Clothes · Weight Loss

REASON FOR LOSING WEIGHT 3: To wear pretty clothes

Okay. So as shallow as this may sound, it’s the truth. When I was overweight I couldn’t wear the clothes I wanted too. Usually because it was a style that just didn’t look good on a round body. Most clothes just are not designed for over-weight bodies. They don’t sit right or they ride up either at the front or the back.

Most of the time I had to wear what fit rather than what I wanted. So I lived in jeans, hoodies, and non-button up shirts. I’ll be honest, I kinda looked the same each time. In the summer, no shorts – no sireee, I wore cargo capris or jeans. Yes, I suffered through horrible summers constantly over-heating. I never wore a tank-top or anything without sleeves because I hated this weird fat line on my upper arm (which is still there I might add…but smaller, I’m working on it). My clothes said nothing about my personality, they were simply the covering I could find. And because I sweated so much I opted for black or white tops to hid the wet stains. I don’t think I did a very good job hiding it. Dress and skirts? Never. Now there are some very nice plus size clothing out there, but they’re expensive and I couldn’t afford them. And they look like old people clothing. I grew up over weight at a time where there was no Old Navy in Canada or online shopping.  So when I found hoodies – hahaha! something to cover the rolls! – I was hooked.

I used to always say I hated shopping – but the truth was that I hated shopping with other people. I couldn’t shop in the same stores my friends did because they just didn’t have the sizes. And I wasn’t going to bring them with me to the plus-sized stores. Which I have to say as a youth, or even in my 20s was terribly embarrassing to go to. It was like if anyone saw me enter those stores I would be admitting I was fat. WHAT!? Why are we always honest with ourselves last? I wanted my humiliation when clothes didn’t fit or I had to go up a size again or they didn’t have my size to be mine and mine alone.

And now I’ll fill you in no a not-so-secret secret. I like shopping. Turns out, I love dresses. Especially the sweater dresses that are in style. You don’t need to know how many I own…seriously you don’t. I can now buy most clothes in a store (still depending on the store) and I have CHOICE. Glorious choice.  And an extra perk I found out only after losing weight: uhmmm…non-plus size clothing is A LOT cheaper! I won’t go into why I think that is or what the reasoning is for that right now…but clearly from this post I should do some more about clothing. I can’t deny how much the shape of my body has changed and how that has completely changed my relationship with clothing and how I choose to present myself to the world.

Now, I still can’t wear everything I want, but I did find out what cuts and styles actually look good me, which I didn’t before. A-line skirts just don’t work no matter how cute I find them, I’m short and I have thick legs, it ain’t gonna happen. However, pencil skirts and dresses? I totally rock those! And I love them!

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Clothes · Weight Loss

Happy New Year – Bringing in 2012

Happy New Year everyone!

Hope everyone has had a great weekend so far. I spent a lovely New Year’s Eve catching the fireworks display.

If you caught my post last year you’ll know that I don’t believe in new year’s resolutions – mostly because I believe that true change can happen at any time and it can only happen when one wants it to happen. You’ll never quit smoking, lose weight save money, etc. until you are ready to commit to it and do everything you have to do, no matter how unpleasant. I understand that many people like the reset that a new year provides, but it also comes with a built-in excuse for failure – “everyone gives up their resolutions!”

And, so I would rather make goals for the year rather than resolutions. My goals this year are: 1. To run the half-marathon in September and 2. to reach my goal weight.

To help me reach my goals I have started researching different training programs for the half and have been recommitted all week-long to my weight loss.

And here’s somethig I did yesterday to help me with my weight loss goal: I threw out my underwear. What?! Let me explain.  I, at 164lbs still had and was wearing(!) three pairs of underwear from when I was over 250lbs.  Yup, I had three pairs that I still wore…they were much too big and uncomfortable but I still wore them. There was something reassuring about them. But just like with new year’s resolutions I feel they had a built-in excuse for failure. If I regained I would still have them, waiting for me, welcoming me back. But no more. They’re in the garbage. With that in mind I am going to go through my closet and once again put aside all my clothes that are too big so there is no excuse. Only proper fitting clothes from this point on! No “fall-back” clothing for me this year.

Off we go to 2012!

Do you have any goals for the new year? How are you preparing for them?

Clothes

Busy Bee…

Yup! That’s been me!  Which means I haven’t updated my October activity sheet which means it’s not ready for me to post. Ack.

I thought I would add some unofficial progress photos. Let’s talk running and running outside. So it’s mid-November and I live in Canada. What does this mean? It means the weather will soon become frightful…

I’ve become a tiny bit obsessed with figuring out a way to keep running outside. I’ve been back a couple times on the treadmill and I have to say I am not keen on returning. And so I’ve been experimenting with what to wear outside. I bought a long-sleeved running shirt at the 5K back in April, but it’s still a touch too tight. Not too tight to wear, but it rides up. I tried running wearing a hoodie, but the cotton is just not comfortable once I’m sweating. I’ve figured out that the best combo so far is the long-sleeved running shirt tucked into my yoga pants (so it doesn’t ride up) with a t-shirt over it. Here’s what I looked like after today’s 8.25K run:

 

I also invested in some warmer running attire. At first a bought a wind-breaker type jacket. It was nifty with magnet attached sleeves so I could take them off and run in a vest. I tried a run in it and it just wasn’t doing it for me, it kept the sweat in and it made way too much noise. I ended up returning it (don’t worry – the store doesn’t put returns back on the floor. It ended up in the “defective” pile)  and got store credit for it which isn’t an issue as I’ll need to buy new shoes and since the store sells New Balance shoes all will be good.

I found something closer to what I was looking for – more like a hoodie, but without the hood. It’s has some reflective bands which are good since I run in the evenings and is nice and warm. I figure I’ll be able to layer underneath it as it gets cooler. In fact, it’s still a bit too warm to wear it. Here’s what it looks like!

And the BEST part…THUMB HOLES!

This means warm hands while running 😀

Back to our regularly scheduled programming tomorrow…and also I’ve realized I need to clean that mirror…of I go! Have a great week all!!

Clothes · Weight Loss

Progress Photos Update

Alrighty, so I have posted new photos at 171lbs on my Progress Photos page. This time around I’ve added three photos – one from the front and two from the side. This is mostly because I’ve realized that my workout outfit is doing NOTHING for me. It makes me look like a box. I don’t mind – I’m at the gym to work out not be noticed, but the shirt is getting a bit big to be able to run in it comfortably. So the second photo from the side is my pulling my shirt tight – as you can see I still have that roll above my belt-line. I’m not sure what I have to do to get rid of it, but I figure I’ll just keep working towards my goal and worry about it then if it still doesn’t get smaller/go away.

Sometimes I think I should get myself a tank top so that I won’t be annoyed by sleeves, but I think I’d be too self-conscious. I’ve mentioned before that I absolutely HATE my upper arms due to a bizarre crease about half-way down. It’s getting smaller, but it hasn’t vanished yet so I think until it does I probably won’t be wearing sleeveless shirts out very often.  In fact that sunburn I got last week was the first time I’d worn a tank top in public probably since I was a kid! 

I guess I’ll just have to find a smaller t-shirt – which is harder than it sounds ALSO due to my self-consciousness about my upper arms. Why? Because for the last few years as I’m sure you’ve noticed women’s shirts have had very short sleeves. In my personal opinion I think the cut that is so popular actually makes most people’s arms look bigger than they really are and when I wear them they really don’t look good on me. And so, when it comes to just plain t-shirts I tend to buy men’s shirts and usually from Old Navy or American Apparel because the sleeves are longer and cover that crease comfortably (and often, like most things, the men’s versions are cheaper than women’s!). Usually this hasn’t been an issue but I’m already wearing a small and they don’t usually make extra small in men’s! What a good problem to have, but it does cause me a bit of clothing stress.

I’ve been having more and more clothing stress lately. I’ll be happy when Autumn arrives in a couple months – SWEATERS! Yup! I think I need the upcoming cold months to get comfortable with my body. I know how to dress myself to cover myself up what I don’t know how to do is how to dress for summer (I always just wore what fit and what would keep me relatively cool) or how to dress to flatter my body. I feel like this is going to be quite the learning curve.

Oh and guess what all – it’s my one year blogiversary on Sunday July 31st!!! Woohoo! Be sure to come back Sunday to see how I’m going to celebrate 😀

Clothes · Measurements · Weight Loss

April Measurements & Progress Photos

Okay, okay, okay. So I FINALLY took my measurements for April. To be honest I’m a little surprised. I thought the numbers would be better and show more of a difference considering it’s been about a month and a half. (click on it to see a larger image)

Now, the reason I thought the numbers would be better is because I FEEL better. My clothes fit better, I went down a dress size to a 12 (woohoo for not being in the teens anymore!!) and in general I feel smaller. Yes, you read that right. I actually have days where I feel smaller. Not small mind you, just smaller.

I still have to say I don’t necessarily see the weight loss yet. I mean I see some changes in my body in the mirror – some days are better than other others – and I see that I have to buy smaller clothes but I don’t have a good time judging clothing. Now clothes have always been a bit of an issue for me. I dress to cover up, I dress to not pull focus or attention. I NEVER wear clothing to show off any part of my body because I didn’t think anyone wanted to see that.

Well the other day I went shopping for a dress with a friend of mine (something I would have never done before! I hated shopping with other people) for an upcoming event. We went to a store I rarely shopped at before – Simon’s.  The clothes are smaller in general and you’d be hard-pressed to find an XL anywhere. I really like the clothes, but usually I could buy only a shirt or sweater here or there, never bottoms or dresses. Well I went with my friend and she picked out a few dresses for me to try on. She picked up a size large! I was skeptical…but they fit. I was floored. Some of the dresses just didn’t look good, but they all fit. I had CHOICE. This is unheard of, usually I just have to take what fits. She also picked up a cute pink cardigan to wear over the dress in a size medium!  I ended up (side note – regular size clothing is a LOT cheaper!) buying the cardigan and a couple of dresses. Here is one of the dresses I bought. The other one is just a black jersey dress which will be nice once it’s a bit warmer out.

The most interesting thing about this whole experience was actually how bad Iwas at jugding what clothes would fit me. I look at the dress and I think there is no way I can get into it. I brought the dresses back to work and a woman I work with told me how when she saw the dress she completely thought the dress would fit. It’s definitely been a learning experience. I’m also noticing that I’m also having trouble with how much room I need to pass by people or squeeze  through doors etc. It would seem my brain has not yet caught up with my body. I’m hoping this will come in time. 

Taking these progress photos in 10lbs intervals this year has really been an eye-opener. I see a difference in the photos I don’t see in real-life. I’ve updated with new ones. Check them out here

I hope everyone has a great long weekend 🙂

Clothes · Weight Loss

Out with the Old

Just before xmas I tried on a pair of size 14 jeans and found not only that they fit, but they fit well enough to now wear comfortably and out in public! I decided that this was a great time to go through my closet and get rid of clothes that are too big to wear.

I have no desire to keep any too-big clothes as I believe it will just give me permission to re-gain the weight. I did, however, keep all my small clothes from when I first lost the weight. It’s been great re-discovering them; I found so many pairs of pants and shirts which I haven’t worn in about 3-4 years.

I threw out clothes that were in bad condition that should not be donated and packed up the rest to either be donated to a women’s shelter or will go to a clothing swap at some point. The bag currently sits in my closet, but it’s nice to have freed up the hangers! Here’s the bag o’clothes:

There’s many, many pairs of pants in there ranging from size 20 capris from the summer to size 16 dress pants, a skirt I wore to a wedding 2 years ago that is way too big now, and a few shirts worthy of donating.  I kept a couple pairs of size 16 jeans as with a belt they’re not too bad – except when I sit and they bunch up in the crotch. I figure they should be good for at least the next month or two depending on my progress.

I also found a couple pairs of nice black dress pants I’d been hiding which was super exciting. I just bought a new pair from Reitman’s – which now I will return to save on the money. I probably should have done the closet clean up first. I don’t want to waste money on pants that I won’t be able wear nicely in 2 months. Not worth it at this point.

So that’s where I’m at – into the new year with (somewhat) new clothes. Feels great. Here’s hoping to another big clean-up before the summer!

Body Awareness · Clothes · Exercise · Rewards · Weight Loss

The Polka-Dot Dress

Now, I may be assuming here, but I’m pretty sure no matter your size everyone has an outfit or piece of clothing that they love but think they can’t wear or pull off.  For me it’s the polka-dot dress. I absolutely love retro-styled clothes, but I just don’t feel comfortable wearing it. Most of this has to do with my upper arms.  It’s not just that they are big (I mean they are, but that’s not the reason) it’s that they have a funny crease about half-way down that I am VERY self-conscious about.  It stops me from wearing cute t-shirts because the trend for the last few years on women’s shirts has been short-short sleeves (which by the way, I think look good on very few women – I happen to think it’s an unflattering cut and makes the upper arms look larger than they are).

This also means that I NEVER wear anything sleeveless. NEVER. I don’t own a cute dress with straps or anything like that because I would spend the night distracted by my arms – wondering if everyone can see this weird crease/roll of fat on my upper arm – and I don’t enjoy myself.

And so, I’ve decided that one of my rewards for when I reach my goal weight will be to buy myself a cute, polka-dot dress with a halter-top like this one I found on the website called Scene Dead.

I am also taking steps to make sure my arms are going to be ready. Now I realize, having spent my entire life overweight, that my upper arms will never be small and tight – most likely I will have loose skin. But I can do some things – I focus on working both my biceps and triceps when I work out so that I am toning the muscles which in turn will help with my skin’s appearance when I do lose the weight and I drink lots of water each day to help my skin maintain its elasticity. I think I’m on the right path. But only time will tell.