LOL.... thanks again all....
I wasn't on any particular eating plan. I just ate healthier and cut my portions. Now (a year later)... I eat whatever I want but I only eat when I am hungry and stop when I am full. I typically eat 5-6 times a day. I also drink about a gallon of water a day.
When I first started, I worked out 7 days a week (I could only handle about 15-20 minutes slowly on the treadmill). I always strength trained. Now I ride the bike at extremely high levels, I lift free weights and I use the treadmill. (I ran for a while and actually did 5K races but tore cartilage in my left knee).
I personally do not believe in dieting. It just makes you want to have foods that you aren't supposed to. When I saw a nutritionist, it just made me crazy trying to get enough protein and carbs in each day. I couldn't stand counting all of the grams etc.
My body tells me what I want, when I want it. If I crave protein.... it lets me know......
I just tried to eat balanced meals - plenty of fruits and veggies... and worked out!!!!
Now I average about 3-5 days per week (lately more like 3) but it really is the working out that is important. I cannot stress it enough.
Cardio AND strength training!!!! The cardio helps burn fat and the strength training increases metabolism. I actually eat more now than I did then because of working out (which is a good thing because I do like to eat ;-) ).
You all sound really motivated and believe me that is first and foremost important!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Again... Good Luck and keep going.... it does eventually pay off!!!!!