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CHESAPEAKE60 SparkPoints: (7,814)
Fitness Minutes: (12,922)
Posts: 448
2/28/13 9:54 A

The biggest thing for me was experimenting with new recipes to find foods that I truly love that are healthy for me. I don't want to have to take 2 bites of something and then stop because it is sooo high in calories or unhealthy fat or whatever. And I don't need 2 platefuls of bland, boring food that doesn't satisfy my taste buds.

So I work hard to keep my diet varied and interesting. I use sites like this for ideas and recipes I have not yet tried that look good to me.

Long term I think this is the only way to success. You HAVE to enjoy what you are eating.....

ALGEBRAGIRL Posts: 1,925
2/28/13 9:07 A

More fiber and watch the calories.

JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (81,972)
Fitness Minutes: (86,286)
Posts: 2,489
2/27/13 5:09 P

I stayed in the Spark calorie range. Started eating healthier and more balanced. Fresh, whole foods; lots of veggies, fruit. I started cooking from scratch. Was able to eat *more* food. Limited junk food and not so healthy choices to special occassions or in moderation. I do calorie cycling.

Started exercising. Fitness videos and weight training 6-7 days a week for an hour plus.

I've changed sooooo much in the past year, I'm a whole different person than when I started this journey. Not only physically but I am tons more active (outside of exercise), have way more energy and strength. I'm far more busy. I spend lots of time in my kitchen, the food I eat is more satisfying and tasty and I'm much more happy. This is the way I plan on living for the rest of my life. I could never go back to the way I lived before.

No tricks. Just changed my behaviour in regards to food/exercise/activity. You just have to burn more than you consume.

Edited by: JENNILACEY at: 2/27/2013 (17:15)
ZELDA13 SparkPoints: (80,464)
Fitness Minutes: (26,270)
Posts: 3,536
2/27/13 4:42 P

I don't really use tricks, but I will once in a while adopt parts of plans that interest me just to change it up. I might do a week keeping sugar grams under 15 grams. I might do low carb for a week. I don't know that it helps anything except it keeps it interesting. I think a well balanced meal plan is the best way to go and the easiest lifestyle to continue.

BEANBYDESIGN SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (36,402)
Posts: 1,021
2/27/13 4:37 P

I don't use "tricks." I eat real, unprocessed food, in portions that fit into my calorie allowance, every 3-4 hours. When I want something "bad," I balance it out with something good (I'll have a giant salad and then one piece of thin-crust wheat veggie pizza, instead of 2 or 3 slices of extra cheese from Domino's, for example).

Tricks don't work because they're not realistic - it's absurd to think you're never going to eat a piece of bread, or a bowl of ice cream, or a piece of chocolate, or a potato chip ever again. It's absurd to think you're never going to eat after 7pm or whatever "rule" you make up for yourself ever again. You're going to eat after 7. You're going to eat things that are less than perfectly healthy. The way to prepare yourself for those moments is by building a balanced lifestyle, not by trying to force yourself to adhere to some arbitrary, random diet rules. If you practice moderation all the time, you won't go spinning off into crisis mode at the first moment when your "rules" are disrupted or your usual "tricks" are unavailable to you, and you'll be able to handle situations that are less than optimal without packing on the pounds.

YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,981)
Fitness Minutes: (120)
Posts: 2,171
2/27/13 3:18 P

Here's my list, in order of importance, for me.

1. Planning. I plan my meals as much as I can a week in advance, especially for weekdays. I create my meal plan, build my recipes, all a week in advance. Then as soon as I can, I enter everything into the tracker. This way, if I see I'm over for a day, or under for a day, I can change the plan without having to do it on the fly that day. Also, it takes the thought out of it. In the mornings when I'm leaving for work, I already know what to put in my lunch bag without having to think about it, and I don't have to sit and wonder all day what I'm going to make for dinner, it's already planned out for me. These days, I try to leave an extra 100-200 calories each day, that is for an after dinner snack and is for whatever I feel like snacking on. Monday night it was a bowl of froot loops last night it was an english muffin with a bit of butter and cinnamon and sugar. Without planning, left to my own devices, I would have had way too many impulse meals and snacks, and I don't think I would have seen the progress I did without having the plan in place.

2. Cooking at Home. There's no WAY I could have done this if I didn't cook the majority of my meals at home. Before, when I was fat, I knew how to cook, and actually enjoyed it when I did it, but I was lazy and often opted to just eat out. Now, eating out is a treat. I used Pinterest to find a lot of great recipes and other sites with healthy cooking recipes on them. I try new recipes all the time. Since May of last year, I have made over 125 new recipes, and most of them have been fantastic, and taught me that eating out at a restaurant was not necessary to have delicious, satisfying food. I also managed to find ways to lighten up things I liked to eat before.

3. Getting enough protein and fiber. I have found that these two things are the keys to helping me feel full. This week, I didn't plan out as well, and my protein is only around 80-85 per day, and I've noticed I've been hungrier. On weeks where I get 100 or more, I feel full and satisfied all day long. While I don't do a low carb diet, I've also found when I go over 200 grams I tend to be hungrier, usually because those 200 grams are taking up calories that should be spent on protein and fiber.

4. Working the things I like into my plan, even if not healthy. I love sweets. I could eat a whole sleeve of oreos no problem. But to keep me from doing that, I work other sweets into my plan that provide more nutrients. Like, I mentioned froot loops above. They're pretty much all sugar (sugar is the first ingredient on the ingredient list), but they also have 3 grams of fiber for 1 cup. So, I use that as a good snack for me when I just want something sweet. Same for fiber granola bars... they satisfy my sweets/chocolate cravings, but also provide a lot of fiber. I also still have my one Diet Coke per day, in the mornings. I don't like coffee or tea, and I personally have found that the flavor of Diet coke helps w/ the sweets cravings. Your mileage may vary as some people have found that diet sodas make cravings worse. I even do Diet Cherry 7-up in the evenings sometimes with the same results.

5. Figuring out an eating schedule that works for me. Throughout most of my journey, I ate very little breakfast. In fact, my "breakfast" was just a 120 calorie fiber granola bar, with some snacks a few hours later before lunch. Even now I have a 250 calorie breakfast between 9 and 10 and don't eat lunch until 1-2. I also ate dinner late, after 8pm. So, pretty much breaking all the "rules" about when you should eat. But this worked out well for me. I found if I ate a bigger breakfast, I was more hungry throughout the day. Again, not everyone has these results.

6. Every now and then, just letting go. Over Christmas, we visited SO's family for a week. They are not healthy eaters. So, for that week, instead of stressing and agonizing and not enjoying myself, I just ate what they ate. I ate cookies, fried foods, everything. And you know what? I didn't gain anything...I felt like total crap and I think my digestive system wanted to kill me, but I didn't gain anything. I didn't lose, but I didn't gain. I got back on track after New Years, but those two weeks were a huge eye opener for me, sometimes you just have to enjoy life and what comes along with it.

KRISTEN_SAYS SparkPoints: (82,009)
Fitness Minutes: (48,676)
Posts: 5,092
2/27/13 2:50 P

No specific diet for me, just continuously improving my diet over time and counting calories. It worked because I never deprived myself, I didn't go for a crazy quick fix to drop weight quickly and I knew how much I was eating. It took a long time but I've learned so much. Even though I reached my goal, I'm still making improvements to my diet and challenging myself with different workout routines.

THENEWROSE Posts: 1,410
2/27/13 2:50 P

Bringing healthy snacks to work to eat during the day.

TONKA14 Posts: 4,947
2/27/13 2:30 P

Here is some information that might provide some helpful ideas.

An Obesity Expert Tells Us What Really Works with Weight Loss

Habits of Fit People series

Weight Loss Success Stories

Coach Tanya

LUCKYNUMBER23 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (15,322)
Posts: 449
2/27/13 1:10 P

When you have lost weight, what did you do to lose it? Some people use low-carb diets or they don't eat after a certain time.I'm looking for tricks to continue my journey.

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