I'm really flattered that so many of you have been asking me to write a healthy eating and fitness post. Yes, over the past year and a bit I have lost weight. As you know, I'm a newleywed so the wedding was a big influence and motivation to lose the weight. The number on the scale has never been a focus of mine, only how my clothes would fit and what dress size I was. When I lost the weight, it honestly isn't the weight that is noticable to me, it is the inches I have lost. At my heaviest point, basically when I started blogging, I was a good 25 pounds more than I weigh now. I've always carried my weight fairly well so I never looked overweight, just a bit chunky at my heaviest. I carry my weight in my upper arms, thighs, butt, and chest. When I was a kid, I've always been "solid". I've been active all my life, always in sports, swimming...etc, but I've never been "skinny". I can honestly say I am really happy with my current weight. I am 5'7" and weigh 135-140. I'm still curvaceous and could use toning up in some areas, but I am in no rush to do so. My weight loss has all been a gradual process, and I intend to keep it that way.
With this said, I still have been hesitant about writing this post because I haven't been working out to lose weight recently, just focusing on eating healthy. I never ate bad before, but I would indulge more often than I do now. At my heaviest weight I attribute that to being in University, sitting on my butt studying all the time, and then going out every weekend drinking. I know this happens to a lot of people who are in college and university. I had a lack of activity and drinking on weekends was fun at the time, but I packed on the pounds from liquid calories. As soon as I graduated, I took the summer off. I didn't work and when I did find a job, I was only working minimal hours for a little over a year. The weight started to come off a bit when I started working, but plateaued. I ended up getting my current job, which is a manual labor, factory job, and I am always on my feet. I work long hours and weekends, so that amount of walking enables me to keep the weight off as long as I eat healthy.
Before I got engaged, back in July 2010, I was doing P90X. I ended up doing a little over a month and I ended up losing some weight as well as inches off various parts of my body. I'm pretty sure I lost 2 inches in my waist alone in a month. After that, I didn't exercise as vigorously, but I would go for the occasional run and do laps and treading water at my local pool. P90X is a great program, and I intend on starting it over in the new year and completing the full 90 days. None of this P40X laziness. LOL. If doing this program for only one month worked so well for me, I can't imagine what completing the program would do. It would definitely transform my body. P90X is a very demanding program, but if you can fit in an hour a day, 6 days a week, I highly recommend trying it out. It honestly works and I must say this triggered a life style change for me. I actually went through old blog posts to see exactly how I looked and when the weight started coming off and in what areas. It is pretty interesting to see the chronological progression through posts. If you look back to June 2010, when I was doing P90X, you can see how little I started posting because I was busy with my new exercise program. It's funny because I had another phase closer to my wedding date of July 2011 where I wasn't posting as frequently and I lost more weight then too. Unfortunately, blogging takes up a lot of time where I would be doing something active. I need to find a balance or not be such a procrastinator when it comes to writing posts! I always get distracted by online shopping, youtube videos or checking out other peoples blogs that I won't realize hours have past and I still am working on ONE blog post. LOL. I'm a terrible procrastinator...I was a bad procrastinator in school too. Maybe a New Years Resolution should be to stop procrastinating. I seriously need to write some resolutions.
Anyways, since I didn't do the full 90 days, what really has been working for me was a change in diet. I started eating foods that increased my metabolism (I.e., grapefruit, black coffee, green tea) and eating more salads. I think I started my salad kick a month or two before going to Vegas for my Bachelorette. 5 days of the week I bring a salad for lunch with veggies, chicken, or egg whites. I use calorie wise salad dressing, and only a very small amount. I was eating my salads with no dressing or just a bit of freshly squeezed lemon juice for a while, but it got boring fast.
Example Daily Food Intake
5:00 am - bowl of cereal w/ skim milk or 1 egg + egg whites and a piece of whole wheat toast. (Sometimes I just eat egg whites with salsa).
8:00 am - two 35 calorie skim milk yogurts. If I'm not hungry I will just have a large black coffee
11:00 am - mixed greens/baby spinach with cucumber and tomotoe (or chicken). 1 tbs Calorie wise dressing.
1:30 pm - Grapefruit
3:30 pm - 100 cal snack or V8 shot
I eat often because I have scheduled breaks and a demanding job. This is a typical eating schedule while I'm at work 7-4:30 pm.
6ish or 7 - Whatever I end up making for dinner. When eating pasta, I use whole wheat. I eat brown rice. I rarely eat red meat (I.e. 1-2 times a month). Instead of using lean ground beef for meals I use extra lean ground turkey or chicken. Most suppers consist of some form of chicken or seafood. I love salmon, shrimp, and scallops.
This chart I got from one of my husbands health books. This is basically the types of foods I eat.
Everyones body is different, and what worked for me, may not work for you. The biggest change for me was P90X and eating more salads. Salads are simple, easy to prepare, and you can create many different kinds of salads so it doesn't get boring. Use veggies one day, chicken the next, egg whites another, almonds, you name it. The choices are endless. Just stick to it. I like packing lunches because you HAVE to eat what you pack. Its not like you can go by cravings and be like, I'm going to eat pizza, junk food, etc. Even at home I plan my meals. I will take chicken or fish out of the freezer and then I know I HAVE to use it or it will go bad. One thing about me is that I will not waste anything (i.e., food, makeup...etc.).
I do eat out still and indulge in some of my favourite foods (I.e., pizza, nachos, wings). Typically when I order one of these treats I end up sharing so that I still get the taste, but don't consume all the calories. For me, its really important not to deprive myself or I'll go crazy. I found when I tried to go full-on health crazy, absolutely NO bad foods, I ended up giving up. Now if I eat bad, I just make sure I eat really good the next day.
Honestly, the best way to lose weight is old fashioned diet and exercise. There are no fast fixes to weight loss, if you want to do it healthy. It is bad to fluctuate up and down (I.e., Oprah Winfrey) for your body. Losing weight is a life style change. Just by what I eat and substituting for leaner cuts of meat, and whole wheat is better for your overall health, and thus, you will eventually see a change in your body.
TO SEE MY WEIGH LOSS EVOLUTION, CLICK BELOW!
Weight loss Evolution
April 2010 - Noticeably fuller in thighs, arms, butt, chest ~165lbs
April 2010 - I've probably lost 2 full cup sizes, if not more. I've heard people say you tend to lose off your upper body first, especially your chest, when you first start losing weight. I definitely followed this rule!
June 2010 - I was currently doing/almost done a full month of P90X here. ~155 lbs
January 2011 - My face lost a lot of the baby weight. I think I aged me quite a bit since I started to lose weight!
April 2011 - Losing off my upper body, still had thick thighs and a big ol' butt. LOL
May 2011 - When the salad kick was in full effect. I really started toning up April/May 2011.
Chest is considerably smaller at this point.
May 2011 - End of May when I went to Vegas. I was very please with my body shape at this point. Still had thicker thighs at this point as well.
July 2011 - Just before my wedding! I lost a bit of thigh and my arms are much more toned. I look generally much leaner here since the beginning of my weight loss.
Recent OOTDs - Total of 25+lbs since April 2010
Took a while, but I took baby steps. Started off with exercise, did a diet change, now plan on incorporating both for 2012.
I reached my personal goal, but I would still like to lose a few more pounds and tone up! 2012 look out!
Disclaimer: This is my weight loss story and what worked for me. In no way am I a certified nutritionalist or fitness expert.