We Be Skinny!
By Renee Wiebe
As a life long runner, it was never really a problem for me to control my weight. I could eat whatever I wanted and not worry about it. But don’t hate me…it caught up with me. As I got older, I slowly started to gain a few pounds a year and discovered that running just wasn’t enough. I knew what I should be eating, but just wasn’t doing it. I enjoyed French fries and pizza much more than fruits and veggies. I thought that running and weight lifting would balance it out, but it didn’t. So last spring, when I was unhappy with my body image, I finally decided to get serious.
It was my goal to lose about 20 pounds and several inches around my waist, abs and hips. I wanted to look better and be healthier. I hired Betsy Wellman, a personal trainer and friend. She assisted me with an exercise/nutrition plan and setting realistic goals. We decided I needed to continue my running and also add in some cross training. Betsy’s plan was for me to lift weights 2 to 3 days a week, swim 2 to 3 days a week, run 5 times a week and do Pilates twice a week. The combination was a real winner. I started this in March and lost 2 to 2½ pounds a week. It took dedication and getting up early every morning, but I did it!
Good nutrition was just as important as the exercise. Betsy suggested daily limits of 1,500 to 1800 calories, 41 fat grams and 150 grams of carbs a day and I recorded what I ate each meal. It was tough, but I knew if I cheated and had a big soda, a pastrami sandwich, Doritos and a candy bar for lunch Betsy would see it on my record. Not that Betsy is a big mean trainer, but I knew I was accountable and that was very motivating. So I added more veggies and fruit to my diet, cut out soda and enjoyed lots of fish, turkey and chicken.
Betsy and I also worked out a reporting schedule where I reported my weight weekly and she calculated body fat and measurements monthly. Seeing the difference in those numbers each month was so COOL! I still refer back to those for motivation and support! I did have a donut and miss a workout now and then, but I knew it was OK to treat myself occasionally as long as I stuck to the long-term plan. I lost 22 pounds in just over 5 months and kept it off. Not only did I lose weight, but also I lost inches and went from a size 10 to a size 4. I love knowing that I have the willpower to do it and that I’m much healthier now.
And on top of all that, I ran a half marathon near the end of this program and achieved my personal best time. It was proof that I was in better shape and I even sprinted the last quarter mile with a smile on my face. I hope my success story offers encouragement to others. It takes discipline and the assistance from a great trainer like Betsy, but there is nothing more rewarding. It really hit home for me when my younger brother complimented me in typical brotherly fashion by calling me “Skinny Butt.” That’s a huge compliment from him, especially since my backside has never been my smallest feature! So, here’s to being a skinny butt, working hard to get there, being HEALTHY and staying that way!