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Old 10-13-2013, 10:59 PM   #1
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Default Getting started

How did you get started losing weight? Did you just jump in 110% day one or did you slowly introduce new habits? I've lost weight in the past but it seems like these days I don't nearly have as much motivation as I should. I need to lose about half of me and I really need to get on the wagon.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Kayla
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Old 10-13-2013, 11:15 PM   #2
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I used a hybridized approach. I started with well over a hundred pounds to lose and it was daunting, to say the least. So I started with small habit changes; walking for at least 20 minutes during my lunch break. Taking the stairs if I was going up 3 floors or less. Weaning off the cream and sugar in my coffee.

That all led to small progress, but quickly stalled out. However, those small bits of progress were just motivating enough that when I would stall, I wanted to figure out how to make the next little loss. So then I would pick another habit to make, break or change. I was also doing a lot of reading and research, because our knowledge base has changed a lot since I was a teenager. The more I read, the more excited I got. And so one day I decided to go all in with diet changes and I radically changed my way of eating overnight. That helped spark a quick drop followed by a small plateau, so I decided it was time to get serious about working out. So I made a promise to myself that every day, either before or after work, I would hit the gym (we have one on site at work). So far, so good. I'm not perfect at all, but I strive for it as much as I can.
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Old 10-13-2013, 11:18 PM   #3
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Default Same here

I'm following because I am right here with you. Today is my Day 1 of my first ever attempt to lose weight. Getting started... and then what? That's exactly where I am and am curious to see what others have to say.
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Old 10-14-2013, 12:42 AM   #4
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alexjchase:

I recommend that you start simply by journaling. Actually count and measure what you eat, and enter it into a log of some kind. When I was a teenager, I simply used a notebook with a running calorie count running in a column. Now I use MyFitnessPal app on my phone; there are many similiar apps, all are good and bad in their own ways.

Journaling will help you in a few ways:
Some people simply don't realize how much they are eating in a day. It's an eye opener.
Computerized logs will use your height, weight, age and activity level to estimate your Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE), and help you estimate how many calories you should be taking in to lose, maintain and gain weight. It's an excellent tool for helping you start, and when you make tweaks in your plan it helps you compare how you lose with different eating habits.
It also helps you plan your changes. When you can look back at your day and see everything at once, it helps you decide where you can make changes tomorrow. Cream and sugar in my coffee was 120 calories? I'll take it black tomorrow. Soup came out lower calorie than I thought? I'll have a half a grilled cheese with it tomorrow, and maybe I'll be less hungry and I won't reach for that candy bar at 3 o'clock again.

Once you have the hang of the journal, I think that meal planning is key. I would not lose a single pound if I didn't meal plan. Every night before bed, I pack my breakfast and lunch and snacks for the next day. I even do this on weekends now, because I love the ease of having it done and ready to go, and the kitchen stays much cleaner now that I'm not in and out of there all day. I then figure out my dinner plan and log all the food for the next day into My Fitness Pal. If it looks like I'm going to be over a little bit, I make the necessary changes. I try to leave about 100-200 calories of wiggle room in case I need to use it.
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Old 10-14-2013, 04:04 AM   #5
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I have just started my journey for real this time.

I started with portion control and really trying to listen to my body's hunger needs. I had ignored them for so long I had to really stop and think "am I hungry?" and sometimes I was so I would adjust my daily meal and include a second snack.

I also started to move more... dancing while cooking dinner or doing dishes.... walking/marching to tv shows for as long as I can....

I also do some calorie counting.... but I'm not super into that part yet, it's just helping me with portions to see how many calories are actually in that.

and then coming here daily....being accountable to people and joining some challenges is helping me at the moment.
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Old 10-14-2013, 04:56 AM   #6
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Walking. I started with 10-15 minutes. Now I am up to an hour of exercise most days. Will start the couch to 5K next week. My eating habits sort of adjusted themselves once I got going. I joined Weight Watchers, but counting points pisses me off, so I don't really do it. It's enough to know that one BK Whopper is half my day's points. I'm only going to have one if I really, really want one now. Would rather make a healthier choice most of the time. Etc.
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Old 10-14-2013, 06:32 AM   #7
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Short answer: Slowly introduced new habits.

Long answer: Health scare for my husband made me change my habits - after he got out of the hospital last December I restarted Atkins for the first time in ten years - it takes a while to get into the groove - then I found this forum- this summer I really started exercising - next I started using my fitnesspal - I struggle daily with portion control but it gets easier with a routine!! It's the things you do for yourself everyday that matter!!
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Old 10-14-2013, 08:01 AM   #8
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I just don't trust my "comes and goes" motivation. When I decided to lose weight this past January (for the thousandth time), I decided to plan everything out meticulously. I made up a gym schedule and decided how many calories I was going to eat, and then I forced myself to stick to it, no matter how I felt about it. Not saying that I was 100% perfect, but having the set-in plan really helped. What made this time "permanent" for me was 1) hitting rock bottom and being totally fed up with being overweight; and 2) deciding that I had to change HOW I ate. Now one meal is 1 1/4 cups veggies and 2 cups fruit, every single day. Sugar is down to 1 - 2 servings per week. It's really helped me keep my focus and have a consistent loss.

I guess the most important thing is to just keep going, no matter what.
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Old 10-14-2013, 08:06 AM   #9
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As of today, I'm officially two weeks into my re-start. For me, my mind must be fully engaged before I can be on-plan. I was in a sugar fog and I was suffering from depression. Two weeks ago, I decided to start Phase 1 of Southbeach which is a sugar detox program. Now, I'm mentally prepared to do this. Following SB takes planning and I do think that is key. You need to plan ahead. Because, we all have those days when things are just tougher than normal and it seems too overwhelming to figure out how to stay on-plan. If you've planned ahead, it makes it a bit easier. You can put yourself in auto-mode and just do what you do.
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Old 10-14-2013, 08:22 AM   #10
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Hi Kayla,

I tried changing habits slowly several times and that just did not work for me. That is not to say that it won't work for you because we all must find what works for us. I had a health scare that motivated me to start. First, I had to have a plan.

I looked at everything that I had tried that did not work for me, some of which were:
* Just trying to eat healthy
* Guessing portion sizes
* Exchange plans
* Refusing to log my food

I realized that I needed structure so I created my own plan:
* Count calories - at first I gave myself a fairly large amount up to 1800 calories. I was liberal with those calories. I did not care what I ate as long as I stayed under 1800 calories. Then as time went on, I reduced the calories and learned what food items helped me stretch my calories.

* Weigh and measure my food

* Keep a food log

I think that the thing that has helped me the most is refusing to look at the large picture. Thinking that I needed to lose 150+ pounds was too overwhelming. I set 5 and 10 pound goals and focused on today. I did not worry about tomorrow and just did the best that I could for today.

We are all an experiment of one. You can find something that works for you if you keep trying. If you start today, a year from now you will be very happy you did. It is amazing what we can accomplish in a year by just focusing on today.
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Old 10-14-2013, 03:29 PM   #11
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Welcome to both the new ones that posted. The best advice I can give is to try everything and find out what works for you. Things you can do the rest of your life. Dieting won't work, changing your life will! I have been on this path for 5 years since I found out I was diabetic. Put your whole self into it and you can have an amazing journey to travel ahead of you!
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Old 10-15-2013, 01:44 AM   #12
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Thank you all for the advice it was very helpful. I think I will definitely be sitting down tomorrow and making a plan. I think that will definitely be something that helps and planning all my meals too. I think I'm going to start journaling too.
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Old 10-15-2013, 12:45 PM   #13
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Welcome and good luck on your journey!!

I started slowly, dropping one "bad" habit a week.

(For example: soda was the first thing I stopped.)
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Old 10-15-2013, 03:46 PM   #14
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I started because in May I was dx'd with diabetes, gout, high blood pressure and high cholesterol :P I've lost weight before and gained weight before (the same 30-40 pounds unfortunately) so I've never been able to really commit till now. I'm 54 years old and want to live to see my kids grow up and to be here for future grandchildren.

I did some research and found that a low carb diet would likely bring my blood sugar down. So I quit eating anything with flour in it, potatoes, rice and of course no sugar. I do eat lots of leafy vegetables, meat and good fat (think phase one of South Beach) Since exercise also lowers blood sugar I started walking to the end of my street and back and then a little more each day. I now walk between 5 and 6 miles for six days a week.

My blood sugar is lower and so is my blood pressure - due in part to medication. The gout is under control again- medicine. For the first time in over 5 years I can walk!!

I hate that it took a health scare to get me motivated, but I'm also glad that I have another chance to get things right.
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