When people start a “DIET” they always start the wrong way! First off it is usually a fast decision after a week of binge eating or learning that your pants have gone up two sizes. You are upset and start freaking out and VOW to start your “DIET” that minute! AND YOU DO! BUT you do it the WRONG WAY! FIRST off never let yourself get two sizes up as soon as your pants start getting snug don’t grab a larger pair of jeans go ahead right then and lose the little weight you have gained! That is why I say to never keep larger than what you wear clothes around. IF you do accidentally gain the weight look at my list below and this will help you start a LIFESTYLE not a “DIET”. DIET’s eventually END and LIFESTYLES DON’T!! Diets equal yo-yo weight gain/loss problems! Lifestyles don’t!
- Make a goal or set a reason of why you want to lose weight. Do you want to live a long healthy life for your kids? Do you want to teach your kids how to be healthy so they don’t have the risk of being overweight? Do you have a reunion coming up? Do you want to walk/run a 5k, 10k, half marathon? Do you want to be able to run around with your grand-kids or walk the a flight of stairs without being out of breath? What do you want to lose weight for??? These goals or reasons are important because this is what will get you through the hard times when you want to quit! When it gets hard you have something to focus on, a reason to do this!! When you start trying to give excuses of why you can’t exercise, etc… you can think about these reasons and tell those excuses to bug off!
- Let everyone know what you are doing! Get everybody in on it! When a person states out loud to others what they are doing they are more likely to actually do it because people are waiting and watching to see if it gets done! It is not embarrassing to tell people you are losing weight and trying to be healthy, its exciting! You are embarking on a new life!!! So tell your family/friends/coworkers what you are doing and get them involved! Getting people on board with you helps you not stray from your goal! These people can help when times get rough by encouraging you, eat healthy with you, exercise with you, and just be there for support.
- Changing your lifestyle takes commitment. Clean out your fridge, freezer, and pantry! Really read the labels on food and see if it is truly healthy or not! Stock your kitchen with healthier options so you are not in a rush and just pick up a doughnut to eat on your way out the door! Find someone who knows a lot about healthier foods and so forth and use them as a guide if you have to until you can learn what is good and what is bad! The longer you do it, the easier it gets!! You start to learn what good options are and how to estimate calories (of course they have nutrition stuff on everything these days so you can just type it in and it pops up) it just becomes your way of life and it gets easy!
- Only check the scale every 2-3 weeks!!! Sometimes that scale will not budge!!! AND IT’S OKAY!!! You may be changing in other ways like less body fat percentage! You may be in a smaller clothes size or have lost 1/2 inch of your belly..those are the things to focus on!! Sometimes (A LOT) of times the scale can be discouraging! I don’t even own one!! If I want to look I just use the scale at the gym so I can’t do it everyday! Plus it just pisses me off when I don’t see a difference or if I am bloating and it says I weigh a pound more! I go by the fit of my clothes!
- Stop the negativity! IT WILL HAPPEN!! It may not happen when you want it to happen or happen as fast as you want it to but it will happen if you are eating healthy/clean and exercising! Change your minds negativity about being healthy. A lot of us think negative when it comes to eat healthier food and exercise! WHY? Your body eventually becomes use to it and in a routine of what you are doing. If you can go a whole month eating healthy and exercising (heck even just aim for 2 weeks if 1 month is to big of a commitment) you would start to be in that routine and notice how you don’t feel as good when you don’t exercise. You will notice that some foods aren’t as bad as you thought, you actually may start to love those fruits and veggies you so-called despised!
- Cut the excuses we all have them! ALL sorts of ones we can make up! Kids, Weather, Tired, Time, Money – the list goes on! Be ready to fight when those excuses start trying to make their way in! Have something for every excuse! KNOW okay kids have play practice so I have to workout at 5:00 am or I have to go at 8 pm. It is too cold to run, oh wait I have my gym membership or DVD’s at home! I don’t have time to eat anything healthy I will just grab from Wendy’s really quick, you should always be prepared and pack snacks in your purse that are healthy and if you don’t get on your phone and start looking up nutrition where you are eating so that you can make a “healthier” choice! Take the top bun off etc!!! I don’t always limit myself, I just make changes. I ate a Wendy’s burger last night with un-sweet tea. NO mayo and I took the top bun off – sometimes even no cheese! I might have 2 chicken tenders but I know they are around 100 or a little more a piece at sonic.
- I try to stay around 1,500 calories or under! Depending on my exercise!! If I burned 700 to 1,000 calories in my workout I can’t expect to eat 1000 calories the entire day and do that hard-core of a workout without good nutrition. If I am only burning 200 calories for my workout that day I may stick to 1,300 calories! NEVER go under 1,000 calories!!! HELL, I have the hardest time staying at 1,500 I don’t know how in the world people can only do 1,000 calories a day or under.
- A food journal! Write down everything that goes in your mouth!! EVEN a bite! DRINKS too, we forget about that latte, whiskey and coke, sweet tea) A lot of times we don’t realize how much we are eating and how many calories we actually eat everyday!!! The food journal makes us aware and helps us to count our calories. People bitch about counting calories, but I don’t know why! Sure it took my a year or so to actually learn calories in my head. I hardly EVER look up calories anymore…WHY? Because it is burned in my head! I know the savory chicken sandwich at back yard burger is around 280 calories..I know an egg is around 70 calories…I just got so use to it that it is in my head. I can estimate how much something is going to be. I don’t have to do my food journal anymore because I can add up in my head really quick and I pay attention to what I eat all the time now. I did do the food journal for over a year and counted calories and so now its just a part of my life. (thanks mom for making my future life easier) I do try to eat more proteins and veggies than carbs! That doesn’t mean I don’t eat carbs!! I do eat my wheat bread, sweet potatoes, etc…I just watch my intake on them and I usually try not to eat after 2:00 pm or so but HEY some night I do have a carb with dinner, but it’s okay – not stressing over it!!
- FINALLY – ONCE you reach your goal! Whatever the goal is..to lose 5 pounds or 60, to walk a 5k, to run a half marathon ..whatever it is DON’T STOP once you are done!!! KEEP GOING! Instead of walking the 5k, try to walk/run your next 5k. Instead of losing the 25 pounds and then immediately stop exercising and eating like your old ways again keep up your exercise and healthy eating. You may reach your goal but that doesn’t mean your goals can’t change and be different along the way! My goal was to be healthy, I am! My goal was to get back in my size 8’s, I did! My goal was to run a 5k, I did. Then a 10k, I did. Then a half marathon, I did. Now my goal is a triathlon, I WILL!!! Don’t reach your goal and just stop!! Keep striving to be better!!!
THIS is a LIFESTYLE!!! NOT A DIET! DIET’S END and LIFESTYLES DON’T!!!! Diets mean weird things like eating only cabbage and drinking just grapefruit…popping pills….Really change and be the person you want to be!! WITH HARDWORK AND DEDICATION YOU CAN AND WILL DO THIS! JUST HAVE THE STRENGTH TO START AND KEEP GOING PAST THAT GOAL YOU SET!!!