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Lifestyle Change, or Temporary Diet to loose weight???

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I have been thinking about that very idea today. Sustaining these changes I have made recently over time. I have made some major changes. I know eventually I will back off the number of calories I am burning weekly - right now I am at 5000-7000 per week. I am sick this week, so it may be closer to 2000.

One thought I have had is that I have had to make a huge dietary change. I am now gluten free, and will stay that way for life. I have to.

Other than this huge change, which has brought about wanting and needing to eat more fruits and vegetables, what am I doing differently?

Well, I am tracking. I am keeping my motivation high by sparking. Neither of these are that hard. It only takes minutes out of my day. I can't see why I can not keep it up long term. I may spark less and less, but there is no reason I can't keep tracking my nutrition and exercise.

What else am I doing differently? Actually, not much. This new lifestyle is not much harder than the one I used to have. It is becoming habit for me now.

My new concern is that I fell into that old lifestyle once before. Maybe all I need to do is be vigilant to not fall back there. I can't as far as the dietary concerns are, not if I don't want to spend lots of time in the Emergency room.

I think I may be well on my way to making this a permanent lifestyle change, not just a temporary thing to loose weight.

Take some time today to evaluate your current nutrition and fitness routine. Is it something you are using simply to loose weight? Is it something you can maintain permanently? Is it something you want to maintain? If not, what do you want to change and maintain in order to keep the weight off once you reach your goals?

I would appreciate any feedback to this blog. I am still exploring where I stand on this question. I would like some help to work through it, and who better to ask than those of you who are on this journey with me. Those of you who have lost weight before. Those who have gone off the diet and regained their weight and then more. Please share. It will help.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Lots of people commenting on your blog! Guess its because it's a good one.
    To add my two cents!
    I want this to be a lifestyle change or habit, which every way you want to call it. Because I really enjoy food I must exercise! The good thing is I find I really like exercising and am doing things that I was afraid to before. One day I will run in a race or two. In my twenties I had a goal of running a marathon before I was thirty. Didn't happen. It still could be a goal if I choose. Right now, a race will work!
    I have lost and gained my weight before. How do I expect this to be different? Good question. New attitudes, new habits no food is bad and it's all about choices. For me this process has been very very slow. Twelve pounds in five months. But, they are staying off and not going up.

    3317 days ago
  • -LORI-B
    I would like to think this will turn into a lifestyle, but Im not quite there yet. I do well for a bit and then I fizzle.. Until I get this into a routine and keep it up I cant call it a style, cus this "style" aint working.. I think once I get to loosing some of this weight it will turn into a lifestyle more quickly.
    3318 days ago
    I would say that mine is definitely a lifestyle change.

    For one thing, this isn't something I've paid for, something on someone else's terms. I set all my own limits, goals, and I hold myself accountable. I am thinking about the motivation behind most of my poor choices in the past, and the excuses I made to myself that kept me where I was.

    I've already learned and relearned tons of things along the way. I have never been this successful at being consistent with exercise and diet. I feel incredible. I don't feel punished, deprived, or stifled. I feel abundant, and that is what I want out of life. I have a tremendous amount of variety in my diet and exercise choices. Diets always make me feel like I have NO choice. This makes me feel like I'm in charge. I can't place the blame on "the plan" if I fail, because I wrote it, and so, if the plan was wrong, I was wrong. If I am wrong, I need to do what I can to make it right. The more successful I am with this, the less likely I am to lapse, because I have so much more to lose by not losing, and nothing to gain by gaining.

    3318 days ago
  • FITN2014-TSP
    I am still at the starting gate trying to determine how I am going to make this work. In other words, I still have a lot of changes to make. I am anticipating that I will begin to become stronger over time...I will crave exercise and develop a taste for healthy food. I recognize that I need to view this as a life long journey and not a destination.

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3318 days ago
    For myself ... this is merely part of a larger picture.

    I want to *be well* ... That encompasses too many things.

    I've been different but never truly where I wanted to with this lifestyle. I know the pitfalls, I know where I have been, I know how to move forward.

    I just think SP is making it something I can live with as part of what I need for everything to help me become Well.

    Far too many people just focus on this as weight loss. I'm aiming for something above and beyond that I think. To be well means financially, physically, emotional, spiritually, etc. A big part of the problem encountered rounding all these things out is the lack of a decent plan I was willing to choose.

    SP has allowed me to choose a way. It's so far empowering me to clear away some stilling parts of my health choices and get this part of my well being under control. The rest will fall in line with it.

    You have a choice to either be Well or be what you were not happy with. Which will you choose?

    3318 days ago
    You have a gr8 plan and one that is attainable.
    Knowing what you want is key.
    If you don't buy it you can't eat it.

    Good luck on your lifestyle.
    3318 days ago
    For me its a lifestyle change that I am just beginning. I have a very long way to go and I know that I will be reducing my caloric intake and upping my caloric burn along the way. For me it's about getting healthy and finding a routine that will keep me healthy. I have a long way to go to get there and I'm still figuring things out, but I will find the best path for me, something that I will be able to maintain in the long term...
    3318 days ago
    What do I do? I'm a very indulgent person. I need to know that if I want something, I can have it, or I'll find a way to get it. So if someone tells me I CAN'T have Oreos, I'll eat a whole box of them. However, if I know I can have them, I won't want them half as much.

    But I'll still want them occasionally (like when that pesky TOM comes...) in which case I can go to the store and buy a pack of 4 cookies.

    For me, my lifestyle is all about moderation. If I want something sweet, I can have it, as long as I am aware of the decision and track it. If I don't want to run one day and would rather walk, I can--as long as I do something. This makes my lifestyle flexible, which is what I need. I'm a college kid, after all! I could never be strict enough to maintain a hardcore health diet and exercise regimen, so I do what I can. I don't lose the weight as fast as I'd like to, but I know I can keep it off, which is what counts. And so far, I've lost 30 pounds and never were in danger of gaining it back, even if I did plateau for months at a time. :]

    It's all about finding what works for you.
    3319 days ago
    it has to be a lifestyle change.. forever.. I lost over 100lbs here in a little over a year.. then decided to take some time "off" during the winter.. I put on a fast 40+ lbs and am working hard at taking it back off now...

    Why would I do this? I wanted to see if I could do it on my own without tracking.. and i learned a huge lesson.. I need to be aware at all times of what I am eating and even more important to ask myself why am I eating this?

    I have to be a clean eater and thats all there is to it.. I need to have a mostly vegetarian diet and i need to eat every 3-4hrs
    3319 days ago
  • 40_4ME4FAMILY
    My foundation this time around is exactly that...a lifestyle change. I am starting with small goals and building on them, hoping to build a strong foundation for a new lifestyle. I was thin once. I didn't have to think about it. I was active, I didn't overeat, and was pretty reasonable about the kinds of foods I ate. I lost control of my food, of my life, and became still. I finally woke up and said, enough is enough. I felt like I needed to break out of bad habits and a bad current lifestyle (eating, working out, healthy). I fell into this lifestyle a bit at a time, and that is how I am trying to dig out. It's hard for me to imagine the "maintaining" phase. I am hoping, that by doing this one step at a time, one lifestyle change at a time, I'll just be there. I won't be thinking "Oh,'s my maintain phase." I just want to be "hey, I'm comfortable at my weight now" and just stay there. I'm not sure if I'm making sense, but that's what my thoughts are now anyway! Best wishes. You are doing great!
    3319 days ago
    Great blog, Keena!

    The simple truth is that you can't be fat unless your lifestyle supports it. I'm fat because I don't eat enough or move enough, and when I do eat, I eat too much. I'm also fat because I'm a perfectionist... if I don't have time for my whole workout, I don't do any... if I can't walk for 30 minutes I don't go at all... if I can't do something well, I'm reluctant to try... even if it could create the balance I seek. I'm fat because my life lacks balance and nurture.

    "Habit (OR LIFESTYLE) isn't about acts of heroism. It's about establishing a consistent, almost automatic pattern of behavior over time. Much of the challenge of successful self-discipline is throttling your enthusiasm so you don't burn out. Keep the focus on meeting some clearly-defined, rigorously un-ambitious daily "good enough." AUTHOR UNKNOWN

    For me the biggest changes have had to happen between my ears and in my heart. There are no off-limits foods to my lifestyle, but there are limits to how much I eat of what and when. I have to eat only what I need to sustain my body, and I have to make exercise a daily part of my life. I'm at an age where I now actually feel that if I don't use my body, I will lose the strength and vitality I want to have with which to live the rest of my life.

    Lifestyle is unencumbered by obstacles. This means that the things I keep tripping over are something other than obstructive. They are instructive, and part of the directions on my map.

    Lifestyle is frequently and unceasingly becoming new (constantly changing), and arriving at a fresh place... ever-NEW, ever-FRESH.

    Lifestyle is intentional and specific to me... it IS all about ME.

    Lifestyle is selected by me and selective - CHOSEN for EXCELLENCE.

    Lifestyle is actively arranging my HABITS. It is examining my habits and practically (Does it make sense to ME?), effectively (Is it producing the results I say I want?), and diligently (Is it sustainable by ME?) ordering them according to priority.

    Lifestyle is experiencing, expressing and enjoying every aspect of my life intensely and ardently to the full.

    It's pretty straightforward. If I'm not creating a lifestyle, I'm dying.

    There is so much more I would like to say, and if you're interested, you can read the rest here:

    Hence the Term LIFESTYLE
    JUST DO IT! GOYAAM!!!!! You Are 'DONE'!

    My 'Inner Athlete' Met Magda!

    Good luck exploring and defining what 'lifestyle' will mean for you. In just asking the question you've already succeeded in finding the answers!

    {{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}}
    3319 days ago

    Comment edited on: 5/21/2009 7:38:37 PM
    For the most part I will keep activity in my life, just at a maintenance level instead of a weight loss level. I will also continue eating a healthy, balanced diet, just with a tiny bit more leaway than I'm striving for now. Then I'll be a little free-er with treats for example, but I know I'll always have to keep them under control. Things I will change are tracking. Now I use the tracker tools here on sparkpeople; then I'll still track but it will be more general and simply a daily accounting that I'm still living a healthy lifestyle. I'll still weigh myself to notice changes and handle them before they become a problem again, but I'll be weighing only once a month instead of every week. I think the big things that won't change is my thinking and how I handle emotional issues. The new ways of thinking and coping skills I'm learning will be something I keep for the rest of my life.

    3319 days ago
  • RAMONA62
    I am intrigued by your blog. I have heard so much about gluten free these days for a sundry of reasons that I checked a book out of the library to learn more. I think it might be a lifestyle that has helped many people so there has to be some validity to the diet change.

    I have lost tons of weight in my lifespan by dieting...too many to mention but the relationship with food and changing your thought process has been a tough one. I am an "all or nothing person"...unfortunately I cannot just take a taste and be done, it needs to be totally gone so I not longer buy food that triggers this behavior. That was step one for me.

    I have read many of your bogs and comments in the past 3 certainly are inspirational. Keep up the good work....
    3319 days ago
    your changes sound sustainable and in my opinion that is extremely important. A diet to lose weight results in a return to a diet that causes weight gain.
    3319 days ago
    Great blog, Katrina! What a co-incidence too! Yesterday when they changed our Sparkpages, I went ahead and changed some things on mine. Now it says "A lifestyle, not a diet" right at the top of my page!

    Diets are about a quick fix, and it won't last because once you go off the diet, you gain the weight back. You have to choose a healthy way of eating that you can maintain for life. I know that even after I lose the weight, I will want to remain a vegetarian. The only difference there will be when I finally get to maintenance is that I'll be able to have more calories. But I'll always have to watch what I eat, and I'll always have to be active. I'll have to be careful because I know from experience how EASY it is to gain the weight back.

    I lost 86 lbs in 2005/2006, and went from a size 24 to a size 10. I loved my new body...I felt so active and strong and free! I was able to walk without pain, I had more stamina, I could buy pretty clothes....I felt 'normal', finally. I swore I'd never gain that weight back.

    But then I started my old eating habits again. I was so sure I could control them, but I couldn't. I gained almost all of those 86 lbs back! Now I know...I can never ever ever go back to eating the way I used to. When I lose the weight this time, I'll be better prepared for maintenance.

    3319 days ago
    Definitely a lifestyle change. Although once I reach goal the calories will come up some since I will be in maintain mode but I plan to continue logging my food and exercise. I will also keep learning more and more and make the healthy choices.
    3319 days ago
  • ELLIE381
    I wish I had the magic answer. I have lost almost 20 lbs here regained 14 of it. My life has changed since then and I need to figure out how to make it work no matter what happens. I know I was doing a lot more exercise and eating too little so I am trying to get it more equal. It needs to be a lifestyle change but life is always changing. I need to adapt to those changes which isn't always easy.

    I hope we find the answer in ourselves to make these changes work for us. I am hoping that something just clicks and I find that happy medium.

    If you find a change that works, let me know. I will do the
    3319 days ago
    Lifetime changes that takes a lifetime. That's what I've been feeling. I keep working on this everyday. I work at making my needs number one
    3319 days ago
    No question, it has to be a lifetime change. It just has to be. I still eat pizza when I'm craving it - I just try to stick with a couple slices instead of 6. Occassionally, I eat things I'm not supposed to and then I get back on track. I have to. I don't want to gain back what I've lost.

    by the way, I was shopping at Meijer's the other day and they were passing out all these samples for gluten free foods. OMG, Have you ever tried "nut-thins"? They're crackers made with nuts and rice - they are so good. While shopping at walmart today, I tried to find them and they didn't have them. Looks, like I'm going back to Meijer tomorrow.
    3319 days ago
    I most definitely vote for Lifestyle Change- last year I managed to lose 70 lbs and thought I had made permanent changes- long story short at some point I got derailed and slipped back into my old habits of fast food and NO excercise- luckily I caught myself after putting about 20 lbs back on and I am happy to say that I am back on the right track and starting to lose again. I find that my body craves activity- this is a GOOD thing- even if it is just a casual evening walk I have to get something in every single day- and yes, I know it is sustainable- there really is no excuse NOT to get that excercise/activity in - before I let it slide b/c I got lazy and just didnt want to get off my butt- I wasnt injured- I wasnt sick - I had no condition in my life that kept me from it- I was just being lazy- and that really isnt a good excuse right? (haha)

    My body appreciates the healthy food that I give it- and driving past McDonald's or Taco Bell- well I dont really give it a second thought anymore- I cook for myself and I truly appreciate the good it does for my body now- I always have to learn my lessons the hard way! But I don't want to just lose weight and be "skinny" I want to be healthy and strong- so Lifestyle Change it is!

    3319 days ago
    Good question we all need to ask ourselves. Me personally, I am not making any changes in my LIFESTYLE that I cannot sustain indefinitely. It may mean I don't lose weight as fast as someone who is going 'all in' but it also means I have a better chance at keeping what I do lose off.
    3319 days ago
    As for a lifestyle change, I have been at it for exactly a year and I can tell you that some changes that I have made are such a way of life that I don't consciously think about them. I can eyeball portion sizes and I know how much I have eaten throught out the day. I just think back and can roughly estimate how many calories I have eaten.
    3319 days ago
    A B S O L U T E L Y !!!

    This totally needs to be a "rest of my life" change and you have just proven that you know it! And that you know it's not THAT difficult to keep up with. I feel the same way about working out. I am cool with working out every day (well, just weekdays for me and occasional bike rides, etc on weekends) but I know that I won't be burning 1000 calories a day forever. I don't think it's feasible. Though, who knows. It might be like something is missing and we won't want to stop! I know that I am semi-obsessed with working out right now. I can work out for 90 minutes and start stretching and getting ready to leave the gym and a song comes on my iPod and I am VERY tempted just to jump back on the treadmill so I can get that high of running to that particular song again. We might love working out so much by the time we get to goal that anything less than what we do now will just not feel right. That's how I feel about this whole journey now. Eating junk and fast food all the time just wouldn't feel right. Missing a day at the gym would make me feel like someone's cut out a part of me. Sooooo... if we are DETERMINED to make this something that is NON-NEGOTIABLE for the rest of our lives it will just become part of us. DON'T LET YOURSELF SLIP. I mean, sure, make room for occasional treats like chocolate or a little splurge meal going out with a friend or whatever - but don't even get CLOSE to who you were before or it will be so much easier to slip back into becoming her again. I, for one, am not interested in becoming my former self ever again.

    Are you with me?
    3319 days ago
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