My name is Taylor Register. I’m 23, born and raised in Fayetteville, North Carolina. I’m a hairstylist and makeup artist, and joining a WW program helped me lose over 100 pounds.
My entire life I’ve struggled with my weight. Even as a child, I was the largest kid in all of my classes at school. My mom took me to see doctors and nutritionists at a young age because she was concerned about my weight, but no health care providers were able to pinpoint a particular reason for my weight issues growing up.
Looking back at my childhood, I had developed an unhealthy relationship with food that I didn’t realize until later on in life.
I would sneak snacks into my room and hide the packaging behind my bed. I would stuff wrappers into couch cushions. I started developing the habit of constantly overeating.
When I entered high school, I joined the marching band. It helped me keep my weight down, but when the season ended, I was no longer active and gained nearly a pant size before the start of the next season. This happened each year in high school—and I went up at least (if not more) four pant sizes.
After I graduated HS, I lost all motivation to be physically active in any way and relied on fast food for quick, easy meals. I became a closet eater, as I describe it; I would stop by any fast-food chain on my way home and order copious amounts of food, eat in my car, and proceed to eat another meal when I got home. These habits went on from 2014 through late 2017 and caused me to gain huge amounts of weight.
My turning point came in November of 2017, when my mom scheduled an appointment for me with her endocrinologist.
I remember feeling so anxious at the doctor that day, but my mother was concerned and I knew the appointment was well-intentioned. I weighed 320 pounds, which was more than I’d ever weighed. I cried when my blood pressure was being taken because of how high it was.
When I met my doctor for the first time, I also remember being impressed with how non-judgmental she was in regards to my weight. Doctors have always shamed me about being overweight, and I’d never felt welcome in a doctor’s office until that day.
She asked about my eating habits and lifestyle and also told me that she had recently lost some weight using WW (formerly known as Weight Watchers). All she said was, “think about it!” That night I signed up for WW and immediately began the next morning, on November 29, 2017.
I have had huge success using WW Freestyle.
The plan allows me to eat the foods that I love while teaching me to eat clean, whole foods. It’s all about balance—I love that.
My meals change daily. I’m not a meal prepper and become bored if I eat the same things all week long. But I strive to have one fruit or veggie, plus a protein, plus a carb with each meal.
Here’s what I typically eat in a day now.
- Breakfast: I always eat eggs in some form. Lately I’ve been loving eggs, Al Fresco chicken breakfast sausage, and Laughing Cow cheese, wrapped in a low-carb wrap (I prefer Joseph’s Lavash or Cutdacarb wraps). On the side? An apple or some pineapple.
- Lunch: I’m currently obsessed with making a Teriyaki chicken bowl, made with chicken breast and G Hughes sugar-free Teriyaki marinade. I mix in spiraled carrots,diced zucchini, and white rice.
- Dinner: Lately I’ve been having shredded chicken with sugar-free BBQ sauce (I like to make my own) and broccoli with cheese sauce and mini potatoes.
- Dessert: This is not an optional category for me—I *love* dessert. I often reach for Eat Me guilt-free high-protein brownies or Enlightened ice cream bars.
In the middle of my journey in June 2018, I began exercising.
At first, I wasn’t incorporating any exercise and was only making dietary changes, and I lost about 90 pounds. But in March 2019, I hit a plateau with my weight loss.
I ended up quitting WW (but only temporarily) and began counting calories. I did a bunch of research and calculating to land on an appropriate caloric deficit for my gender, height, weight, age, and activity level—and I tried several different deficits. But over a period of about four months, I saw no success with calorie counting.
So in late July of 2019, I rejoined WW. Since then, I’ve re-evaluated what and how much I’m eating and have found a happy balance of exercise and actively working at forming healthy habits that I can stick to long term. I feel like I’m back on track, and I have lost 109 pounds total thus far.
The biggest lessons I’ve learned all have to do with maintaining a healthy relationship with food mentally.
To start, never restrict yourself from any food. Restricting often leads to bingeing. I eat a balanced diet and I’m successful because I make things that I love and enjoy everything in moderate amounts.
If you’re not eating what you love, you won’t be able to maintain your weight and live your new life as a lifestyle, as opposed to a fad diet. I actively look for ways to create some of my favorite less nutritious meals in healthier ways without compromising the taste. Plus, it keeps things fun and interesting.
I also have to remind myself not to feel guilt if I get off track. We are in charge of ourfeelings and how we respond to our actions. So now I choose to never feel guilt over food. Why? Because it’s *just* food, and I am alwaysonly one meal away from hitting the reset button. Take your day one meal at a time, and remember that you always have a fresh start tomorrow. One bad meal does not equal one entire bad day.
Before I began my weight loss journey, I wish I knew how much more of a mental journey it is rather than physical.
I wish I knew that I wouldn’t necessarily lose weight consistently each week. It is a never ending rollercoaster ride, but it’s so worthwhile and rewarding.
I want other women to know that a number on a scale won’t make you love yourself or make you happy. You have to discover happiness in your own skin, at all parts of your journey. You can’t just expect to arrive at some goal weight and love yourself now that you’re smaller.
Always respect your body. Find ways to show love to even the parts of your body that are not your favorite- it will help your confidence soar. Start by wearing a cute outfit or fixing your hair/makeup. Do anything that will help you feel comfortable in your own skin. Confidence doesn’t come from weight loss. Confidence starts in your heart and mind. I worked diligently to love and respect myself at all parts of my journey, and it has paid off! I’m happier in my own skin than I could’ve ever imagined.
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