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  1. #1
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    Ok here's my story

    I've been reading everyone's stories (wow wow wow) so I think I'll share mine now.

    I'm a 48 year old woman, 5'7" (used to be 5'8" go figure). I have always been pretty active but not competitively so...I prefer solitary sports..horseback riding, walking, a little jogging (in my twenties). I weighed around 155 for most of my young adult life, occasionally creeping up to 180 or down to 130.

    As I aged I held around 170-180 mostly, but I still felt pretty good about the way I looked and felt...I could do anything I wanted to, I could ride horses so I was happy.

    I had 2 kids in my early 20s...I was 130 when I got pregnant with the first one, and 3 months after his birth, 140 when I got pregnant with the second...my weight would go up to 180-185 but then came down pretty quickly. After #2 I don't think I ever got below 130 again.

    Fast forward to age 38..I was holding right at 172 or so and got pregnant. Twice, I had my last 2 children a year and two days apart...but I was back down to 182 when I hit my foot into a wall and broke a small bone...

    Over the next couple of years I packed on weight. I couldn't walk the weight off and I couldn't run at all because of my injury...I wasn't riding horses anymore (I didn't have any) and I had two little kids to watch, as well as working. I didn't have the time or the resources to commit to exercise.

    I picked up a couple of horses a few years back, and IMAGINE my horror when I went to get on my pretty Arab girl and realized I couldn't pull my fat butt up!! This was quite a shocker for me...I've NEVER had trouble getting on a horse...my horses were usually quite tall and it has just never been an issue. I did eventually get on my horse, lol...bless her heart she was very patient with me and it's a good thing because it took a while and it was not comfortable for either one of us hahahaha...I keep expecting to see a YouTube video of that day online, taken by one of the neighbors who overlooked the pasture, who HAD to be laughing their butts off. I think even my horse was laughing.

    Anyway, at that point my plan was to get in shape by riding..unfortunately the death of my pretty mare put the kabosh to that.

    So then for about a year, I just didn't care so much. I was in a tiny community, I had two little kids, I worked full time...the weather was extremely cold in the winter and hot in the summer (high desert). I sort of liked the fact that I was completely free of male attention for the first time in my life..in fact I still sort of like that..so I didn't make any sort of push to lose weight or exercise, other than occasionally strolling to work.

    Then a transfer I wanted came through, and we moved to the community I'm in now...a coastal community where everybody (and I do mean everybody) bicycles, where there are trails for bikes, for hiking, where there is the beach. My home, the kids' school, my work are all located in a big circle, with a circumference of maybe 2.5 miles...I determined that I was going to get a bicycle and ride bikes with the kids, and ride to work.

    I got my bike(s) in the Spring. By then I was quite alarmed at the rate at which I was losing flexibility, breath and strength...it seems like suddenly tying my shoes was a big ordeal, let alone picking things up off the floor. Climbing the dunes to get to the beach made me feel like DYING (to be honest, it is quite a climb). Even sleeping was uncomfortable.

    I got a mountain bike, thinking it was something else...then picked up an old Schwinn 7 speed (one of the old blue bikes) with a big, comfy saddle.

    I tell you, it was scary at first. For one thing, it was hard for me to get on and off the bike..almost impossible with the new bike, a little easier with the old one...but still very awkward and unsteady. Then I wasn't able to move right into riding every day with the kids because someone vandalized our bikes and it took me a while to get my daughter's fixed...and I still haven't fixed the old Schwinn..I started riding the mountain bike instead.

    It was SUPREMELY uncomfortable at first...it felt like I was going to go over the handlebars, it felt like it was designed to exert pressure on big nerve balls in my pelvis...but I kept with it, at least a couple of times a week, sometimes with the kids, sometimes just going to work or a jaunt to the grocery store. Gradually everything improved...I went from having to awkwardly walk my bike down my driveway (quite steep) and flouder around at the bottom to mount, to actually being able to hop on at the top of the driveway and roll down into the street. I found I could stand up when I needed to get up over steep hills (there is a fun little trail that is up/down/up/down, pretty steep) and really work it. I found that looking behind me to see if traffic was coming was no longer a neck breaking, bike swerving ordeal, and I found that I was able to navigate town streets/highways/stops/turns comfortably and safely (I don't think anyone would have called me comfortable or safe initially, I always was just on the verge of wiping out in a big way).

    Since school started, I've kicked it into gear. I get the kids off to school (they won't be riding through the winter, the weather is too nasty, we have to cross a highway and my son isn't quite controlled enough...next year he'll be safer) then I ride my bike the 1.5 miles to work...and then back home for lunch, then back to work, then back home. Last week I also had a day where I ran errands that took me clear to the other side of town and to my house and back to work on my lunch hour.

    I think I started out weighing about 250 at my heaviest. I think I'm around 230 now. I don't weigh myself very often at this point. BUT I'm able to wear clothes that 3 weeks ago were gathering dust in my closet. I have 3 pairs of khakis that I haven't worn all summer because they were uncomfortable. My bras are fitting me again. My ankles aren't swelling and I can see my ankle bones and achilles. My upper back isn't burning any more. My boobs once again can be distinguished from my stomach.

    My goal is to be 160 next August. I don't know if it's realistic, I have no idea how this is going to go because I've never had to lose so much weight before. But I am pleased with how it's going right now. I avoided my 30 year class reunion this year because I didn't want people to see me like this (this is not the girl they remember from school, lololol) but I want to go next year and I plan on going to the Pendleton Round-Up as well, and I don't want to go as a fatty this coming year.

    Primarily though, I just feel better. I can pick things up off the floor...I can once again put lotion on my lower calves/feet without having to lay down on the bed and use a winch to haul my leg up to where I can reach it...heck I think my face looks better.

    So that's me. I'm not really tackling the diet right now...if I'm exercising, I eat in moderation. It's when I don't exercise that I want to eat continually. Plus I tend to eat at night, but since I've been cycling almost every day, I find I don't wake up in the middle of the night to eat.

    I do realize that the weight is going to come off fast at first. I expect to have to change things up somewhere around 185, and then have to really fight for those last 25 lbs. I expect to hit 185 though fairly quickly.

    Wish me luck!

    I'll post pics eventually....probably not before I'm at 185, I think that's a good "during" weight for me....when I get there I'll post a before and during pic.

  2. #2
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    Thank you for posting and I am pulling for you.

    You have made a great step by increasing your activity level. If you reach a point where you want to lose weight faster then you can change your eating habits. But just take it one step or ride at a time and enjoy the journey. Try to look at life as a journey and take the time to have some fun.

    You will be able to get down to 130 again if you are determined enough. I am 59 and weighed 200 lbs and 6 feet tall. I decided to see if I could get down to my 16 year old weight of 140 lbs. In about 4 months I was down to 150 lbs and so far I have not been able to make enough reduction in my food intake to lose the last 10 lbs.

    Once you lose down to your desired weight, you will feel so good that you will not know how to act. Please remember how you felt at your heaviest weight and use it as an incentive to never gain the weight back. Keep a positive attitude and watch the weight just disappear.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Fangowolf's Avatar
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    Good Luck!

    Everyone works differently, but in case you are like me and want successes. I don't like to put a time frame on my weight loss. I try to keep it strickly weight, so every down is an achievement. Last week was a down 2# and at first I was bummed, till it hit me that a year of that is 100#. I also have rewards along the way. Right now mine are @ 300 fixing up my trike and around 270 a new road or bent.

  4. #4
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    keep riding, eat better and should be a doable goal. When you hit the first plateau, you need to shake things up and try something else or different riding style.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Black wallnut's Avatar
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    Thanks for taking the time to share your story and goals. We are the same age and I also did not go to my 30 tear reunion but for different reasons than you. I did go to a cross country team reunion with friends from my era. I was somewhat surprised to see many of them also gained a bunch of weight since we were young. I saw pics of my class reunion and most folks that went there were also overweight. At least we are doing something about it. Hold your head up and be a great mom for your kids. Lead them down the path of life long fitness. Coastal Oregon has cycling weather year round you just need to dress for it. Post pics when you are comfortable but between now and then join in the monthly challenge thread and enjoy the ride back to better health. Congrats on your success so far.


    Mark

  6. #6
    You gonna eat that? Doohickie's Avatar
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    Good luck. I went from almost 240 down to 168 back in 2005 on South Beach Diet. This September I realized I'd gained almost all of it back even though I was riding my bike. So like you, I'm at the beginning of a weight loss program. Weight loss is possible, but you have to be stubborn about it.
    I stop for people / whose right of way I honor / but not for no one.



    Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."

  7. #7
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    Congrats on turning things around! That is a good example for your kids, too.




    If I may offer a thought (if it's something you haven't done already...): On your mountain bike, get some slick/street tires for it. You can get nice quality fat ones that are really nice to ride on. It makes a nice difference if you ride primarily on paved surfaces.

  8. #8
    Senior Member longbeachgary's Avatar
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    Congratulations. You're doing a great thing. Us old folks can't do the up and down weight thing like we used to.
    Gary

  9. #9
    Senior Member nevermore1701's Avatar
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    great story thanks for posting im in the same boat as everyone else. i been losing weight but i also changed my diet too. i lived in oregon for 10 years.. beautiful state and very bike friendly

  10. #10
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    Thanks for the support! A lot of my motivation is kid-related. I want to be able to keep up with them..they're 9 & 10 now, and my daughter notices that I'm overweight and it worries her. My son doesn't care. When my older boys were children, their little friends had crushes on me..that's not happening anymore, and probably won't again no matter what my weight, I'm not a young thing anymore...When I broke my foot they were 1-2 years old, and it was horrible to not be able to catch them if (when) they got out of reach. I always was able to run kids down...the stress of having active kids that I couldn't catch if I needed to was pretty overwhelming, and it went on for years (not so much weight related as foot related..then when the foot could be depended on, they were older and just faster!)

    I like the tires I have on my bike right now, because I'm not always on pavement. Mostly I am, but I also have to go off pavement here and there on my route.

    I am going to take it into the shop this weekend though..I think the brakes need tweaked and I'll have them do whatever they need to in order to head into the winter. Oh and I need to get lights for the front and back, because soon enough it's going to be dark.

  11. #11
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    Keep up the good work. You are making great progress.
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  12. #12
    Junior Member Bill Walker's Avatar
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    Welcome and thanks for sharing your story. Reading of others success helps keep my motivated. I was 298 lbs a little over a year ago and am down to 272 this morning. Not earth shattering but steady. Just keep moving. I'm trying to mix up some riding with my walking/jogging and it seems to be helping. It gives me more activity without all the stress on the knees and ankles. Hang in there.

  13. #13
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    I didn't expect to slim down...I wanted to conquer the bike and up my fitness level, or at least keep it from further deteriorating. I was skeptical that the short rides were going to accomplish much else; I have a low resting heart rate anyway, I have to work very hard to keep it at a rate that will increase my fitness and burn calories, so I don't expect much in the way of visible improvement unless I'm engaged in a brutal exercise regimen. My rides are about 15 minutes, though 2-4 times a day...I do challenge myself with them, primarily by attacking inclines at an ever increasing clip. Last week was monumental in that just about every day I noticed some improvement in my quality of life. Things that I had written off as just part of the toll of life/age...back pain, loss of flexibility, my stomach cutting off circulation to both my head and my legs if I attempted to pick something up off the floor (even from a chair!)..last week all three of those things changed significantly, it was like a miracle that I wasn't even looking for and just like that, overnight, my life is more comfortable and easier. After just a week or so of committing to a slight increase in activity.

    Whoda thunk I'd gain neck flexibility and reduce upper back pain? Not me. And I haven't been sore at all, aside from the uncomfortable saddle thing...today I just barely feel the backs of my arms and lower abdomen (that's good).

    Last night I had a dream about how wonderful my calves looked. Completely fantastical, of course, but lol...I'm fairly hyped.

  14. #14
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    Welcome.. Thank you for posting your story. Great that you're getting out there with your kids. That's so important. I too am using cycling as my exercise in conjunction with my Weight Watchers. My losses are slow but fairly steady but I find it much harder at 58 than I did when I was in my 40's so it's good you're tackling it now. Keep up the riding and eat healthy and you'll get there. Looking forward to hearing about your journey to success.

    Karen
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  15. #15
    Senior Member SeanBlader's Avatar
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    Welcome Allie! Love the story, which is pretty similar to a lot of us, age and life got ahead of us and slowly but surely the pounds pack on. You have a good motivator in the kids to trim up and keep up, now the hard part is to not let anything get in your way!

  16. #16
    Senior Member Shellyrides's Avatar
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    Your doing great!

  17. #17
    Senior Member rdtompki's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing your journey. Keep it up!
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  18. #18
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    Whoops had to adjust my ticker, I wasn't reading the scale right (I use the scale at work, trust me, it's confusing).

    I think I'm at 250 now, so I'm guessing I was 260 a few weeks ago...that's as good as any place to start.

    Holy moly how the heck did that happen. oh well, I'm on it.

  19. #19
    Senior Member goldfinch's Avatar
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    Your goal is a good goal, you should be able to meet it.

    Welcome, and enjoy the ride.

  20. #20
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    I haven't been able to ride for two days; work and school schedules are interfering. If I miss my ride to work then it's hard for me to pick it up anywhere else because my youngest isn't really safe enough to take on lengthy rides...and sometimes I have to miss the morning ride; if the kids need something before school, or are running late and miss the bus.

    But I am planning on riding everywhere on Sunday, and then back to riding to work on Monday.

  21. #21
    Senior Member SeanBlader's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AllieBaba View Post
    Holy moly how the heck did that happen.
    Yeah... that's exactly what I said too. Then I miss one day because of something and then that turns into 3 days, and then that day back on the bike is harder than you expect, and you briefly consider giving up entirely until you pass someone else on the bike, or you pass 4 someone else's on bikes right in a row, and then you think how awesome you are now, and how epic you will be in a year, that hottie that you've had your eye on will regret being with their current SO, and you'll both ride off into the sunset together on a grand adventure never looking back on the troubles of the world around you.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by SeanBlader View Post
    Yeah... that's exactly what I said too. Then I miss one day because of something and then that turns into 3 days, and then that day back on the bike is harder than you expect, and you briefly consider giving up entirely until you pass someone else on the bike, or you pass 4 someone else's on bikes right in a row, and then you think how awesome you are now, and how epic you will be in a year, that hottie that you've had your eye on will regret being with their current SO, and you'll both ride off into the sunset together on a grand adventure never looking back on the troubles of the world around you.
    I love it!
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  23. #23
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    Wow I haven't been here because I've been bummed..after that one week (the last week of Sept?) where I rode everywhere I haven't been able to ride so much...the kids have their sports so I can't ride and pick them up or we end up riding home at night and it's just too late and dark for the kids; it's not safe. And the rainy season has hit..and rain here is not just rain pitter patter, it's drenching driving downpour, with wind and the water bouncing back up from the ground and going sideways. Yesterday I went home at noon and rode my bike to work during a little window..but by the time work was over the rain was so intense I had to get a ride home.

    This morning I brought my car to work because this was where the bike was, but I went home at noon for lunch, then rode back to work..and I think I'll go ahead and ride to pick up the kids so I think I'm getting back on track. Because if I ride to pick up the kids after work, that means we'll be car-less tomorrow morning too bwahaha and that is how I force myself to do what I really want and need to do.

    Plus I just don't have any money for gas and we still have 15 days till payday....that's why I rode so much at the end of last month too, lol.

  24. #24
    The cat says Merry Xmas Pamestique's Avatar
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    Welcome... I missed your post last time... not many women around so we need to increase our numbers (actually I don't mean that - we want to decrease our presence in this forum don't we!). Anyway, never beat yourself up - always look forward at what you can do; not at what you didn't... every day is a fresh start for the rest of our lives. Keep at it!
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  25. #25
    SERENITY NOW!!! jyossarian's Avatar
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    Kids you say? Here's what you need.
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