Check out my “Fat History” Page to find out about my journey!
Don’t yo-you diet or try fads. It’s a simple equation to lose weight:
DIET + EXERCISE.
After my “revelation” to get healthy, I decided to count my calories for one day. I made no changes to my eating habits and just wrote down everything I ate. I looked up the calories online and wrote it all down. I was absolutely shocked at what I was putting into my mouth. I had no concept of serving sizes. I was probably eating 3 servings of food instead of 1 serving. I made poor choices for snacks. I ate too many sweets. I decided to limit my calories to 2000 a day.
This began my calorie counting. It was hard at first. I realized that trying to eat under 2000 calories was difficult to do, and it really wasn’t that much food. I tried to eat fruits and vegetables as my snacks, and eat healthy foods for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner. I found myself reading every label and deciding if I wanted to eat those calories. It was all about sacrificing and substituting.
My weaknesses are sugar (ice cream, cookies, cheesecake) and pizza. I decided to completely cut out pizza from my diet. I knew I could not just have 1 slice and a salad for dinner. If there was pizza in my house, I would eat the entire pizza without any regard to health or fitness. As for the sugar, I started substituting the yummy treats I was obsessed with for lower calorie alternatives: frozen yogurt, Snackwell’s cookies that were about 50 calories each, Rice Krispie Treats for 90 calories. Those were my desserts.
The other part of this equation is EXERCISE. I started swimming at the local pool. I swam a few times a week. I wasn’t a fast swimmer when I first started. I did about 20-30 minutes a few times a week. I swam one length of the pool, rested, then swam back. I had to rest A LOT. But that was okay. It’s all about building up stamina.
I got better at swimming–then the time came when I was able to swim half a mile without stopping! I was so happy and proud! More landmarks arrived: I swam an entire mile without stopping! I ran a 5k! Nothing was going to stop me!
YOU MUST CHANGE YOUR ENTIRE LIFESTYLE
I know that everyone (including me) wishes there was an easy way to lose the weight. There is no magic answer, no magic pill, no secret diet. Yo-yo dieting will do more harm than good. YOU MUST CHANGE YOUR ENTIRE LIFESTYLE. Eating healthy and exercising HAS to be a change and commitment you are willing to make for the REST OF YOUR LIFE. Even if you reach “goal weight,” you have to keep doing the work to stay where you are at. Reaching goal weight is not a pass to go back to eating poorly and being lazy. I know, not what we want to hear, right?
You will be amazed at how your body changes. Keep at it!
Losing weight was easy in the beginning. It took me just under 2 years to lose 100 pounds (and then I kept going to lose another 10). Two years of hard work. As I got closer to my goal weight, the harder it was to continue losing. My body was fighting the loss; my body was also turning into muscle. The changes I made are going to stay with me for the rest of my life.
Anyone can do what I did.
My Food Philosophy
I currently strive to eat 1590 calories a day. On days I exercise, I can burn an average of 500 calories, so I will eat more calories than the 1590. Some days, especially on long bike rides, I can burn over 2,000 calories. On days that I have an intense workout, I have to eat more calories to fuel my body. This is crucial to have a healthy body. Starvation does not work!
I am not a doctor or dietitian. The way to achieve optimal health, in my opinion, is to not deny yourself anything but to eat foods you love in moderation. Find “skinny” alternatives. For example, if I’m craving Mexican food, I’ll make a lighter version of things I love: quesadillas and enchiladas with light cheese, light sour cream, lean meats, lots of veggies. Eat smart and exercise!
Questions? Send me an email at email@example.com.