Like a lot of people, I’ve struggled with weight loss and body positivity for most of my 28 years of life. Fortunately for me, I stopped hating my body in my early to mid 20’s when I was on my first health journey and lost somewhere around 30 lbs. Though I didn’t keep the weight off the self-love and body positivity I learned did stick around. But that doesn’t mean I was happy with the way my body looked at times.
I’ve probably lost and gained – and lost and gained and lost and gained – somewhere around 50 lbs in the last few years. Mostly gained in the last year or so since getting my first desk job as a graphic designer.
So when I stepped on the scale the week before my 28th birthday back in February (2018) I almost cried. I was at my highest weight ever at 240.6 lbs. A good 20 lbs heavier than I was when I did my first weight loss journey back in 2013 where I lost 30 lbs but it took almost a year to do so.
I was devastated.
More than anything I was disappointed in myself. I’d been watching my weight creep higher for months and had convinced myself that I had it under control. Walking 1 mile a week (or less) was being active. That I was doing everything I could to lose weight. I thought I was eating pretty healthy and walking enough. I’d already cut out fast food for lunch every day and was eating lunch at home. I’d already stopped buying donuts and pop tarts for breakfast. So why wasn’t I losing weight? Why was I still watching the number on the scale go up, slower but still going?
Seeing that number on the scale I knew things had to change. I had to stop fooling myself into thinking my lifestyle was healthy or that I needed a bunch of expensive things to lose weight like gym memberships or pills.
I wish I could say I started dieting and exercising immediately after seeing 240 lbs on the scale. That something just clicked and everything was so easy. That I found some magical secret formula that just melted the fat off in just a couple of weeks (wouldn’t that be fantastic?!)
But I didn’t so I won’t. In fact, there is nothing new or secret about how I lost 30 lbs in four months. I simply followed some simple rules to lose weight and become a healthier person. And I’m going to share them with you here today!
As I said, there is nothing new or secret about how I lost 30 lbs in four months. I stayed determined and I worked hard. Everyone knows how to lose weight; Eat healthily and be active. That is the very basic how-to for weight loss. And those are both things I’ll cover in later posts! Unfortunately even this simple equation doesn’t work for everyone! People with underlining medical issues, injuries that prevent activities, and even just normal aging can make losing weight so much harder for a lot of people. Don’t be discouraged if just simply eating healthy and exercising doesn’t work as easily for you as it does for others. Speak with your doctor about what your options are to make weight loss easier for you! That could be special diets or even medications to help your body function at its best.
Today I want to cover some different simple rules.
- Start Your Weight Loss Now
- Forming Good Habits
- Tracking Food and Exercise
- Write Down Your Weight Loss Goals
- Find What Motivates You
I wish I had started my weight loss journey when I first noticed my weight getting out of control again about a year ago. I’d been hanging around the low 200s for a while and was ok with being there for the most part when I only had about 40 lbs to lose. But instead, I fooled myself into thinking I had everything under control. Until I was finally at the point where I had a total of 70 lbs to lose! I would be a lot closer to my goal if I had just started sooner. I, like a lot of people, kept telling myself that I was going to start….on Monday…or on the 1st…or when I could afford a gym membership (I still can’t)…. the point is I kept making excuses when it came to starting.
When I did start it was on a Friday, March 2nd, and I kept it simple.
The next Monday I walked another mile after work. And again on Tuesday. Over the next week or so I developed a routine and got up to walking 2 miles. I decided I wanted to walk at least 4 miles a day so I started to use my hour-long lunch break to walk too. After a couple of weeks, a wanted to up my daily miles to 6, so I started getting up a little earlier to walk before work too. By the end of March, I walked a total of 72 miles. In April I walked 120 miles for the month! Since March I’ve been walking almost every weekday between 4 – 6 miles a day. Do you know how? I made walking a habit! This leads us to our next simple rule.
Supposedly it takes twenty-one days to form a habit.
I don’t know if that is true, I’m sure everyone is different, but I do know that good habits are a powerful tool for success. And that is for any area in your life! Not just weight loss.
I developed a few habits to help me in my weight loss journey and to help me keep going so I can reach my goal. Walking daily, food prepping, tracking food intake, and 30-day exercise challenges are just a few habits I’ve adopted over the last few months.
Being healthy doesn’t have to be hard! When you have habits in place to help you succeed it makes weight loss so much easier.
Tracking your calorie intake and your exercises are a great way to stay accountable during your weight loss journey. You can either write everything down or use apps as I do. I’ve made a post about my favorite apps that help with my journey here if you’d like to check that out!
Food diary apps are so much simpler than they were a few years ago the first time I used one. You can even scan the barcode on food items for easier tracking! I love knowing how many calories are in something And I always track everything before I eat it in case there are too many for that meal and I can adjust.
Tracking my calorie intake has been a huge help for weight loss. It takes a lot of the guesswork out of my day when I know exactly how many calories I’m eating! Even better I also track my walks so I know how many calories I’m actively burning and will calculate my net intake for the day. There are so many ways to track your calories, weight loss, workouts, and much more! I absolutely love how easy technology has made weight loss!
Having goals is great! And I’ve always believed that writing your goals down makes them more tangible. When you write down your goals it gives you a solid point to say “Yes! This is working! All my hard work is paying off!” And that is one of the best feelings when you can cross a goal off of your list.
I personally like to have both long-term and short-term goals. Not only for my weight loss journey but for life in general. Some of my short-term goals are things like walkings 4-6 miles every day that week or completing a 30-day challenge -squats are my favorite!- My biggest weight loss goal was originally 70 lbs. Now it is 40 lbs. I like to break it up into 10lb goals so that I can celebrate every time I hit one of my mini goals!
It might sound crazy, but my biggest source of motivation – other than my amazingly supportive boyfriend!- is Pinterest. Since my hands are free during my walks, I take that time to get some things done. I check my bank account, my stocks, check on bills, my credit score, I mess around with my blog, and countless other things.
…Ok, actually I spend a few minutes adulting then I jump on over to Pinterest and spend the majority of my forty-minute walk pinning health and fitness pins. I love searching for new exercises, 30-day challenges, healthy food ideas, and more. My favorite motivation is before and after weight loss photos! I guess seeing other people’s success gives me the determination to succeed myself. They give me so much motivation! I think to myself “If they can do it, so can I!”
These are just a few of the simple rules I follow for weight loss. I hope these can be helpful in your weight loss journey too!
Do you have any rules you follow for your weight loss journey?
Please leave your comments and share!