Following the birth of my second child, it has been a struggle for me to lose the weight I have gained. While I have lost most of it in baby KB’s first year (thanks to breastfeeding and moderate exercises), by the time KB was 2, I still had 20+ more pounds to go before I went back to my pre-pregnancy weight. I managed to lose a couple more pounds a few months following her 2nd birthday but after that I was going nowhere.
I have always been athletic since college. I literally played almost all sports available at that time. I was a varsity player for table tennis, badminton and chess. I also dabbled in basketball, softball, martial arts, volleyball, darts, billiards and even soccer. Probably the only sport I did not like (and did poorly too) was bowling. This aversion seems to have remained up to now in my professional life where most of my colleagues like to join bowling tournaments.
After my first child in 2001, I was able to shed off the weight through badminton. No change in diet, just pure exercise. I loved my food and I could never give up eating whatever I liked. It appeared, however, that after a decade, this recipe no longer works for me. And as my responsibilities at work and home grew over the years, I found that playing badminton a few times a week for up to an hour each session no longer contributes to building my skills as a player (I was really competitive). So, badminton was not an option anymore. How was I going to lose all those remaining pounds and fit into my old clothes again? I considered going back to running. Back in 2010, I fell in love with running. That was in Reading, UK, where I was taking up my masters in capital markets, compliance and regulation. I started training for the half marathon. I have never felt fitter in my life. Then I got pregnant with KB…my training was deferred.
So I thought, what better way to lose the weight than running? But I felt that my knees might not be able to withstand the harsh pounding from running. So I decided to go back to yoga. With the help of videos, youtube (my first encounter with Ms. Esther Ekhart in this youtube video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KQRtiLpomHg inspired me to do more yoga) and other online resources, I restarted my yoga practice. However, while practicing yoga increased my flexibility and strength (not to mention incredibly reducing stress levels), alas, I discovered I was not losing weight. 😦 I knew then that I had to combine cardio, yoga and strength training plus reduce my calorie intake if I wanted to succeed. By January 2013, my new year’s resolution was to lose 20 pounds in six months, even targeting below my usual “normal” weight. What began as a weight-loss journey, however, turned into a journey to overall wellness as I discovered the importance of a well-balanced and healthy lifestyle. More of that in future blogs.