Woo hoo! It’s another “Shed & Share” story!! Meet Tonya!
– Age: 37
– Profession: Homemaker/SAHM
– How long have you been on this weight loss journey? Approx. 2.5 years (pregnant time included)
– Weight Loss/Inches Lost: (Post Baby) 40 lbs./ 4.5 inches (waist)
– Blog/Facebook Page (if you have one): www.amrsamom.blogspot.com
Here’s some background:
I had never really had a weight problem. I’ve been a size 6 most of my adult life. When I met my husband in May 2004 I was the smallest I had ever been (sz 4). My husband & I married 6 months later in November & I gained 40 lbs. in our first 2 years of marriage. I moved into a size 8 & carried it fairly well, but when the 8 started tightening I knew it was time to do something. Just when my size 8 started loosening I got pregnant w/ our first baby & gained 70+ lbs. during the pregnancy. After having him in January 2008 the weight literally fell off. I was smaller than before I got pregnant, but still not wedding day size. Eight months later I was pregnant with our 2nd child & gaining that 70+ lbs. once again. After his birth, the weight started coming off… & then it started piling on. For the first time in my life, I was on the heavy side. Because I wanted another child I didn’t pursue weight loss, but in December 2009 I asked Jesus what He wanted from me for His birthday & felt that His answer was my physical body. I set a goal date to lose weight & be in better shape.
My 2nd son would celebrate his 1st birthday on May 5, 2010 so I set that as my goal date.
At least I thought I was setting it for that reason.
Tonya, before and after
Here’s my low point:
At this point it’s important to remember that the Lord had prompted me to take care of my physical body, to get healthy. I did not do it. Lazy. Disobedient. On May 1, 2010 my best girl friend, my mama, suffered a massive stroke. She was in 2 different hospitals over a 2 month period & we were told 5 different times that she would not live. Care for her is ongoing, but praise God she has come a crazy long way!! Her extremely intense care involved several months following the day of the stroke. Her extremely intense caregivers were my daddy & me.
Our schedules were completely out of whack, our eating was certainly not controlled, & the lack of sleep all amounted to unhealthy living. I’m so ashamed that I didn’t listen to the Lord so I would have the needed energy & physical strength to REALLY handle those days. However, HE IS FAITHFUL & MERCIFUL & GRACIOUS & HE CARRIED ME!!!! My goal was to be between 128-130 & maybe in sz 6 again by Valentine’s Day. February 11, 2012 was weigh-in day for the week. I was at 130 – PRAISE GOD!! (And I’m a size 4 again – WHAT??!!)
How did you get started?
When I was able to return to a fairly normal schedule at home I started running (slow jogging for a super-short distance) 3-4 days a week. I have never run & never wanted to run. I enjoy exercise & I enjoy walking, but not running. BUT this was a prompt from the Holy Spirit & I chose not to ignore it this time (He has taught me SO MUCH during my times of running).
I remember laughing when I heard Lysa Terkeurst (“Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl DVD) talk about running from one mailbox to the next her first time out, then running to the 2nd mailbox the next time & so on. I loved the spiritual application she made & was impressed with her, but I did NOT have an interest in running at all. I knew I wouldn’t be trying that…until I did. I went out one day & ran from one mailbox to the next. If I heard a car coming down the road I’d stop running until they passed because I knew I looked ridiculous. I still look ridiculous, but I also look healthier so I don’t care anymore – FREEDOM!!
Three months later I think I was at about 1.5 miles (don’t laugh) & became pregnant with my 3rd child. I tried to exercise, but just couldn’t do it so I steady picked up those 70+ lbs. again. Six weeks following baby’s birth in June 2011 I started exercising, running (only 1 day a week), & counting my calories.
Tonya and her family, before
What is your workout routine and eating plan?
I know what my daily caloric intake should be so I watch that in a way that works for me. I exercise for 30 minutes a day/6 days a week.
What are your top 3 favorite resources that helped you along the way?
– Lindsay Brin (www.momsintofitness.com)
What one piece of advice would you give to someone who is sitting on the sidelines and waiting?
JUST DO SOMETHING. Do it now. Waiting doesn’t burn calories. MOVE. MOVE. MOVE.
What one piece of advice would you give to someone who is in the process but is feeling discouraged?
Keep on keepin’ on. You are not alone. We go through seasons & some days are harder than others. Don’t focus on the numbers on the scale or the size of your jeans. HOW DO YOU FEEL? If you’re eating better & moving more YOU FEEL BETTER. Don’t pursue an image of what you think you should look like – pursue health & fitness! Fit doesn’t look or feel frail!!
If you are a parent, how have you balanced everything?
It is not easy to keep 3 small children occupied at the same time for 30 minutes a day, but it can be done. Sometimes I have to stop for their potty breaks or more juice or discipline issues, but I pause my DVD, take care of my children, then start up my workout again. Some people would think I’m selfish for prioritizing daily exercise while my kids wait (I count it as a lesson for them in patience). FOR ME, it would be selfish not to do it. Exercise makes me feel better & it keeps me strong for the task of handling 3 small children. I have a large, heavy 2-year old whose love language is physical touch. The boy loves to be held & if I didn’t exercise I could not hold him for any length of time. My other son needs my time like he needs food & water. He loves to play outdoor sports. Exercise gives me the energy I need to be fully engaged when I play with him. My baby girl doesn’t sleep well & nurses frequently through the night. I am quite sleep-deprived so exercise gives me the boost I need to start my day. MOMMY EXERCISES EVERY DAY. It’s part of their routine. No biggie.
Tonya and her family, after!
Anything else you would like to share?
FIND A SUPPORT SYSTEM. It might just be one person, but find someone who is really interested in your pursuit & keep them posted on your progress. I’m blessed to have a few cheerleaders! You need at least one of these people in your life to keep you accountable & encouraged! If you don’t have anyone, let me know – I’LL BE YOUR CHEERLEADER!!
What a story, Tonya! Thank you so much for opening up and sharing your heart and the specifics of how you shed your weight!
If you have a Shed story that you would like to share, please be sure to email me: firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to have you!
Love your testimony, Sister! I hear you girl! I was there too. But, praise be to God for deliverance!! I love the family picture you look so good and healthy. Stay encouraged and thanks so much for sharing your story.
Yes, all glory to HIM! Thank you for being so kind! Sitting on this side & looking back is amazing & a little unbelievable, isn’t it? It puts a lump in my throat – I know you know what I mean! I remember your story & you look incredible! Way to go!
LOVE it! I did the same exact thing- running from one mailbox to the next! Thanks for sharing. You look great- happy and healthy. ;oD
You look fabulous!! I’ve thought of you often since reading your story. You are proof that “fit doesn’t look frail”. Thanks for commenting, Jinka – nice to meet you. :o)
Thanks for sharing your story — so motivational! I’m down 20 pounds this year so far and up to jogging 2 miles. I hope to share my story someday soon! It helps greatly to read about other people’s successes. I can DO this!
YES, YOU CAN!!!!!!! Awesome results already, Christine!! Feels indescribable, doesn’t it?? I look forward to hearing your story. Keep on keepin’ on!!
Wonderful, inspirational story – thank you so much for sharing!
Thank you so much for commenting! The feedback is the most fun part! :o)
Congratulations, Tonya! You look great and have a beautiful family!
Thank you, Jaki!
Thank you for these stories. They are motivational.
I agree, Judy! The stories before mine kept me encouraged while I was smack dab in the middle of the climb!! Thank you for doing this, Clare! You’re such a blessing & you help us girls more than you even know!!
This is very encouraging to me. I am also a mother of three young children (all under the age of 6), and need to loose at least 20 lbs before I have another baby due to gestational diabetes in my last pregnancy. I’ve been trying to loose for several months, but have only lost a few pounds. I actually love to run, but knee pain prevents me from running and some days its painful to walk. Thank you for sharing your story.
Wow, I know it’s tough when you have the want-to, but you also have physical limitations. Maybe Clare has some suggestions for easy-on-the-knees exercises that you would enjoy or some advice?
Friend, a few pounds is not a small accomplishment, so GOOD FOR YOU!!! Those few pounds add up!! Don’t give up on yourself!
“Yet those who wait for the LORD
Will gain new strength;
They will mount up with wings like eagles,
They will run and not get tired,
They will walk and not become weary.”
Great story and inspiration! I need to have a fire kindled in my before it’s too late. I start an exercise program only to have my knees or other joints go haywire on me and I stop because I don’t want to damage them more. I am on the brink of giving up and I really don’t want to get out of control more than I am. I need encouragement and support and have no one to count on in that area. My hubby loves me just the way I am and is no help when he brings home ice cream. NO….I don’t think he would deliberatly sabotage my efforts……he truly doesn’t see me the way I look. So, I am going to start again……slowly……..and hope that this time I will succeed. Thanks for sharing your story.
Oh please hang in there, Brenda! I am not qualified to give advice on exercise, but I will be cheering you on & lifting you up in prayer! Please let me pray for you now?
Father, I praise You for this unique opportunity You’ve given us to share in an online community. Thank you for Clare & her ministry here. We come here because we want to take care of these bodies that You’ve awesomely created. Help us, Lord? Brenda needs encouragement right now. She needs to know that You are her #1 fan!! She needs wisdom to know how to be healthy & fit even when her body seems to fight against her. Let her know that victory is in her reach & carry her to the finish line, Lord! We thank You!! Amen!
“I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made…” Psalm 139:14
“…Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
“Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7
“…If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31
What an awesome example you are to Mommas of little ones. I did not get my act together until my kids were older. I let myself make excuses that I couldn’t do anything b/c my kids kept me from being consistent. You are beautiful and thank you so much for sharing your story!
Nikki, your words are so sweet, but they convict me. “I let myself make excuses that I couldn’t do anything b/c my kids kept me from being consistent” – Sister, I’m sad to say that’s me spiritually. We’re keepin’ it real here, right?? Oh, if I could be an “example” in SPIRITUAL discipline & fitness. Wow, I’m really thankful you stopped by here – God has used you to prick my heart.
Thank you so much for sharing your story, Tonya! And thank you, Clare for reposting it! It is always so encouraging for me to read about people who have been successful in finding a free, healthy place in life by relying on and being obedient to God, rather than going to crazy extremes. Thank you for your honesty! You’ve blessed me today!