New Lily

She Lost Almost 20 Pounds…And Kept it Off

Diana Sibley 1I wrote recently about long term weight loss, and Diana Sibley is an example of someone who has accomplished just that.  She lost almost 20 pounds over one year ago and has kept the weight off.  One of the amazing things  was that she was actually only trying to lose five!   I talked to Diana about her weight loss, how she did it, and why she is confident she will keep the weight off.  Her experience is probably not unlike many others’ experience…it came down to a decision, a commitment, and common sense.
How much weight did you lose?
     I lost 19-20 pounds.
How long have you kept it off?
     I have kept it off for over a year.  When I think about it, it’s still odd to me; my goal at first was to loose 5 pounds!  For several months after I lost the weight, I woke up every day and got on the scale – I was convinced I was going to wake up one morning and it would all be back!
How did you lose the weight initially?
     It was Feb 2011 and I had just gotten over a cold/flu thing and I was tired every day even when I wasn’t sick. I was so sick of being sick and tired. I knew that I had to do something to change but I wasn’t sure what.  I am a Consultant for Arbonne International which is a health and wellness and Swiss skincare company.  And, the month before, in January, we had our annual conference and Arbonne  launched our new wellness products which included protein shakes, vitamins, antioxidant drink and some other items. Our nutritionists developed a “30 days to fit ” plan which focused on detoxing through an elimination of certain foods/ingredients known to be allergenic for many people instead of a dieting program.  The Arbonne products are used to support and add health into your life rather than focusing on what’s being removed.  After the 30 day “elimination”, you add each ingredient back into your eating so you can see if you are bothered by any of the foods/ingredients – such as a headache or upset stomach or just feeling sluggish.    I knew I had nothing to loose, so, I decided to give the ’30 Days to Fit’  program a try. 
     For 30 days (well, I picked February because it has 28 days!), I eliminated sugar, gluten, coffee (still ok to have caffeine), dairy and alcohol. It may sound like a lot at first, but when you just switch what your eating by removing these items and  put more focus on what you ARE eating — much more vegetables, lean meats and fruit — it really becomes easy. And using Arbonne’s products to support me, it really worked great — no cravings, no headaches from removing coffee for example. And, within the 1st week I had so much more energy, I slept better and woke up actually refreshed (which had not happened in a while!).  Because I was feeling so good right away, I wanted to continue and by week 2 the weight began to come off..and that continued.  After 30 days, I had lost more than the 5 pounds which was my original goal (a really low goal!) and I felt great. When I began to add the ingredients back in to what I ate I felt changes right away.
What are your “secrets” to keeping the weight off? 
     For me, I found that food choices have been even more important than exercise for keeping the weight off.  Keeping it off comes down to following a routine where most of the time  my diet does not contain dairy, sugar, gluten, alcohol.   But sometimes I eat anything I want — like a really yummy dessert.  I found, for me, it’s then easy to continue this long term. It becomes a lifestyle rather than a “diet” or things I can’t have.

Diana Sibley, on the right in the black dress, lost 20 pounds and kept it off.

What is your primary form of exercise?  

I do Pure Barre 4 times per week. And I’ve recently starting taking a deep stretch yoga class once a week.   I walk the dog, but she likes to sniff so much, I really can’t call that exercise!

What advice can you give others who want to lose 10 or more pounds?

Focus on what you’re eating first.  If you do nothing else, eliminate soda and processed foods.  I truly believe that  finding out if your sensitive or allergic to certain foods is important and can be a key to weight loss and feeling better.

What are your “non-negotiables” with yourself?  In other words, what are the things that you just don’t allow yourself to do (i.e. skip more than 3 days of exercise, eat desserts, …) 

I don’t skip more than 2 or 3 days of exercise (for me that is usually Pure Barre).

What is it that you like about weighing less?  What are the tangibles and intangibles (i.e. the way you look, the confidence you have…) 

What I like most is how I feel — more energy, better mood, better sleep.  My clothes fit better, so I think that helps boost confidence too.

Is there anything else you would like to add? 

When I eliminated certain foods, I found  out which ones I’m sensitive/allergic too. Many will experience the same result of seeing which foods are allergenic for them. Some will find that they are not bothered by any of the foods they introduce back to their diet, but doing this “elimination” work for a month does a great job of detoxing the body….which is important to do regularly for weight loss. I learned that when the liver is relieved of toxins, it helps the body support weight loss.

While many of the strategies Diana used are simple, not all are easy to do.  For instance, eliminating processed foods sounds like something you can just check off a list.  However, I know because I have tried it, that it is much harder to do than to say.  My point  is that losing weight is often not an easy endeavor…it takes desire and commitment.  I believe it can be helpful to hear how others are doing it and how they are successful at keeping it off.  How about you…have you lost 10 pounds or more…how did you do it?



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