As far back as I can remember, I've never been considered overweight. On the flip side, I've never been considered skinny. I was just an average kid/teenager/young adult weight-wise.
I participated in dance classes as a young child, played youth sports (was one of three girls that played on the team) and continued to play soccer throughout High School at the Junior Varsity and Varsity levels. My mom packed my lunch every day from pre-school right up until the day I graduated High School. She cooked dinner every week night and we ate out. She was (and remains to be) an excellent cook - always incorporating vegetables, lean proteins, fruits and grains.
I continued working out in the campus gym, played intramural volleyball and walked a lot (to the bar!) and all over campus. I pretty much ate what I wanted and stayed active. I did gain the "sophomore 15" when I had moved onto campus after commuting my first year, but then lost it after realizing it crept up.
I think it would be safe to say that exercise has always been a part of my life.
When I first met my husband, we played tennis, hiked and were pretty active. When we moved in together in June 2005 to our first apartment, we worked out in the mornings and weekends at the complex gym. For our second apartment, we purchased a treadmill. Again, we stayed active and I began to diet for our upcoming wedding. With a combination of South Beach Diet and doing pilates and cardio - I looked rockin' for our wedding.
Well, at least I thought I looked rockin'. :)
Fast forward to 2007 - just nearly a year later, we found out we were expecting our first baby! We were over the moon thrilled and excited. However, I gained wayyyyy too much weight over the course of my pregnancy. I'm pretty much I set myself up for the inevitable during the first trimester when I gained a ton of weight too fast because all I wanted to drink was milk. My milk consumption went up 500% from having milk in only cereal to drinking 3 glasses a day! However, I tried to continue to be healthy for myself and our baby and tried to maintain a healthy diet and took walks with the dog each day. In the back of my mind was always my weight that I tried to keep from rising and rising.
However, the "damage" was done and I gained more than the recommended pregnancy weight by doctors and experts everywhere. I decided to shake it off and figured after the baby was born, my decision to breastfeed would get my pre-baby body back in no time, flat!
Then, finally, we met our baby girl via emergency C-Section and life was forever changed.
And, so was my body.
By the time she was 8 months, my return to moderate exercise, combined with diet and the benefit of breastfeeding - I was within 10 pounds of my pre-pregnancy weight in early 2009. I was thrilled to fit into most of my pre-pregnancy clothes and it was just in time for our trip to Florida!
However, when we got down to Florida, trying on a pair of capri pants that fit just before we went as I was going through and packing, I found them to be a bit snug and hard to close. Whaaaat? They JUST fit a few days ago - how are they not fitting. Later in the week, after realizing I was "late", I suspected I might be pregnant again.
After sending the hubster in a somewhat panic to the drugstore, he shortly returned with two digital pregnancy tests. Both of which turned up "not pregnant". However, you and I both know a woman knows her body. The Monday upon our return home, I tested again with a non-digital test - the one that promises to provide you with an accurate answer even before your missed period! To my already-knowing "surprise", I was indeed pregnant again. We were very excited - although unsure how 2 under the age of 2 would go.
As many of you know (or if you'd care to know), taking care of a baby and being pregnant is exhausting - especially in the first trimester. However, I didn't let that stop me. I continued to work from home part-time while staying home with our daughter. We joined a mommy group, went on daily walks and continued to go out and about.
As I entered my second and third trimesters, my weight creeped up again and of course, life happens. We sold our condo and bought a new home and moved in the summer of 2009. Moving, being pregnant, taking care of a now very active toddler and working from home was very stressful and I did the very best I could to ensure I was taking care of myself and everyone else.
I entered the hospital in early December 2009 for my repeat Cesarean Section at the highest weight I had been - EVER.
Like most white lies we tell ourselves, I confessed to myself: "It's okay, I'll lose it all again in no time."
The months passed and even though I could not have been happier with our family, I was frustrated and down about myself. Despite my weight loss with my first child, I found myself not losing weight as I had hoped as easily the second time around. I breastfed again but found myself hungry, tired and turning to not always great food choices. I decided to safely diet while breastfeeding to help lose weight, but nothing I tried worked. My body didn't respond to the ways I used to lose weight pre-pregnancy. My ever-faithful South Beach (Phase 2 for breastfeeding) didn't even help. I tried and tried...and tried.
Needless to say I'm here today still stuck at the same weight as I was about 9 months post-partum with baby number 2.
Two years later, I'm here. I still have the weight to lose - and that's right folks - you guessed it.
It's not called toddler weight.