Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Weight Loss Tips #2: Gaining Momentum

Gaining Momentum
So many times in life, I have started something and given up before I've accomplished it or, sometimes, even before I've made any progress at all.  The important thing about losing weight is sticking with your goals and making the decision to make a lifestyle change.  Losing weight should NEVER be a result of a temporary diet.  It should only be the result of a lifestyle change.  That way, once the weight is gone, if you keep up the habits you began when you lost the weight it will never return.  Half the battle is starting out though.
The one thing that helped me the most when I started out was tracking my calories.  There are various ways to do this.  Some people like to join a paid program, and indeed there are some great weight loss programs, like Weight Watchers out there that help you track your food and lose weight.  If you're going to pay for a program, then I definitely recommend Weight Watchers, because it works.  I lost fifty pounds on it, previously, then forgot all the techniques I learned when I had kids and started eating my life away.  However, if you stick with it, it could work for you to help you change your lifestyle and maintain that change.
I, personally, use a free app that can accessed on your phone or your computer called MyFitnessPal.  I love it for several different reasons, but NUMBER ONE: It's free!  You can input different foods, and it basically calculates the calories for you.  You input how much weight you want to lose per week, and it tells you how many calories to eat.  It also allows you to enter your exercise, and gives you the extra calories for the exercise (I'll get back to that point in a bit). 
A few other good free programs are: Livestrong, SparkPeople, and Calorie Count
Here are a few pointers for tracking your food:
  • Input all the food you eat during the day.  Even if your calories are not exact, seeing what you're eating will help you reduce the amount of calories you're eating.  I basically went from unknowingly eating 5000 calories a day to eating 1300 calories a day.

  • MyFitnessPal allows you to put notes on your page.  If you had a particularly bad day eating, then you can describe what happened, e.g., sat in front of the television and ate a whole bag of chips.  This helps you identify how you're feeling when you are overeating. In that example, obviously it was boredom or mindlessness that led to overeating. 

  • When you're starting out track your water intake too.  A lot of people overeat, because they are thirsty.  They have forgotten how thirst feels, because they never drink enough water.  When you begin drinking more water it often eliminates the hungry feeling and helps you stick to your calories. 

  • Adding exercise to your day will allot you more calories to consume.  DO NOT EAT ALL YOUR EXERCISE CALORIES.  MyFitnessPal says you can, but honestly, if you don't eat all of the exercise calories you'll lose weight and get in shape more quickly.

  • Don't get discouraged if you can't make your calorie goal right away.  This is a lifestyle change, so it will take time!



  1. I can't eat all of my exercise calories?!?!? Why should I exercise???? ;) (idea for blog 3?)

  2. So funny Mike!  No!  Don't eat all your exercise calories.  I'll address in Blog 3...lol...


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