PEERtrainer member: 'explorer'
weight loss and fitness success story
153 - Early March 2007
135 - Mid July 2007
After a lifetime of sugar binges and sometimes other binges, and the resultant weight gain-diet-weight gain cycle, I decided this time would be different. I was sick of dieting and gaining it back. This "diet" would not be a diet, because whatever changes I decided to make would be ones I believed I could do forever. Yes, FOREVER. If the new habit was too hard to keep up forever, then forget it.
First, I spent 3 months focusing one what I *did* want to eat, and not worrying about the rest. I learned to eat 2 fruits/veggies, 1 protein and 1 high-fiber food item every meal, or at least the equivalent of eating that 3 times a day (sometimes it got spread around a little), plus whatever else I wanted. At first it was harder than I thought it would be, but I knew it was a great habit to get into, so I stuck with it until it felt easy. Plus, all the junk food was still allowed, so I couldn't complain too much.
Then, after two weeks of vacation-food binging, I went back to my previous 'definitely eat this' habits, but decided to make one small change every week. Something small enough that it wasn't very hard. Maybe substitute mustard for mayo or sherbet for ice cream. Or choose baked over fried a little more often. Or eat some good dark chocolate instead of pie and ice cream. Eat a handful of nuts before each dinner to curb cravings. Just small things that everybody knows or that I picked up in books or magazines. I also enjoyed very much "French Women Don't Get Fat", which helped with my motivation. Plus, I tried to mentally tie my food choices with the way I'm going to feel in retirement, particularly since heart disease runs in my family. I can't wait to retire and do what I want, and I wasn't going to let bad food choices ruin my health!
I figured this no-trauma tactic would take a long time to show up on the scale, and that was fine with me. I had all the time in the world to tailor an eating lifestyle just for me, that I could enjoy but that would still be good to my body. To my utter amazement, the pounds started coming off and kept coming off. A pound a week on average, but really it was more in fits and starts. My large portion sizes naturally started diminishing as my sugar consumption decreased (imagine that!). I started noticing the effect certain foods had on my energy levels and that helped me make good choices, too. I tried not to worry about the occasional accidental splurge. I'm sure that's not something that will go away in the long term, nor do I want it to. Some things are just worth eating!
Halfway through, I found out about PT from People Magazine, and it was made a big difference. I love the people in my group, and the accountability part of it really works for me. I've been able to avoid a lot of bad choices just because I didn't want to see it staring back in me in my log. I'm going to keep using P.T. for at least several months just to solidify things. Thanks P.T. and thanks group members!