I’m losing weight again. And I know exactly why and how. And I’m going to tell you. Since I’m all sweet and generous like that. Also? Unsolicited advice? Totally my thing.
So every once in awhile I have this little ah-ha moment where I remember what it takes for me to lose weight. It’s a hand smacking against the forehead moment, because I’ve had it literally dozens of times over the last few years. I’m going to sum in a point form because honestly? I’m a bit of a windbag.
1) Get the junk out. We keep all our junk food in the trunk of my husband’s car. That way it’s not home, with me, all day long. And in the evening if we want it, we have to put some thought and effort into retrieving it from our frigid garage.
2) Treat yourself with things that are actually a treat. That rather dry piece of birthday cake you’re not really enjoying? The stale doughnut? The handful of semi-sweet chocolate chips you’re chowing down on because it’s the only sugar ready to hand? Toss ’em. Don’t bother. You deserve better. Treats don’t give us much in the way of nutrition or satiety, what they give us is a nice taste and texture in our mouth that quickly dissipates. If you’re going to be taking in that many calories, make sure you enjoy them to the fullest!
3) I have one treat a day, and I save it till the end. If I have a treat in the middle of the day, heaven knows I’ll have one a night too. I wait till after dinner, and right after my treat, I brush my teeth. And then I don’t eat anything else till breakfast time the next day. This is a hard habit to form but so worth it.
4) Over time, change your definition of “treat.” For me, a bowl of sliced peaches in light syrup, a handful or two of lightly salted air popped popcorn, those chewy and salty Nature Valley granola bars, foccacia bread dipped in olive oil and balsamic vinegar…the list goes on. I’m not quite there yet, but I feel my perspective changing. It’s exciting.
5) Eat food that remembers where it came from. A lot of todays so called “diet food” leaves us feeling hungrier than ever. That’s because our body doesn’t recognize certain elements as actual food, and so our brain doesn’t receive the signal that we’ve eaten. A small serving of natural yogurt (with fat!) is going to satisfy us a great deal more than a larger serving of no fat artifical sweetener laced yogurt. I’m focusing on eating what I consider “real food.” Fruits and veggies, lean meats, nuts, natural yogurts, high fibre bread…
6) Fibre. I’ll post more about this another day, as it’s a favourite soap box subject of mine.
7) Water. Also requires a post all of its own. I try to drink a gallon a day. 8 cups? That’s the bare minimum. And the larger you are? The more you need. And the more you exercise? The more you need. It takes your body a week or so to get past the peeing every hour stage, but it’s worth it. You’d be surprised to know how much of your extra weight is due to water retention.
8) Teeth brushing. I brush three or four times a day to help keep me from indulging when I shouldn’t.
9) Eat regularly. As in every 2-3 hours. You’ll lose weight more quickly and in a more healthy fashion than if you starve yourself. If your body has a constant supply of nourishment, it won’t be as reluctant to let go of its fat stores. Trust me. This works.
10) Finally, it doesn’t have to be about depriving yourself. There are some seriously tasty healthy food choices out there. My favourite? Turkey and provolone on high fiber flax bread, microwaved till the cheese melts, then topped with romaine lettuce. So yummy!