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KU2013 SparkPoints: (3,683)
Fitness Minutes: (1,162)
Posts: 50
4/3/13 2:07 P

Thanks for sharing some terrific information! I love using the trackers on SP! I have type 2 diabetes and I really need to plan my meals. I plan healthy meals with what we have in the house and I like to plan exactly what I will eat for the day so I know what my calorie intake will be. I am a stay at home mom with a 2 1/2 year old boy and a 6 month old little girl. I am also attending school part time, 2 classes this semester. I am busy so planning ahead really helps! Thanks for the encouragement! emoticon

ICEDEMETER Posts: 1,332
4/3/13 12:39 P

Yay for you in making a lifestyle change! I can't say what will work best for you, but I can tell you what has been working for me:

First, I found that tracking everything that enters my mouth is incredibly useful. Before I made any changes at all, I tracked for a couple of weeks just to see what I was eating, where I fell in the macronutrient ranges, and where I fell on a couple of micronutrients that were really important to me.

Then, I set up the program for a weight-loss of 1/2 pound per week, which gave me a calorie range and exercise level that I was comfortable with as a minor change. I'm one of those people who can do a major change for only a couple of days before getting unhappy, feeling deprived, and then tossing the whole idea. This let me make only a few minor tweaks in portion sizes and food changes (switched to yogurt from ice cream, for example) while still hitting my range. I bought a food scale and a good set of measuring cups and spoons, and made sure that I was accurately setting my portions. I started this at the beginning of the year, and was averaging around 1950 calories per day in (and losing weight).

As I got comfortable with this, I started looking at adding some different elements to my meals. I'd pick a new vegetable and buy just enough for one or two meals. As an example, I went and bought a few brussels sprouts. One day, I steamed a few (not even a full serving) and tried them with dinner. I found them ok alone, but really enjoyed them with a little bit of veggie dip on them. A couple of days later, I tossed a few more in olive oil and garlic and threw them in the oven to roast while I had some chicken breasts in. I found out that I REALLY liked them that way. By only buying a few, trying them as an "extra" instead of the basis of a meal, and trying them cooked in different ways I didn't feel like I had wasted anything in trying them (and didn't end up hungry because I hated them and they were supposed to be a main part of my meal).

By gradually adding more and more vegetables, my meals started changing without me really working at it. Since I was adding things that I enjoyed, cooked in ways that I enjoyed, I have never felt any sense of deprivation or resentment about a "diet". As my meals changed, my calorie intake has gradually fallen along with it. My daily intake now averages around 1550 per day, I'm full, and thoroughly enjoying what I'm eating. I have no issues with going out for an occasional meal, or splurging on calories on the odd day, and I'm still losing weight. This range allows for a loss of 1-1/2 to 2 lbs per week at this point. Since this is about the right calorie range for maintaining at my final goal weight, I am very happy to find that this is a level of eating and exercising that I will be comfortable doing for the rest of my life.

How I've approached things is not a way to quick weight loss (I'm down around 23 pounds so far --- 27 according to my original scale but I changed scales part way), so I'm thinking it might take me a year or two to get where I want to be. I'm perfectly ok with that, as enjoying my food and having a fun and active lifestyle is more important to me than the number on the scale.

This may not be how you want to approach it, but I would still highly recommend that you use the nutrition and fitness trackers to make sure that you are eating enough (too few calories is just as bad or worse than too many), and that you are getting the nutrition that you need to thrive.

Good luck, and remember to enjoy the journey!

KU2013 SparkPoints: (3,683)
Fitness Minutes: (1,162)
Posts: 50
4/3/13 2:09 A

One thing that I have realized since starting emoticon my Sparkpeople journey is how important writing down everything that I eat is! Before logging my food I ate a crap load of food! My portions were way more than I should have been eating. It isn't easy cutting my calories so drastically but, I am determined to lose weight and become the healthy me that I know I am supposed to be! I just take it one day at a time!

LUNAMEOWER SparkPoints: (1,840)
Fitness Minutes: (469)
Posts: 60
4/2/13 10:43 P

These are all major steps and it's great that you are making this commitment, just remember, though, that sometimes baby steps are easier to follow through with than giant leaps. In my case I try to make my weight loss goals in smaller quantities, 60 pounds is a pretty big one that might seem like it's taking forever to get to, but fifteen pounds is much closer on the horizon and telling yourself that you will buy a new pair of jeans or do something that's not food based that you enjoy to celebrate might help you reach that goal. Keep on trucking and see what's best for you.

P.S. Sorry for run-on sentences.

4/2/13 10:40 P

Congrats on the 3 pounds! It sounds like you are doing great! I can't really give you advice on fruits and veggies (there will be others who are more knowledgeable though :) ) considering I am HORRIBLE at getting mine in, although I am trying!

My only advice is to make sure that you have a varied diet; eating the same stuff all the time can get boring but it does sound like you are on the right track. If you find that you are getting headaches from cutting out the soda (I would get them HORRIBLE when I tried to cut soda out), then I suggest having some soda every day (considering the previous coke consumption) or every other day until the headaches are gone. I know that wasn't a question, but just in case it arises.

JAMIE5485 SparkPoints: (30)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 5
4/2/13 9:41 P

Hello everyone. I am just starting this new way of eating and want to know if I am doing it right.

First a little background on myself. I am 27 years old, work full time and have a son, and started out monday morning weighing 264 pounds. My first goal is to get under 200 pounds. Prior to monday I could easily drink a 2 liter of coke in a day and ate whatever, whenever. That included candy, fast food and all junk food. I decided to quit drinking soda and eating all of that junk food and bought a lot of fruit, some veggies, tuna in water and lean ground turkey. Monday I ate a few strawberries, an apple, an orange, baby carrots, a few sliced cucumbers and a handful of grapes throughout the day. Lunch was a lean cuisine and dinner was a spring mix and spinach salad with half a chicken breast and light dressing. I also drank one cup of coffee with sugar free creamer and lots of water. Today I ate and drank about the same. For exercise I just walked 30 minutes after work. I have lost 3 pounds so far.

I was just wondering if this sounds like a good plan. Am I eating too much fruit or not enough of something? I am new to veggies and don't know of many that I like.

Sorry this was so long but I do appreciate any imput. Thank you in advance!

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