WEARY -- try not to get weary; this is a life-long journey for most of us. The key thing is to do what works for you; and continue to eating healthy on a regular basis. Create or follow a plan that fits your likes & dislikes; and a fitness plan that you can do. I can do walking best, so that is mine.
I am following a portion plan; it is simple and easier to follow. There is no calorie counting at this point, as my doctors don't want me to diet but stay strong after a big surgery and 4 months of chemo. I have actually lost about 5 lbs and feel good. I believe the longer it takes to take it off, the longer you'll keep it off. I am only going for 30 lbs max a year later on.
For now they want me to just stabilize; then later I hope to up that from 1-3 lbs a month (for health reasons). Trust me, losing 30 lbs is half your goal and you will feel great but do what you want; these are just my suggestions from many years of trial and error.
Read through the site and you will find that each person is different and are following methods that suite them best.
to you too, JENNIFER -- all of those programs have been tried and posted in this site; and if you do a search, you will find some threads on them. Unfortunately, people are just not faithful to the plan(s) and/or threads for some reason. Are they too difficult for long-term use? I honestly do not know ...
I prefer plans that are more practical in their approach, as I mentioned above. I wrote a thread about EMOTIONAL EATING: HOW TO HEAL in this forum becuz this is a common problem. Maybe some of the tips there can help both you ladies. I know they have helped me. I have a set plan that I made up with the help of a dietician of the foods that we love to eat on a daily basis; and I find this portion plan much easier to stick with. It is almost second nature now; the plan is very basic. I know what we are going to be eating each day and week; and it takes only a few minutes to make out my new plans.
I read this TIP in a book: to take a few favorite entrees for each meal and stick with them. For instance, I know at BREAKFAST that I will have either cereal (hot or cold) or eggs with toast or a bagel/toast with pb/hm jam, plus fruit every day. I know those three choices by heart. Some days I may have an omelette, some days scramble, or some days a dry-fried sandwich. That's where the variety comes in.
For LUNCH: I know the basic menu is soup & sandwich OR salad & sandwich/bunwich. That is very simple; I just change the ingredients and add veggies to my sandwich. I also have yogurt (for dairy) with my lunch as well. When available, I may have a homemade veggie pita pizza (with chz for dairy) which I love.
For DINNER: I know that I will usually have some kind of lean meat and veggies or a salad. Some days I will have a small serving of complex carbs, as desired. Once a month I may have pizza or homemade hamburger & salad for variety. I vary the meats and salads and veggies throughout the week always incorporating our favorites into the meals.
For SNACKS: most of my snacks & desserts are fruit-based; and I love pumpkin custard the most. Often, I have sunflower seeds still in the shell becuz they take longer to eat; or baby carrots & pb; or chz & celery; or yogurt & fruit; or fiber cereal if I am really hungry at night. On occasion, I may have a fiber muffin (hm) or a slice of fiber bread with pb or chz, if I had a busy day. I have found that a bowl of cereal is a lot less calories & fat than a bag of junkies (and much more filling & nutritious too).