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Balancing the scale: Health, self-confidence and happiness

Keeping our jeans, bellies and minds happy

From SheKnows Canada
Hello lovely SheKnows readers! Welcome to my very first column. You've probably guessed from the title that this column has something to do with weight loss. But there's more, I promise.

No more weighting


Keeping our jeans, bellies and minds happy

Hello lovely SheKnows readers! Welcome to my very first column. You've probably guessed from the title that this column has something to do with weight loss. But there's more, I promise.

Rolla BahsousShocked by the scale

Let me introduce myself first: My name is Rolla Bahsous and I've struggled with weight since I was around 11 years old. I was bigger than other girls in my grade school classes and in grade 11, I hit 245 pounds at 5 feet, 6 inches.

Of course on the way to becoming 245 pounds, I had family, friends and random people my parents knew tell me that it's a shame I'm overweight because I have a "pretty face" and I should try to lose some weight. Seeing the red needle of the scale stubbornly setting on the bold number 245 is extremely shocking to a teenage girl who had no idea she was even 200 pounds to begin with.

One day, I walked to the library and began looking at books that had to do with weight loss. I ended up signing out a book written by Suzanne Somers called Eat Great and Lose Weight.

Changing my eating habits

After I read it and saw that it seemed straightforward, I showed my mom the basic food combination rules and she began helping me by preparing special meals that consisted of proteins, veggies and complex carbohydrates. Meanwhile, I learned the benefits of cutting out refined sugars and starches so that red needle on the scale began to drop until I was about 180, less than two years into the eating plan. I plateaued here and after five years on the same eating plan, I decided to let the reigns go a bit. I was able to maintain my weight, even though I didn't follow the eating plan too strictly.

Rolla Bahsous

When I started going to the gym more often (at least four times a week to do simple cardio and light, controlled weight training), I got down to 165 pounds, give or take 5 pounds over the course of 2 years. I couldn't get those last 10 pounds off for good, no matter what I tried as the scale kept bouncing up and down. I tried to be happy with my weight, but I always felt there was room for improvement because I wanted to take hold of my self-confidence and positive body image, and not let a number on the scale shake it.

A vacation from healthy eating

Then my awesome Europe trip this past summer came my way and I ran wild with gelato, cannolis, pizza, fish and chips and lots of refined sugars and starches. When I came back, I could feel my clothes were snug and my belly was sticking out more than usual. I stepped on the dreaded scale and learned to my horror that I gained 7 pounds! Even though I carried on with maintaining my workouts and cutting out refined sugars and starches as best I could, I knew I wanted to do more. This brings me here.

Rolla Bahsous before and after weight loss

Back in control

I'm here because I want to share my journey with you as I work to accomplish my goal to lose at least 10-15 pounds, get back in control of my weight again, and stop feeling guilty when I treat myself for dessert once in a while. My goal is to find peace with my weight as I continue to live an active lifestyle, being, as Susan Somers says, "fit, not fanatic." My ultimate goal is to find a balance that keeps my hips, my confidence and I happy. Here I will share my weekly progress, tips, things I've learned along the way and even seek advice from people in the same boat as I am.

I know I called this column "No More Weighting," but that isn't simply referring to the process of shedding pounds. It's referring to other weight that brings us down: fears, low confidence and bad habits. So this isn't just another weight-loss journal to blab about the cheesecake that I shouldn't eat. This is a column about our very human battles with weight, our senses of self confidence and our sources of motivation. With this column, I propose that we don't weight -- or should I say -- wait any longer. Let's go ahead and grab a healthy treat, sit back (perhaps after a good work out), and enjoy the ride together to a happier, healthier life!

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