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Food, Sweat, and a Year

Food, Sweat, and a Year

On a bit of a more serious note today, this is something I haven’t ever really written or talked much about because it’s still so new to me. So bear with me while I describe some of the challenges and honest truths about my experience with weight loss. Don’t worry—this is but a brief interlude of seriousness. I’m feeling contemplative this morning. I’ll be back to my sassy, snarky self tomorrow. 😉

Around this time just one year ago I was in the beginning stages of eating right and exercising. One year later I can happily (and with quiet pride) say that I’ve lost 110lbs. from August 2011 to today. It’s not something I made a huge fuss about. I’m generally a pretty private person about the stuff that matters (and when I say that I mean it, not to subtly seek attention like some other self-proclaimed “private” people out there). So there was no big announcement that I planned on finally getting in a committed relationship with eating right and working out. I started out slowly: amending my eating habits, adding in routine exercise, and filling my head with every cliché mantra in the book to keep myself motivated.

The thing about losing this much weight though…it’s obvious. You don’t lose the weight of almost an entire person without people taking notice. …And this was and is one of the hardest parts of it for me. Sure, it’s gratifying to hear that people think you look great and that your hard work is showing, but I also find it embarrassing. It really puts into perspective just how big you were before. I find myself a little mortified by the shocking before and after those around me have witnessed. Don’t get me wrong—I know I’m awesome for what I’ve accomplished—but the shame that it took me this long to get in shape and take care of my body will take more than a year to overcome. This is a LOT of change to get used to!

The mental aspect of weight loss is the part that people overlook. All that stairmastering, running, weight-lifting, sweating, stepping on/off the scale, and having a closet full of clothes that are too big are typically the issues that get all the spotlight. There’s something exciting about these physical challenges though, because there’s a clear pot of gold over that sweaty, frustrating rainbow. The mental stuff takes some getting used to. I don’t weigh 250lbs anymore. I’ve never been healthier or happier than I am right now. I routinely opt for fruits and veggies over junk food without feeling faced with a Sophie’s Choice scenario. There’s a lot of positive change in this to process. I’m still getting accustomed to being a lot smaller in my own skin.

March 2011
February 2012
September 2012, this is the first real comparison I’ve done like this.

In the occasional future post, be on the lookout for more insight on weight loss tips, tricks, and advice. Having lived (and still living!) through it, I know what it’s like, and I hope my experiences with it might help out anyone trying to lose weight or eat healthier.

Have you dealt with similar struggles with your weight, food, or fitness? Let me know!

Katie Hoffman

Katie Hoffman is a writer living in the suburbs of Chicago. She enjoys leftovers, lunges, and laughs.


  1. Scorchy September 14, 2012

    Gah! Weight loss might be harder than breast cancer. I’m serious. Whether you’re losing 10 or 110 it’s not easy and I applaud your resolve and success. Right in line with my sarcasm, when I was diagnosed with breast cancer a fleeting thought was REALLY “Maybe I can lose 50 pounds.” Your story inspires me!

    1. sassandbalderdash September 14, 2012

      I highly doubt that, but thank you! Honestly, once you get into it and you start seeing results and your eating habits become actual habits, it all becomes enjoyable. …There are still times (many, many times) where I’d like to go to McDonald’s and order everything on the dollar menu, but you build up a tolerance. 🙂

  2. Anthony Dobranski September 14, 2012

    In the spirit of the “before” and “after” of most discussions of weight loss, it’s great that your “after” is not a conclusion but a new beginning, a halting sense of new-self. I stumbled on your post through blogs on writing, not weight-loss, so it’s in that spirit I say it’s interesting that you explore the downs as well as the ups of your new body.

    1. sassandbalderdash September 14, 2012

      It’s interesting for me to write about, because so much of this entire process happens in your head in terms of staying rational and keeping yourself motivated–it’s an endeavor you’re incredibly close to every step of the way. To take a step back from that and actually analyze the journey and it’s lasting effects was good for me. I’ve always found it easier to sort everything out through writing. Thanks for taking the time to read!

  3. Kitt Crescendo September 14, 2012

    Congrats! I know weight loss is not easy. I, myself, lost about 50 lbs in the last year and a half. My husband has lost 160 lbs. I’m very proud of him. It was a lot of hard work. With us it boiled down to eating healthy, exercising and portion control (not to mention leaning more toward complex carbs instead of simple ones). I hope you’re celebrating your successes along the way. You deserve it!

    1. sassandbalderdash September 14, 2012

      Congratulations to you and the hubby! That’s incredible. I would say those three issues were the same ones I struggled with, too. Drinking soda, eating fast food, and eating while bored were my other tricky habits I had to work through. Thanks for your words of encouragement! 🙂

  4. ichoosetolivestronger September 15, 2012

    Just linked over from another blog I enjoy following. Congrats on your determination and getting healthier. Currently I still weigh 250 …I have shed 65 but have a long way to go. Blogging has given me a lot of support and accountability. Looking forward to reading more soon and following your journey.

    1. sassandbalderdash September 17, 2012

      You’re doing great! Give yourself the credit you deserve. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by.

  5. Cakes and Shakes... September 16, 2012

    I don’t want to risk embarrassing you, but all the same, well done for doing something about it, you look amazing (you’re super cute anyway which helps) and I’m sure you feel a million times better.

    1. sassandbalderdash September 17, 2012

      That’s okay–it’s not stopping anybody else. Thank you though, I do appreciate it. It took me long enough to finally do it. It’s amazing being healthy and in shape and all that shit, but really I’m just in it for the wider array of clothes I can wear. (Just kidding. Partially.)

      1. Cakes and Shakes... September 17, 2012

        Seriously, I hear you! I lost weight in my early twenties and managed to never put it on again, thank g-d and I also really love having a wider choice of clothes.

      2. sassandbalderdash September 17, 2012

        Congrats! Losing it is hard, but I think the real struggle is keeping it off.

  6. ejnshow September 17, 2012

    Congrats, that is truly remarkable. The short amount of time that you did it in makes it that much more impressive.

    1. sassandbalderdash September 18, 2012

      Thank you. 🙂 Surprisingly looking back now, it went by really fast. It definitely didn’t feel like that most of the time, though.

  7. elitebodyptf September 26, 2012

    Congratulations on your huge accomplishment. It is definitely dedication and work to do what you did. You should be PROUD of yourself – not embarrassed. You can be a role model for so many people out there. You story is very encouraging. It is definitely a lifestyle choice that makes you who you are. Keep up the positivity.

    1. Katie September 26, 2012

      Thank you so much. 🙂 I’m getting there with the whole pride factor.

  8. Raul Felix October 3, 2012

    Now that’s the tits.

  9. kuhniverse October 14, 2012

    Just want to say that I think you’re gorgeous at any size, but I am glad you are doing the right things for your health! It’s so great of you to share this with your readers. I hope it inspires lots of people!

  10. psychofab January 31, 2013

    Don’t ever feel ashamed that it took you this long. My mother weighed well over 300 pounds most of her life. She was in her 40’s by the time she said “enough” and realized how much a toll it was taking on her health. Hell, the only reason I stopped myself was because I had watched her. There’s nothing more terrifying than watching your mother fall, and know she can’t get up, and there’s no way you can lift her. Weight loss is a bitch. And anyone who decided, at any time, that they are gonna conquer it is amazing.

    1. Katie January 31, 2013

      You’re absolutely right. I truly believe just about everyone that’s overweight is someone that just hasn’t made the decision to get up put in the effort to lose the weight yet. It’s not easy. I tried and failed several times before finally getting it right this time around, so I’m learning to own it. 🙂 You get used to it like anything else, I think.

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