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Old 12-31-2011, 10:42 PM   #1  
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I have been saying that I want to lose about 35 pounds by my birthday in July. Eating all the time isn't my problem. I usually only have 1 small meal and 1 big meal a day. The big meal being a pretty large portion of really fattening fast food. I also drink a lot of diet soda. I plan on substituting the fattening fast food meals with a weight watchers or smart ones dinner and limit my diet soda intake, or even completely stop drinking it. I don't really exercise but I do have a treadmill that I should probably start using again.I REALLY want to get this weight off by my birthday, it would be such a HUGE accomplishment. I'm just not sure if the changes I plan on making will work. I'll never know unless I try, but I guess I'm just looking for some words of encouragement
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Old 12-31-2011, 11:07 PM   #2  
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I think you know exactly what you need to do.
I personally have an exercise plan in place while eating healthier food in smaller portions [calorie counting is key] while consuming plenty of water.
I think 35 lbs by July can be done if you remain focused!
Sorry, I'm not too good with words of encouragement. I just know it can be done!
Good luck!
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Old 12-31-2011, 11:21 PM   #3  
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Thanks for the responses. I wouldn't be just having frozen meals. I would also be having other regular (non fast-food meals) in smaller portions. I just meant that instead of having fast-food 2-3x a week, I would try to replace them with healthier meals, such as the weight watchers ones.
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Old 12-31-2011, 11:27 PM   #4  
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Personally, to succeed I had to give up date-based goals. They always backfired, because anything but perfection felt like failure.

Also, if I started "falling behind" schedule, I would do crazy stuff to try to "catch up," and if I came close, even very close, it felt more like failure than success. So if I planned to lose 30 lbs by a certain date, and only lost 27 instead of seeing it as 90% succes, it felt like 100% failure - and I'd overanalyze every choice I made and obsess over how I could have succeeded if I hadn't made this, that, or the other mistake.

For me, I've done much better when I made the goal something I had complete control over, and allowed the weight loss to be the reward rather than the goal.

So my goal is to stick to my 1500 - 1800 exchange plan, and to go to the gym 3 times a week. If I don't suceed 100%, I don't label it as failure, I look at the percentage of success (and I remind myself to grade on the curve).

That's why I LOVE my TOPS group, because every week well all share what we've lost or gained. And the weight recorders announced how many gains and how many losses and the net result, which I then divide by the number of members who weighe din to come up with the average weight loss or gain per person, and I can then compare my results to the average.

Since I started doing that, I've come to realize that the "average" weight loss is much lower than we're taught to believe. In fact, even in my group the average is skewed, because people in weight loss groups tend to do much better than the average. So if my TOPS group is averaging a quarter pound weight loss per person per week, then I can see that my 2 lbs a month is actually quite good.

My doctor actually helped me see that, when I was complaining (at the time I was only losing 1 lb per month) that I "should be losing at least 2 lbs like a normal person," and my doctor told me I was spouting nonsense. He told me that "normal" is losing nothing, or losing and then regaining even more.

When I saw it that way, I realized that all the times I've quite weight loss in the past (because I thought I was failing at it) I had quit over a lie. I wasn't failing, I was succeeding - I just didn't know what sucess really looked like so I called myself a failure and I gave up.

My "success" this time has been slower than all my past "failures," which means that if I had only realized that I had been succeeding, I never would have given up.

Date-based goals were largely responsible for those feelings of failure - because if I fell short even by a smidge I couldn't feel the success of what I had accomplished, only the failure of falling short.

That may not be true of you, but be aware of the possibility so that you don't interpret partial success as total failure.
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Old 12-31-2011, 11:27 PM   #5  
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35 pounds in 7 months is totally doable! That's 5 pounds a month! I think calorie counting is going to be key though. And it doesn't sound like one Weight Watchers meal and a small meal every day is enough calories. You should be eating at least 1,200 calories every day. (By the way, a large #10 at McDonald's with sweet tea is something like 1,240 cals! Yikes! I was pretty upset when I learned that one!)

I'm not sure what your small meal consists of, but planning out three 400 calorie meals a day sounds like the best way to go. I did that, plus ate a small treat every day (low calorie chocolate pudding) and worked out daily to get where I am. I've lost about 46 pounds since I started in mid-July. So, it CAN be done! You just have to be really dedicated to making it happen.

Exercise isn't necessary for weight loss, but I wouldn't do one without the other. Exercise helped tone my body as I lost weight, and it encouraged me to skip the bad foods. I would think, "Okay, do you really want to spoil all your hard work with eating crap food?" Plus, cardio betters your heart health and gives you more energy throughout the day.

I also encourage drinking water instead of diet sodas, since diet sodas do cause water retention which adds up on the scale. Plus, aspartame (found in diet sodas) has some pretty nasty side effects for your health.

Good luck, lady! I think this is an excellent birthday gift for yourself! Come back to the boards any time you need support!

Last edited by KatieC87; 01-01-2012 at 12:36 AM.
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Old 12-31-2011, 11:47 PM   #6  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KatieC87 View Post
35 pounds in 7 months is totally doable! That's 5 pounds a month!
That's a pretty rapid pace to lose weight... especially consistently. It's definitely faster than most people lose.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KatieC87 View Post
You should be eating 1,200 calories every day.
Do you mean "at least 1,200 calories every day?" Because 1,200 calories may be too low (or too high) for some people, depending on their weigh, height, activity level, and medical history. It's also fine to have a caloric range in which to eat- which would mean eating different amounts each day. Some people find great success and flexibility in doing so.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KatieC87 View Post
So, it CAN be done! You just have to be really dedicated to making it happen.
Sometimes weight loss isn't about dedication. Sometimes you can do everything "right" and the weight doesn't come off exactly as the calculations suggest it should. Everyone's body is different- some can lose weight quickly and for others the exact same plan will yield different results.

I think this mentality is why many beat themselves up over not losing as quickly as they want. They are committed and dedicated and don't see the exact same results as others losing around them.

It's why I too am focusing more on behavioral goals than numerical ones, as kaplods said. It sounds like you were dedicated and enjoyed consistent, fast results, but not everyone will be as lucky. No reason to compare ourselves to others. We can only hold ourselves accountable for what we have control over... and unfortunately losing a certain amount of weight by a certain date is not one of them.

Congrats on your weight loss and wish all the best to the OP
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Old 12-31-2011, 11:53 PM   #7  
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one small meal and one large meal a day wont help boost your metabolism. The best way to get that weight off and to keep it off is to boost your metabolism and that involves completely changing the way you eat.

Sounds like you're probably very busy and leave that big meal to fast food or frozen dinners because you dont feel that there is enough time or you dont have enough energy to prepare something. Pre arrange fresh fruit and vegetables for small meals and snacks. you should be eating small meals through out the day and calorie counting. CALORIE COUNTING IS KEY! When i just tried to eat healthy....the weight didnt come off. You need to be very aware of whats going into your body so you know exactly how much you need to burn off and consume to regain energy.

Diet soda is great! But in moderation. Its a great way to curb a sweet craving...but you shouldnt drink it all the time, that's a lot of sodium to put into your body.

DRINK WATER CONSTANTLY! if you dont drink water to get rid of the waste your body is producing, then you will either retain water or retain the waste....neither are very appealing to someone who is trying to lose weight.


Exercise is also key, I would try to get in at least 40 minutes of exercise 4 times a week. I workout for at least an hour everyday (give myself a break every one in awhile) and thats when i see the pound strip off. I lost 25 pounds in 3 1/2 months. and if i can do that, then 35 pounds is totally attainable by your birthday! You just need a lifestyle change to lose the weight properly and to keep it off!

you got this girl!
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Old 01-01-2012, 12:51 AM   #8  
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indiblue Thanks for pointing that out! I did mean "at least 1,200 calories," and I edited my post to reflect that.

I agree that it's a rule that doesn't apply to everyone. When I first decreased my portion sizes and was working out every day, I easily felt full eating 900 - 1,000 calories a day. It's just a number "the experts" have come up with as being the lowest number at which a person can get all the nutrients they need.

But I stick by the idea that 5 pounds a month for 7 months isn't an extraordinary amount of weight to lose. With 4 weeks in a month, that works out to 1.25 pounds a week. Based on the information given here, there's no reason to believe that she personally couldn't lose 1.25 pounds a week, so I feel fine saying the goal is possible.

Whether or not a date-based goal is a good idea depends on the person, I think. For me, date-based goals keep me on track. Like kaplods said, it can lead to feeling like you've failed even though you succeeded at losing X pounds, but without a deadline, I don't feel as motivated to go to the gym every day or to keep my calories in check every day. I currently don't have a date goal, and I've been very lax in allowing myself treats because I'll get there at some point.

The OP should definitely not compare her weight loss to anyone else's. She's lost 60 pounds up to this point, so she should know her rate of weight loss and only compare her losses to her previous losses. Or, when she changes her exercise/eating habits to reflect her new goal, she should compare future losses against past losses. If I implied that she should compare her own losses to my own or anyone else, I'm sorry. That was not my intention. I simply meant that it is possible for people to lose that much in a month or in a seven-month period.
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Old 01-01-2012, 01:05 AM   #9  
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Thank you for the responses! I see everyone's success stories and they really show me that losing the weight is possible. I just wasn't sure if the changes that I am going to be making would be enough. I lost the previous 60 pounds by just eating less and keeping busy. I never counted calories, so don't really know anything about that aspect of losing weight.
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Old 01-01-2012, 01:53 AM   #10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xLindsay46 View Post
Thank you for the responses! I see everyone's success stories and they really show me that losing the weight is possible. I just wasn't sure if the changes that I am going to be making would be enough. I lost the previous 60 pounds by just eating less and keeping busy. I never counted calories, so don't really know anything about that aspect of losing weight.
In that case, I think counting calories has the potential to do wonders for you. For myself, when I started my weight loss journey, I never would have guessed I was consuming all the calories I was. So, recording those calories for every meal really helps keep me on track, and it keeps my expectations realistic for my weekly weigh-in. If I've stayed within my calorie range and exercised, I can expect to see a loss. If I ate maintenance calories or over maintenance, I know to not expect a loss. (By the way, if you Google "calories needed to lose weight," you'll find plenty of calculators. This is the one I use. That calculator actually should be uber helpful for you because it lets you put in a goal date and will tell you the number of calories you should consume daily to reach your goal weight by your goal date based on your activity level. Just keep in mind that online calculators are an estimate, and you might need to do some tweaking to get the number that's right for you. In my experience, they've been pretty accurate.)

I keep it simple. I have a notebook where I record every meal and total the calories at the end of the day. I stay in the 1,200 - 1,600 range to lose weight. I don't count calories burned through exercise because it gets complicated and exercise machines are notoriously inaccurate. So, I just consider any calories burned through exercise to be icing on the cake.

I don't want to get too detailed here because I'm not sure if you're really interested in picking up calorie counting, but it's the only plan that's worked for me. Let me know if you have any questions/concerns!
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Old 01-01-2012, 02:21 AM   #11  
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Drink water like its your job. The more water you drink, the less diet soda you will consume. Besides the sodium content (and potential for water retention), the chemicals aren't doing you any good. Ween yourself off the soda.

About the sodium, frozen meals are loaded with it too--so be careful. I totally understand that they are a prize compared to fast foods, and very convenient; just note that the trade off is the sodium and you may still be a little hungry sometimes when you eat them and if that is the case, supplement the frozen meal with a salad or some frozen unsauced veggies. Even Jenny Craig and Nutrisystem require that you supplement the meals with fresh veg (not sure about fruit tho).

If you are eating 2 meals and used to that, and have lost weight on that, it probably isn't going to matter that you continue to do that. However, if you find yourself hungry, do reach or a piece of fruit between meals.

Also, since you aren't aware of calories, keep a log of what you eat and look it up on a site like calorie count or fitday or livestrong or loseit. Obviously, the calories are going to be listed on any packaged foods. By starting a log, you'll get an idea of your consumption. Too little and you risk slowing your metabolism, and being so hungry you may sabotage yourself; too much and...no weight loss.

When I have a "serious" week, I go for 2 fruit snacks (morning/afternoon), and Glucerna (diabetic) shake meal replacements for breakfast and lunch...followed by a plate of whatever dinner is (generally something balanced/generic protein/veg/starch). Its really convenient and a no brainer. I do pretty well with that a week at a time and if I find I'm more hungry than usual for lunch I have a salad with protein or a can of Progresso soup (very filling and a caloric dream).

Your goal is totally doable. Good luck and I wish you success.
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Old 01-01-2012, 06:32 AM   #12  
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I always direct people who are starting out to this site:
http://www.choosemyplate.gov/myplate/index.aspx

It's a great tool to see how many calories YOU should be eating a day based on your age, height, weight, gender and the amount of exercise you do. Also, the food plan is all about healthy eating - feeding your body the good stuff 3 times a day! I think 2 meals a day isn't good for you, because your body might be storing things away to compensate that you aren't feeding it regularly. Obviously, not everyone can just hop on the healthy eating bandwagon, it took me a few months to realise that I actually wanted to, but nevertheless it's a great guide to start you off on educating yourself on healthy eating.

I've read in multiple sources that if you're excising consistently then you should eat 5 meals a day but divide the calories up to suit your style. Personally I don't have time to do this because of my job, so I stick to 3 and try on a day off to snack on fruit to fill me up.

Water should be worshipped. It's just a fact. It hydrates you and it helps with your weight loss like you wouldn't believe. So replace that diet soda (gradually if you're used to it and can't go cold turkey) with water.

I agree with kaplods in that time based goals are stressful. If you don't meet your "quota" then you might get upset and then lose faith in yourself. You just cannot afford to doubt yourself during a weight loss journey, you have to be strong willed to get through. So if I were you, I would think about your goal in a different way, think more like "I will lose as much weight as I can before my birthday."
I wanted to be 150 lbs by February 11th a few months ago. If I lost my usual 1 lb a week I would have achieved it. Well it's January 1st and I'm 162 lbs - life happens and you just have to deal with it and not let it get to you. Am I upset I won't reach it? No, because I've still come so far and I'll reach it in my own time!

I think you should most definitely start using your treadmill. Get on it for 20 minutes a day 3 times a week at least and break up a sweat. Even if you sweat by walking fast, that's fine. In time you'll get stronger and you'll be able to go faster. Exercise is so important to weight loss.

So is your goal achievable? Maybe, it's definitely not unreasonable. But if you have faith in yourself, if you can stay dedicated for all that time then you can do it. I believe anyone can lose weight if they really want to, but they have to really want to change. Because that's what it's all about really, changing your lifestyle to become a healthier person.

I wish you all the best, this site is an amazing source of support and inspiration. I don't think I would have had quite the same success as I've had so far if it weren't for this message board!
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Old 01-01-2012, 11:14 AM   #13  
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I have to agree with Kaplods and other posters that time related goals are just recipes for disaster. While your goal is certainly reachable if you lose at a steady rate, you must not deem yourself a failure if you don't if you don't happen to reach it.

I've had time-related goals and if I wasn't meeting them I would get stressed and feel like a failure even though I still lost weight. Just worry about living your life--you're in your 20s so you've got plenty of time to lose weight.
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