100 lb. Club - Is anyone losing weight without counting calories?
01-21-2010, 10:46 AM
The first time I went through this, I was a faithful Fitday user for the first several months. It was incredibly helpful. But then I found myself unwilling to eat anything unless it was super low calorie, even though I then had a hard time eating enough calories. It was really messing with my mind, so I quit, and continued to be successful. I also was able to lose a substantial amount of weight (from 170 to 130) and keep it off for a few years (prior to pregnancy) by following a low-fat regimen. I don't want to go that way again, especially because I am horrified now by how much sugar I consumed.
I know weight loss can be done without counting calories, but I am experiencing a stall right now. I know there are a million things that could be causing it, so I am not panicked, but it would help soothe my mental issues to hear that others are losing weight without counting calories (and the insanity and obsessiveness that haunts me when I do it).
I did lose about 40-45 pounds without counting calories but it was slow and I did it by changing one habit at a time. Then when I stalled out I decided I need to tweak by counting something so I went to Weight Watchers because points are smaller numbers than calories and I don't really like math.
I go the opposite direction, I don't become obsessive about counting---I just stop counting and writing it down---it still is a pain in the neck to do it--even though I have made it as easy as I can for myself. It works, though so I keep on keeping on.
traci in training
01-21-2010, 11:02 AM
I do count calories but I try not to let it "run my life." I think in a month or two I can probably quit journaling and counting - I'll be sure enough about my knowledge about food content to trust my judgement. When I've lost weight before I've journaled to keep track of calories. This time I want to get away from that and learn to trust myself. Eat lots of veggies, lean proteins, stay away from processed food. Get lots of exercise. I don't want to count calories for the rest of my life, so it's time to just eat correctly and let the weight come off the way it should.
As for the stall - I had to fast 24 hours for a medical test and can I just say it was a great way to jump start weight loss? Put my mind on track (if that makes any sense).
01-21-2010, 11:28 AM
I'm not counting calories right now, and I'm having way more success than when I was counting. I've done both, and I feel that I'm better at staying "on plan" when I'm not counting. I focus on eating healthy foods, healthy portions, and eating when I'm hungry. I allow myself some "treat" food when I'm in public, as my main problem is shameful, secret eating.
When I was counting, I'd obsess over the salt contents, to the point where I felt guilty eating pickles, which I LOVE, and are super low-cal, but high salt, and it was just bad. And then I'd feel deprived and binge regularly (although less frequently than before, obviously!)
I realize that at some point, once I get to a lower weight, I'll have to start counting again, but for now, eating intuitivly is working wonders. It's slow, but it's a plan that I can stick with, so I feel that it's something that I can do more realistically for do the rest of my life.
01-21-2010, 11:39 AM
I count, but not strictly. I focus more on the quality of the food I put in my body and the hunger scale. If I eat whole foods, lean protein, complex carbs and get my five servings of veggies a day while monitoring my hunger scale, I am sure it will all work out.
If I notice that I am feeling especially hungry on a particular day, I will get a veggie (carrots, celery, green beans, anything) and eat until I am full. It usually helps keep me on track and prevents me from eating junk. I have found that I am more likely to eat junk when I am hungry. But if I keep myself between a 3 and a 7 (scale 1 to 10) and eat complex carbs/protein with every meal, I avoid the sugar roller coaster and make the best choices.
To make sure I am keeping myself in check, I will record what I eat and then tally it up and the end of the day. Honestly, though, now I am in such a rut that as long as I make the same things to eat, I know I'm fine.
This is all coming from someone who has a history of eating disorders, so I really can't get too exact or it will trigger bad things for me.
01-21-2010, 11:44 AM
I've lost 54.5lbs since the end of July last year so far, and I don't calorie count.
I cut out all the crap I was eating between meals (and it was a lot), have a healthy breakfast and lunch, then eat them same things for dinner I always used to, but a much smaller portion.
Added to this I go to the gym for an hour a day 5/6 days a week.
I've lost on average 2lbs a week and gone down 4 dress sizes. So losing weight without calorie counting is definitely possible.
I know as I lose more it will slow down and I will need to make other changes, but til then I'm happy not having to count every single thing that passes my lips.
01-21-2010, 11:57 AM
I slowly lost 30 lbs doing South Beach which does not count calories. But I'm having more success now that I do. I think my current success is due to portion control and eating mostly whole foods.
01-21-2010, 12:23 PM
I did. I think I lost about the last 30 pounds without calorie counting. I did go 2 to 3 weeks here and there with stalls, but it always picked up again. I can't say it was necessarily because I wasn't counting, because I was also, obviously, closer to goal, and there were other things going on to at different times.
01-21-2010, 12:36 PM
I'm a calorie-counter. I know myself well enough that if I didn't have that built-in accountability, i'd be "oh i'm sure this is about 200 cals" as I was shoving an entire cheesecake in my face LOL :D I don't let it run my life, a lot of stuff is 'pre-programmed' as I eat it regularly, and I don't freak out if the fat/carb/protein ratios are off, but i find it very helpful to keep me on the right path. Some days i don't record it, but most days.
I like it best I think, because if i WANT mcdonald's one day, i HAVE it, but I also know the price of it. McDonald's for lunch = soup and salad for dinner. It's all about trade-offs and learning to 'pay' for my treats.