I am driven by logic. I chose to use the Spark Nutrition and Fitness trackers as the cornerstone of my 2011 weight loss plan, and loved having lots of numbers to target, crunch, and analyze. I set goals based on the projections I could view, and things sort of fell into place. Sort of. In hindsight, I realize that early on, I came to understand that part of my success came from math, while the other part involved "magic." Not necessarily good magic either.
I don't have a fairy godmother..or a friend from Hogwarts. Nobody waved a wand at me to zap my fat. The "magic" I refer to is the often frustrating LACK OF LOGIC that comes with long-term weight loss. What I have found is that when I relied totally on math, the scale didn't always move.
Math-based reality: Follow the advice of my SP trackers. Note the calorie differential. See loss of pound each time the negative differential sum is 3500 calories. HA HA HA! How many times does THAT happen?
Magic-based reality: Follow the advice of my SP trackers. Note the calorie differential. Note how the calorie differential seems to have no bearing on the scale. Sometimes a pound is "lost" with a 2000 negative calorie differential, and other times it disappears with a 7000 negative calorie differential.
So, what have I learned about ME and this magic? It's not always logical, but:
1) I've lost weight when I eaten around 1400 calories a day, regardless of where that number falls in my tracker range.
2) I've used the Spark-suggested protein/fat/carb ratios successfully, BUT, if I went over in fat - even if my calories were well within my tracker range - I maintained or even gained weight.
3) If I wanted the scale to move, I couldn't eat too many calories at one sitting, even if my daily total was within range. My body doesn't mind if I eat all day - even late at night - as long as I only eat mini-meals.
4) I do best if I track the three main nutrients PLUS my sodium, calcium, fiber, and saturated fat, and keep them all in check.
None of these four things are necessarily supported by "the math," but they were the truths for my own journey. If I ignored them, and just said, "I'm doing everything right, but I'm not losing weight," then I wasn't being honest with myself. They were the non-quantifiable aspects of my Spark program - my "magic." I had to learn them by trial and error, over the past eleven months, and adapt and adjust accordingly. So I read and learned, paying attention to the experiences and blogs of Spark friends. But I knew that at the end of the day, I needed to do the things that worked for me.