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A few years ago, I had just turned 40 and I was looking at the photos, when I saw how much weight I had gained. The song was still playing in my head, Happy Birthday to… and all I could think about was cake and ice cream had gone straight to my hips, gut, thighs and face. It was like I was seeing myself for the first time in years. How in the world was I going to lose weight I have had been gaining for 9 years?
I did one of those, close the laptop, fight back tears and headed straight for the kitchen. I quickly made a pan of brownies, while I thought about how this could have happened. Once brownies were made, I added a huge scoop of ice cream on top and sat down to Google fastest way to lose weight.
While looking for a solution, I found that obesity is an increasing epidemic. I learned that I was part of the epidemic, I was a statistic. I was obese. More than ⅓ of American adults are obese. Let that sink in for a second! 1/3 of American Adults!
Have you noticed how many articles, books, documentaries there are on food? How do you know which one is right for you? Are you overwhelmed at the thought of how to begin to lose weight?
You are NOT alone! It is SO overwhelming! Just a few years ago, I was at my all time highest weight ever.
As you can imagine it was all so new to me. I had to assess my problem. What was holding me back from achieving my goal. How did I get here in the first place?
I did a crash diet and lost a quick 10lbs, I felt great. But guess what?! The weight crept back on. I had to figure out how I was going to maintain my original weight loss and lose a little more.
Maybe you are right where I was and are looking for a way to turn your life around? These 3 steps are what I focused on for my first 30 days.
Track your calories
Say what? Isn’t that so 1980 and Jane Fonda to track your calories? Yes, it is, but bottom line if you are eating 3000 calories because you are binge eating pizza and ice cream then you have to recognize that and make a change. No one is in control of what you put in your mouth except for you. You are the only person who can hold yourself back.
There are tons of apps to help you track your calories. Many of them you can scan your food package and it will put in the amount of calories you may be consuming. My personal favorite is My Fitness Pal. I go back to it regularly. I like it because that was the one that I started with and it has all my favorite stuff STILL saved.
Commit to change
You didn’t gain all the weight overnight. Recognizing that you have to have a time commitment helps you achieve your goal. I like to set 30 day goals so they are smaller and more achievable. Looking into things like the Dietbet to help challenge myself to lose weight has helped jump start progress and for motivation. I am not an affiliate of Dietbet and I have used them in the past. This past week, I signed up for a bet because I needed something to keep me motivated.
Remember how I said to track calories? I recommend tracking your activity too. If you have an activity tracker, pay attention to it. There are so many ways to increase your activity. Here are a few:
- Go for a walk after you eat
- Take the stairs at work
- Park further away from the store
- Ride your bike to work
- Go for a bike ride with the kids
- Shoot hoops with the kids
- Play tennis
The goal is to move your body. Decide to commit to moving your body 30 minutes a day. This post, 5 Home Gym Essentials for Under $100, will help you create a gym at home. It has some great products you need to create your home gym right now!
Also, why not make some money while increasing your activity level?! There is an app similiar to DietBet that tracks your steps and you can bet on how many steps a day or week you want to focus on. It’s called StepBet. I just joined a game in StepBet. It’s six weeks and I’m intrigued to see how it works. I’m not one for losing money so we will see.
Accountability to Lose Weight
Finally, I am going to recommend accountability. If you don’t have anyone at home to help you, then send me a note and I will keep you accountable! I would love to hear how you are doing with your fitness goals. I would love to hear what motivated you and how it helped you. Don’t forget, this change is for yourself, not for anyone else and you have the power in your mind to make the change!
Stephanie Joseph has been blogging at Sticky Note Mom for 4 years. Before starting her blog she worked in the finance industry working on the floor of the Chicago Board of trade to working for major financial institutions with personal financial planning and the mortgage industry. Now she shares all she has learned about frugal living to help others learn how to stop spending and start saving more.