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So up until about 3 years ago, the largest I’d ever gotten was a size 4, a 6 depending on the fit. The point is, my whole life I’ve been small. Flat stomach, cute shape and humbly as I believed a cute face. Then life came crashing down on my head, and depression hit and my love for food grew to a need and the overeating began. Also, over 30: a memoir. *rolls eyes* Before I knew it, I looked up and now I’m a size 12, 14 depending on the fit. Perhaps more than just being larger than I’m used to, my self-esteem took a big hit. I went from feeling like I could hold my own in a room with the best of them, bar none, to hating every picture or taking none at all. I despise every outfit I put on and feel as though nothing I did with my hair or makeup was helping. Not to mention one of my best friends is literally the poster child for conventional beauty with a body out of this world. Ya girl has been feeling real less than is what I’m saying. Over the last year I’ve done the flimsy, “ok, this is it! I’m going to eat right and work out,” pep talk. I’ve started and stopped and thought about it and then decided not for one reason or another. Look, I love to eat and hate working out, so…fat. But as I’ve begun to do the inside work through therapy, prayer and a genuine desire to be healthy, happy and whole, I’m now ready to allow that to manifest itself on the outside.

So here’s the plan: no diets that I’m only going to be ready to throw out the window the minute I mess up, I’m gonna keep it simple. Limit sugar to only smoothies in the a.m. and def none after 2pm. Cut out the carbs, keep to smart proteins (seafood, lean meats and a little chicken.) and veggies. I’m counting calories through the myfitnesspal app and have the help and support of a couple of friends that are on the same journey with me. On the fitness tip, I have an app that I like (fitonomy) that has a good plan that I can stick to at least 5 days a week, any two a days I can add in there will be bonus points for me. While I hate it as I’m doing it, I really enjoy spin class, and the app has a great plan that is high in weightlifting which I understand helps accelerate weight loss as opposed to cardio as I previously thought. I’ve also learned that it doesn’t require these long drawn out workouts which is a relief cause honestly, who has the time. Now, this part, this part is a struggle, so I’m going to need you to pray saints, no alcohol for October and a gallon of water a day. Whew, yeah, I know that is tough because like surviving adulting is predicated on a healthy adult beverage intake but if I want this belly to be bikini ready for my trips to a few islands I have planned for the upcoming winter months than sacrifices must be made. Now, since I’m a realist, IF I am to have an adult beverage because, in the interest of full transparency, I already have then its tequila Blanco and soda water for me. Keeps the calories to a minimum but still gets the job done. You’re welcome.

All in all, I’m ready, I’m ready to feel beautiful again, to have a desire to get dressed every day and feel good about myself. To look in the mirror and love what I see. I’m ready to get back to the Erica that I know and love. I am a masterpiece, created in the image of the Most High and, designed for greatness. I can do this. I will do this and baby this glow up will be epic. I invite you to join me if you find yourself on a similar journey, we can do this together. The most important part I am learning is that it starts with how we feel within. It’s hard to dig deep and really face yourself in the mirror and see the parts of you that you’ve avoided, but it’s freeing when you can meet them head on and heal through them. Truth is, we can’t love what we look like at any size until we love who we are at all times. Falling in love with me again has been a dope experience that has me finally feeling ready to get snatched. It won’t come overnight nor will it be easy but it will get done. And this version of me will be the best one yet!

Stay tuned….

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