Blogs > Lighten Up with Sarah

Sarah Buchanan is a 48-year-old full-time Lakeland Community College nursing student who knows she represents many people struggling with their weight. The Painesville resident will work together with her family to get active and get healthy.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

My journey begins..

I met some great people at the weigh-in on Sunday, and we are all on the same lose weight and get healthy.

A little history about myself that may help you get to know me.  I have not always been the obese and unhealthy person that you are getting to know now.  I was misdiagnosed for 10 years with a thyroid condition that we found out was actually thyroid cancer(a curable one), after surgery I was considered healthy again.  For me I do not see it this way since during that time I had no metabolism and had gained approximate 250 lbs. This lead to the high bp and diabetes that I have now. But I have to also say that I cannot blame all of my weight on this condition either, i have to take some responsibilty for it too. Like some obese people I have times that i let my emotions get the best of me and find comfort in food. I have tried to lose weight and failed or gave up thinking that at this weight why try, it will take me forever to lose it, or the fear of hearing doctors telling me that because of my weight I most likely could have a heart attack, this comment is good and bad.  It puts the fear in someone my size that I should lose it no matter what and to exercise and get the pounds off, but there is also the fear that exercise may cause the heart attack. I have finally gotten to a point in my life that I realize that if i do not exercise I will die alot younger.

I have 2 son's that are 21 and 28 and 4 stepchildren(13 yr old twin girls, a boy 15 and a girl 23.  I was blessed to see my oldest son get married in Oct of 2011, I want to be here to see the rest of them graduate college and high school and maybe get married if that is in their futures.  But I'm the only one that can make sure that this happens.

I am also a full-time nursing student at Lakeland Community College, this is something the I have dreamed of becoming since I was a child and at this time in my life everything fell into place and I was able to start school and achieve this dream.  But one thing that I do realized is that being a nurse is hard work, i have several in my family, and at my weight I may be able get the degree to achieve this but would not physically be able to do the work.  This just will not work for me, I did not have this desire for this long to let my weight be the only thing that is stopping me, I am determine to not let this happen.

Knowing that my weight was going to be something that would be known now to everyone was something I had to think about first and discuss with my family also.  When it came to my family I have alot of support from everyone and they told me to go for it.  Everyone volunteers to help however they could, whether it was going to the YMCA with me, taking walks, or just listening if I was having a bad day(there is where the emotional eating comes in), they have always been this supportive but I have always been tough and didn't want anyone to think I was weak and could not do this on my own.  What I also hope to achieved by sharing my story with everyone is for the people that may be a little overweight or very obese like myself to see that it can be done, you are not alone, and if you feel that you are, find any of us that are on this blog and let us know how you are feeling, sharing this with others might help you to see that it can be done and you are not alone.  You can even start your journey to getting healthy with us, and we can be your support system.

I also decided to change what I was eating about a year ago close to Easter of 2011.  I decided at this time to give up all meats, and begin a plant-based diet, I did start out as a vegetarian and still had some cheese and milk here and there, but have since given this up and became vegan. I have tried to do this before and always would think it is to expensive or just let things get the better of me and give up.  Not this time, being able to achieve almost a year of my choice of foods I want to eat and not giving up has showed me that I do have determination and I know I have to use that and start exercising the way I should. Between the YMCA and the gym at Lakeland I have no excuses. I may not know what to do when it comes to knowing machines or how much to walk each day or laps to swim, but there are people that are trained at both of these places that can help with that also.  So no matter who you are, there are no excuses.  I have finally realized this and by blogging here I am also making myself accountable. The plant-based diet is a choice, and if anyone would like more information about it please let me know, I have 3 books I use constantly, "Eating Vegan on $4.00 a day, The Happy Herbivore, and Everyday Happy Herbivore".  Both of the authors are on facebook and will message you and share posts on facebook also. Lindsay Dixon is the author of The Happy Herbivore and actually has a 1200 calorie diet that she shares, she list how to cook the recipes, how many calories are in each serving , and a calendar for the week, even shopping list and 50/100 calorie snacks.  This is something that I have been following for about 2 mths now and have lost about 15 lbs and have also felt better and had more energy.  Like I said before, this is a choice that I made for me and its up to you what is good for you.

Well enough about myself for now, I look forward to this challenge and know I can do it this time, just keep me in your thoughts if you could.



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