Weight Loss Support - Question from someone who is weary of being half-you-know-what about wt loss...

07-17-2013, 08:41 AM
So, I've mostly lurked here, and posted to a few support groups, which have been great and a reason to keep coming back. I love this forum. So supportive and friendly and non-judgmental.

I'm female, 42 years old, 5'2 1/2" and I've reached 150 pounds and I would rather go in the OTHER direction. If I were to capture what my weight has been like during the last 10 years, it would be that about 10 years ago, I was about 125 pounds and I looked great. I wore sizes 2-4 in petites and I felt good in pictures. I looked awesome in my sister's wedding, one of the best, despite being about 10 years older than the other bridesmaids. So in the coming years after that my weight crept up to about 133, but still people considered me "tiny" and I looked good in pictures. I have a mostly small frame, but very muscular "larger" legs and a tiny waist (pear shaped).

Five years ago, my weight entered the 140s. I'd had a major life crisis happen at the time (violent crime victim) and yes, I did some stress eating and drinking for awhile. Ever since then, it's been a STRUGGLE to keep my weight under 140, but for several years I managed to keep it between 135-139.

Last summer, I got divorced, and while it was a very amicable and non-stressful divorce as far as those go (we don't have kids, no property, very clean and simple, and we're still very good friends), I ballooned up to 147-148 and ALL this past year I've been struggling to even get down under 145 again (a few years ago, 145 would have seemed horrifying to me, now I'd love to touch it again).

This summer, despite all my declarations to eat clean, start fresh, etc., it hasn't always worked out, and now my weight is 150, and I've even seen 151-152 a few times. Apparently being half-***ed about weight loss and making promises I don't keep doesn't work, go figure!

So basically, what I'm asking all you experts, especially but not necessarily only people around my height and age, how did you lose your weight? Calorie counting? I tend to get very frustrated and obsessive while calorie counting so it probably won't work well for me, but I'm willing to try if I see that the vast majority of people have lost their weight this way. I like the idea of doing something like Paleo with veggies, lower carb, protein, fruit, healthy fat, but I haven't been consistent at it. I also like the idea of doing just one meal a day (although again, just haven't been able to get my head in the game to do that).

What probably won't work for me is anything that involves day in and day out of bland diet-y food like chicken breast and broccoli for every meal, even though I bet that works, so if that's what you've done, I still want to hear about it. :) Another thing that has worked for me in the past is to eat VERY clean six days a week and then let myself eat whatever one day a week. But that hasn't worked so well lately because I have a lot of social things going on on days I can't control.

Anyway, I would love to hear anything that has been working for you.

(Also, I do enjoy a glass of wine every evening, but I rarely drink any other alcohol or drink excessively. And I've found in the past that the wine does not seem to affect whether or not I lose, maintain, or gain weight (I've experimented with taking it out of the mix sometimes).):cool:

07-17-2013, 09:00 AM
I've spent a fortune on diet books and special foods/supplements that were supposed to make me thin but what really worked for me was deciding that I deserved to eat as well as my dogs. Now I don't put anything into my mouth that I wouldn't be willing to feed to a dog I wanted to stay healthy, nothing processed, not too many carbs, lots of fat, protein and water. I also run around the park every day.

For me, weight loss got easy when I stopped making it complicated.

07-17-2013, 09:41 AM
I also dislike bland foods, so I just don't eat them!

What worked for me is having a few go-to options for each meal, which removes the need for repeated calorie counting. I like to do most of my eating earlier in the day. My typical breakfast is two slices of buttered toast (made with fancy artisanal bread) and a fried egg. A popular lunch option is a tortilla pizza made with a large whole-grain tortilla, sliced tomatoes and onions, shredded cheese, and cilantro. For dinner I might have a veggie stir-fry with a few shrimps and an interesting sauce like teriyaki or sweet chili. I also have a glass of wine with dinner.

I recommend you build your eating plan around healthy dishes you truly enjoy.


07-17-2013, 10:32 AM
I get where you're coming from, and the simplest thing I can offer is to cut out/way down the things you know are junk (I don't count wine in that category, BTW!), and to eat 2/3-3/4 of the portion size of everything else that isn't a vegetable or "clean" protein. I took off 20 pounds that way 3 years ago. Like freelance, I dearly love good food and still do. As JohnP puts it, I eat everything I want - just not as much of it as I want. I found it a lot easier to get used to smaller portions and eating more slowly than it was to try to keep track of all the minute details of calorie counting and planning.

07-17-2013, 10:48 AM
Thanks, guys!

@Trudiha - wow, that's so true! I am so careful about what people food I allow my cats, why not as much for myself? If I had children (which I don't), I know I would be the same way about them.

@freelance - you're so right. I like that idea. I do like a lot of healthy things. I love salads, very spicy stirfrys, things with lots of flavor (either from spices or herbs). I still can't make myself like chicken breasts and broccoli, *sigh*, as much as I want to, but I do love oven-baked kale, salmon, etc.

@ICUwishing - thank you! That sounds like very wise advice, actually. I feel like doing that (just eating less of the things I love) is more life-time do-able than cutting out tons of categories of foods or counting every single calorie. What I don't want is to obsess. There are plenty of people in this world that are slender or near an ideal weight who don't think so much about food. *nods*

07-17-2013, 10:51 AM
I get tired of calorie counting too, but unless I fully get on board with it, I don't lose. I've tried and experimented with other approaches, but counting's the only surefire thing. I'm struggling to get back to it at the moment - and trying to argue with myself that while it gets tiresome, what I get in exchange is the certainty of weight loss.

The only other thing that keeps me on track is viewing my food choices from a health perspective. (I've slipped lately there, too.) But I do best when I am really excited to eat well - I boost my motivation by reading up on WHY certain things are good for you. The Perfect Health Diet (stupid name, really solid science) is scientifically-grounded, 'paleo-esque', very intriguing. The latest edition of their book got off to a rough start for me (too try-hard in advancing the whole ancestral eating hypothesis), but once they start really start reviewing the body of studies out there, it starts clicking and builds to a pretty persuasive argument for "try this way of eating out - deliberately eat this and not that, try this rough macro profile out" - and I find that my motivation to adhere to diet choices skyrockets. That may or may not be the thing for you, but maybe there is a health angle to hook yourself with?