I Needed to Lose a Few Pounds

– “I can do everything through him who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:13, NIV

Y’all, weight loss is a topic I never thought I’d be writing about. But I have had some great success over the last month, and I believe in sharing anything that might be helpful to others. If you have health issues, you may want to ask your doctor. This may not work for you, but it has worked for me.

First of all, those who know me well know I’ve never had a real weight problem. But I have slowly put on 3 pounds here, and 5 pounds there (free Disney dining at Disney World … may have been free, but it’s costing me now! Grin!) … and well, I have a real hard time losing even three pounds (or I always have in the past).

Nitty gritty: counting calories is everything. I am eating a 1,000 – 1,200 calorie a day diet, and I am taking a daily brisk 20 minute walk around my neighborhood (but not on Saturdays or Sundays). Y’all, in one month, I have lost 9 pounds and am almost at my “normal” weight. I know that doesn’t sound like much … but like I said, losing weight has always been difficult for me. Luckily, I never gained it too quickly. But, age is taking a toll.

I am choosing healthier options, but the good thing with this plan is that you really can eat what you want, as long as you stay under your calorie limit. This is what I’ve been eating …

Take a multivitamin

Breakfast: 110 cal Yoplait yogurt and 1/4 cup honey nut Cheerios

Mid morning snack 100 calories

Lunch: 1/2 can chicken noodle soup and 25-50 small pretzel sticks, sugar free jello (try to keep lunch at 200 calories) * my favorite lunch lately has been 1/2 sandwich (1 slice of bread or 1/2 med sized sub bread with chicken sandwich meat), 25 pretzel sticks, sugar free jello, and 50 calories of cookies!

afternoon snack of 100 calories

Supper: you have 500 calories here or more. Easy to stick to that. (healthy meal)

Evening snack under 100 calories * I have actually been skipping this lately, and I am dropping weight a little faster than before; the last few weeks,  it was taking a week to lose 1 lb., but this last week I dropped 2 lbs in a week after I stopped the evening snack.

You can vary this any way you need to … just stick to the calorie count. If you need to eat items with less sodium, do that.

I have been snacking on popcorn (1/3 of a bag), sugar free popsicles (15 calories), and sugar free jello. And I never drink sodas with sugar. I stick to water, unsweet tea, or diet soda.

And when I started out a month ago, I tried my best to eat things that I knew the definite calorie count. If you need to know calorie count, acaloriecounter.com has been very helpful for me (especially where fruits, vegetables are concerned, etc.).

And stick to it. When you see the pounds dropping off, you will be encouraged as I was. I have been keeping a chart to record my weight daily. My scale shows your weight down to the ounce. There are days when I remain the same, but give it a day or two, and it drops another two ounces.

And here is the thing that I love the most … this is a way to eat for life. Light. Those Starbucks, blizzards, basket of chips & salsa, etc. were pushing me over my calorie needs, and that had to stop!

I will say that when I first started the only time I was really hungry was at night (and it did hurt) … especially if I’d had caffeine and couldn’t sleep well. So limit caffeine at night, and you’ll sleep thru the hunger! But I also know that if I’m a little hungry at night, more than likely I will be a little lighter on the scale in the morning.

And the other thing that I love … I don’t have to exercise myself ragged. A 20 minute daily brisk walk is working for me. Of course, the more exercise, I’m sure the quicker the weight would come off. But I am not a huge exercise fan (I’d rather eat less than exercise more … just being honest here).

Other positives: I feel like I’m eating all day long (more than I was, just choosing differently), and there are no costs for meals, joining groups, etc.

And for those times when you have to eat at McDonalds … a kid’s 4-piece chicken nugget meal with tiny fries and apples is only 300 calories (so skip your 100 morning or afternoon snack that day and have 1/3 bag of popcorn instead!). My recent meal from Chili’s lasted me three meals!

Anyway, just wanted to share this. Hope this might be helpful to someone! The more you adjust to the plan, you won’t have to count the calories as much … you will just know.

And disclaimer … I am not a health professional, nutritionist, etc … this is just what is working for me. And when I reach my goal, I’ll be able to add more calories to my diet to maintain my weight … yahoo!

And if you think I’m bizarre, well, you might be correct! But I’m 9 pounds lighter from just one month ago! My favorite blue jean shorts fit me loosely again! Yea!

Love, Shelli

ps. And if the next time you see me I’m heavier, you’ll know I stopped counting calories! So, your prayers won’t be wasted on me!

(and obviously, if you are a man reading this, you need more calories!)

Update: At the start of week 7, I am down 12 pounds! (4/30/2012)

Update 5/25/12: I have not lost anymore. I think I have hit bottom unless I start working out more. I’m okay with this weight and hope I can maintain it.

And one more thing … I have found a website, Loseit.com … it really helps you keep track of your calorie intake and is very encouraging to me.

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