Posted by april on April 23, 2009
Okay, all of you shredders (you ARE still shredding, aren’t you?) and work out peeps, listen up! You have the exercising part down pat now, but do you have the nutrition part figured out?
When someone says to me, “oh, you can’t have this cupcake because you’re on a DIET,” or “what diet are you on,” I truly want to poke my eye out. Also, now that I’ve lost a lot of weight, I hear a lot of, “how’d you do it?” And then the person is anxiously awaiting my magic pill answer on how to lose weight. This situation makes me want to puke.
I am not on a diet. I have tried those. They don’t work. Instead, I have chosen to have good nutrition.
Nutrition is half the battle in the war of weight loss. Working out is fabulous, and we all know I love a good work out, but good nutrition can really accelerate your weight loss. When I first began “eating to fuel my body for working out” instead of “working out so I could eat what I want“, I chose to count calories. (All of you Weight Watchers? It‘s basically calorie counting and good nutrition made simple. So, good onya.) I set my calories at 1200. I could go this low because I knew that my body had over 50 lbs to lose and wouldn’t feel like it was starving. I know 1200 calories doesn’t sound like a lot of food, but I found ways to make it a lot of food for me.
First, I ate a ton of veggies. Especially the green ones. These are free foods because it takes more calories to burn them off than it does to actually eat them. Then, I cut out all white breads, pastas, and other processed foods and replaced them with whole grain foods. Your body basically processes white breads and pastas like sugar, so this can slow down your weight loss. The last thing I did was to occasionally treat myself. If I wanted a cookie, I ate A cookie. If I wanted a beer, I made sure I stuck with with light beer, but I drank A beer. Then, I either adjusted my calories or planned to work out extra to make up for it. Giving yourself occasional treats will keep you from going insane; you just don’t make those treats the norm! For me, following these simple tricks plus being extremely meticulous about how many calories I was eating, and the weight literally melted off.
Until, I got to the last 23 lbs. I stopped losing weight and couldn‘t figure out why. I was still working out, and I was eating healthy foods, so what the hell? After researching a little more, I found that I actually needed to eat more calories. This was hard to accept because I was so used to eating 1200 calories and well, it’s been beaten into our heads that in order to lose weight, we need to eat less.
While that is true, when you get to the point where you don’t have as much weight to lose, and especially if you’re working out, you have to eat more because your body doesn’t have the extra fat to use as energy. So, the solution for me was up my calories to 1500(it‘s all trial and error). Weight loss now is slower than before, but I’m still losing, so I’m just fine with it!
And I am not on a diet.
So my advice? Choose good nutrition over a diet! Then, load up on your veggies, throw out the white breads and pastas (seriously, throw them out! Now!), replace them with whole grains, and treat yourself every once and a while! Then remember, good nutrition + regular exercise = successful weight loss. I promise.