Slow & Steady Wins the Race
I've been successfully chipping away at my weight over the past three years. I'm a 61 year old woman, 5'7" tall, and my top weight was 230. When I was 20 I weighed 140 and thought I was fat. By "successful" dieting, and always gaining back more than I lost, I gradually gained 90 pounds over 38 years to reach my top weight of 230. That's pretty sneaky at less than 2 & 1/2 pounds gained per year.
Over 30-40 years of struggling, I have found that when I "go on a diet" I feel deprived and then I rebel by bingeing. I also find that if I lose too quickly I get too many compliments and get too excited about the changes and somehow that backfires on me too. The last time I lost 20 pounds at the rate of 2 pounds/week on an official diet I was able to catch myself and reverse the backfire when I had only gained 10 back. That was two years ago, and solidly confirmed my belief that drastic restriction is NOT the way to do it.
So my own solution is to DO IT VERY SLOWLY. If I only lose 10 pounds a year, that's 50 pounds in 5 years! I make small goals of 10 or 20 pounds at a time. I do it by concentrating on healthy eating: real food, eating lots of fruits & veggies and plenty of water seems to automatically minimize the rest. Then I spend several months working on MAINTAINING the new weight. We all know how to lose it, but few of us know how to maintain the loss. Staying within a new 3-lb range for anywhere from three to six months means real change. After staying between 191-194 for about 6 months I suddenly jumped up to 197 and realized I'd slipped and needed to concentrate on it again.
My current goal is to lose 12 pounds in 13 weeks (from 197 to 185), and it's okay with me if it takes 26 weeks as long as the trend is in the right direction. It's been one week and today I'm back to 193, but I never believe the scales till they say the same thing 3-4 days in a row, and the first week always goes faster than the rest. FitDay shows me my calorie balance, and as long as I burn more than I take in each day I'm doing well. I do not have a list of taboo foods, just a policy of moderation and making choices.
As well as healthy eating, I'm working on being more active. I got a pedometer and found I was only going 800-1000 steps in a normal day. My current goal is to average 5,000 steps/day over a week's time. I'd like to reach that goal in six weeks. This first week I averaged 3,000 steps, so I'm headed in the right direction.
FitDay has helped me find balance in what I eat. A couple of years ago it was very difficult for me to get my percentage of fat calories below 50%. I've now come back to FitDay after being away for probably a year, and my fat calories are now 30-35% without really thinking about it much. That's real change.