Wednesday, April 23, 2008

How I Lost One Hundred Pounds the Right Way

Weight loss equals self-gain! There is so much to cover but I will just jump in with both feet..(The right way means SLOWLY, this did not happen overnight)
Why was I overweight? I believe that this is the first step for everyone..We need to ask ourselves why do we have all this extra weight? Are we stress eating? Are we bored? Are we covering emotional pain? We first need to get to the bottom of that question before we start the journey of weight loss or we won't have or sustain success..I personally had many issues including losing a house and a business while pregnant and having gestational diabetes..I was at the point where I did not care what I was putting in my mouth I was building a fleshy pillow between me and the world at my own expense..Let me say also, that I do love food, I love to cook and to eat and the Food Network is my favorite channel..Having said that, there are healthy ways to cook and consume exciting foods without going overboard..I had built up more than two hundred and twenty something pounds on my five foot four inch frame and it was really paining me..I got to the point where I was ready to face my issues, decompress, let go and cut back..BABY STEPS is the way to start this process..I began walking everyday, I could not walk far but I started and if the weather was bad I walked in the mall or a super Target, I was committed..I stopped drinking soda altogether and believe me that alone was HUGE for me, I really loved my soda! Before I cut it out entirely I just started gradually drinking less..Slowly, I began cutting out other unhealthy food choices and adding in healthier foods..I kept my eye on my goal, I had a specific weight in mind, I had a photograph of a woman's body that I really wanted to have and I was not deterred..Gazelle-like focus (like Dave Ramsey would say about finances, but that is a whole other blog post! and clearly I needed his advice!) Anyway, I slowly replaced my fried foods, sugar and white flour products with fruits, vegetables, yogurt, lean meats and so on....I once heard that sugar was the devil! and that must make white flour his best friend! Now, don't run because you think I'm a radical, I assure you that now that I have reached my goal I still have my sweet treats, just in moderation and not as an entire meal! :-) My theory about eating everyday is to eat like a King at breakfast, a Prince at lunch and a Pauper at dinner..Some of the specific foods I eat or that I have replaced are as follows: I don't eat regular bread anymore I eat Ezekiel Bread, it is sprouted grain and not made with flour, I substitute Splenda for sugar or Stevia for sugar and I make gallon pitchers of decaf green tea with Splenda and fresh squeezed lemons so that I have something somewhat healthy (green tea is full of antioxidants) and still sweet to fill me up and I drink it throughout the day..When I do have a crave for soda, I keep some Diet Coke with splenda in the fridge so that I can have something cold, somewhat sweet, and bubbly..I eat a lot of chicken and I bake it in the oven in a variety of ways to bring flavor to the table..I never read the labels of foods for fat content but I did pay attention to carb and sugar grams because this is what winds up "sticking to ya"! I also started substituting protein shakes for a meal, usually dinner, depending upon my schedule and my day..I buy Smoothie King Gladiator Vanilla protein powder which is a combination of whey and egg proteins..One serving (two scoops of powder) gives forty-five grams of protein, and many times I just use one scoop with a half cup of milk (I only drank skim milk, always organic!) some pineapple chunks with its juice, some fresh squeezed oranges (usually one or two), flaxseed oil, a little extra virgin organic coconut oil, a spoon full of royal jelly (a bee product suspended in honey, gives you energy and promotes acetylcholine in the brain along with lowering cholesterol and a host of other beneficial qualities) about a cup of ice and blend away, truly tasted delicious kind of like a pina colada and sometimes I throw in some frozen strawberries..The key to everything is to tailor the specific ingredients to your taste..But whole foods and not processed, organic milks, eggs, and meats if you can afford it and snack on fruits, nuts, vegies, and cheeses..For my sweet treat I love Stacy's Pita Chips in the sugar and cinnamon flavor or Hershey's dark chocolate nuggets with almonds..We do need something to feel like we have something to fulfill that sweet tooth..I started slow, gave myself cheat days on either Saturday or Sunday or rearanged if there was a party or special occasion..Eventually, after I started seeing my results I became less interested in the cheat days and more focused on seing more results..I kept walking, eating right, taking a good vitamin (important!), drinking lots of water and then I added in a yoga ball and a thigh master into my mix..This way I could do some stretching and work out in my living room (and no I don't love exercise but it is a necessary evil!!)..You can use the ball to do situps, stretches, push-ups and create your own routine..Many of the balls come with a DVD with some routines and you just use what works for you.. Another tip is that I never ate out, brown bag lunches and brown bag snacks so that you always have your own foods.. If you must eat out, order so you know exactly what you are eating like a ceasar salad with grilled chicken breast, light dressing and you don't need to be militant with yourself..If you cheat, be forgiving of yourself..It is a process not perfection! Once you reach your goal weight, celebrate and gradually add things slowly and with moderation..YOU CAN DO IT!!!! My process and journey of weight loss took me around twelve months and I am feeling awesome and weighing in the one twenties! YOU CAN DO IT!!!

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