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How I Kept My Resolution to Get Healthy

Are you setting a New Years resolution?  Spend less money, get organized, get birthday cards out on time.  I have made all sorts of resolutions, but 2012 was the first year I actually accomplished what I set out to do.  I got healthy.

At the beginning of 2012, my three sisters and I took our mom on a weekend getaway for her birthday.  It was the first time I had left my girls overnight so I was a little nervous.  What I should have been more concerned about was fitting in the clothes I had packed.  I knew we were going out to a nice dinner so I threw in a dress I had received for my birthday six months prior.  I was shocked at how tight it had become, and not just around the middle. Ugh.

melanies family

I decided to take the plunge and try Take Shape for Life, a division of Medifast, after seeing how successful one of my sisters had been on the program.  Here’s the dreaded “before and after.”  Dreaded because I just did not want people to see me like that.  Now I’m thirty pounds lighter, and so incredibly thrilled that I can share some of the things I learned with you.

getting healthy in 2013


If you asked me a year ago if I drank water, I’d say “of course.”  What I meant was I drank water while I waited for my diet cherry coke to arrive.  Now, I drink 64 ounces of water daily. I had to schedule drinking water at first.  Using my reusable Starbucks cup, I track my consumption.  Something totally ridiculous I discovered is that I drink more water if I have a cup with a straw and crushed ice.  Don’t know why, but it works for me.

drinking more water to get heatlhy

I’m not going to lie and say 64 ounces is easy for a caffeine-junky like me.  I start my day by drinking 8 ounces (and then the coffee).  Starting the day off hydrated wakes me up better anyway.  I tell myself that if I have the time or bladder space to drink things other than water, I’m not drinking enough.

Small Meals Frequently

Eating smaller meals throughout the day isn’t an earth-shattering revelation, but it made a difference for me.  Now, I eat every three hours.  This still allows me to eat meals with my family.  The other meals get filled in at recess and the drive home.  The benefit of eating more frequently is I’m not hungry!  My blood sugar level stays constant, and I’m not the human vacuum that consumes everything in sight from the moment I walk in the door until dinner is ready.

I did cut down on my calorie count, but talk to your doctor about what’s a good number for you.  I just assumed everybody was 2,000 calories because that’s what the food packaging bases its numbers on for the nutritional information.

Pump Up the Protein

I’m a vegetarian, so eating fruits & veggies was already a big part of my diet.  What I was lacking was protein.  I’d have black beans, tofu, or something of that sort each day. However, it wasn’t until I began this program that I integrated protein into all of my meals.  A concern for me as a vegetarian is that many of my sources of protein are higher in carbs than the meat-alternatives. Bummer.  I still eat carbs, but have started paying more attention to the number.  Not all veggie burgers are created equal!

Clean Out the Cupboards

My pantry looks like a Medifast factory.  What you won’t see is all of the junk I used to love eating.  I had to control mindless snacking which meant I needed to stay away from the pretzels, crackers, and tub of ready-made cookie dough.  My children would have revolted if everything disappeared, but I only buy the girls the things that aren’t tempting to me.  I also purchase one treat type thing at a time.  If the cupboards aren’t full of options, I have better control of saying “no” to the one thing that’s in there.

medifast meal options

Leave Kid Food for the Kids

I’ve got to give credit to my sister Carolyn for this one.  She doesn’t eat birthday cake at kids’ parties.  With such a big family, there’s always a cousin or nephew’s party to attend.  The menu was designed to appeal to the kids.  Leave it for them.  Although cheese pizza and a frosted cupcake are tempting, it’s not worth your clothes not fitting.

As a mom, this tip stretched to not eating things off of my kids’ plates either.  Since I have a picky eater at home, I’ve read about not being a short order cook and tried to adhere to that.  In a perfect world, my 3 and 5 year old would dine on lean protein and non-starchy vegetables daily.  Not always the case.  If they are eating mac & cheese, I’m worth the extra effort to make something separate for myself (and since I’m not famished, I can spend a few more minutes on my own meal).

Find Support

For two months, I only told my immediate family about my efforts.  I didn’t want my coworkers or extended network watching or judging me.  What if I failed?  What if I slipped up and cheated?  Trying to keep it secret wasn’t the best way to keep on going. Finding support made such a difference.

You know who kept me in line the most?  My daughter.  I told her what I was going to be eating only healthy food.  It opened up a dialogue between us about which foods were healthy and why I was making certain choices.  Since I could see how much she was taking an interest in my health aspirations, I felt an obligation to her to do it right.

Now that I’m at my goal weight, I feel so much different.  I was so grateful for the life-changing decision I had made, I became a health coach for Take Shape for Life to assist others on their journey.  If Medifast is something you’re interested in, check out my site.

I wish you all the best of luck with your resolutions for 2013, whether they be for your health or any other aspect of your life.  It’s going to be an amazing year!

Disclosure: If you enroll with Medifast under Melanie, she will receive a commission.
About Melanie

My name is Melanie. I love glitter, my family, and making lists.


  1. 1

    You look great!

    • 2

      Thanks! I feel a lot different too. It’s a lot easier getting up and down the stairs without the extra weight. 🙂

  2. 3

    I’m on the Medifast right now, this is my goal this year to get to my goal weight.

  3. 5

    I’m glad you lost the weight you wanted.

  4. 7

    OH my gosh, way to go! You look like a teenager! I hate water. I’d rather eat dirt than drink water. I have NO idea why and know how important it is. I have heard keeping a cup ready and waiting is the key…and a pitcher of the exact MINIMUM of water a day to fill it so you can see how you’re doing and keep filling. I am OK with that bc I don’t like ice cold water. Even in summer. Go figure. yeah.. I need to go get a BETTER figure!;)

    I know I could not afford the program but you had great tips for anyone just trying to change their bad eating habits.

    • 8

      What about getting those Crystal Lite packets to add into water? There are some low sugar, low calorie versions. Maybe it’ll spice up your water enough to help you up your consumption.

  5. 9

    You look beautiful! You look great before, too, though! I’m on my on weight loss journey now.

  6. 11

    Congrats on your accomplishment! You look fab.

  7. 13

    personal goals and making good choice can make a huge difference in people My husband has a terrible habit of cleaning off the kids plate and then he complains about getting fat… HELLO… he never listens

    • 14

      It’s such a habit for parents. I always felt baffled when I ordered something healthy for myself at restaurants and still gained weight. I thought the calories only counted if you ordered it for yourself. If only that were true!

  8. 15

    Congratulations! I have to agree with you about the cup and straw. That works for me too!

  9. 17

    CONGRATS, your story is wonderful and you look gorgeous!

    • 18

      Thank you so much. I hate sharing the “before” picture, but I’m so grateful that I was able to have the success I was hoping for. Thanks for the positive support. 🙂

  10. 19

    You look amazing! I was never a water drinker, but drink tons now (with lemon). I also do high protein, low carbs and also eat every 3 hours. It has worked for me for years. Now I just need to get back on track exercising!!

    • 20

      Oh man. I need to get on that too. We had a really warm summer (so I couldn’t run because it was too hot) and now it’s winter (so I can’t run because it’s too cold). Maybe I’ll edit my New Years Resolution for 2013 to no more excuses.

  11. 21

    Congratulations and awesome tips!

  12. 23

    Wow! First of all, I have to say that you look amazing! Also, thank you for sharing your journey. I was always the “thin girl” but after babies, I found that keeping the weight off became difficult. I still think of myself as the thin girl, but my clothes don’t fit and it’s frustrating. I know what I have to do, but just like you, I become a vacuum when I get home. Your post is really an inspiration for me to get my butt in shape.

    • 24

      Thank so much. I ended up weighing what I did when I was five months pregnant with my first child and knew I was doing it all wrong. Had to change my habits and ward off “When’s your baby due?” even when I wasn’t pregnant!
      I had to fight the vacuum-ness by eating on my way home from work. That way I could tell myself that I was not going to eat until dinnertime. Best of luck to you on your journey to get in shape. It can also be frustrating, but those clothes fitting again feels great! So does throwing them away because they’re too big!

  13. 25

    You look great – and so extremely happy in the after picture!

    • 26

      Absolutely. My husband laughs because unintentionally the “after” picture is in a happier setting, with cuter clothes, etc. That’s how they do those commercials on tv. Make the “before” picture look as pathetic as possible so anything’s an improvement!

  14. 27

    You look amazing!

  15. 29

    You look great! I have set some goals for this year and I hope to achieve most of them. 🙂

    • 30

      Good luck to you! If you’ve made it through the first week of January, you’ve outlasted most of us with our goals!

  16. 31

    You look fabulous! I’m glad you tackled your goal for the year!

  17. 33

    Great job!!

  18. 34

    I think you looked great before, but your after photo is awesome! Great job, I hope to get in better shape this year.

    • 35

      Thanks, Kathleen! Good luck to you this year. I was grateful that I took measurements, not just my weight. It was a good motivation for those times when the pounds were changing, but I was losing inches. Whatever works for you, stick with it!

  19. 37

    That’s really great, and you look amazing.

  20. 39

    Having lost almost 80 lbs myself, I agree with a ton of your tips! They’ve worked for me too.

    • 40

      Congrats! That’s amazing! I’m also interested in people’s stories and how they made it work. If you’ve got any helpful ways to add, I’d love to hear them.

  21. 41

    Wow! You look great thanks for your tips!

  22. 42

    Wow, you look great!

  23. 43

    You look awesome! Tahnk you for the great tips! I need to get more water in too!

    • 44

      Water forgives so many of our less than stellar choices. Never realized how important it was, even when I was pregnant.

  24. 45

    You are radiating happiness!

  25. 46

    Congratulations on getting healthier. You look fantastic! I drink more water with a cup that has a straw as well.

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