low carb transformation : amanda

I started Keto on July 5th, 2016. I vividly remember spending the whole day crying over how I looked in the photos I took on the 4th of July.

I couldn't believe how I looked and my depression had gotten to an all-time low. I've spent my entire life dieting, counting calories, and trying to starve myself starting at the age of 12. I have never been happy with my appearance and my self-confidence was totally shattered. When I spent years yo-yo dieting & starving myself, I did lose weight very fast. But within weeks or even days it always ended the same way, with bingeing. I couldn't control my eating and rapidly put on even more weight than where I started. This is how I have spent years of my life, in this vicious circle of tormenting myself and my body. I have tried everything you could possibly think of to lose weight: diet pills, clean eating, working out daily, fasting, counting calories, weighing my food...EVERYTHING. My body was so metabolically damaged from the crash diets that no amount of clean eating or working out could help me. I continued to gain weight despite my endless efforts to lose weight the "healthy way."

Fast forward to July 5th, the day I stumbled across an article about keto. I had never heard of keto, which is pretty shocking since I thought I knew it all when it came to weight loss. I spent the whole day educating myself on what keto was, how to start, what I could and couldn't eat and decided I needed to give it a try. I hadn't already eaten that day, as usual, so I was determined to dive right in at that moment. I downloaded the My Fitness Pal app to help me track my macros and limited my carb intake to 25grams a day.

I lost 10lbs in three days! I know that was just water weight, but it had been years since the scale had budged for me so it was a pretty emotional moment when I saw that.

I knew I was on the right path after that. I wasn't starving, I eat amazing food, I have tons of energy, and I never feel hungry.

In three months I lost 30lbs and after that I steadily lost another 15lbs, totaling 45lbs since I started. I have a goal to lose another 20lbs and that will bring me to my ultimate goal weight!

Still doesn't feel real and when I look back at photos of myself just a year ago I don't even recognize myself. Repairing my mental health and self confidence is a big part of this journey too. Learning to love yourself again is a long and difficult process, but it is possible.

I do allow myself cheat days and I think that's important for anyone following a lifestyle where you are cutting out things you love to eat. I have a rule that if I'm on vacation I will allow myself to eat anything I want, or every few months I give myself a day to indulge on some of my favorite foods. After a cheat day it's critical to get your mind back on track and not slip back into your old habits. Get right into your keto routine and try adding in some cardio for the day to help get rid of any water weight you may have gained from your cheat day. My biggest advice when starting keto is to jump right in with no cheating for at least the first couple of months. If you cheat too early into keto you will only set you back and you'll have to start all over.

If you've struggled with weight loss your whole life and feel hopeless, I promise this is worth a try. I finally feel happy and proud of myself for the first time in my life.

Keep strong & Keto on.

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