I’ll admit it: I’m a total diet cliché.
I’ve been on some diet or another for as long as I can remember. I’d start on a Monday and severely limit calories or convince myself I’d only eat frozen 200-calorie dinners for the rest of my life. I’d lose some weight and gain it back.
Gain. Lose. Gain. Lose. Over and over.
Everything changed two years ago. I’ve been considered overweight or obese most of my life, but I let myself go to a point where I was hovering dangerously close to morbidly obese. I didn’t recognize the person I saw in the mirror, though I hardly ever let myself look in the mirror.
So, I took action. However, I knew I couldn’t go for another crash diet; I had to make a lifestyle change that included proper nutrition and plenty of exercise. It hasn’t been easy, but I’ve managed to lose 45 lbs. so far on my “not a diet” diet.
Tracking All Calories
I can’t even tell you how many hours I’ve spent reading nutrition websites and books to learn about proper nutrition. This research has taught me that calories aren’t the enemy, but I do need to watch them closely.
I use MyFitnessPal to track my daily food intake. I generally try to stay within 1,800-2,000 calories a day, depending on how much I exercise that day. Of those calories, I try to make 40 percent carbohydrates, 30 percent fat and 30 percent protein.
Plenty of water, vitamins and sleep are essential to my success, too.
Plenty of Exercise
All of those fitspiration photos on Pinterest might claim that “abs are made in the kitchen,” but exercise – and in particular, strength training – has made all of the difference in my life.
I’ve never struck with a fitness routine longer than a few weeks, so I knew I needed to find something that would keep my interest and push me. I finally found what I was looking for in Reformer Pilates. I was always interested in Pilates, mostly because celebrities swear by it.
I took my first class and was hooked. I’ve been practicing four times a week for two years and I’m making weekly improvements with my strength, balance and athletic ability.
I think paying $25 a class has its own motivating effects, too. I don’t want to waste the money I spend, so I’m always in class.
I also mix in HIIT training 2-4 times a week.
Recognizing My Own Shortcomings
These two years haven’t been perfect and I’m still quite a way from my goal. However, I’ve learned that one bad day, week or month doesn’t mean I’ve failed. I just keep pushing toward my goals.
And no, I might not have lost 45 pounds in two months, but I know I’m finally going to keep this weight off for good.