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Please Read This Blog If You've Gained Weight Back Before

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Monday, September 03, 2012

The first time I lost 60 pounds it took me 9 months to lose it and 3 months to gain it back. I was 16 years old and I doubt if I even maintained my loss for a week.

On December 1, 2008, when I started my current effort to control my weight, I'd lost 30 pounds or more eight times and twice maintained for almost a year. I'd lived over 5 decades overweight. This time my goal was not to lose weight, but to change my life.

Today I claim 180 weeks, almost 3 and a half years, of living life at a weight below what I weighed in 7th grade, a weight I never dreamed I could achieve, 86 pounds gone.

What did I do differently this time? For me, successful maintenance is in a large part due to three factors:

1. Super Foods or Power Foods - I dramatically increased the healthiest foods (see
and decreased dramatically the processed foods I eat.

2. Based on what I read at the National Weight Control Registry, I increased my exercise. I went from 5 half hour sessions per week to a minimum of 6 one hour cardio sessions. And then SparkPeople convinced me to add strength training.

3. And most important, I quit quitting. After years of letting myself get discouraged by the scale and how hard it is to maintain, I recommitted each day to do the best I can, no matter what. Some days the best I can do isn't very good, but if I just keep trying, I get it back and find it is good enough. And my SparkFriends on the At Goal & Maintaining Team,
, understand and support me like no one in my 3D life.

My point is that maintenance is possible, even for someone like me who found it impossible over and over again. Perhaps your keys to successful maintenance will be different than mine. We are all different. But if you keep trying, you can do it.
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