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DHS Weight Loss Series: Santasha RoyDate: 06/20/2018
How long I’ve kept it off: My name is Santasha Roy. I’m an Administrative Specialist III for the Office of Communications and Community Engagement (OCCE). In the summer of 2015, my weight loss journey started. About a year ago, I finally reached my targeted weight. Aside from the holiday season, when I gained a few pounds, I’ve been disciplined enough to maintain my current weight of 166 pounds.
Personal life: I’m a 40-year-old mom of three adult children. I have a close bond with each one of my kids. We enjoy laughing and having a good time. I love to play basketball, laugh, and shop – especially for high heel shoes! I’m always up for an opportunity to have a good laugh, enjoy life.
Keeping track of progress: At my heaviest I was basically weighing 200 pounds. Once I committed myself to losing weight, for psychological reasons, I chose not to keep a close eye on how I was doing. I weigh, but not that often. I weigh about once every two months. I like to stay within a 10-pound range of 165 to 175 pounds. But my goal is to never get to 170, and I’ve been able to do that.
Turning point: Three years ago, following my youngest son’s basketball practice, I was playing ball with him. I had trouble getting around. I was so tired. I’ll never forget my son saying, “You ought to be ashamed of yourself.” I just told him I’m getting old. He then says, “That is not an excuse. You used to be so active and full of energy.”
That conversation made a difference. But also, a lot of people in my family have diabetes or high blood pressure. I don’t want to deal with those problems. I don’t want to be forced to take medicine. So it was time for me to lose weight. I knew I had to do something before I started having serious health problems.
Diet plan: I started off with the South Beach Diet. But I just decided to stop dieting. When I realized that dieting wasn’t the key, I decided to just eat better. I started losing weight once I began to eat more vegetables and lots of good proteins each day. Also, I don’t eat after 7 p.m. I make sure to have breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I usually have small, healthy snacks between meals. And I drink a lot of water.
I no longer eat pasta or bread, and I’m getting closer to eliminating all sugar from my eating. Cooking at home makes a big difference. When you cook at home you can be responsible for making the food as healthy as you need to.
Exercise routine: Every weekday morning I do weight training and from 5-to-6 a.m. and from 6-to-7 a.m. I focus on cardio. I workout with a trainer who works with a group of us at Camp Robinson. That workout pattern has helped me a lot. I can see and feel the difference.
In fact, I recently ran two miles for the first time. The track at Camp Robinson is a mile long. I finally made it twice around the track while running. I was so, so happy when I did it. I’d been running on that track for a year. I set goals to be able to go further each month. I finally got to my biggest goal. I’m able to workout like that because I get the right amount of rest, and I drink a lot of water. Your body needs the proper amount of rest to do what it’s supposed to do.
Biggest challenge: Eating right has been the biggest challenge to my weight loss. I love to have a good time. Good times often include eating. I loved eating fried chicken. I’ve always been extremely active physically. But eating right was the most difficult part for me. I like to enjoy life on the weekends. If I have an adult beverage, I usually get hungry. At most clubs, the main food they have is fried chicken. But I learned to become disciplined. So eating right was formerly the biggest challenge. But thankfully, I conquered that road block and have learned to eat healthier foods.
How life has changed: I have so much more energy now. I just want to stay on the go. I want to do things. Rarely am I ever tired. I have more energy now, and I move around well. I feel amazing. My body rewards me for taking better care of it.