Denise at Got Chai? asked me to write up a How I did it post. I laughed out loud when I read her email! It just seemed odd to me to have somebody asking what I did to lose weight. But I did lose 17 pounds and I have changed my attitude about food, so I guess I have something to share. lol
I started the Challenge knowing that I couldn't restrict my food because I was anorexic in high school. Restricting my food has always led me down the 'stop eating to lose weight' road and I know that that is not the road God wants me walking down. I have tried diets that require weighing food and cutting out certain food groups and they all had the same results. I stopped eating all together.
Not this time. I knew that something would have to be different with my eating but also my attitude. I decided that I wouldn't make a No List, but have a limit on How Much. I also decided to view food as a means to an end. The end being energy to live and to take care of my family. The ultimate end being my health.
With that in mind, I approached each meal with the thought of only eating what I needed for fuel, listening to my body for signs that it was full. I ate a lot less than I thought I needed and had always eaten. My serving sizes went down drastically. I also upped my water intake to around 72 oz a day. That helped my body be able to get rid of extra water weight and helped control my eating. I felt fuller therefore I didn't gorge at meal times.
Sleep was another biggie for me. I am a night owl by nature but when I would stay up late, I noticed that the next day I would snack a ton more. My body was craving energy from rest and I was trying to get it from mindless eating. When I went to bed at a decent hour and slept for more than 6-7 hours a night, I didn't crave the fattening and sugary snacks as much.
Exercise was also a big part of it. I know, I know no one wants to hear that. I would so love for the weight to fall off without me having to get up off the couch and move; but it won't! I started with doing 30-45 minutes a day, five days a week with the Wii and would sometimes take a 2 mile walk around our neighborhood. I do not like waking up early in the morning but when I do I actually feel better. Honest! It also helped to get the kids involved and working out with me. I worked harder if they were watching! lol The key was to move my body. Dance around while cleaning, walk up the stairs extra slowly and squeeze muscles while doing it, park farther away and walk, stop sitting around watching t.v. or playing on the computer. Ouch! That one really hurt. Not just one thing, but all of them adding up together are giving me the results I want.
The biggest change for me was my attitude. I stopped looking at myself and thinking/saying negative things and started getting realistic. I admitted to being overweight and seeing the things I needed to work on. I would think the negative, "I am so fat" and instead would say, "I am overweight, but I am working on it." I stopped focusing on the bulges and bumps and focused on the effort and changes I was making. I accepted me the way I was and then made changes based on the results I wanted. It's an every minute kind of thing!
I have a long way to go but the change in my attitude towards food is a lasting and permanent thing. I do not need it to make me feel better or to cheer me up. I need it for fuel.
I hope that made some kind of sense! lol I have some pictures but I'm not sure they really show the changes I'm feeling. The first picture where I'm in blue I was wearing my fat pants! You can't see them but I know I was wearing them. The second picture was taken this morning after I was able to fit into a pair of jeans that I hadn't been able to before. AND they were even baggy around the waist and butt! It's not a great pic but I had to have a pic in those jeans. lol