Health Female Adda
1 year ago
How This "Former Fat Kid" Became a Kickass Trainer and Lost 70 Pounds

Before: 189

After: 120

The Lifestyle
I was always heavier, but I was also an athlete and played sports every day. I totally overate, and at that time, the fat-free craze was going strong. I would have a whole box of fat-free treats and think, "Well, it's fine because there's no fat in them." When I went to college, it was a free for all when my friends and I went to the cafeteria. And although I was an athletic training major, which meant I was always in the training room, I never actually worked out.

strength train for weight loss

Each summer, I would go on a trendy diet, like Atkins or South Beach, and start working out twice a day. I usually lost about 20 to 30 pounds. But when I went back to school, I would gain it all back. 

The Change
When I graduated college, I stepped on the scale and discovered that I was very close to being 200 pounds, which was a lot for my 5'1" height. I was like, "Holy sh*t. How did I get to this point?" I was shocked because I had actually been on a diet a week before I weighed myself. At that moment, I could have let it go and seen the scale keep going up—but I decided I was done gaining weight.

I started working at a sports club, which left no room for the excuse, "I can't make it to the gym today." I worked out about six days a week for an hour at a time. I also started watching how much of everything I was eating by eating frozen pre-portioned meals. It was the easiest way to keep myself from overdoing it.

To stay motivated to work out, I started training for a half-marathon, even though I hated running. It was a great way to work toward achieving something while continuing to lose weight. I eventually ran two more full marathons.

A year after I'd started my journey, I'd lost 60 pounds. At that point, I moved to New York City and became a nanny. Since I couldn't just feed the kids frozen dinners or fast food, I had to learn to cook for them. I started noticing that fresh, whole foods—like veggies and chicken stir-fry—were way more satisfying and better for me than what I'd been eating before.

Eventually, I started a job in the corporate world and kept up my workout schedule. I also started taking some mind-body classes that incorporated positive thinking into the workout. Those classes were really helpful because I was still trying to get over what I think of as my "fat kid" mentality. I still have moments sometimes where I have to remind myself that my body is awesome and capable of so many things.

 

A photo posted by Dyan Tsiumis (@dfierce) on

When I realized that I wanted to become a fitness instructor so I could train others to feel good every day, I quit my job. It was scary, but I knew that was what I was meant to do.

Five years after initially setting out to lose weight, I'd lost about 70 pounds and weighed 120 pounds. On top of that, I'm a personal trainer and cycling instructor at the indoor-cycling studio Swerve Fitness. I also have a number of fitness competitions under my belt. Most recently, I competed in a body-building competition. It was so challenging, but I loved setting and achieving that goal for myself. Staying consistent, setting new goals, and focusing on how my body feels when I eat certain foods has helped me keep the weight off for 10 years.

The Reward
I feel like I can do anything because I'm healthy. I'm really confident in my body, and that translates to every other part of my life. I feel like I've grown so much and wouldn't have discovered so much about myself if I hadn't set out to lose weight.

 

A photo posted by Dyan Tsiumis (@dfierce) on

Dyan's tips
Take baby steps. Looking back, I know relying on the frozen-food section to eat a reasonable meal wasn't the best thing for me. But you can't expect to go from an out-of-control eater to eating totally clean in a heartbeat. I had to take baby steps to learn what was best for myself.
Set a goal to drink a certain amount of water each day.  When I first started losing weight, I told myself that I was going to drink a liter of water a day. That made me feel like I was doing something good for my body, which made me more conscious of the other healthy changes I wanted to make in my life.
Set a sleep alarm. I have an alarm on my phone that tells me that I have an hour until I have to be asleep. It's so important to get enough rest so that your body has time to heal from your workouts. I've found that I'm a lot less hungry when I get enough sleep.

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