Weight loss has always been a struggle for me. I have dieted on and off with short-term success, then I would gain it all back. September 1, 2010 was the day this journey truly began. The decision to commit to losing weight was due to my health insurance provider’s requirement to undergo 6 months of supervised weight loss. I was planning to have bariatric surgery. After my initial consultation with the potential surgeon in August 2010, it was an awakening to see my weight was almost 365 pounds! Within the first three months, I had lost over 30 pounds. Over time, I started to find it frustrating and costly to meet with my doctor monthly for a weigh-in. By November, I realized I could do this on my own and let go of the “crutch” of weight loss surgery. I also had firsthand knowledge from a friend that gastric bypass surgery would not offer me a long-term solution. The short and long-term side effects of obesity were evident in my family: diabetes, heart disease, asthma, and cancer. My motivation could not be greater. Big family meals were a constant in my home and there was no accountability. I suffered with depression, social woes, and other issues due to my weight. Food was my comfort and I often used my personality to convince myself I was happy. I realize today that I was NOT!
Breakthrough & Success
Today, I am 128 pounds lighter! I am still working towards my goal of losing another 75 lbs by Spring 2013. My goal weight is 160 lbs.
I have been an ongoing member of Merritt Security since October 2009, but had previously been sporadically dropping in at various Merritt Cub locations since 2007. Merritt Security is somewhat of a second home where I work out at least five days a week alternating between cardio and strength training. I am now trying new things to keep my routine fun and interesting. I finally had my first Spinning Classes with Sharon and Cheryl, respectively, and for me that was a major victory! My favorite classes are Zumba, Spin, and Absolutions. Out of all the Merritt clubs I have attended, I feel most at home at Security.
My daily calorie intake is about 1600 calories that I monitor with an online application called MyFitnessPal and I burn an average of 500-1200 calories a session with exercise. I cut out sugary beverages and I drink mostly water.
I am motivated, focused, and working on continued success. I still struggle with issues of daily living and have good days and bad but I remain positive. I credit my strength to Yahueh throughout this journey and my prayers and faith have gotten me through the challenges, pains, and struggles. My words of advice to others like me are that you have to prepare yourself in order to take that first step. You MUST be ready! I have kept Yahueh in the midst of this journey. I take life one day at a time. This experience has taught me patience and self-appreciation.
The Merritt Family celebrates the success of Tiera’s weight loss as we continue to encourage her in her journey. May she be an inspiration for others who are facing the same challenges, and her story will be your story.