Girl how did you loose the weight?!?”

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why I hated the word “RUNNING”

Running can be a chore, especially if you are new to running OR dread the word “running.” I don’t know about you but RUNNING was not one of my fav activities to do, especially before loosing my first initial 30lbs and here is why.

1. Jiggling. YES, I said it – JIG-GLING. 30 pounds ago, when I tried to run it would HURT! Yes, I said it! Between my boobs slapping me in my face and my big legs pounding on my tender knees – it was an annoyance to me and I dreaded when my husband would say those three words “Let’s go Run!”

Low and behold, I went to Target and found some compression pants and some additional compression gear and that has helped tremendously. I can tell the difference in my body when I wear my compression gear and when I do not.

Now that I am 30 pounds lighter and I have the correct equipment,  running isn’t as bad as I thought.  I thoroughly enjoyed my first 5K with Black Girls Run (more on that coming shortly) – and now I have a love affair with running.

Running actually clears my mind and allows me to think – especially when I’m playing Rick Ross in the background *smiling* #guiltypleasure

2. Knee Pain. I suffered from knee pain for YEARS. Never did I put two and two together that the pain was a result of my excessive weight gain. I am 5’3″ which means I should be no more than 150lbs or less. My doctor said 160lbs  and she will be happy but I’m going for my personal goal of 150lbs.  I could care less on how I “look” as long as I am healthy and fitting into the clothes that I want to wear! (that’s another conversation).

Not only did my knees hurt but they would make an excruciating noise when I did simple things as squats, lunges and walking up the stairs. I would literally tell people to walk in front of me – I was that embarrased. Now 30 pounds lighter, NO MORE KNEE PAIN (Praise the LORD) BUT they do still make that noise. I’ve just learned to ignore it – I can’t let anything hold me back from obtaining my goals!

3. Lazy. I admit – I can be very lazy BUT on this journey to a healhier “ebby” I had to put my differences and “don’t like’s” to the side in order to obtain my goals. Running takes a lot of energy and commitment and in order to see results, I knew I had to get out there and go.

4. Shins. OOOHWEEE I do not know if you ever experienced shin splints but let me be the first to tell you -PAIN – FUL! I used to run track in high school and had to quit because of my shins and I wasn’t even heavy back them (was actually a toothpick). Let me be the first to tell you, that pain is from Satan himself!

So I am sharing all of this with you for what?
In my weight loss journey, I knew I had to switch up my workouts (because I get bored very easily) and running is one of those “things” that I dreaded but knew I had to do it. Well, during my first run a few months ago, I really messed up my right foot and here is what happened to me – I got Plantar Fasciitis! An excruciating pain occurs in my right foot and it’s hard to walk some times – especially in the morning. I had to get cortisone shots in my foot a few times to ease the pain. I still have the pain (because I don’t do the proper stretches and exercises) BUT I wanted to share this video with you that I got from Runner’s World which shows you various exercises to do with your foot to prevent what I am now suffering from.

BTW, My husband, Dr. Kittles diagnosed me after doing research online (smiling).

ootn: watch me roar!

This past weekend I had the amazing opportunity to run my first 5K with Black Girls Run! (more details coming soon)

With all of the working out I did during the conference from West African Dance to an Insanity style work out,  I knew I wanted to hang out in Charlotte – and I did just that. – soar and all!

I purchased these cheetah pants from H&M when I went to Dallas a few weeks ago and I LOVE them. I also have them in black and gray. Am I the only person that purchases more than one of the same item because you’re just in LOVE with it? The real shoppers understand my struggle…

These pants are super comfy and stylish and because of the fit, I am convinced that I can wear them for a few more months before they get too big in the waist (that’s an issue I’m having now). My hips and thighs will always be “ham hocks” – it’s hereditary BUT my waist is naturally small.

Now that my waist and hips are smaller than what they used to be (30 pounds lighter), I feel better about wearing these pants. Let’s just say someone in my household calls them “MC Hammer” pants and hates them – but now “they” love them.

The beauty of shopping now is that I am fitting clothes in stores that I haven’t been able to comfortably and confidently wear in YEARS.  I still have a habit of buying larger than what I am – I guess it’s an internal thing. There comes a time in your weight loss journey where you’re stuck at  your old size and you have to really  accept the fact that you are no longer the size you used to be. It makes me nervous to purchase smaller BUT I do now and I’m feeling really good about it.

Here’s a before and in process pics of me from Left to Right (February 2013 to September 2013)
What a difference 6 months make!
be inspired.
details on the look…(Right Picture)
tank: Express
pants: H&M
shoes: BCBG
bag: Charming Charlie
necklace: H&M

summer 2013:
the beginning of my journey

SW:  225  |  CW: Gained weight back from my smallest which was 190 |  GW:  150

I remember the day like it was yesterday. I went to the doctor for my annual physical and of course I was nervous. Going to the doctor was never an exciting adventure for me – the suspense throws my pressure up every time- and this time it was no different.

As I waited patiently for my doctor to come into my room, I began to pray. I didn’t know what she was going to tell me.

“I knew I was overweight but I didn’t know how overweight I was.”

When she finally came in, she said “Eboné you weigh 220 pounds.” I said “WHAT!” She knew by the look on my face that I was in pure shock, and at that moment the tears began to fall.

It was then that I knew in my heart that I had to make some changes.  I called my then fiancé and started crying. Naturally it was easier for me to blame someone else for my weight and of course I did- but he took the blame like a champ and said “babe,lets work on it together.” We came up with a game plan but so much was going on in our lives that year that health and wellness took a back burner so I pushed it off.

We were both in graduate school getting our MBAs, preparing to get married a few months after I graduated and in the midst relocating to another city.

That was in 2012….

Now here we are 2013 and still my health and wellness was not the priority in my life. Heck I was a newlywed in a new city adjusting to married life. Checking out the restaurants in our new town was recreation for me- it shows in my 2k+ pics on Instagram!

February 2013 – I weighed 225 pounds!

But one day, I got on the scale and it read a whopping 225 LBS!! I knew something was up because my bras were getting tighter, my face fatter and my knees were killing me! Standing for long period of times was hard for me, and let me wear heels…I was really in pain.

April 1, 2013 my husband decided to cancel our membership at the Y and revisit a gym we visited when we first got back from our honeymoon. I said “dude you’re not leaving me, I’m going with you.” So we went, talked to the sales lady and decided it was time to make a change.

Of course the sales lady wanted to add on to the sale so she asked if we were interested in personal training. Knowing the goals we had in mind my husband told her that we needed to discuss in private so she walked away to let us chat.

In our conversation I got very emotional. See, my weight was always a sensitive subject for me-no one ever knew it but it was. I felt my weight held me back from pursuing a lot of opportunities. I’ve felt like this for years! My personal life didn’t suffer at all, I was always fabulous (on the outside) BUT on the inside and my true self esteem suffered.

I knew I was heavy but I had no idea how heavy I was and how bad it was.

Truly God spared my life because the doctor didn’t find any signs of illness, but she did see some signs of high blood pressure and high cholesterol- all of which run in my family. She also said I was at high risk to get diabetes- that runs in my family also so I knew I had to make some changes.  I stood in determination that I was going to break the chain of illness in my family because I was going to start taking better care of myself.

As I was wiping my tears the sales lady came out but this time a cute fit lady came out and introduced herself as Melissa- she is one of the trainers. Melissa was so bubbly and full of energy and I immediately liked her!

Melissa looked at my report and said wow, I used to weigh over 200 pounds so I understand your struggle. I immediately began to cry…AGAIN! There was no way this petite fit lady full of bubbles used to weight over 200 pounds! I knew right then and there I wanted a trainer and my husband supported me in that decision and we decided to make that investment in me.

So, here I am today, sharing with you my personal journey, my testimony to become to best ebby.K I can be.

Left: Summer 2013  | Right: September 2013

“The journey to defeat all doubts that I’ve had in my head for years about loosing weight and being athletic again are broken. ”

I CAN do this and i WILL do this! This is a walk not a race; a  journey to not only see the numbers on the scale go down, but to become who I truly am created to be and that is to BE BEAUTIFUL starting from the inside and having it radiate out- SEE myself as beautiful and most important FEEL the beauty that is within me.

I invite you to stay a while and take this walk with me. I pray you are inspired and empowered to dig within yourself and find YOUrself.

“feel your BEAUTY and OWN IT!©

Stay Connected, Be Inspired!

Update: Since this post I’ve gained some of this weight back BUT I’m not at the beginning anymore so there is still opportunity for me to finally get to my goal weight!