*Disclaimer: I just want to start off by saying that I am not a doctor. This is just my personal experience and what has worked for me. The information I share with you is what I have learned through trial and error and my own research. But of course, if you have any questions about any of this, please make sure to discuss it with your doctor first.*
If you’ve been reading my blog for a while now, then you’ll know that in May of 2018 I decided to start my fitness journey. I wanted to update you guys because I know articles like this can help encourage and motivate others who are on a similar path.
Today is now July 1st of 2018 and I am happy to say that I am still on my fitness journey. This would be my 7th week of working out at the gym and eating portion controlled meals. I am so proud of myself though for really sticking with it this time. It’s funny how you can have so many times that you tell yourself, “This is it. I’m finally going to lose the weight!” But then you just end up quitting. Honestly you guys, I had been saying for about 6 years now that I was going to lose this weight. I would try so many different things that ended up just not working or I didn’t like it so I’d quit. So I find it so crazy that this time around I am sticking with it. I am serious about losing the weight this time and there is nothing that’s going to stop me. I am just that motivated and determined. But I feel like the reason why this way of losing weight is working is because it’s not hard to me or dreadful at all. I don’t feel starved or deprived or anything like that.
For the first month of my weight loss journey I just focused on portion control and it worked, but only during that time. After a while I noticed that my weight had plateaued. I tried to wait it out to see if it’d work itself out. But after 3 weeks of being the same weight, I decided I’d try calorie counting. I just didn’t want to be wasting my time doing something that was no longer working. And I felt like 3 weeks was long enough to wait. So I went online and tried a few different calorie calculators to see how much I should be eating for weight loss. I tried about 3 or 4 different ones. They all tend to give you a different number so I just took the average of all of them. I ended up with about 1600 calories. I think that is the perfect number for me. I still nurse my toddler 4 times a day, I tend to be moderately active, and I workout at the gym 3-4 times a week for an hour each session. I also have a good amount of muscle mass on my body. So all that needs to be taken into consideration when determining your calories. One calculator tried saying that I needed to eat just 1300 calories which I already felt was very low for me but I thought I’d give it a try. When I did, I was very hungry all day, felt light headed, exhausted, and irritable. So I knew that I needed to eat more. The crazy thing too is that before I thought all those symptoms were normal to feel when losing weight. But let me tell you, they’re not! That was a big reason why I never stuck to losing weight before: because I didn’t want to feel like that for months while trying to lose weight. So if you find yourself feeling miserable at all when trying to eat less for weight loss, try increasing your calories by a few hundred, Most likely you’re body just needs to eat a little more.
A really simple tool I’m using for calorie counting that I’m sure you heard of is the “My Fitness Pal” app. It’s free to download and so easy to use. I’m not getting paid or endorsed by them at all. This has just really helped me and I think it”ll help you as well. I have always hated counting calories. HATED! But this app is seriously so quick and easy to use. It even has a bar code scanner so if you have the package of the food you’re eating, you can just scan the bar code with your phone and it’ll upload all the nutrition information for you and then you’re done. If you tend to eat the same meals (like I do. I eat the same breakfast everyday.) you can log all the ingredients for it on your phone and then save it on the app. So next time when you’re eating that meal again, you don’t have to log each and every little thing again, you can just click on the saved “meals” button and it”ll have it all ready to go for you right there. If you’re going to a restaurant, it’ll already have the menu and calories on your phone so you can literally just click on what you ordered instead of having to log it all in yourself. I honestly love this app (especially the bar code feature 🙂 ). So even if you’re someone like me who has tried tracking your calories before but hated it, try giving this app a try. You might just like it 🙂
I also don’t restrict myself when it comes to cravings. If I really want to eat something, I’ll let myself have it. I just make sure to keep it within my calorie intake for the day. I feel it’s best to eat what you want in moderation now, than to restrict and deprive yourself for so long until you can’t take it anymore and you end up binge eating hard. Also, eating in a balanced way like this will help you in sticking to your weight loss plan long term since there are no rules as to what you can and cannot have.
And I just wanted to touch on something that was very hard for me losing weight this time around, since I know other people may be experiencing the same thing. I have lost 40 pounds in the past when I was at my heaviest but back then I was able to drop the weight so quickly. There were times where I’d lose 7 pounds in a week and it wasn’t even like I was trying to. But now I lose 1 pound a week. It was very frustrating at first to see how slow the weight was coming off. Especially since now is the time that I’m working my hardest at the gym and eating less, and yet I’m losing the weight much slower than when I was heavier and wasn’t trying nearly as hard. I had to remind myself though of how my body is going to try and hang onto these vanity pounds so it is going to take longer. I also reminded myself that progress is progress. That has basically been my motto throughout this fitness journey. Even if you are losing the weight so incredibly slow, just be happy that you’re going in the right direction. You’re still losing weight, even if it is slow, and that’s bringing you one step closer to your goal. It’s that mindset that has helped me to keep going even when I become impatient and wish that I could drop the weight faster. Before I would be so upset that my progress was so slow that I would just quit. But how is that helping the situation? At least before you were making progress. If you quit, then you’re not getting any closer to your goals.
To sum this all up for you: track your calories (but don’t go too low), eat what you’d like but just in moderation, and keep in mind that progress is progress. I hope this article has helped you guys. I just really don’t want you to waste your time like me doing all the wrong things when you can just get it right the first time and finally reach your goals. Please give this a “like” if you enjoyed it and comment down below a weight loss hack that has worked for you. We could all use each other’s help.