Weight loss is something you usually hear about around the new year usually in reference to a resolution...probably because it comes right after the culmination of the Thanksgiving and Christmas season and everyone just ate twice their weight in not-so-healthy-but-oh-so-yummy food and you need to resolve to lose the 10 lbs you gained over the last month and a half. There is another big push nearer to the end of spring when you realize you will probably have to wear a swimsuit sometime in the next few months and you don't really want to have to buy one that's bigger let alone be seen in one at all. Well, it's not January and it's not April, but I have a few things to share about my journey so far.
I decided to try this weight loss thing on my own this time. I've successfully done WeightWatchers in the past (I lost 35 lbs after my first child was born), but I didn't really want to spend the money to keep myself accountable. I didn't really know how the points thing translated, but it seemed like it could be something I could do. I found out that what I really needed to worry about was the amount of calories I put into my body every day. Yeah, pretty basic, huh? But counting calories can be work! I started out getting an app for my phone that could count calories and give me an estimate of how many I could take in and how they should be divided up (fruits, veggies, protiens, etc). You know the drill. I've tried several and they all work very similarly. You add the item you ate, the amount of it that you ate, and it pops out a number. Simple, right? I used it for less than a week. I just got tired of entering it into the database. It frustrated me. That's when I developed my actual plan. The one that has been working for me.
It's not very difficult, really. I just decided that I would eat a variation on the same things every day so that my calories were predictable. Sounds boring, doesn't it? Yeah, I thought so too. You see, I like food. I like food a lot. I don't think that I could eat the same bland food day in and day out for the rest of my life...because face it, we're not talking about a diet we're talking about a lifestyle change. If I am going to have a healthy body, then I need to feed it what it needs (not what I emotionally want) every day for the rest of my life. I needed a plan I could live with...literally. So, I have several options for breakfast that are fast and easy...Usually Great Grains Crunchy Pecan cereal with light vanilla soy milk (yes, you have to measure it out - portion control!) or Hungry Girl's western omelette in a mug (egg beaters, chopped peppers and onions, deli ham, and cheese). I can portion control most cereals this way, so it's easy to change up if I want to and egg beaters mixed with all this stuff taste pretty good. My lunch tends to be some variation on a sandwich with lots of veggies and fruit. I really like the St Joseph's pitas that are 60 calories each and half of a laughing cow light cheese wedge used as a spread instead of mayo. Then you can add chicken or almost fat free deli meat along with tomatoes and lettuce or spinach or whatever! Have some carrots, sugar snap peas, and a fruit and you are golden. Yum. Oh, and you can dip the veggies in the other half of the cheese! Then (and here's the best part), I get to have whatever I want for dinner. Okay, so 'whatever I want' with portion control. And there are many recipes that already have the calorie count figured for you...just follow the directions. CookingLight.com is awesome!
That's it. Well, not quite. I have also added excercise to my routine. Yeah, I didn't know if I could actually do this. I have three little ones and I didn't know how I was going to find the time! However, I ended up joining the YMCA and I am able to put the kids in childwatch while I work out. That has been awesome! I aim for three times a week. I usually hit that.
Oh, I didn't really do this all on my own either. I don't have any one person keeping me accountable, but I have many who have either gone before me and give me inspiration or are walking alongside of me in their own weightloss goals. My Mother-in-Law and little sister have been especially inspiring and encouraging as I walk through this journey as well as the book Made to Crave by Lysa Terkhurst.
I'm writing about this today because I have recently reached my halfway goal and have now made it into the next tens-digit down! I am less that 5 lbs away from my wedding weight of 9 1/2 years ago! I am thrilled about this (obviously) and I wanted to share. I have less than 20 lbs to go before I reach the goal I think I want to stay at. However, it's taken me 7 months to lose 22 lbs this way. I could have been more strict with my calorie count, but I just didn't want to...besides, slow and steady wins the race.