Sunday, January 2, 2011

Ready, Set, GO!!

HAPPY NEW YEAR! It's been a couple of months since I've posted, so here's a quick update: I'm down 65 pounds and surpassed my goal of being below 200 by Christmas. I am VERY excited about that.

Since most of you probably made New Year's resolutions, here are mine:

Lose the remaining 55 lbs by May 12
Streamline my blog
Continue to become a better me

Now, for the REAL point of this post. I've received a plethora of emails, texts, phone calls, and DMs, all from friends asking, "How did you do it?" And, since SO many people make it their New Year's resolution to lose weight, I thought I would reiterate a few things that have helped me along the way.

First, I will make this VERY clear... YOU have to WANT to lose weight and be healthy. There is no one else that can make this decision except for you. You have to do it for you, and not for anyone else. That's how I started, and that's how I've continued. I made the decision to do it, and as I saw the changes, I've been too excited to stop!

TIP 1: I began this journey by purchasing a scale. The first weigh-in was a tear jerker, mostly because I knew that I had a long road to travel. Don't look at the overall weight loss goal. Make smaller goals inside of the larger ones. If you need to lose 50 lbs, make a goal of 2 lbs a week.

TIP 2: Next, I looked at my expensive, pocket-sized computer known as an iPhone, and decided to put it to use. The apps I downloaded were Lose It!, Fitness Pro, and iTreadmill. Each of these apps does something different, but the one used most often was and still is Lose It!. It tracks calorie intake, calories burned, and provides a graph that tracks your weight. Utilize the technology that you have, you won't regret it. 

TIP 3: For me, I completely eliminated all things tempting from my diet. I know that I have the tendency to over-indulge in my favorite things. I'm not a sweets lover, but a carbs lover. I love pasta, bread, and cheese. So, I eliminated them, unless I found a healthy version. I also measured every morsel that entered the Black Hole attached to my face. Over time, I have re-introduced those things, because I have a better understanding of portion control. Which, leads me to the next tip.

TIP 4: PAY ATTENTION TO NUTRITION LABELS!!!!! I can't stress this enough. Packages of Ramen Noodles? Yeah, they're TWO servings, not one. If you eat the whole package, you're actually consuming 380 cals, not 190. Also, that's 1600mg of sodium. WHOA!!!! If you're not going to count calories, I would highly recommend measuring your food. You will be surprised how much you're actually eating.

TIP 5: Exercise. Period. I don't care if you walk to the mailbox and back 10 times, if you really want to burn fat, you have to get up and MOVE. I have access to a gym, but if you don't, there are SO many at home options to choose from. And, yes, there are going to be plenty of days you'll whine because you don't want to go.

TIP 6: Advertise what you're doing. I announced it to everyone, no matter how ridiculous I felt. I posted it on Facebook and Twitter. I told coworkers, friends, family, and even strangers. When people know what you're up to, they can help hold you accountable, which you'll need. Trust me. My Facebook peeps have yelled at me electronically on more that one occasion to get my butt up and out the door. It works!

TIP 7: Don't obsess over the numbers on the scale. This one is hard, but important. Nothing is more frustrating than working your butt off all week, only to see no difference in the numbers. That is why you should not depend solely on the scale, but take your measurements as well. Keep a journal, and write them down.

TIP 8: If you do find that your weight has plateaued (and it probably will), then it's time to fool your body. Our body's don't like change. If you do the same workout for weeks without any changes, your body will begin to maintain. The same applies to your diet. If you eat more on Monday, then eat a little less on Tuesday.

TIP 9: Do what works for you. I did my homework when I started, because I wanted to know what actually worked. I didn't believe in the miracle pills, because I tried them in the past. Evaluate the amount of time you have to devote to exercise, even if you have to break it up into 20 minute workouts 3 times a day, it's what works for YOU.

TIP 10: Water. I don't need to preach on this one. You know what you're supposed to do, now do it!! Also, your body uses more energy (calories) when it has to digest ice cold water. So, bottoms up!!

I want to thank each of you for all of the support and encouragement you've provided thus far. I know I wouldn't be this light physically, mentally, or emotionally, without you. I'm excited for 2011 and everything it has to offer. If at any point during your journey you have questions about something I've done, please ask! If you want to follow me on Twitter, I'm fitbound11. Good luck, and Happy New Year!

Ready, Set, GO!