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Teresa Krause

Teresa Krause
Lost 100 Pounds!

Before: 250 lbs.
After: 150 lbs.
Lost: 100 lbs.

My name is Teresa Krause, and my Clubhouse name is LvYrSLf. I have been a member since November 2005, but I have used Richard`s programs on and off for 13 years, since I had my second child.


Before

After

I would like to introduce myself. I was born on July 23, weighing 2 pounds, 2 ounces. I am 35 years old, married 16 years to Jim, and I have 3 wonderful children - Brittany, age 15; Frankie, age 13; and Johnny, age 12. My husband and I met at St. Mary`s Catholic Church in Centralia, and we still go there to this day.

My dream job was to work with preschool kids. I am a Teacher`s Assistant at Lewis County Head Start, working with low-income families and their children, and I love every minute of it! My hobbies are scrapbooking, exercising, cross stitching, spending time with my family and friends, and going to church. I also love to be on the computer and be in the Clubhouse, where I get so much support and love!

My top weight was 250 pounds on January 9, 2004. On this day, I weigh 150 pounds! I have lost 100 pounds and 98.75 inches in two and a half years! I want to lose 15 more.

I was never a heavy child, but it took one comment from an old boyfriend to start my negative thoughts about myself. Before I lost weight, I depended on others for my self-esteem. I never had a lot of self-esteem, even when I was younger.

Years went on as I had kids and started on my depression and anxiety, with even more negative thoughts. The thoughts became so bad, I put myself in danger by trying to commit suicide twice. I thought over and over that I was worthless and that no one loved me.

I was so depressed that I slept for 6 months and only got up to eat and go to the bathroom. That was so painful that I would just go to bed and sleep some more. I had lost a job because of my weight, and I gained the last 50 pounds while I just slept.

When we went to Wal-Mart, I would argue with my kids about who would push the cart. I had to, because I had to have the support for my back. Even walking from the closest parking spot to the entrance, I had to stop because my legs and back hurt so bad. I could not use the restroom in Wal-Mart, and I could barely use my own. I had to have help cleaning myself.

I could not tie my shoes. One day, my son, who always tied my shoes, came home with a coupon book for Mother`s Day, and he said on one, "Tie Your Shoes." That morning, I had had to tie my own shoes. It took tears and sweat just to tie my shoes! I couldn't get my foot even close to my knee to reach my foot.

I could not do any of my housework. My husband and kids did that. One job I had, I lost because I could not clean or get up and down on the floor with the kids. I would get winded just picking up the toys.

I had a hard time with my husband. I would go to bed early, when he wasn't tired, so he wouldn't be close to me. When we were in the dark, I would cry, because I was so heavy I couldn`t breathe. I didn`t tell him that until recently.

I didn`t go to a lot of the kids` activities because I didn`t want to embarrass them. I secluded myself and came up with excuses why I couldn`t go anywhere. The only reasons I went out were to go to church, to go to appointments, and to go through drive-thru's - I knew the exact change. I waited for my husband to go to work, then went there. That was all I would think of. I even dreamed about food!

When we went to Utah to visit relatives, we went hiking. Well, I remember I had to stay at the bottom for 3 hours waiting in the hot sun while everyone else went hiking. I couldn`t walk even a few steps up a hill! It hurt to stand, sit, lay down… in whatever position I was in.

It was doing a number with my bipolar. Not only did I have to deal with the mental with the extra weight, but with bipolar, it was doubled, even tripled many times. I was numb to the world around me. I couldn`t - well, I didn`t - live at that time.

I also was falling asleep driving, almost getting in accidents. I was afraid to go to work and afraid to come home. I then found out I had sleep apnea. I stopped breathing 45 times an hour!

My turning point was when my son, Frankie, made me a coupon book, and it said he would tie my shoes. He always did, except one time when they left for school, I was to do it myself. I cried and sweated for 10 minutes trying to tie my shoes. At that moment, I told myself, "No, he is not going to tie my shoes for the rest of my life!"

The process has been very hard. Being I have bipolar, it was even harder. At first, I couldn`t even do 5 minutes of a video. I thought, "How am I supposed to do this? I can`t even finish 5 minutes, not to mention finishing the first week!" The eating was even harder. I always would give those puppy dog eyes (still do!) to my hubby to get fast food. That`s why my cholesterol was over 300. The doctor kept trying to get me to stop the fast food and exercise to lose weight, but fast food was my life, my blood. It was in my dreams. Now my cholesterol is 117, and I have not had to take meds for it! My bipolar meds have been decreased, and I don`t have to use my sleep apnea machine!

As I started to get myself on an exercise schedule, I started cutting back on portions first, then making better choices, consciously! I was stopping and realizing what I was putting in my body. This was hard because my husband loves Hamburger Helper, and he can eat Doritos - the whole bag! - and drink pop all day, and he doesn`t even look like he ate it! Even to this day, when we watch a movie, I am biting my nails or eating whatever everybody else is - pop, candy, chips, ice cream. I was to the point where even 1 bite of a Big Mac made me sick.

As I continued, I had weak moments. I still do! It gets easier, but when it hits, it hits hard! I realized that I don`t only want to lose weight, but this process needs to continue for my bipolar to stay stable. If I don`t exercise, I not only feel it physically, but my mental wellness starts to slip. I feel numb and irritable, my thoughts creep in, and the downward spiral continues. If I exercise and eat candy or even French fries or something of an unhealthy nature, I still go into a spiral. If I exercise and eat healthy, but have negative thoughts, I spiral again. I also need 8 hours of sleep every night. I need to tell myself how great I have done, tell myself that I am worth it, and compliment myself. I need to take meds on time every day, eat healthy and love myself. If I continue to do all those things, I will continue to bloom!

Lately my hard time is in the evening with family, eating junk and eating late at night, but I start over the next day with a clean slate! I need to be conscious again, in a conscious state to be successful. My husband says, "Have you exercised yet today?" or "Did you take your meds?" because he can tell when I am not "well" or starting to go down. Sometimes it seems like he`s nagging, but he just loves me and wants me to be happy and stable. It all goes together!

Since I have lost weight, not only am I happier, but there are lots of things that have changed! I am not quite at my goal weight of 135. I have 15 more pounds left, and they are stubborn. They don`t want to leave! I get depressed and feel like a failure, so I cheat myself out of healthy foods so my kids can have things they need. I feel like I am selfish when I take care of myself sometimes - there are those negative thoughts! Without the love and support of friends, family, God, the Clubhouse, and Richard - my angel on earth - I wouldn`t have done it!

Life has been so different! My eyes are open to life, open to love my family and life! I love myself and live in the moment. I can walk to the end of the road and walk 2 miles. I can walk into Wal-Mart with my head held high because I don`t need a cart! I can go to the bathroom in 2 seconds! I can take bubble baths! Two summers ago, my son Johnny hugged me and screamed, "Mom, I can touch my hands." Now he can touch his elbows! Brittany has been my cheerleader.

My husband dared me to run from the layaway bathroom to the other bathroom at Wal-Mart. Now he is 5'11", all legs, and I am 5'3". Well, besides almost running into two ladies - I did apologize - I beat him! I yelled, "Ha, ha, I beat you!" I had everyone looking at me. I was shaking my hips, too. Well, I didn`t care if everyone saw me! This was a great accomplishment, going from having to push a cart to running through the store! I was elated!

I can cross my legs and tie my shoes in no time at all! I walk with the confidence I never had! That`s the truth. I never had self-worth or confidence. I now speak my mind, laugh, and enjoy every waking moment that God has blessed me with! I have only one chance, and I am not going to "waist" ;-) another minute! Life is too fragile and too short to "waist." I have "waisted" too much of my life. It is time for me to open my eyes to every blessing God has given me and live!

Bless my husband. He said he would love me if I was 500 pounds! He has loved me through a lot of struggles I have had. For that alone, I am truly blessed! Jim, I thank God for you and your love and support through not -only the weight loss journey and the bipolar, but everything in between for these past 17 years. God has blessed our marriage and made our family stronger. Thanks for letting me go with strangers to meet Richard, making one of my dreams come true. I love you with all my heart and thank God for you daily, for you have blessed my life immensely! There is not enough time or words to show you how much you mean to me. You will never know what is truly in my heart because it is too deep for words. I love you!

My goals started out small - lose 5 pounds and then get a treat, exercise and put a sticker on my calendar, look better in a dress (the black one), laugh more, take one day at a time, eat more veggies, play with my kids, not cry when my husband and I were close, tie my shoes, sit crisscross without having to hold myself up, tell myself I am worth it. My goal for my 35th birthday was to meet Richard, to go to his radio show, to take a class at least once, and to thank him for saving my life. My next goal is to get my teeth fixed once I lose all the weight and possibly have my skin removed.

I always wanted to take my family to Disneyland once I was at goal - because I can actually be on my feet all day now and not even get a backache and enjoy the time with my family. But you know from Washington State, it would become expensive for 5 people, so my family can share in my joy of meeting Richard, too.

Based on all my experience, it is very important to love yourself now - if you`re 100 or 500 pounds. You need a lot of support. Without my friends and family, Richard, and the Almighty Father, I couldn`t have done this. Keep a positive attitude and keep going! You can always do better tomorrow than you did today. Remember you only have one body. There won`t be another chance, so take care of it and live each moment to the fullest. Keep your eyes open for your blessings. If you have a mental illness, you can do it! I was down, so far down that I wasn`t in a tunnel with the light at the end; I felt I was buried alive, so far down that I was suffocating. I now have been raised up to a new life I couldn`t even dream about!

Thanks to everyone who has been there for me!

TERESA`S TOP 3 TIPS FOR SUCCESS!

   1. LOVE YOURSELF! Don't depend on others for your love. It needs to come from you!
   2. LAUGH EVERY DAY AT SOMETHING! Joke around, hold your head up high, stay confident!
   3. REMEMBER ALL THE KEY ELEMENTS TO BEING HEALTHY - exercise, portions, self-worth, sleep, living each moment, setting goals along the way, forgiving yourself, and keeping on going!